Thursday, January 18, 2018

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

Hello, friends! We've reached another Thursday, which is a great thing, if you ask us. We'll start today with the Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge, hosted by Angel Sammy and Teddy.

We're sure many of you already know that for this fun challenge, our hosts now give us a photo prompt each week. The photograph our hosts gave us for our poems this week is this lovely one here:

My poems may or may not make any sense at all, but I sure do have lots of fun writing them. This week was no different, and below is the poem I had fun scribbling up for the happy and colorful photo above.

Adventures in the Sky

Journey Jones embarked on many adventures.
There was no land to which she had not ventured.
That was her very problem, though.
She had no places left to go.

Journey's travels had taken her near and far.
She had completed a road trip in her car.
She already hiked every forest without fail,
And she had sailed every sea there was to sail.
Not even the mountains she could not conquer,
And in a heartbeat she would climb up that peak over yonder.

At first Journey lamented her dismal future,
In which she had nowhere new to adventure.
But then a bright idea flashed in her mind.
She could not believe to this thought she had been blind.
There was a sparkle in her eye,
When she realized that she had not yet traversed the sky.

And so Journey began making her plans.
This adventure would take her far off of land.
When finally the day of departure arrived,
Journey's excitement she could not disguise.
She climbed aboard her trusty hot air balloon,
And felt confident enough to fly to the moon.

Up, up, and away Journey did rise,
And before she knew it she was far up in the skies.
 The world way up there was grander than grand,
With wonders far different than those of the land.

First she arrived at the City of Clouds,
Where around Journey did form a friendly crowd,
The cloud folk were beyond happy and kind,
And Journey felt sad to leave them behind.

Yet up and onward she flew in her hot air balloon,
Until, before she knew it, she was indeed on the moon.
It was quiet and peaceful on its great round surface.
Journey would have been happy to stay there in earnest.

But back into her hot air balloon she climbed instead,
For she still had a great many adventures ahead.
After the moon, she visited the stars,
And made a pit stop at none other than Mars.

Then Journey changed course and returned to blue skies,
And what she found there was a lovely surprise.
There before her eyes was a stunning rainbow,
Spanning the whole sky, from high to low.
She landed on its beautiful and decadent bands,
And visited the folk of that colorful land.

And like so Journey adventured the sky day and night,
Until she had taken in every sight.
When it came time for Journey to return to land,
Her next hot air balloon ride was already planned.
She could not wait to return to that world way up high.
Journey was born for adventures in the sky.

As per usual, I doodled up a little illustration for our poem of the week. This one takes place during Journey's visit to the City of Clouds.

Thimble says that's enough about hot air balloon rides, though, as it is her turn to star in this post. I work for her, so of course I must agree that she is right.

We've mentioned a couple of times over the past week or so that we have a new cat tree in our house. It was a late Christmas gift for the kitties, to help them, especially Eddy, recover from the loss of their beloved Christmas trees. Thimble loves the new cat tree just as much as Eddy does.

The new cat tree gives the kitties a direct view of our back yard, where we feed all of the birds and squirrels. You know what that means. Bird TV and Squirrel TV!

Thimble is of course entering her gratitude for the new cat tree in Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog  Hop.

Do you know what else Thimble is thankful for? Her Donut Kitty has been located and is safe and sound! If you read our post from last Thursday (click here if you would like to meet Donut Kitty), you might remember that Donut Kitty had been missing for some time. I helped Thimble look under all of the furniture, but simply could not find it. Then, just a couple of days ago, Eddy reached under the china cabinet and pulled out Donut Kitty. Thanks, Eddy!

And, of course, on this Thankful Thursday, we are also so very grateful for all of you.

Happy Thursday to all!

Our Tip of the Day:
Yesterday we discussed some of the the benefits of using baking soda, such as to help deodorize your carpet and furniture. Another great asset in a home with pets is vinegar, which can serve as both a cleaner and a deodorizer. A quick and easy homemade cleaner can be made using white vinegar and water, such as in a 1:1 ratio. This can then be used for any number of purposes, such as removing carpet stains caused by pet vomit, urine, or feces. At the same time, as previously mentioned, it will also serve as a deodorizer. For a double whammy cleaner, you can mix both baking soda and vinegar together as a more potent cleaner, stain remover, and deodorizer. You can keep your vinegar mixture in a spritz bottle, and spray it onto stains or other scenes of accidents as needed. Vinegar itself can also be used to clean litter boxes. For example, once you've emptied out the litter box, you can add a layer of vinegar to the bottom of it and let it soak for a quarter of an hour or so. Then you can scrub the litter box, drain out the vinegar, and let it dry, and in the end you'll have a freshly cleaned and deodorized litter box. Of course, to be safe, do be sure to keep all such cleaners and other similar substances safely out of your furbaby's reach.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

Our Doodle of the Day:

Yesterday we posted a doodle of a special little version of Winnie the Pooh, in honor of tomorrow being Winnie the Pooh Day. I also mentioned at that point that, to be honest, my favorite Pooh Bear character is actually not the bear himself. I quite like myself some underdogdonkey.

Fun fact? I collect Eeyore dolls. I remember the Christmas, many moons ago, when I received a jumbo Eeyore doll. I was ecstatic. It now sits on a shelf above my bed, as creepy as that sounds.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Our Tip of the Day:
Did you know that, as a pet parent, baking soda can sometimes be your best friend? Though you of course don't want your pup or kitty consuming or breathing any large amount of substances such as baking soda, it is largely pet-safe when used wisely. That's just one of the reasons why it can come in quite handy for those who have pets.

We all love our furbabies, but we all might also perhaps admit that sometimes our furbabies don't leave things smelling their freshest. This is where baking soda can offer a bit of help, as it can work wonderfully as a deodorizer, as it can absorb smells like those related to our furbabies. One way to take advantage of this is to sprinkle some on your carpet or furniture, let it sit for roughly 10 or 20 minutes, vacuum it up, and thereby leave your floor and furniture smelling more fresh and clean. You can also do this in your car, such as if your pup or kitty takes a trip in there often and perhaps leaves it smelling a little, well, furry. Baking soda can also help keep your cat's litter box smelling more fresh, as you can sprinkle a small layer at the bottom of the litter box before you put the litter in, and it will thereby help absorb some of the odors.

There are also other potential uses of baking soda. For example, if you accidentally trim your pup or kitty's nail too short and hit the quick, thereby causing some bleeding, you can dip the bleeding claw in baking soda and apply pressure. This will cause the baking soda to form a paste with the blood, and thereby help it to clot. Cornstarch, flour, and styptic powder purchased from the drug store can also be used. With all of the wonders it can work, do be sure to keep some baking soda on hand.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Tuesday Taste Test (#ChewyInfluencer)

It's that time again. The picky kitties around here tried a new food this month as part of the Blogger Outreach Program.

The Weruva Cats in the Kitchen variety pack comes with four enticing flavors. There is Chicken Frick 'A Zee (chicken recipe au jus), Funk in the Trunk (chicken recipe in pumpkin consommé), Lamb Burgini (lamb recipe au jus), and Kitty Gone Wild (wild salmon au jus). All of these flavors are high in protein, and they are grain-free, starch-free, carrageenan-free, and GMO-free.

My kitties are huge fans of moist food of the paté variety. The chicken flavor we tried first is more of a shredded or minced sort, but with a decent amount of thick broth that I hoped might give it a fighting chance.

So, what did the kitties think?

Toby, Evan, and Thimble all love the Weruva Cats in the Kitchen food (Eddy has yet to jump on the moist food bandwagon). If you know these kitties, then you know this food just worked a miracle. Now, I don't tend to feed my kitties food in fishy flavors, but the other flavors are a huge hit here at our house. And the strays and ferals outdoors quite enjoy the salmon flavor, as well as the others.

(Disclaimer: As members of the Blogger Outreach Program, we received the Weruva Cats in the Kitchen variety pack of canned cat food in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own. We only review products that we believe will be of interest to our readers, and we never recommend a product that we do not believe in.)

We hope all of you friends of ours have a tasty Tuesday!

Our Doodle of the Day:

This Thursday is none other than Winnie the Pooh Day. Since our doodle that day will be centered around the poem we managed for the Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge, we decided we wanted to honor Pooh Bear today. Of course, we had to give him a bit of an alteration.

To be honest, this here human has always been a huge Eeyore fan. So, tomorrow's doodle will be inspired by the lugubrious donkey himself.

Our Tip of the Day:
For a while we've had a little list of random tips and tidbits that we don't think we've really shared yet. So, we've decided we're going to share some of those random tips with you over the next couple of days. Today, we want to give you a tip for when those ants come out of the woodwork. If ants are a problem at your house and they seek out your furbaby's food bowl, in addition to keeping their food area clean in general, you can use to your advantage the fact that ants are not proficient swimmers. To protect your furbaby's food, put their food bowl within a shallow plate or bowl of water. This will serve more or less as a moat that protects your furaby's food from those tiny invaders.

Monday, January 15, 2018

Mancat Monday

Welcome to another Mancat Monday, friends! Yesterday, for her Sunday Selfie, Thimble showed off her cute little nose. Evan didn't want left out of that trend, so today he's showing you his magnificent mancat nose.

Just as with Thimble, you are welcome to give Evan's nose a little smooch. He quite likes kisses.

Now, did you know that today is National Hat Day? We figured there's no better hat for a kitty than a crown, so we doodled this royal calico for today.

That there doodle is also a bit of a prelude to our positive thought for today's Sparks hop. I like to at least try to tie my Monday doodles in with my contribution to the Sparks blog hop, which is of course hosted by Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

So, in line with our royal doodle today, our Sparks is a quote from none other than Queen Elizabeth II.

"Let us not take ourselves too seriously. None of us has a monopoly on wisdom."
- Queen Elizabeth II

Well said, Queen Elizabeth II. I have honestly always found Queen Elizabeth II a quite sophisticated, formidable, and intriguing woman, and not just because she wears a crown. What's more, I appreciate her way of expressing this approach to life. While wisdom and solemnity can be great things, they can also be detrimental if not kept in check. It is so true that no one here on earth is omniscient or omnipotent. No matter who you are, sometimes you really just need to let loose, throw all seriousness out the window, and have some fun.

Wishing you all a fun and fantastic Monday!

Our Tip of the Day:
We've discussed the importance of offering shelter and comfort for furbabies outdoors, especially in the winter. Don't forget your indoor furbabies as well, though, as they can also be affected by the cold of winter, even when they're protected by four walls. For example, floors can be cold, and there can be cold drafts, such as from doors or windows. To ensure your indoor furbaby is comfortable, make sure they have somewhere soft and warm to sleep, with blankets or a bed in which to curl up. Make sure they have somewhere to sleep that is elevated off of the floor and away from drafts. If your dog or cat stays in a certain area of the house, such as in a kennel while you are away or in a room of their own, make sure that area of the house is kept comfortable. For both indoor and outdoor furbabies, do your best to help them stay warm and cozy. After all, if you're cold, they're likely cold as well.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Sunday Selfie

Thimble is all about belly rolls and nose shots these days, and that pretty much explains her selfie for today's Sunday Selfies blog hop.

And in case you were wondering, you are more than welcome to give that nose of hers a little smooch. Thimble loves kisses!

Thimble wants to remind everyone to visit the Kitties Blue over at The Cat on My Head, where you can see what all shots our friends snapped for the Sunday Selfies blog hop.

Happy Sunday to all!

Our Doodle of the Day:
Today is none other than National Dress Your Pet Up Day. As we've mentioned before, we are being reminded of all of these fun days thanks to our fantastic 2018 Blogging Cats Weekly Planner. Our planner not only keep us organized, therefore, but also informs us of momentous days about which we can blog or for which we can create a doodle. That being said, for this National Dress Your Pet Up Day, we scribbled up this little piece:

Does anyone recognize that pink bunny suit? Honestly, we really do know that Christmas is over, but it still lingers in our minds because we just love it that much. Anyway, what we're getting at is that we got this pink bunny suit idea from A Christmas Story. If you've seen the movie, you might remember the scene of which we speak.

Our Tip of the Day:
Isn't it great to think that your furbaby would let you put them in all sorts of cute clothes and snap lots of adorable shots to share on your blog? Unfortunately, that's not always the case. So, if you ever plan on dressing up your furbaby, do be sure to first take into consideration their personality, body language, and of course overall comfort and happiness. Some animals find great joy in dressing up, and some are simply laidback and tolerate it with ease. In some cases, a particular kitty or pup might be willing to tolerate a short game of dress up, perhaps just long enough for you to snap that perfect shot for your Christmas card. But, on the other hand, there are also those furbabies who simply do not enjoy such fun and games. If you dress up your furbaby and they show any signs of displeasure or discomfort, such as growling, hissing, or even refusal to move or eat, it is likely that they are not good candidates for playing dress up. Some furbabies might respond well to treats or other forms of positive reinforcement, and can perhaps in this way be trained to wear clothing. But, again, it depends on the furbaby, and if they become stressed upon being placed in clothing, please do be sure to take their comfort and happiness into consideration.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Caturday with Duckie

Does anyone know what day it is? Huh, do you? It's Rubber Duckie Day!

That's right, January 13th is the day we celebrate those fun duckies. If there are any rubber duckies in your life, be sure to wish them a happy day!

That there duckie doodle is of course our contribution to lovely Athena's Caturday Art blog hop.

We hope you all have a fantastic Rubber Duckie Caturday!

Our Tip of the Day:
We're sure you all already know this, but we thought today was a good day to remind you to never leave tubs, sinks, or other areas of water unattended, especially around furbabies who are not accustomed to swimming. Though most animals have the instinct to paddle when in water, the potential risk for drowning still exists. So, if you fill up that tub or sink, make sure you keep an eye on your furbaby, or block their access to it. This of course also goes for outdoor areas of water, such as swimming pools, ponds, or lakes. Though it might seem harmless, water can indeed be very dangerous, so always be cognizant of your furbaby's safety around large amounts of water.

Friday, January 12, 2018

Friday Fun

Happy Friday! We always look forward to this day. It means the weekend is nearly here, and it also means it's time for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by Ellen of 15andmeowing and Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

As always, our clever hosts came up with some fantastic fill-ins for us.

1. I would like to ask _________ why _________.
2. My favorite fast food restaurant is _________.
3. If I could go to any concert of someone still performing, it would be _________.
4. My winter pastime is usually _________, because _________.

I really had to put on my thinking cap for these.

1. I would like to ask Wilson Rawls why he had to rip my heart out with Where the Red Fern Grows.
(This is such a random answer, but it is quite honestly the first thing that popped into my head when I first saw this fill-in. I read Where the Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls way back in 5th grade, and even after all these years it has stuck with me, but not for a reason I like. It was easily the first traumatic reading experience I had as an animal-loving child. Has anyone else out there read it? If you have, you probably know what I'm talking about.)

2. My favorite fast food restaurant is nonexistent.
(I don't eat fast food much these days, if at all. I have never really been one who enjoys eating out, to be honest. As a kid I did enjoy getting ice cream blizzards at Dairy Queen and my all-time favorite chocolate milkshake at Culver's, and of course pizza, but even then, I still usually preferred a home-cooked meal. In addition, I have recently developed some dietary restrictions that have left my options at restaurants a bit slim. But I'm okay with all of that, because I love to cook and bake and find new recipes to make at home.)

3. If I could go to any concert of someone still performing, it would be Mumford & Sons.
(I must sound like such a boring individual, but I don't really enjoy concerts. That's probably the homebody in me talking. That being said, I've been telling myself for years that, if the folk rock band Mumford & Sons were to come to or near my hometown, I would lend them my ears. They are, after all, just about my favorite band these days.)

4. My winter pastime is usually snuggling with my furbabies, because that's the best way to stay warm.
(Of course, I love to snuggle them in the heat of summer, too.)


Hi, friends! It's me Eddy! I told my mom that I'm hijacking this post, and so here I am.

Okay, where do I start? Oh, I know! Guess what? The Christmas tree is still up!

My mom ended up not taking the Christmas tree down last weekend, because it just felt too soon to her. So, she decided to just let it stay up until this weekend. I'm sad it will be leaving, but we also got a new cat tree in my mom's room to make up for it, so I guess I might be okay.

Now, I'm doing something extra fun today. Our stunning friend CK recently made a post in which she, from the fantastic viewpoint of a kitty, answered some questions from one of those questionnaire thingamabobs that you find on places like Facebook or whatchamacallit. Wouldn't all of those be so much better if they were always from a kitty's perspective? CK mentioned that her kitty friends could fill it out, too, and so that's what I'm doing today.

These were technically supposed to be one-word answers, but sometimes rules are made to be broken. Besides, my answers are pretty short, so isn't that close enough?

1. Where is your cell phone? My mom hides it in her purse.
2. Your hair? all over the house
3. Your dad? Who's that?
4. Your mom? my favorite person in the whole wide world
5. Your favorite food? fish food
6. Your dream last night? climbing my Christmas tree (though maybe I was awake for that?)
7. Your favorite drink? fish water
8. Fear? stranger danger!
9. Favorite shoes? my mom's slippers
10. Favorite way to relax? sleeping in the box-spring of my mom's bed
11. Your mood? playful
12. Your home away from home? No, thanks, I prefer a hermit's life.
13. Where were you last night? cuddling up to my mom
14. Something that you aren't? lazy
15. Muffins? I make them all the time for my mom.
16. Wish list item? year-round Christmas tree
17. Where you grew up? my forever home!
18. Last thing you did? begged for food that I'm not going to eat
19. Favorite thing to do? play!
20. Your TV? Squirrel TV
21. Your pets? my mom
22. Friends? all of you!
23. Your life? fun
24. Missing someone? my mom, when she goes to work
25. Something that you are? purrfect!

Do be sure to read CK's pawsome answers by clicking here. And, if you want to do as she suggests, you can fill these out, too. It sure is fun!

Have a fantastic Friday, friends!

Purrs, Eddy

Our Doodle of the Day:

Our 2018 Blogging Cat Weekly Planner informed us that today is International Kiss a Ginger Day. So, of course, here's our very own ginger mancat Evan to help make your dreams come true!

Our Tip of the Day:
We all know how warm and cozy a heater can be this time of year, but do be sure to keep your furbaby safe around those heat sources. Be cognizant of your furbaby's proximity to heaters and heat registers, as some can cause burns, and they can also lead your furbaby to become overheated, or may lead to uncomfortable dryness of the coat, skin, eyes, and so forth. Take all precautions necessary to ensure that your furbaby and any household heaters coincide safely. Monitor your furbaby around heat sources, unplug heaters when you are not around, and block your furbaby from unsafe heat sources as needed. This could of course include a fireplace, if your home has one, as there are many dangers it can pose as well. Staying warm is crucial in the winter, but be sure that your furbaby and yourself do so safely!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

Welcome to the eve of Friday, friends! In other words, happy Thursday! As always, we will start today with the Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge, hosted by our pals Angel Sammy and Teddy.

We have been having great fun with the new version of this poetic challenge, which involves our hosts giving us a photo prompt each week. The photo we were given for this week's poem is this one here:

I see the photo above and I think how wonderful it would be to write a poem expressing how tender and loving the relationship between a parent and a child can be. At the same time, though, I'll be the first to admit that I'm pretty much rubbish when it comes to writing prose such as that. Profound and lyrical poetry is not something that I can do, it would seem.

My reading and writing habits have always been centered around far more obscure, whimsical, and eccentric tales. I was happily raised on stories smack dab in the genre of fantasy. What's more, that preference for fantasy did not change when I entered adulthood. I think that's why, when I see these wonderful photo prompts our hosts share with us, the deep and meaningful possibilities bail out the window. Instead, my mind tends to go rogue and things like pirates come out to play.

The Pirates of Puck

Once when I was but a young lad,
I stood by the seashore with my dad.
He told me the water told a great many tales,
And that on it sailed a great many sails.

"Have you ever heard of the Pirates of Puck?"
My father asked as overheard flew a duck.
I told him that I most certainly had not,
And so to my ears a great tale he brought.

Once from a land far, far away,
As my storytelling father did say,
Sailed a ship with a crew of plundering pirates.
They were fierce, skilled, and their loot often giant.

They were known as nothing but the Pirates of Puck,
And a great many thought them an omen of bad luck.
Stories claimed they were covered in shaggy fur,
And that on their boots they wore the sharpest of spurs.
Others said they boasted sharp fangs and sharper claws,
And that there was no loot on which they could not get their paws.

The Pirates of Puck sailed a plain and simple ship,
But it was said the mere sight of it would make your heart skip.
They were the source of a great deal of fear,
As it was said they would pillage all you held dear.

One day the Pirates of Puck sailed to a shore,
Where bankers and merchants their riches did store.
The Pirates of Puck took what they pleased,
Leaving the wealthy folk greatly aggrieved.

What happened next is quite often debated,
But there is one version of the tale that is often stated.
It is said that the Pirates of Puck sailed with their loot,
Until they reached the sad little Island of Moot.

The Island of Moot was not a grand land.
The island folk had nothing to their name but the sand.
The islanders were more than down on their luck.
But then arrived none other than the Pirates of Puck.
At first the islanders were greatly suspicious,
Until the Pirates of Puck handed them their newly gained riches.

The Pirates of Puck took from the wealthy,
And gave to the poor so that they could grow healthy.
Now the people of the Island of Moot are well and strong,
And they tell of the pirates' generous deed in a song.

And that is the tale of Pirates of Puck,
That my father did tell me by the sea at dusk.
"So the Pirates of Puck were really heroes at heart?"
I asked my father in hopes that insight he would impart.
"Some say yes and some say no,"
Was the answer my father did bestow.
And then he added with a wink,
"Tell me, son, what do you think?"

As always, I also felt compelled to create a little doodle to help illustrate that there poem on piracy. So, here is my version of the Pirates of Puck:

In case you were wondering, yes, my poems' illustrations will always star furry characters. This is of course because I love me some kitties and puppies. That, and drawing human beings is not my strong point.

All right, now it's time for Thimble! Today, Thimble wants to show you one of the gifts she got for Christmas.

This here human may or may not have had a hard time parting with that there Donut Kitty (purchased from the Etsy shop known as Miso Handmade) in order to gift it to Thimble on Christmas morning. But, I eventually managed it.

Thimble did not spare Donut Kitty one bit. He smelled of catnip and his little jingle bell taunted her one too many times, so she launched an assault.

Want to know a secret? Donut Kitty has been missing since not long after Christmas. He is almost certainly being held captive in the land Beneath the Couch. A rescue mission will soon be launched to return Donut Kitty to the light of day.

Thimble is entering her gratitude for all of her toys, like Donut Kitty, into Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.

All of us here are also thankful for so much more. This time of year, we are thankful for the warmth of our home, and the warm food in our bellies. And it would not be Thankful Thursday without us letting you all know just how grateful we are for all of you friends of ours. Your friendship means so much to us!

Our Tip of the Day:
Today is Milk Day (which we yet again know thanks to our trusty 2018 Blogging Cats Weekly Planner!). That being said, we're yet again repeating a past tip. Just like us humans, some cats and dogs are lactose intolerance. Especially as a furbaby ages and no longer consumes their mother's milk, their bodies may not produce lactase, which is the enzyme responsible for breaking down the milk sugar known as lactose. In such animals, products containing lactose are not digested properly, and so consuming lactose can result in issues such as upset stomach and diarrhea. So, do be cautious when feeding your furbabies milk and other foods high in lactose, especially if you know your furbaby does not digest it well. It might be worth it to know that some dairy products, such as plain yogurt and aged cheddar cheese, actually contain little to no lactose and so could potentially make safer options for small treats. Still, these should still only be fed in very small amounts and only as occasional treats, and only if your furbaby does not have adverse reactions. It's no fun having an upset stomach, so when in doubt, please do not feed it to your furbaby!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

(I asked Astrid to please look at the camera, but she has selective hearing.)

Our Doodle of the Day:

Our Tip of the Day:
Especially in extreme weather, please do your best to be eyes and ears for the innocent and a voice for the voiceless. In other words, such as in freezing cold temperatures, keep watch for any animals who might be struggling or who might be the victims of abuse or neglect. If it is freezing cold and you see, hear, or suspect an animal living outdoors in unlivable conditions, such as without shelter, warmth, food, or water, please do what is in your ability to help them. If a kitty or pup appears to be a stray or feral who is struggling in the inclement weather, try to provide them with even temporary aid. If possible, you can trap them and help place them in a shelter or with a rescue group. Or, you can report their plight to someone who can assist them. Depending on the situation, you can contact animal control or an animal shelter or rescue that has the ability to help the animal. If you suspect an animal is living in unhealthy or dangerous conditions but does have an owner, such as if they are living in someone's back yard, garage, or other similar situation, then report this and contact help as soon as possible. This could include contacting the police if necessary, or animal control. Animals cannot speak for themselves, so if you believe you are witnessing any form of abuse, neglect, or difficult living, try to do what is in your power to help the furbaby in need.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Toesies Tuesday

What kind of Tuesday are you having today? Is it a Tuxie Tuesday in your house? A Tabby Tuesday? Tortie Tuesday? Perhaps even a Tummy Tuesday? Around here, we're having us a Toesies Tuesday, courtesy of Thimble.

The claws of Thimble's back feet never retract very far, if at all, even when trimmed short. Her litter mate Trapper, who owns my parents and is simply a 20-lb version of Thimble, is the same way. Their hind limb claws simply want to stick out all the time. What about our feline friends out there? Do you retract all of your claws? Or do you like to leave some sticking out, perhaps as a reminder to the humans to keep those food bowls full?

Happy Tuesday to all!

Our Doodle of the Day:
Today's doodle is one that I actually created a while back, but there was something about it with which I wasn't happy. It just didn't look quite right to me. So, I never shared it. I don't like to do that, as I'm working on not being such a perfectionist and simply being okay with making things that may not be exactly as I pictured them. That's why I decided to finally share this doodle here after all.

This doodle was actually intended to be part of our Ten Days of Tortie series from last year. It was inspired by none other than Mudpie, who, along with her mom Melissa, gives us many wonderful book reviews on fun cozy cat mysteries. (This here human has found a great many new books to read thanks to Mudpie and her mom Melissa!). So, here's a tortie of a detective for you.

Our Tip of the Day:
Today is Static Electricity Day (which we know thinks to our handy 2018 Blogging Cats Weekly Planner!). Some time ago we gave a tip revolving around static electricity, and so today we will be repeating that tip. Read on if you are interested in this shocking repeat tip.

One of the downsides of winter is the dry air. And one of the downsides of dry air is static electricity, which means shocking the poor furbabies in our lives when attempting a simple pet. Although sometimes it's difficult to beat the dry air of winter, there are some possible solutions you can try to cut down on zapping the furry ones in your life. First, try using a humidifier to help keep the air in your home moist. You can also try using fabric softeners and dryer sheets in the laundry, to help blankets and clothes from harboring excess static. Also, be sure to keep your hands moist with lotion. The dryer your hands are, the more likely you are to build up static electricity and shock your furbaby during a petting session. Also, if you can tolerate the chill on your feet, you can see if there's an improvement if you go barefoot rather than wear socks or slippers around the house. Cloth on your feet might result in more static buildup as you walk around, which thereby might cause you to shock your kitty or pup when petting them. Although some days it seems like there's nothing up to the challenge of beating dry air, perhaps try one or more of the potential solutions listed here to see if they help keep your furbabies from receiving a shocking surprise from you.

Monday, January 8, 2018

Mancat Monday

Evan is proud to be your host again today. Yesterday he shared his Sunday Selfies with you, and today he's giving you another look at him for none other than Mancat Monday.

Sometimes it's hard to look outside when there's so much going on behind you in the house. That means you have to tilt your ears back and listen to make sure you don't miss anything, all while keeping your eye on the wildlife outside, too. It's not always easy being a busy mancat.

Given that today is indeed Mancat Monday, our Doodle of the Day stars the other mancat of the house. For those who don't know or might not remember, this here human's sister currently lives with her, and so does her handsome mancat Toby. That being said, for Christmas I doodled a little something, well, special, for Toby's mom.

There is a story and a reason behind this strange little piece. First of all, my sister finds sloths quite intriguing. What's more, it's a running joke in our house that Toby is, more or less, much like a sloth. He is a very unique and chill cat, and you can do just about anything you want to him without a fuss. But, at the same time, he's also very slow, speaking in terms of mobility. Though young and able-bodied, Toby is one of the slowest walking creatures you will ever have the misfortune of getting stuck behind in a hallway. He is of course one cool, sweet, and funny mancat, but also, well, much like a sloth. So, that's in large part why I doodled this up for my sister for Christmas.

That being said, we're now moving on to the wonderfully inspiring Sparks blog hop, hosted by Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

Inspired by the aforementioned comments on Toby and his special and unique nature, this is the Sparks I chose for this week:

"Be you. The world will adjust."

As always, I found this sweet and simple sentiment on Pinterest. I think being unique and being true to yourself is the only way to go. After all, as the quote says, the world can adjust to fit you just the way you.

So, don't forget to be you! And have a magnificent Monday!

Our Tip of the Day:
Winter often means dryness in the air, as we're sure you all know. That being said, do your best to steer clear of or reduce baths for your furbaby this time of year. Too much bathing can dry out the skin and fur, which can be even more of a problem in the dryness of winter. In addition, if a bath is needed, schedule it accordingly. If your furbaby is due to go outside, whether it be for a bathroom break of a trip to the vet, do no bathe them immediately before this, as going out into cold weather with wet fur can cause discomfort as well as potential health concerns. Long story short, be aware of the health of your furbaby and their fur and coat, and only bathe them as needed, if at all, during the winter months.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

Sunday Selfies: Sleeping on the Job

Hello and happy Sunday, friends! We of course are here today for the Sunday Selfies blog hop, hosted by our wonderful friends over at The Cat on My Head.

Our selfies for today are brought to you by mancat Evan. He decided that he wanted to show you all that his taxi cab, which he got for Christmas, is not only good for going on joy rides, but also for doing a little relaxing. After all, who said you can't sleep on the job?

Evan actually snapped today's selfies, last week during our Twelve Days of Christmas festivities. That's why you can still see a stocking hung in the background, and why a Christmas movie is playing on the TV. Can anyone guess which movie it is? It's a romantic Christmas comedy, and to be honest, it's not one of this human's most favorite movies. But, if it involves Christmas, then it is likely to play at least once in this household during the Christmas season. But we digress. Back to Evan.

If anyone needs a ride in Evan's taxi, feel free to give him a call. He'll come over and let you a hitch a ride. When he's done with his nap, that is.

Happy Sunday to all!

Our Doodle of the Day:

Though we're no longer drawing up festive, Christmasy doodles, we do have some Christmas-related pieces to share with you over the next couple of days. What do we mean by that? We mean that we'll be sharing with you some doodles that we gifted to family for Christmas.

For today, we have a doodle that I created for my grandma and her husband. First we'll show you the doodle, and then we'll give you a brief explanation.

This doodle, which I turned into a refrigerator magnet for them, is meant to be a comical commentary on my grandma and her husband's living situation. You see, my grandma's husband really loves dogs, and they have two Boston terriers. And then there's my grandma, who loves cats and is often rescuing kitties and bringing them home. They have both dogs and cats, obviously, but they are one of those couples in that classic dog person vs. cat person relationship. So, that's why this is the doodle they got from me for Christmas.

Our Tip of the Day:
In the midst of freezing temperatures and winter storms, it is the perfect time to make sure that you have a winter emergency plan ready. Power outages can indeed happen in the winter, especially during strong winds or snow or ice storms. Such power outages can be extremely dangerous in the winter, as it often won't take long for a home to become unbearably and unhealthily cold without heating. So, do you have an emergency plan in the event that you lose power in the cold of winter? Do you have a backup generator, or another means of staying warm without power? Do you have somewhere pet-friendly to go if your house were to become powerless and dangerously cold? Do you have a plan for packing up and safely traveling with your furbaby in the case that you need to seek a safe and warm location? Consider these and any other important factors that would need to be addressed in a winter emergency. And of course also take into consideration other potential winter emergencies. Even if you don't lose power, do you have enough food, water, medications, and other necessities for your furbaby and yourself, in case you need to sit tight and ride out a winter storm? Winter emergencies can come in a number of forms, so always be prepared!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Farewell to Christmas

Yesterday was the Twelfth Day of Christmas. But, we couldn't let one last Caturday go without a festive little something for the Caturday Art blog hop. So, here is our farewell-to-Christmas doodle.

There are five furbabies in this doodle. Do you see them all?

To be honest, I was sort of trying to channel the artist Thomas Kinkade in this doodle of mine. I love Kinkade's art, especially his Christmas pieces. They are so beautiful and rustic, often starring quaint and festive little homes. My Christmas doodle up there looks nothing like any of Kinkade's, but in case you were wondering, he was more or less the inspiration for this final Christmas doodle.

We hope all of you friends of ours had a merry, bright, and blessed Christmas season! Our tree and the rest of our decorations are, sadly, likely going down tomorrow. That will devastate Eddy, but we'll be cheering her up with a new cat tree for one of her favorite windows in the house. It's actually a late Christmas gifts for all of the kitties, and it even has lower levels that Evan can use. That's always a prerequisite for cat trees in our house ‒ it must be able to accommodate Evan and his paralyzed hind legs. But, let's be honest, I predict that Eddy will be the cat tree's primary inhabitant.

A happy continued 2018 to all!

Last but certainly not least, do be sure to visit the lovely Athena for the Caturday Art blog hop! You'll find all sorts of beautiful pieces there!

Our Tip of the Day:
Since for their health and safety it is recommended that time outdoors be reduced for furbabies in the cold of winter, try to keep them busy, entertained, and happy with plenty of indoor activities. This can help keep them fit as well as and keep cabin fever at bay, for both indoor and outdoor furbabies. To keep those furbabies entertained and happy inside, you can of course consider buying or making new toys, including interactive or puzzle toys. You can even simply go cheap and easy and use wadded up paper to play a game of fetch with your kitty, or use cardboard boxes to build a fun new fort. You can also play hide-and-seek with your kitty or pup, including hiding treats around the house or even in a treat-dispensing toy. You can also make treat time fun by turning it into a game of fetch, such as by sliding the treats on the floor so that your kitty or pup can chase them. The important thing is find a way to keep both their body and their mind active, as physical and mental stimulation are both equally important for a happy, healthy furbaby.

Friday, January 5, 2018

A Final Festive Friday

Merry Twelfth Day of Christmas! Don't worry, we're such suckers for Christmas around here that we will have one more festive doodle to share with you all for Caturday Art tomorrow. We wouldn't let Christmas go that easily. We're sorry to any of our friends who are tired of Christmas. We just can't help ourselves.

Today, though, we'll of course begin with the Friendly Fill-Ins, hosted by wonderful Ellen of 15andmeowing and Annie of McGuffy's Reader.

This week's fill-ins are wonderfully inspirational.

1. My guiding word for 2018 is _________.
2. A house is not a home without _________.
3. I look forward to _________ this year.
4. I really need to _________, because _________.

And then of course I did my best to fill these in.

1. My guiding word for 2018 is positivity.
(I mentioned last week how I'm chucking negativity out the door. So, a positive attitude in life is how it will be!)

2. A house is not a home without kitties!
(Duh, right? Of course, my house is a home with a pup in it, too. My home has lots of hairballs floating about, but also lots of love.)

3. I look forward to achieving some of my dreams this year.
(I said I was being positive, right? I have some dreams and goals for this year that, with the help of lots of positive thinking and some much needed organization, I plan to achieve and share later this year.)

4. I really need to finish cleaning my house, because it looks like a tornado tore through it.
(I am finally in the process of removing some clutter and unneeded items from my home. In the process, though, I've turned it into a war zone. The kitties are having a grand time turning anything and everything into a jungle gym, but, much to their dismay, I plan to have the house back in functioning order by the end of this weekend. Don't worry, though, the kitties will have a new official jungle gym to enjoy after all of their makeshift jungle gyms are removed. One of their late Christmas gifts is a new cat tree that, once I've finished rearranging everything, will be going by one of the windows in my bedroom.)

All right, who's ready for Eddy? She has a festive shot to share with you all, coming from, of course, the Christmas tree.

My favorite way to decorate a Christmas tree is with white lights and red ribbons. Given that I no longer even attempt to prevent or remove Eddy from the tree (because let's be honest, that was a hopeless endeavor), I have been spending all season trying to get a shot of her in the tree with one of the red ribbons (which she loves to remove from the tree and hide under my bed, by the way). I finally got that shot, even if it isn't all that great of quality.

In case you were wondering, Eddy will actually settle down and snooze in the Christmas tree. Her favorite spot is at nearly the very top of the tree, where there are hardly even enough branches to hold her. She manages to climb all the way up there and drape herself over the branches to snooze. She sure is a pro at that, too, because she has never even once knocked the tree over.

We are again wishing you all a very merry and bright Twelfth Day of Christmas! We'll see you tomorrow with one final festive post to end the Christmas season.

Our Tip of the Day:
Today's tip is of course another winter one. Just as you wouldn't leave your pups or kitties in the car in the heat of summer, please also remember to never leave your pups or kitties in the car in the cold of winter. The inside of a car, as you all surely know, can become incredibly cold without the heat running. It's very much like how the opposite can happen in the summer, when the car can become like an oven. In the winter, though, the inside of a car can be much like a refrigerator or freezer. For this reason, please take your pup or kitty's safety into consideration and never leave them in a car alone. If you need to run errands, leave your furbaby home, or have someone along to sit safely in the car with them. Of course, the same goes for the summer months. As always, it's better to be safe than sorry!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

We've arrived at the Eleventh Day of Christmas, friends! That means it's the penultimate day of the festivities. Well, that's sort of a lie here on our end. We'll of course have another festive post tomorrow, but then we'll actually have even one more Christmas season post for none other than the Caturday Art blog hop.

That all being said, we're starting this Eleventh Day of Christmas with Angel Sammy and Teddy's always fun Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge.

Our hosts have been sharing photo prompts each week for the past month, and we are quite enjoying this version of the poetic challenge. The photo they shared with us for today's poetry is this one here:

It's probably no surprise to some of you that we, yet again, really wanted to give this photo a festive twist. After all, we're still in the Twelve Days of Christmas spirit. I often try to explain how I got from point A to point B, but this time around even I don't really know what route I took. All I can say is that below you can read the poem we scribbled up for this week's quite intriguing photo.

Stone No More

Do you know the tale of Stone Man?
A life alone and without friends was his plan.
Cold, grey, and unfeeling was he,
And that included his cottage and its little oak tree.

Like a statue, he himself was a man of stone,
All the way down to the very bone.
Not excluded was the heart inside his chest,
Which could not beat against the stone of his breast.

Stone Man lived on the outskirts of town,
And his neighbors pitied his sad stone frown.
To him they extended greetings and invitations,
Which he refused without even an ounce of hesitation.

 Each winter the townsfolk requested Stone Man's presence,
And hoped he might find the local festivities pleasant.
But, alas, never was that the case,
And at not a single festive gathering would Stone Man show his face.

Letters and cards to Stone Man the neighbors would send,
All of which in the flames of his fireplace unreadable he would rend.
Then one day a little girl from town had a plan.
Her name was Myrtle and her years numbered ten.

A gift for Stone Man young Myrtle prepared,
And a knock on his door the little girl dared.
Stone Man greeted Myrtle with a snarl and a snort,
To which Myrtle did only retort,
"I believe you could use this gift in your life.
Please do open it, and have a good night."

And so Stone Man was left alone with her gift,
Which he decided to toss into a nearby snow drift.
That is, until it let out a little mew.
Though he tried to fight it, Stone Man's curiosity grew.

He untied the gold bow from the box of green,
And lifted the lid so that the contents could be seen.
What stirred inside took Stone Man aback,
For it was none other than a tiny kitten of orange and black.

Another mew the furry thing did sound,
And looked up at Stone Man with eyes bright and round.
After a third little mew that was sugary sweet,
Stone Man's heart took its very first ever beat.

And that is the story of Stone Man,
And how it is that his new life began.
 The kitten gifted to him by little Myrtle,
The Stone Man gave the name of none other than Turtle.
And it was on the day that Turtle arrived at his door,
That Stone Man became a man of stone no more.

That poem and doodle are for all of the furbabies who brighten our lives and make the world so beautiful and colorful. We have no doubt that all of our furry friends out there brighten their humans' lives!

Next up, Thimble is of course here to make sure that she gets to show off her cuteness on this Thursday. Of course, she is showing off her cuteness in a purrfectly festive way.

Thimble is known for finding any and every mirror in our home and using it to gaze at that gorgeous face of hers. This time she was willing to share her own reflection with that of the Christmas tree. But, can you spot something amiss in that reflection?

Do you see it? Do you see the kitty rump sticking out of the Christmas tree? Needless to say, Thimble was not impressed by Eddy's photobomb.

Also, can you tell in the reflection what Christmas movie we were watching? Here, Thimble will give you a closer look.

Thimble is entering her gratitude for mirrors, television entertainment, and the festive Christmas season into Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.

All of us here are thankful for the beautiful Christmas season we have been enjoying, and for the blessing of getting to begin another year together. We also, of course, count all of you friends in our blessings.

May your days continue to be merry and bright!

Our Tip of the Day:
The extreme cold we have been experiencing has prompted us to repeat a tip we have given before in the past. And that is to please remember that animals, such as stray or feral cats as well as wildlife, will seek out warmth in cold weather, and that sometimes includes places such as your car's engine. Especially when your car has recently been running, an animal who is outdoors may seek solace in its warmth. For this reason, please always be careful when starting your car or driving away. If possible, check beneath your car to ensure that no critters are napping beneath it, in danger of being run over. To further help ensure that no animals are beneath or up in the car, you can clap, honk the horn, or make another loud noise before starting it in order to alert any critters who might be using your car as a safe haven. In this same line of thought, keep in mind that your garage, shed, and any other area of your home or yard that is out of the elements might be seen as a good hiding place for outdoor animals. For this reason, take precautions to check such areas for cats or wildlife as needed, and to ensure that such areas are as safe as possible in the event that an animal might find their way there.