Aby-a-Day – 30 Maj: Running around outside (Swedish Sunday)

The other day, we took the cats out. I was trying to capture the differences in their gaits.

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I kind of managed to capture it on “film.”

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Went we went out, I took the big camera with the long lens, and I captured all of them walking and running outside.

Here they are outside. I know, it’s 18 minutes long…but it’s interesting if you want to see their different movements outside

Aby-a -Day – 11 Maj: Family Cat (Cartoon Tuesday)

So last night, we watched the most recent, and quite possibly the best, episode of Family Guy…Season 19, Episode 19: Family Cat.

While it does include some dog-centric stereotypes, it’s actually a pretty cat-friendly episode, and it discusses the conundrum of Toxoplasma gondii. And, you have to admit, that one cat on the far left looks a lot like a cartoon Aby.

I am not sure how long this link will last, but you can watch the episode on YouTube.

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 – 12 Februari: “I’m here live…I’m not a cat” (Photoshop Friday)

The meme of the week has been the Texas attorney who accidentally turned on a kitten filter during a Zoom court proceeding. And of course, once it got out, the jokes and memes followed.

Inevitably, that woman showed up to yell at the poor kitten lawyer.

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So, yeah. You knew this was going to happen.

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 – 27 December 2020: Welcome to the rat race (Cinema Sunday)

We got the cats a remote-controlled rat toy for Christmas. We thought it would be a lot of fun for them.

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It…didn’t go quite as planned.

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I’m not sure if it was the motor noises or the crazy, self-righting wheels, but they seemed a little intimidated by the thing.

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So, Björn got the idea of putting a bit of ham on the back of the rat. Well, that got Alfred’s attention.

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And then the ham fell off.

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And…then Freddy ate the ham. So much for that idea.

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So we stopped the rat to see what they would do when it wasn’t moving.

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Dashiell grabbed it and started dragging it off.

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He was growling as he pulled it along!

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I don’t think any of us saw that coming.

Here’s the video of the whole encounter. I sped it up a little bit, so you may not be able to hear Dash growling.

Aby-a-Day – 20 December 2020: Surprise! Another final! (Cinema Cat Show Sunday)

Surprise! On Friday, when I posted about Jacoby’s victories in the “Haute Cat-ture” category, I didn’t realise that there were two judges in the competition. So Jake won AGAIN, earning 6th place in Millenial Exhibitors Judge Romain Attard’s “ring.”

You can see him narrating his final on YouTube.

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 – 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 – 28 Augusti 2020: Erase ALL pictures of Ron! (Funny Photoshop Friday)

I’ve been rewatching Parks and Recreation, and I have remarked before that Izaak often reminds me of Ron Swanson. I had an idea this morning, and well…here it is.

This is the set of scenes of Ron going “off the grid” that lead up to my little project.

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 – 2 Augusti 2020: Alfred and the GoPro (Cinema Sunday

On one of our outdoor adventures, I got the idea to get a GoPro camera and put it on one of the cats. Alfred, being the largest cat, was the obvious choice…but the GoPro Fetch harness was clearly designed for a Labrador or Husky. It was a series of straps that were designed for an animal with a chest and shoulders.

We tried it anyway, and it was a disaster, even with cutting the straps (so bad I didn’t even bother to take any photos). So, I took the straps off the back mounting plate and tried riveting it to one of Jacoby’s old jacket harnesses. That was better, but still pretty crappy; the fabric was too soft to support the camera and mount. Here’s the video from the test run (ignore me picking up the empty cat bowls). So I gave it another go. Using the straps from the harness, I sewed the mount onto one of Jake’s therapy Yap Wraps. I thought the patches might help stabilise the mount on Freddy’s back.

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We put the new version on him and went outside. The first thing Freddy did when we went outside was go to his dust rolling place.

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Oh, well…that’s going to be interesting to watch.

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And then, he actually managed to get out of it! I couldn’t believe it!

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I finally managed to catch him and put it back on. Dashiell was curious about the camera…but not curious enough to look at the front of it.

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No matter what we did, the camera kept slipping sideways. Apparently, this is a common problem.

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The other problem was, Freddy wouldn’t run with the harness on. Until…

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Freddy’s little buddy showed up!

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That got him to run…straight into the bushes.

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As you can see, it was still having listing problems.

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Jeez, Freddy…it’s not that heavy!

Despite all of the problems, the camera kept filming. I ended up with over a half hour of footage. I’ve edited it down and sped it up so the final video is only about five minutes long (the blurry bit towards the end is Freddy climbing halfway up a tree). I hope it doesn’t make you seasick!

Don’t worry…I am going to rethink the harness and mounting situation (possibly trying something with the chest mounting piece). Stay tuned!

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 – 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.

Sparta and Bob Hunt with StarClan

Sad news. Two of the world’s most famous cats have died this week. Sparta the Mean Kitty and Bob the Street Cat have died.

Sparta became famous when his human, Cory (aka Mr. Safety) posted his Mean itty song on YouTube in September 2007. That video, as of today, has had 91,004,261 views!

But on Sunday, 11 June, Sparta apparently had a saddle thrombosis and his back end was paralysed. Sobbing, Cory posted a short video to let Sparta’s fans know what was happening before he rushed to the vet. Sadly, there was nothing that could be done, and he had to be euthanised.

After Sparta was gone, Cory posted his last video on his Mean Kitty channel. He described what had happened, and thanked his followers. Sparta went from Southern California to Alaska to Oklahoma with Cory and his family. Over the span of 13 years, we followed the life of a man and his cat.

Then, today, Hodder & Stoughton and James Bowen announced the death of Bob the cat on 15 June at the age of at least 14 years on their Facebook page.

I’m sure most of you know about Bob from his books and movie. A busker living rough in Covent Garden selling newspapers meets a cat who decided that he wanted to adopt that human.

James Bowen says “Bob saved my life. It’s as simple as that. He gave me so much more than companionship. With him at my side, I found a direction and purpose that I’d been missing. The success we achieved together through our books and films was miraculous. He’s met thousands of people, touched millions of lives. There’s never been a cat like him. And never will again. I feel like the light has gone out in my life. I will never forget him.” And oh, how I understand how he feels…Jacoby wasn’t as famous as Bob…but I feel his light going out in his life sentiment.

2020 can bite my shiny metal ass.

May StarClan light your path, and you find good hunting, swift running, and shelter when you sleep, Sparta and Bob. You will be missed.

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 – 31 Maj 2020: Izaak in the Duvet Cover (Silly Singapura Cinema Sunday)

The funniest, cutest thing happened this morning.

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Izaak got inside Björn’s duvet cover and was trying to get to me for a cuddle. He got his head through the hand hole…and then got stuck.

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Which is funny, because I always thought that if a cat could get his head through a hole, the rest of the body would fit, too. Apparently, not so much.

I had to make a video of him for Björn, who was making his breakfast and couldn’t come to see Zak in the duvet. I thought you all would like to see it, too.