Aby-a-Day – 3 June: “Toys are a caricature of reality” (Cinema Sunday)

I think we are in a golden age of cat toys right now. There is a lot more attention paid to the unique needs of cat toys vs dog toys these days, and toys are designed with an increased focus towards cats’ specific needs. But do the things we think are fun for cats to play with the same sorts of things that cats actually think are fun to play with?

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Back in the States a few years back, Petco came out with a collection of Star War toys and accessories. They have just arrived in Sweden, apparently, because I have seen them in several shops here. Most of the cat toys are along the lines of mice dressed like Luke and Leia or C-3PO and R2-D2, but this one really caught my eye: Han Solo mousie in carbonite crinkly cat toy! It’s basically a crinkle toy, with a mousie. Dressed as Han Solo.

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Mousie Han also can come out of the carbonite.

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Lorelai was…underwhelmed.

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Oh, she tried to make it be fun…

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But it kind of just wasn’t.

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So then I showed Rory the Grumpy Cat toy. This one is basically a furry rattle ball with a tail.

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Now, that’s what I’m talking about! says Rory.

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Rory freaking loves this toy!

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Awww…look at poor Mousie Han Solo over there. Does Rory feel bad about snubbing him?

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NOPE.

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Finally, I showed Rory what I thought would be the winner: the chirping bird toy.

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It’s definitely one of the prettiest cat toys I’ve seen. The tail feathers are lovely, and the fur used for the body looks feathery. When moved, it makes a variety of different, very realistic birdsong sounds.

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Alfred actually checked the bird out first, while Rory was still busy with Grumpy Cat.

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Finding that it wasn’t food, Freddy soon lost interest.

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Finally I got Rory’s attention and she came to investigate the bird.

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I think at first she was a little afraid of it.

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She played with it for a while…but eventually went back to her bestie, Grumpy Cat. Out of the three, that seems to be the favourite. The bird is great, too – it’s my favourite (as if that counts for something). As for Mousie Han Solo…yeah, I think that toy was made to appeal to the owners, not the cats.

Mere photos could not capture the hilarity of Rory playing with the bird, though. Here is a video of her playing with it that I dare you not to laugh at.

Aby-a-Day – 21 May: Playmobil Purrfect Stay Cat Boarding (Miniature Monday)

I know Playmobil has kind of “Poor man’s Lego reputation, but they have got a lot more choices in the cat department. Playmobil Purrfect Stay Cat Boarding set.

Not gonna lie; overall, I prefer Legos. But Playmobil has some interesting pieces, and I have been known to mix Legos and Playmobil pieces in the quest for the perfect Strollercat action figure.

It kind of started when Björn bought me the Playmobil Woman with Cat Family set as a surprise. After that, I dragged out all my other cat pieces and scoured eBay for more.

Then we saw this ad for a contest in Kattliv where the prize was this set. Well, I needed that shiny device! So we found one in a toy store.

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Alfred was eager to help me build it.

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It’s actually a pretty cool set.

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Hauspanther would be proud of all the catification going on up in here. And the detail is fun, too. There are stickers to put on little cans of cat food as labels and a sticker for the litter box that looks like (clean, unused) litter!

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Only one problem: not enough kitties! So I added all the random Playmobil cats I had collected and added them in.

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Like this small cat tree (with carpet stickers for the shelves).

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And these two iterations of Strollercats. The little grey one is, of course, Lorelai.

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This one is my absolute favourite, though. Somewhere along the line I picked up a veterinary set which included this patient, complete with Cone of Shame.

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But the best part is, she even has stitches! I’m not sure which set this goes with; I must have gotten it as a random cat piece on eBay. I can find the cat with stitches as a part of this set, but she hasn’t got the cone or the bed.

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Here’s the house again with the extra cats added in. Much better.

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Oh, wait! Here, let’s add two more cats…

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Suddenly, the poor cat boarding house was attacked by Roryzilla!

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She’s already using her grabby Aby hands to pick things up, as you can see.

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Oh well. At least Freddy didn’t sit on it…

Aby-a-Day – 24 April: Sketches of Logan (Cartoon Tuesday)

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Logan playing with his favourite fishes.

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I did a lot of work comparing the body type differences between Abys and Singas, creating the cartoon “characters” of Logan and Alfred.

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And also comparing them to the established characters of Angel and Jacoby.

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I wanted to make sure that Logan’s profile was Singapura, not Abyssinian.

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This one is my favourite, though. Logan’s telling Björn, “No, mamma hasn’t given us any food!”

Aby-a-Day – 26 March: Re Ment Pose Skeleton Cat (Miniature Monday)

Personally, I think cat skeletons are kind of cool. You may remember
my roughly life-sized skeleton cat, Os-car I found at CVS one Halloween. So when Björn showed me a picture of Re-Ment’s Pose Skeleton Cat, I had to get one.

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It’s one of those typical cool Japanese toys with tons of special touches. The cat comes with a litter box (I think…it might be a bed), a typical Japanese wand cat toy, and a belled collar. I added a Schleich cat tower and some food and water bowls I had from another set, and it seems that the scale on all of them is roughly the same.

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The amount of detail on this little thing is incredible. The collar has stitching marks and a leather look, and the bell has a seam and the hole at the bottom to let the sound out.

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Of course, when he heard the camera, Jacoby had to come see what I was taking photos of…and why I wasn’t taking photos of him.

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Jake was very curious about the little cat skeleton and tried to pick it up.

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He only succeeded in knocking over the cat tree. Then he wandered off.

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Thanks a lot, Jake!

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It’s really a tiny figure (as you can see compared to Jake’s paw), but it has eight points of articulation (tail, both hips, mid-spine, both shoulders, neck and jaw)! I really adore this little thing.

Aby-a-Day – 21 March: Lovely bones (Cartoon Tuesday)

Alfred loves bones. He loves chewing. Whenever we have lamb or beef ribs, he gets a few more chew toys. I have actually bought him chewing things meant for dogs…and he has loved them.

So this is a doodle I did in class one day about the OTP of Freddy and the bone.

Aby-a-Day – 16 April: “Pop” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

This week’s Photo Hunt subject is “Pop.”

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I recently discovered the Privacy Pop bed tent, and it is awesome. Haven’t you always wanted a bed fort? I may be 50 years old, but this thing is awesome.

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You’re meant to put it on a bedframe, under the mattress, but it also works if your mattress is on the floor.

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And it comes in all sizes, except King. Which means if you have a Full or Queen bed, you and your significant other can have your own private little nest.

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Not only humans love the Privacy Pop…Jacoby thinks it’s pretty cool, too.

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(And it only two about two attempts for him to learn not to try to jump on top of it!)

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Jake has always loved to play with his round lambbones on the bed.

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And a bed inside a Privacy Pop tent is just as marvelous a playground, if not better.

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He really loves those lambbones. He loved them when he wasn’t even a year old yet, he loved them when he was four years old, and he still loves them just as much now, when he’s about to turn seven.

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Aby-a-Day – 14 April: Give me the kitten until he is seven and I’ll give you the cat

Today is Jacoby’s 7th birthday!

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As is tradition, he got his cat food can-cake with a candle on top.

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He loves his birthday cake!

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He knows he can’t eat any of it til the candle is lit, so he paced around impatiently while I got out the matches.

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“Hurry up, mom! Light the candle already!!”

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Abys have no fear of flame…this is a reason why I never have candles.

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Fire on food? No problem!

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Angel was completely uninterested in the festivities.

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Nom nom nom

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I let him eat a little bit, and then saved the rest for his evening meal.

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After the cake, it was time for his present! A new Hexbug!This is the Hexbug Nano V.2, which can climb up tubes.

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What’s nice about it is, on the floor, it seems to just want to go around in circles. It doesn’t try to escape like the other ones. This seems to be more fun for cats, too.

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Kylie always gets involved in Jake’s birthday – hers is only 10 days away, on 24 April.

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Here’s a quick little movie of Jake playing with his Hexbug, with a cameo by Tessie.

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Happy birthday, Jakey!