Aby-a-Day – 10 Maj: Lorelai’s love-hate leash relationship (Movie Monday)

With Lorelai going in and out of heat, sometimes she needs to be on her leash when we go out.

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Today was one of those days.

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It was a really nice, summerlike day today: 20°C (70°F). Even though we still aren’t 100%, we couldn’t let this day pass without taking the cats out. So we took out some recycling.

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Strangely, Izaak did not want to go with us today. So it was just Alfred and Rory.

But she is so good on her leash! I made a little video to show how fast she walks alongside me – I can actually walk at a normal pace most of the time. Keep an eye out for Freddy’s cameo!

Aby-a-Day – 9 May: Oops, I did it again (Silly Cinema Singapura Sunday)

This was today. Izaak wedged himself into Angel’s bed…again.

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Although, she seems to be getting kind of used to it.

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She might even, dare I say it…actually like having the little guy around?

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Zak seems to really love cuddling with her. It’s funny, but they don’t really ever associate apart from the afternoon cudddle sheshes.

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Maybe she just enjoys the free grooming in the spot she can’t reach.

Here’s a short video of them together…what do you think? Friends?

Aby-a-Day – 18 Januari: “I climbed a tree to see the world” (Movie Monday)

When we were outside yesterday, I noticed that Izaak’s tree was looking pretty darn picturesque with all the snow and everything. Zak loves to pose in that tree, so I thought we’d have a little photo session.

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I was right.

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Since I lost Jacoby, Zak is pretty much my best poser. I can put him in his tree, and he’ll stay there and let me snap photos.

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He really likes this tree. It’s just the right height, and it has a little spot between the branches that he feels quite comfortable in.

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People were sledding down the hill, and Zak watched them from his vantage point.

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For being an engineered purebred cat, he looks really natural in a snowy tree. I love the snow flakes frosting his fur.

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I also love that I am reflected in his eyes.

After he got down from his tree. I made a little video of him walking back to our front door.

Aby-a-Day – 17 Januari: Let’s go outside! (Swedish Cinema Sunday)

We went outside with the cats today. Lorelai was the most eager, as usual…

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She has zero fat and thin, sleek fur, but she doesn’t seem to feel the cold at all.

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The boys, on the other hand, kind of hovered by the door.

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Finally, Alfred decided to explore. Seeing as he’s got the most insulation, he should do…

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Our upstairs neighbours were outside sledding. Oksana is always happy to see Freddy.

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He and Rory explored their sleds.

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Eventually, everyone decided they had had enough snow and wanted to go back inside.

I also made a little video of our outing. Enjoy!

Aby-a-Day – 29 December 2020: Not throwing away his shot (Cartoon Tuesday)

It’s finished! I finally finished Dashiell Hamilton! It was a real process, too. But as I mentioned last week, I got a new Paperlike screen protector for my iPad, and it makes drawing on the screen so much more natural and organic. In fact, I did most of this in Procreate. Only the last few bits were done in Photoshop.

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And the very first bit. I started with a photo of the suit and a photo of Dash in Photoshop. Then I went to Procreate and did the sketches.

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Getting the suit just right was my biggest challenge. It took five layers to make it look the way I wanted it to. I did two base colour layers in Procreate, and a low-opacity layer of the actual suit (done in Photoshop) to add the sheen and texture. Then the ink layer was moved above the colour layers. Finally, I discovered a lace brush in Procreate, which was perfect for his sleeves and cravat.

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Dash himself was a little easier, because…well, I’ve done more ruddy Abyssinians than I’ve done 18th century emerald-green silk suits. All layers except the top fur texture layer were done on the iPad.

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Put all the layers together, along with the whiskers and a little shadow, and put him onstage…and, finally, history has its eyes on Dash!

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And, just because I can, I saved the video of the whole Procreate process for anyone who’s interested. Click on the above image to watch the magic happen in Flickr.

Aby-a-Day – 10 November 2020: Izaak and Major (Cartoon Tuesday)

Just an idea that popped into my head this morning…Izaak as Pixie, and Joe Biden’s Shepherd Major as Brutus. I used a Pixie and Brutus fan art by DiviantArt user Space Meme Stardust as my reference for the first rough sketch.

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Because my new MacBook Pro hasn’t arrived yet, and because I hated the hand-drawn speech bubbles, I turned on my laptop for a few minutes just to add them (and my signature) in Photoshop.

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I also saved the video of my drawing process, just for fun (ie, because Procreate lets me). Click on the image to watch it on Flickr.

Aby-a-Day – 1 November 2020: Feline Manoeuvres in the Dark (Cinema Sunday)

Admittedly, these are not the best photos. The iPhone 11 Pro’s night setting is great for photographing stationary objects…but cats, not so much. But I wanted to see how well it did at night videos. So what we have here are screenshots from the video.

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You see, Winter Time in Europe starts a week before it starts in North America, so we set the clocks back last Sunday. Which means that where we live, the sun sets around 4pm. Which makes running the ordinary chores we have to do get done in the dark. We needed to take out some garbage and recycling, and, as usual, Lorelai, Izaak and Alfred came with us. However, ever since the Runaway Rory adventure, she has to stay on a leash.

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But Zak and Freddy are still free to run.

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Hopefully, next year, we’ll be on permanent Summer Time, and winters will be a little less dark.

Here’s the video of the cats walking back after we dumped all the rubbish.

Aby-a-Day – 25 September 2020: Licking leads to biting (Friday Flashback)

Facebook has been reminding me a lot about Alfred and Logan lately. This one came up today.

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Look at little Logan, sleeping peacefully on the IKEA cat bed.

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Suddenly, a wild Freddy appears!

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Freddy uses licking.

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It’s super effective!

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Although, to his credit, Logan did get a pretty good chomp in on Freddy’s ear.

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I also made a little video of the encounter; click on the image to watch it on Flickr.

Aby-a-Day – 20 September 2020: More Singa Sharing (Cinema Singapura Sunday)

So, remember what I said about Singapuras sharing, and the other cats just letting them get away with it?

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It doesn’t always go down that way.

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You know that IKEA cat bed we have? Well, Alfred was sleeping on it.

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And Izaak wanted to be sleeping on it.

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So, he pulled his usual “Well, I’ll cuddle on in here trick.”

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Freddy wasn’t having it.

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He showed Zak the meaning of the word “smackdown.”

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At first, I thought Zak was going to give up.

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Never underestimate the determination of a Singapura.

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After the tussle, Freddy let Zak cuddle in, and they slept together peacefully after that.

Here’s a video of the whole interaction. It’s a bit long, but it’s fun to watch their interaction.

Aby-a-Day – 6 September 2020: Running around outside (Cinema Sunday)

We took the cardboard to the recycling area today, and of course we had help.

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We’re fortunate to have two recycling stations right in our Område. We used to have to go about half a mile to get rid of plastic, metal, and glass…which was a bitch in winter. Now, we just go a few yards.

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Izaak and Alfred were particularly buddy-buddy today.

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I love watching Zak run.

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“What?”

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I love it so much when one cat jumps over another…

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Of course, Lorelai was with us too.

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And, as always, she was so joyful when she was running.

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Rory loves to run. She practically flies when she runs. It’s joy personified.

Here’s a little video of the three of them having fun outside.

Aby-a-Day – 3 Augusti 2020: While Freddy was filming (Movie Monday)

Whilst Alfred was busy recording yesterday’s post, everyone else was busy outside, too…even if Freddy didn’t capture any of it.

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In the shady areas of our område, right now there are a lot of house flies in the shady areas. And Lorelai was hunting them.

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She is an excellent fly-hunter inside, as well.

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Probably better than outside, since there are no birds to distract her in the house.

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Angel was watching everything from the balcony…lately, she’s been happy to join us via the balcony instead of going outside with the rest of us. But hey, she’s participating; who am I to complain?

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Meanwhile, Izaak was busy in the front of the building.

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He found a crane fly and had a lot of fun hunting it.

Speaking of hunting, here’s a video of Rory and Zak hunting flies, with some additional footage of Freddy with the GoPro.

Aby-a-Day – 31 Juli 2020: The day Jacoby came to stay (Friday Flashback)

Tomorrow will be the eleventh anniversary of the day Sherry brought us Jacoby

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He basically walked in, said, “Okay, this is home?” and that was that. He was completely unfazed by Kylie, Tessie and Angel.

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Typical Jake. Bulletproof from the start.

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And, as a bonus, here are two videos my ex took that I never even watched before. Look at him go! Click on the images to view the videos in another tab on Flickr.

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He really did just walk in and take over our apartment.

Aby-a-Day – 18 & 19 Juli 2020: Bringing Lorelai back home (Special Swedish Saturday and Cinema Sunday)

Yesterday, we drove back to Överum to collect Lorelai from her sleepover with Io. When we got there, everyone was outside; Rory in her car cage and Io on his leash.

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Look at how handome Io is in the sunshine!

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We aren’t sure if they actually mated during the past week

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As soon as we got there, we put her harness and leash on so she could say farewell to her beau.

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They weren’t unfriendly towards each other…

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…But Rory wasn’t all googly-eyes over Io, either.

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Rory was super happy to see us again. I wonder if she thought we’d left her and gone forever?

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Rory was VERY happy to go for a little walk around Karin’s yard.

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Rory said her goodbyes to Io and we were back on the road. If Rory hasn’t gotten pregnant from this visit, we’ll make the trip again in a few weeks. I hope she is knocked up, though; we didn’t get home til after 10pm, which is why this is another two-day post!

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On the way back, we stopped at Björn’s brother Örjan’s house.

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Looks like someone really missed her daddy!

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When we got home, we brought Rory into the apartment still in her car carrier. Izaak and Alfred were the first to greet her. I think Zak missed her!

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After her evening chicken neck, Rory was acting like she hadn’t been away for a week. We just need to wait and see if anything developed between her and Io.

I guess the LivePhoto function on my iPhone got switched on again, because all the photos I took of Rory’s journey were also saved as LivePhotos. I compiled them into one video, so take a look at what just might be the origin story of Rory’s kittens.

Aby-a-Day – 14 Juli 2020: Just a quick little romantic sketch (Cartoon Tuesday)

Based on the events of this weekend, I wanted to do a romantic bride and groom drawing of Lorelai and Io.

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So I did a quick 1920’s theme (being that we are now in the new Roaring Twenties), and then changed its colour and lightened it.

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Then I did a second sketch.

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I knew I wanted the heart and Rory’s flower to be red, so I made a “red layer.”

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Then I coloured the sketch in.

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Finally, a few highlghts, and…voilá: a finished sketch. I may come back and finish this, but at least the idea is out of my head.

And…because I can, here’s a video of the drawing in progress.

Aby-a-Day – 5 Juli: A walk outside (Cinema Sunday)

When we take out recyclables, we often take Izaak, Lorelai and Alfred with us. I made a little movie of us walking over there. I also tried to capture the difference between the Singapura gait and the Abyssinian gait, so there’s some slo-mo incorporated in the video.

On the way back, I took still photos.

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For a moment there, I thought Rory was going to go down the slide…

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…but, no…

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…she took the stairs like a perfect lady.

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Zak on the other hand…

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…Zak barrelled down the hill next to the slide like a bat out of hell.

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I had tried to get Dashiell to come along with us. He was at the door…but I couldn’t get him to go out on his own. Since we were going to the recycling bins and not just outside, I didn’t force him.

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When he saw Zak and Freddy having fun outside when we got back to our building, I think he regretted his decision. Ah, well…maybe next time, Dash.

Aby-a-Day – 23 Juni 2020: A quick editorial sketch (Cartoon Tuesday)

Chatting with a group of friends yesterday evening, I had a sudden thought that I needed to draw immediately, because I knew it would amuse them. I drew this in almost exactly an hour; I asked for a breed suggestion at 19:33 and shared it with my friends at 20:31. I am not going to explain it here…if you get it, you get it. That’s the nature of editorial cartoons.

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I also exported the drawing stream, because they are so much fun to watch. Remember that this is all one hour, and you can see my idea evolving as I draw it (Click on the image to watch it in Flickr).

Aby-a-Day – 15 Juni 2020: More Magpies (Movie Monday)

I know I posted about magpies just yesterday, but by sheer coincidence we had another magpie encounter this afternoon.

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Björn and I were outside with the cats, when the magpies started yelling. We looked over, and sure enough, they were yelling at Alfred.

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Freddy noped out, but Izaak was very interested in what was going on up in the branches.

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The magpies yelled at Zak, and Zak yelled right back at them.

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Lorelai, of course, was also interested in the screeching birds.

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She looked like she wanted to go up after them, but she didn’t go any higher in the tree.

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Zak, on the other hand…

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…I think even Rory was impressed with how high Zak was willing to climb.

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Zak is a deceptively good climber.

Here is a video of the entire encounter with the magpies. It’s sometimes hard to see them in the leaves, but you can certainly hear them!

Aby-a-Day – 9 Juni 2020: Freddy the cat burglar (Cartoon Tuesday)

I had an idea today that I just had to sketch out. I was musing that I draw a lot of cartoons witch feature Lorelai and Izaak (especially Zak), but not so many starring Alfred. And I had a lightbulb go off in my head. I started out with the above sketch and a sneaky walk animation sequence I found online.

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This is my final sketch. Freddy the cat burglar! He’s got keys and a crowbar because his specialty is breaking and entering.

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Because Procreate has a recording feature, and I did all this work on my iPad (unlike some other drawings that go back and forth between Procreate and Photoshop), I also have a video of the drawing developing. Click on the image to watch it in a new tab/window on Flickr.

Aby-a-Day – 24 Maj 2020: Walking home after taking out the recyclables (Cinema Sunday)

We’ve trained Alfred, Lorelai and Izaak to come along with us when we take out the garbage and recyclables.

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And they know, when we let them out when we’re carrying bags, that we’re not just “going outside,” but we’re going out to the bins. These three all know how to walk home from the bus stop from vet visits, and the bins are just next to the bus stop.

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They love it…and they do know the difference. Dashiell hasn’t had enough practice outside to do this…and Angel is happier at home.

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Rory so loves to run free outside. I say she is the very embodiment of joy when she runs.

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Sometimes, she even climbs trees!

Here’s the video I made on the way back (note the Swedish social distancing).

Aby-a-Day – 10 Maj 2020: Remember when we used to go to cat shows..? (Cat Show Cinema Singapura Sunday)

A friend on Facebook posted a photo of her cats today with the caption: “Is this really all we do now? We can’t leave?! When is the next cat show?! We’re tired of sitting home!!!!”

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Dude…I so know that feel.

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Because we weren’t able to go to our favourite show in Örebro this year, we haven’t been to a show since November, when we went with Lorelai and Izaak to Turku. It’s the one thing I really miss since the pandemic started.

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So, I went back in my backlog of photos and found this set of Zak at the Turku show, after our collection of show wand toys fell over.

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He was so cute, playing with the toys. We mainly only ever play with wand toys at shows, so this was a treat.

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I even made a short video of it (click on the image to view it on another tab in Flickr).