Aby-a-Day – December 29: Snö! (Cartoon Tuesday)

It finally snowed here in Skövde yesterday! Not quite a white Christmas, but close.

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I’ve been drawing on my iPad again, using both Paper by 53 and Photoshop Sketch. This picture of Jacoby is actually based on the view of the first snow from Björn’s living room window. I’m pretty proud of it, since I haven’t been drawing that much lately.

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Of course, I also drew this picture of Lutfisk after a traditional Christmas day dinner at Björn’s parents’ house…so don’t expect a brilliant comeback of my cartoons anytime soon…

Other People’s Abys – Calendar Cats

Check this out – today’s Page-a-Day Cat Calendar page features a Somali on a leash!

“Like their short-haired Abyssinian cousins, Somalis are both wild-looking and elegant, sporting colors from a traditional ruddy hue to a more unusual blue, all with the characteristic ticked fur that gives them their exotic appearance. Playful and athletic, Somalis can turn anything into a jungle gym – even your drapes – but if you take them outside for some R & R, keep them on a leash or watch out! These cats can be up a tree, or out of the yard, faster than you can shout their name!”

This lovely lady is Luna, and she lives in Massachusetts – Belmont, to be exact! I wonder if this photo was taken last year during all our snow?

Aby-a-Day – May 1: Warm and Wonderful Feline Fashions (Fashion Friday)

I actually got a chance to try out Angel’s new purple parka in some actual snow before it all melted away.

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I took these photos in our courtyard the day before Easter.

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We still had a good amount of snow on the ground then, as you can see. We actually still had snow in our courtyard as late as April 17.

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I took Angel out into the little snow patch so we could see how her coat stands up to real outdoor use. She meowed a LOT while we were out there…I am not sure if she missed Jacoby or if she was just especially chatty about being outside.

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It was a quick outing, so I didn’t bother with her harness and leash. I did put on her undershirt though.

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The sleeves seem to be about the right length. I like the way the faux fur ruff frames her face. It really is a perfect coat for her.

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Here’s how it looks from the back. It seems like it’s a good length and covers her back well.

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And she can walk in it with no problems.

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She may not like walking, but the coat doesn’t hinder her. Next step: boots!

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That should be interesting…

Speaking of fashionable Abys, I also wanted to share these photos of our friends Sanna and Sketsi strolling about on a spring day in Helsinki.

Aren’t they adorable?

Sketsi is modeling his bomber jacket and knit cap that Jake and I sent him in one of our box exchanges.

Sketsi’s a boy. He just likes pink, but he’s secure in his neutered manhood. Sanna says that Sketsi is one of those males who can rock pink.

He was seagull watching on this outing.

There goes one now, apparently.

He really likes his pink knitted cap from our friend Sara at ScooterKnits. And, speaking of Sara and her infamous cat hats…she’s written a how-to book with patterns to knit or crochet your own cat hats! How awesome is that?

Also, please note that
her book‘s cover model is none other than Vivi, a red silver Abyssinian!

The book has patterns for the Pom-Pom and the Elf hats that Jake and Angel have…but the infamous Mistletoe hat is not included.

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I’m still hoping she makes the Hanukkah Hat someday…

Aby-a-Day – April 22: Wordless Wednesday (Whattaya mean, there’s still snow on the ground!?)

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Aby-a-Day – April 11: “Yet” (Saturday Photo Hunt)

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

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The calendar may say it’s April 11th, and Easter may have come and gone…

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…but it snowed again in Boston this past Wednesday.

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So despite what the calendar may tell you…

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…in Boston…

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…it’s not spring yet.

Aby-a-Day – April 3: Ready for Winter (Fashion Friday)

I thought Angel needed a more feminine coat, so I went looking on eBay and I found this purple and white puffy parka for only $9.99. The seller was in Rhode Island, too…it’s like it was meant to be!

It wasn’t completely perfect, though. The coat closed with a strip of velcro, and it was rather warn out. It wouldn’t stay all the way closed when Angel moved – and an open coat won’t keep anyone warm.

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So, I decided to fix it up. My plan? Replace the velcro with a zipper. There was just one catch, though…I’ve never sewn a zipper in my life. I briefly considered taking it to my tailor and just letting them deal with it – they’re aces at zippers – but then my do-it-yourself nature came out and I said to myself, “I can do this.” So I looked up “how to sew a zipper” on Google.

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I read the instructions carefully. And then I completely disregarded them because I couldn’t figure out which of the spare sewing machine feet I have was the zipper foot. I also got the wrong kind of zipper, because I couldn’t find the right kind in the right size and the right colour for the right price. You see, there are two kinds of zippers: open zippers, which are the kind that open up on the bottom, the kind you usually use on jackets; and then there are closed zippers, which you use on things like pants and skirts and bags. The only 7″ purple zipper I could find was the closed kind. But who’s really going to see it, right? It’s just a cat coat, and that part will be down by her belly anyway.

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I pretty much made a hash of the sewing. I basically ignored all the zipper sewing-in rules and just sewed the damn thing on. Twice. And then reinforced it with zig-zag stitches. It works, though, and that’s what matters.

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I found some white braid frog closures on Etsy. I really wanted little coat toggles, but I couldn’t find any that were the right size and colour. Their sole purpose is to cover up my crappy zipper sewing, but they also help keep the coat closed and they nicely balance out the white on the back of the coat. All in all, if you don’t look too closely, it looks really nice. (Don’t look too closely at this photo; you can totally see the end of the wrong type of zipper hanging out at the bottom.)

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It’s warm, and it looks amazing on her. That’s what matters.

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And she loves it! Look at her. She is fierce! Apparently Jacoby isn’t the only clotheshorse in the family.

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Oh. Well. Speak of the devil…look who’s here!

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Angel was less than thrilled at Jake’s photobombing.

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Can you hear her exasperated sigh through your computer screen?

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“Hey, Angel. Whatcha doin’? Nice coat!”

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“Oh! Mom, are you taking pictures? Awesome! I’m ready!”

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“How’s this? Is this good?”                                 (*sigh*)

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“Or is this my better side?”                                (“Seriously?”)

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“Whatever, I’m here now, so go ahead and shoot.”              (“Oy…”)

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“Hate to break it to you, Jake…this is MY photoshoot. Not yours. Mine.”

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“Really? Hmph. Just because you have a new coat? I have lots of coats.”

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“What. Ever. Go ahead then. Don’t mind me…Obviously you aren’t, anyway…”

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“My eye. I am rolling it.”

Aby-a-Day – March 27: New Boots (Fashion Friday)

I want to try Jacoby’s blue Muttluks on Angel the next time we go outside in cold weather, so I need to Jake a new pair of boots – hopefully one that matches his green parka a little better.

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I found a really cute – and inexpensive – set of waterproof boots on Amazon and thought they might work well.

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If nothing else, they match his fur rather nicely!

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He didn’t really like them though.

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I think it was the fact that they have a hard sole, compared to the Muttluks’ soft leather sole.

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He was actually able to kick these off fairly easily. I don’t think they’re going to work on his feet outside if he can’t keep them on in the house. I thought the zipper and velcro was a nice idea, though. So far, the Muttluks have been the only boots he hasn’t been able to kick off, so I guess I’ll just have to find a pair of green Muttluks on sale over the summer for next winter’s outings.