Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tabby Toesie Tuesday

Maggie loves to sleep in the office desk chair. She will race Mom to the chair and curl up before Mom can get to the computer.

Maggie's paws
If she wasn't so cute and sweet sleeping in the chair she'd probably get sat on. But look at her resting with her paws piles together and her back toes all splayed apart. Who could sit on that sweet thing?

Maggie's paw
Mom just loves Maggie's little toes. Every part of her is just so tiny and cute. Like Mom and Dad's friend used to say about her children, "They're sweet when they're sleeping."

Monday, April 28, 2008

Midnight Mancat Monday

Huggy Bear's fur chair
Originally uploaded by jenianddean

In honor of Midnight Mancat Monday, I thought I would post a picture of Huggy Bear and his fur chair. This chair is the whole reason mom bought the Furminator. Huggy Bear is shedding everywhere, but especially on his chair. Mom isn't upset with about it or anything. The chair is in desperate need of being recovered and Huggy has really taken to the chair. I used to sleep in it all the time in our apartment because it was next to the sliding glass doors and I could watch the birdies and talk to Midnight (and any other kitties that decided to come by for a visit). But since we moved into house, I have found a ton of other place to nap!

Note from Mom: I had just vacuumed the chair a couple days before this picture. That's just how much Huggy is shedding. I don't remember him shedding like this last year. The funny thing is his coat looks and feels just as floofy like he hasn't lost any fur. Who knows!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Easy Like Sunday

Maggie likes to chew on the remnants of this Peace Lily. It tried to die last year after the heat got to it (Dad put it outside to water it real good, then forgot to bring it in), but then it showed signs of coming back, so now it looks really sad, but has new growth and Dad can't get rid of it. Plus, Maggie likes to play around it.

Maggie sleeping in the pot
For some reason Maggie decided to curl up in the dirt and sleep in the plant.

Maggie sleeping in the (not dead) plant
Just so long as she doesn't confuse it with a litter box, I guess it's OK.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

PhotoHunt: Funny Sign

The PhotoHunter's theme today is Funny Signs, and we have one from a little while back. Mom and Dad went to meet Dad's parents and sister in the Smoky Mountains last fall and saw this sign at a gas station with a cafe:

Here Jay Leno
Speaks for itself.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Is it Friday yet??

Look into my eyes
Originally uploaded by jenianddean

I'm so ready for the weekend. I know mom and dad will be working in the yard all weekend, but I just love having them home with us and not out and about.

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. It's supposed to be really warm here this weekend. Mom even talked about taking Maggie for a stroller ride on Saturday. How exciting!!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #22: Projects

I had a lot of fun with the last two Thursday Thirteens. Looking back, though, I now wish I had chosen a longer alphabet, because it really gives you something to work with, and I was flattered by the other cats who wanted to us the idea (and hope you do). Today's Thursday Thirteen is a list of cat-related projects Mom and Dad need to tackle for us.

1. The official litter box room: Right now the litter box is in a vacant closet in a cluttered room that will eventually become a nursery. But there is a small storage space in the laundry room that Dad thinks would be perfect for our litter box. Plus it's further away from noses. Problem is, Mom and Dad would need to get a new washer and dryer because, while there is space there, Dad can't squeeze back there very easily to get to the box to clean it.
2. Design the better litter box: Dad actually had a big idea of making a litter box that would be a small chest, built against the wall of the garage so we could go into the box that is, essentially, outside, accessed by a cat door, but still a "room" so we couldn't get into trouble if the big door was open. Unfortunately, this idea never came to fruition because of the layout of the house.
3. Build us a cat fort: Dad has always envisioned building us the coolest cat fort ever. First, Dad needs to learn to use a saw.
4. Cat tree: Dad also wants to get a cat tree -- you know, one of those tree looking cat stands that attaches from floor to ceiling. Of course, we'd need our own room for all this cool stuff.
5. Go green: Mom and Dad are trying to go greener. They bought reusable grocery bags, which eliminated the plastic bags that Dad scoops the litter box into, so they bought paper lunch bags for the litter box waste, which works better and breaks down in the landfill better than the plastic bags.
6. Cardboard cat house: Similar to the cat fort, but Mom and Dad have discussed using cardboard boxes, and cutting them so they interlock in different ways to build a cool cat house for us.
7. A new paper bag tunnel: This one I just decided to add on the fly, because I just remembered, but when I was a kitten Mom and Dad would get paper grocery bags, cut a square hole in the bottom or side and interlock the bags and tape them together, creating a zig-zag paper bag tunnel. They need to do that again.
8. Straighten the garage: The garage needs some work, and the clutter is disturbing my restful garage time.
9. New garage stacks: Speaking of the garage, I think they need to re-stack the boxes in the garage into a new configuration. Variety is exciting.
10. More spa time: I don't know if this counts as a project, exactly, but I think we deserve more spa time, brushes and nails and relaxing music all sounds good to me.
11. More high spaces: I wish Dad would build the steps up the wall out of shelves like he had talked about. Sure, it would put a bunch of holes in the wall, and really confuse people, but I think it would be cool to have lots of high spots to hang out in.
12. Cat stroller time: They need to take Maggie on more strolls, now that the weather is getting warm again. This is fun for Maggie, and gives us some quiet time, too.
13. Win Powerball: OK, another one that isn't really a "project" exactly, but I think it would be a good thing to do. Then Dad could stay home, Mom would be less stressed, and they could both spend more time paying attention to us and visiting your blogs, and I couldn't think of anything better than that.


Also, did you guys see the newspaper article about us? Max posted an article that actually leads with him and mentions Mom Robyn and Cat Blogosphere, too. Pretty cool!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

(Not a) Widebody Wednesday

OK, not to harp on this or anything, but she is my sister, and I need to take up for her. As I mentioned yesterday, when we had company the other night one of the ladies referred to Josie as "quite a big cat" with an ooooh just before saying it. Now, to her benefit, she was probably high on sugar from the dessert Mom made (a high that has carried Mom and Dad well into today), and the lady also did not have Huggy Bear or me to compare to, so in the lack of perspective Josie may appear bigger, but come on! The lady is nice, but way wrong. And I provide the proof...

Not a wide body
Here is Josie sitting beside Mom's shoes the other day. You can see, no roll, no excess fluff spread out over the floor, and it's not like Mom has big shoes either. Plus, look at that slim space she fits in. If that was me, I'd be all over the shoes, and not just because I like to lay across Mom's shoes, but because I'd have to lay across Mom's shoes. I guess it happens to all of us at some time, but we need to remind the non-cat-people out there what a big cat is, and isn't, and Josie isn't, for sure.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Introducing Topi

We have a new "cat" in the family ... it's Topi, the topiary. Mom is very excited about Topi (not as excited as she is about us, but still excited). When she was up in Virginia helping out Lisa, she visited her friend Betsey who owns a nursery and they had these great topiaries called Green Piece Wire Art and Mom just fell in love with Topi. Now Topi sits in the front of our house guarding the front steps. She's the only cat in our family who really likes to get wet.

Topi the topiary
Isn't she cute?

Mom worked her tail off yesterday getting ready for a dinner meeting last night for a group she volunteers with. It was a great meal according to everyone who was there. We wouldn't know, we were locked in the master bathroom. They only let us out at the end, when everyone's getting ready to go, and there's chaos, but everyone wants to see the cats. And someone even had the nerve to call Josie a big cat!?! That's when I decided to stay upstairs by myself.

Now that things have finally calmed down Mom promised to let me visit all my friends and make comments. I'm sorry I've been absent from the comments lately, but sometimes I needs Mom's thumbs to help me comment and use the mouse.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Mancat Monday

Mom and Dad were out this weekend in the yard. The first big farmer's market plant sale was this weekend and that kept Mom and Dad busy, including nine hours on Sunday which left Dad a little redder than he was in the morning.

They also were helping out watching Clara Ann, the sticky person who hasn't learned to feed us treats yet. But she was outside most of the day, which meant that we were free to roam the windows and explore her stuff.

Jasper playing in Clara Ann's exersaucer
She came in to produce some stink of her own and caught me hanging out in her exersaucer. It really is a perfect fit, and she said it was OK for me to stay there.

Jasper hanging out in the exersaucer
It fits me like a giant, shallow sink. Eventually we may have our own sticky person to train, but in the meantime I think Mom needs to get an exersaucer for me.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Squiggles, book meme, & Tommy needs comments

Our Squiggles arrived the other day -- just after my birthday, so as far as I'm concerned that counts as another birthday present! We love them. Huggy Bear hunted one last night and brought it up to Mom and Dad's room so they could see how much fun he had playing with it, and nothing makes Mom happier than to wake up and see toys that HB has collected all night and brought to them.

The Squiggles are here!
Maggie and Josie investigated the Squiggles fresh out of the envelope. They like to check the mail first.

Jasper and the Squiggles
Since I claimed them as a birthday present I got to take my pick. I wanted to pick them all, but I was told that's not really picking.

Squiggles taste good
I picked this one. It tasted pretty good, so I think I made the right choice. (But secretly, when no one is looking, I'm still picking them all... shhh.)


I have been really behind lately, because I was tagged last week for the book meme and have not posted it yet.

Sly tagged me, and I was about to post it, then Mom and Dad turned the computer off, I had a birthday, and excuses followed... So here it is:
Here are the rules:
1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open to page 123
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people and post a comment to Empress once you post it to your blog so she can come see!

There were a few books lying around, but Dad is (slowly) reading Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman, a collection of short stories. [OK, having opened to page 123 and reading sentence five, I've decided on another book, because it landed in a very, very awkward part of a difficult short story, and I would hate for this to be someone's first impression of Neil Gaiman's writings. So, take two...]

Rachel Ray's Express Lane Meals: "Add the parsley and nuts to the bread crumbs and toss to combine. Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of EVOO in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic, anchovies, and red pepper flakes."

OK, not as exciting as a piece of fiction, but I don't know, let's see what we can do: change parsley and nuts to nip and Whicker Lickins, keep the anchovies, ditch the red pepper flakes and toss the garlic for more nip. Now we're talking!

Thanks for tagging me Sly! I guess I'm supposed to tag five more people, but I just never know who to tag. This one was fun, so please grab it and do it, and comment to let me know that you self-tagged yourself. (I'd hate to double-tag someone.)


Mom and Dad's nephew needs comments on his blog for a class project. Uncle Doug explained it here, but Tommy needs the comments here (he may need human comments, though...). Thanks for lending him your support, I know he'll appreciate it.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #21 -- N through Z

Now, to conclude the Thursday Thirteen theme that began last week, the last 13 letters of the alphabet...

1. N is for Nipped Up, our favorite way to be.
2. O is for Orange, my favorite color, of course.
3. P is for Purrs, that Maggie and Huggy do so loudly.
4. Q is for Quickness, Maggie's only speed.
5. R is for Resting, on the couch or on the bed.
6. S is for Scout, Maggie's faraway friend.
7. T is for Tummy, where Mom can scratch me all day.
8. U is for Upside down, how I really like to lay.
9. V is for Volunteers, Mom and Dad's favorite college team.
10. W is for Whisker Lickins, our favorite treats, and also for William, our first blogging friend.
11. X is for Exponential, the way we multiplied Mom and Dad's joy.
12. Y is for You, our blogging inspiration.
13. Z is for Zzzzz, I think it is time for my nap.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Birthday pictures

Thanks for all the nice birthday wishes. I got all kinds of love from the Cat Blogosphere yesterday. Thank you all. I will try to get by in the next few days and visit everyone. I've been a little remiss with Mom gone. I'm a slow clicker without her help.

Also, it was so cool to know I share my birthday with so many other great cats, like Luna, and Princess, and Dr. Tweety, and of course, the Cat Realm Blogoversary, which was quite a party! (Didn't there used to be a master list of all the birthdays somewhere on Blogger?)

Fancy Feast birthday cake -- #6
Last night when Dad got home the first thing he did was break out my birthday cake, a can of Fancy Feast Elegant Medley stinky goodness in the shape of a 6.

Jasper's bag of birthday toys
Dad got me a bunch of toys -- a whole bag full!

Jasper investigating the spider on the string
We got a little distracted by the black spider toy on the bouncy string, so some of the toys are waiting for another day.

Maggie getting bouncy spider
(I shared my toys and opted for birthday garage time, which is just like regular garage time -- you know, chewing plants, climbing boxes -- except it's on my birthday and lasts a little longer.)

Fuzzy spider and catnip sock
Josie really liked the black spider toy and quickly put the toothy death on it. Dad really thought we'd like the catnip sock more, but we didn't pay much attention to it. I think it's because we liked the spider so much more.

Although Huggy Bear escaped the pictures, he was right there, and after Josie put the toothy death on the spider, he took it and gave it the ominous, threatening growl that he does to all new furry toys that come in the house. It's so funny, because he is such a sweet cat, but has such an imposing growl just at fuzzy toys.

Thanks again for all the wonderful birthday wishes. I am truly touched.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy Birthday to ME!

Today is my sixth birthday ... I really can't believe I'm six years old already! Dad is charging up batteries for the old camera since Mom has the new one with her, and he promises birthday pictures for tomorrow's post. So for my birthday post, I have some kitten pictures of little old me that Mom scanned in a little while back.

When I first came home Mom and Dad wanted to introduce me to the house slowly. I was born in a shelter and hadn't been around a lot of space before, so they started me in the bathroom while they prepared the house. As you can see, I found the toilet paper, much like Maggie likes to do now. It was a nice day and I got to sit in the open window my first day home!

Jasper's first picture
This is one of my first pictures. I was a little unsure about all the space and I found this spot under the chair in the living room and it seemed pretty safe. (In retrospect, the chair had rockers, and I don't think cat tails and rockers are supposed to co-exist.)

cat and mouse
This is my very first toy! It was a gift from Mom and Dad's friend Jen. I loved it so much. It's still in the bag of old cat toys and comes out every now and then. It had an elastic string on it so it could spring up and down, and Dad attached it to the scratcher so I could bat it around, but I was quick to figure out that I could pin it down and chew the string in half and get the mouse free to wrestle with instead.

window kitty
Here I am in the bathroom window. I really liked this window in the old house in Iowa. I could sit here and look out over the patio and watch Mom grill dinner. Look how little I was!

jasper in a bowl
Oh wow! I forgot about my old red bowl. I think this bowl is around somewhere, probably in a box. I know for sure I couldn't fit in it now. I'd probably roll around for an hour just trying to figure out how to get my legs in it.

Full Monty
This is my first Full Monty picture! I was on the couch with Mom. I'm not the biggest cuddler, but I would sleep with Mom for a little while as a kitten.

Jasper sleeping in the trash can
I also liked to sleep in the trash can beside Mom and Dad's bed. I would follow them up to bed, knock the trash can over, and curl up in it. At this point in this picture I had gotten a little big to fit completely in the trash can, but Dad had reached the point where he left the trash can empty for me.

Jasper's first portrait
This is my first kitten portrait. At first I liked to hang real close to the edges of the room, just to be safe. Plus I wasn't sure what all the flashing was. I've grown numb to the camera mostly now. (Yes, I had buggers as a kitten, but I think it was because I investigated everything.)

smart cat
I always liked getting behind the books. I think my love of books may have led to my desire to write a blog. Or maybe they're just a cool place to hide. The book on the far right is "The Bigness of the Fellow Within" which I think is a premonition of the bigness of the cat within the little kitten I was.

cat in a sink
I have always been a fan of the sink, even when I hardly filled it. My small size didn't stop me from trying to fill the sink up, though!

Nappin' with mom
Here's proof that I did sleep with Mom, even as a kitten. Sleeping with Mom on the couch is the best! And since I can't have Mom to snuggle with today on my birthday, I'll wrap up with this nice memory instead. I can't wait until tonight when I get my birthday gifts! I saw Dad bring in a bag from a different pet store, which hopefully means a new, different toy selection.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Mancat Monday

Sitting, waiting, wishing ... a good Mancat must remain ever vigilant.

I like this view from the kitchen into the back yard, overlooking the closest tree to the house. This way, I can watch the birds flutter around, and watch for squirrels trespassing.

But I'm not doing any of that right now. I'm watching, waiting for Mom to come home. She is up in Virginia helping watch Gracie and Clara Ann. Their mom Lisa, her great-uncle passed away on Friday after a battle with cancer. He's in a better place, but there's still so much to be done, so Mom is helping by lending two very active hands.

But I know Mom will be home soon, and Dad's around to treat us, and pet us, and trip over us in the darkness (which he quickly apologized for last night). In the meantime, I'm going to clean myself so I look my best when Mom returns.

It's good to be well put together when someone you miss comes home so they know how much you missed them. And yes, this is me trying to lick my face... I think I should go back to using the paw approach.

Oh, I am also cleaning myself up for tomorrow, because tomorrow is a big, special day for me ... and I'm not talking about tax day. Tomorrow is my birthday! I think Dad's picking up something special for me tonight!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Freckle-nose Friday

Looking into my eyes
Mom just loves the freckles on my nose. At first, when I was a kitten and they started to show up, she and Dad were nervous about the freckles, but then learned that spots on the nose and lips are normal on ginger cats. Now, Mom thinks they are one of my best features. Those, and my super big, hypnotic eyes! (Here, I'm willing Dad to pet my tummy ... and it worked!)

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #20 -- A through M

There are 26 letters in the alphabet, which provides nice material for two weeks worth of Thursday Thirteens. This Thursday you will be graced with the front of the alphabet, A through M.

1. A is for Appetite, what Huggy Bear has a lot of.
2. B is for Beautiful, my sister Josie for sure.
3. C is for Catblogosphere, the place that connects us all.
4. D is for Delicious, like fresh food from the bag.
5. E is for Energy, that Maggie seems to have an endless supply of.
6. F is for Furminator, Mom's new favorite brush for us.
7. G is for Gracie, our sticky little friend who gives us treats.
8. H is for Huggy Bear, of course.
9. I is for Ice, one of our favorite kitchen toys.
10. J is for Jasper and Josie, the big brother and sister.
11. K is for Kittens, Mom's greatest temptation, and what she still calls us, although we're definitely cats.
12. L is for Love, which we receive limitlessly from Mom and Dad.
13. M is for Maggie, my cute little winking sister, and McKitten-Cats -- that's us!

Next week, I'll wrap up the alphabet with N through Z!

(I forgot to turn my post orange for ASPCA Day!)

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Tabby Tuesday

Maggie is usually the wild child, chasing, climbing, clawing (inappropriately) -- but she's also a snuggler, a lover, a cleaner of Huggy Bear's head, and occasionally a meditator.

Meditative Maggie
She curled up with her paws under her in one of Mom's favorite Maggie poses and spent several thoughtful minutes beside the end table in the living room. I know Mom and Dad want to know what we're thinking all the time. I think Maggie was plotting her next wild child moment.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Cool Cat Award

Special thanks to Diva Kitty & the Fluffies who awarded us with the Cool Cat Award last week. It is so special to be awarded with any award, but to be called a cool cat is really, well, cool. There are so many cool cats out there, and I could give it to everyone, but I really want to honor meep, because he is a pretty cool House Panther, but also Kellie the Orange Cat, and Chase, because they're pretty darn cool, too. Like I said, I don't want to exclude anyone -- we're cats and that makes us inherently cool. Thanks again to Diva Kitty & the Fluffies for thinking of me.

Special visitors

We had some special visitors Saturday night/Sunday morning. Mom and Dad's friends Lisa and Brian came for a visit to celebrate Lisa's birthday and Gracie (4) and Clara Ann (1) came along and got to spend the night. They were very good, and Dad showed Gracie our new trick of eating treats out of his hands. She liked doing this a lot, which was good for us because, even though we had to work for it some, we got lots of Whisker Lickins.

Open up!
You can see here Gracie is demonstrating to Maggie how she should open her mouth to get the treat .

Maggie eating treats out of Gracie's hand
Gracie was very sweet with us, even though she did shoo me away from the dining room when she was helping Dad set the table. I guess she hasn't learned that I'm allowed in there because I don't beg like some other Mancat in the house does.

Josie working for her treat
Josie showed off a little for Gracie. She did the circus bear pose (Mom's favorite) to get her treat. Josie is very agile.

Josie is probably the most cautious of all of us. She was very good with Clara Ann, though. She would let her get near, but not too close. Clara Ann is just mastering this whole two-legs thing, so Clara Ann would approach Josie, then Josie would give her a sniff and head off, which would lead to a whole "wobble after Josie's tail" adventure.

Clara Ann going after Josie
Josie figured out the Clara Ann couldn't quite follow the maze of under-bread-cabinet to the stools. This didn't stop Clara Ann from trying!

Huggy Bear eating from Gracie's hand
Even Huggy Bear got in the action of the treats. I think he was Gracie's favorite.

Gracie sleeping
There was one issue, though. It seems that Gracie ended up in Mom and Dad's bed. When Dad first cleared the space and put pillows up so she wouldn't roll off, I tested the spot, but left when Gracie showed up. Huggy Bear hopped up, took one look at Gracie between Mom and Dad, and left. Josie spent a little time under the covers as close to Mom as she could get, and sheltered from Gracie's feet by Mom's arm, but she got hot and left. I think Maggie got a little jealous, because in the morning she was sleeping so close to Mom! I think she was sending a message that this was her Mom, and she'll share her with Josie, HB and me, but that's it.

It was a very nice visit, and Gracie asked when she could come visit and spend the night again, so maybe soon. If she keeps feeding us treats, she's welcome any time.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

PhotoHunt: Glass

The PhotoHunter's theme today is glass. At first I thought, "Huh, glass? What can I post? Mom won't let us drink out of her glass." But then I realized there were other pictures, like...

...the new desk top is made of glass. It's very comfortable to stretch out on and big enough that I'll even share it with Maggie...

...and the glass back door, that Maggie machine pawed at after her brief exploration of the back desk on the leash with Mom (hehe, you can see Dad in the reflection on the window taking the picture. Photo mistake ... sorry)...

...or the glass bowls that we eat our special wet food and treats, like the chick-hen from the other day...

New bookcases in the parlor
...and then there's the glass doors on the new bookshelves. Mom wanted to get these bookshelves for a long time and she finally did, which is good for Mom, but it means that the boxes of books from the room upstairs are gone and we have smaller stacks of boxes to sleep on up there, and with the glass doors on the bookshelves we can't climb behind the books, which is a bummer, but Mom is happy so that's OK.

So I guess we had more "glass" pictures than I thought.


I also wanted to share this video. It was emailed to my Mom with a story explaining that the two people in the video (with no audio) had raised a lion from a cub, but when he got too large they were forced to send the lion to a reserve. A year later they came for a visit, and were told that the lion would not recognize them, but you can see he clearly does. The lion puts his stink all over them just like Maggie does to me, Mom, Dad and about anything else near her.

Update: Mom did a little digging and here is the story about Christian the Lion.