Sunday, October 31, 2021

Happy Halloween!

In case the title of this post wasn't clear enough, Happy Halloween to all of you wonderful friends of ours!

We hope your day is full of festive frights, lots of treats, and...screams?

Yikes. Actually, how about we just stick to more of the fun festivities. You know, like these cute and sometimes creepy jack-o'-lanterns we saw at our local jack-o'-lantern display.

It took me a bit to realize what I was looking at with that one above, but then I saw that it said MOO and indeed starred a cow.

I'm going with that one above being Winnie the Pooh. I guess it could also be a pig, but Pooh is my choice.

Now, for this next one, my mom and I were trying to guess what it was. It was like one of those ink blot tests, and my mom and I ultimately saw it as the rear end of a cat and now we can't unsee that. What do you see in this pumpkin?

For the last pumpkins we'll share, they're actually my own attempts at carving pumpkins. The best part is that they're pumpkins from the our very own pumpkin patch we grew in my parents' back yard this year.

I didn't just carve one cat-o'-lantern this year, but two, in two different varieties. Because it's Halloween and I couldn't help myself.

Now, we're going to say it again...


Oh, and of course Thimble is entering her screaming selfies above into the Halloween edition of the Sunday Selfies Blog Hop over at The Cat on My Head.

Tip of the Day

Our final Halloween tip is to use this spooky holiday as a chance to spend some quality time with your furbaby. Whether you're already staying tucked inside on Halloween night, or whether you wait until after handing out candy, do consider getting cozy and festive with your kitty or pup. For example, you can cozy up with your kitty or pup on the couch and read a spooky story, if that's your kind of thing. Another option is to of course watch a spooky movie or TV show, if that strikes your fancy. Of course, as we mentioned yesterday, do keep in mind your furbaby's sense of hearing and comfort when selecting a scary movie and volume level. For something more calm yet spookily festive, consider sitting down with your furbaby to watch It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, or a certain famous orange tabby in Garfield's Halloween Adventure. Halloween night is of course also the perfect time to not only enjoy yourself some treats (of course without sharing anything toxic for your furbaby!), but to also give your kitty or pup any festive toys or treats that you got for them.

Halloween may sometimes be considered a night filled with tricks and terrors, but you and your furbaby can instead use it to spend some quality time together in a festive yet safe manner. So, cuddle up on the couch and spend some cozy and frightfully festive time with that furbaby! Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 30, 2021

Happy Halloween Weekend!

Well, here we are posting late again, and with a change of plans. End-of-month madness took a bit of a turn for the worse at my workplace, but I've already mentioned that a gazillion times, so I won't bore you with it much more. Thankfully, with my new co-worker officially starting on Monday, this should all finally settle down. I'm looking forward to getting back to whatever normal is.

That doodle is not a new one. It's actually from way back in 2018. So are these silly little costume doodles for all the furbabies at our house.

I was going to share the intended new doodle for today. After all, my whole intention was to share a whole week of Halloween doodles leading up to, well, Halloween. That said, I never get as much joy in sharing my new doodles when I post late and in a rush. For whatever reason, that makes me feel like what I'm trying to share has just become an afterthought to my own self, and though that probably makes no sense to anyone else, I don't really know how to explain it.

Having said all of that, since there was some chaos and I ended up sharing flashback doodles both yesterday and today, I still have three new Halloween doodles to share. We have a new plan, though. Here on our blog, we're of course going to have our intended Halloween doodle and full celebration tomorrow. It's a favorite holiday around here, so it will be a post properly tended to. Then, we're going to extend the festivities to Monday and Tuesday, November 1 and 2, which are All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day. Those are also the days of Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. Those days aren't really an extension of Halloween as we know it, but are instead days to celebrate life and death in their own way. In those posts, we'll share some tidbits about those days, we'll share some of our Day of the Dead kitty and puppy figurine collection, and we'll share our final two Halloween doodles for the fun of it.

All of that rambling aside, we hope you're all having a frightfully festive Halloween weekend! If you're not into Halloween, then have yourself a totally normal and wonderful weekend!

Tip of the Day

If you enjoy watching horror films or other similar movies for Halloween, keep your furbaby in mind when you adjust the volume. As you all certainly know, cats and dogs have impeccable hearing. A noise that sounds normal and tolerable to us might for them sound far more loud and uncomfortable. So, take into consideration your kitty or pup's heightened sense of hearing when watching movies, especially those with loud music, screams, and so forth. If you are watching a loud movie this Halloween, or any day of the year, be sure that your kitty or pup has a quiet area of the home, away from the television, where they can retreat should they wish to.

Friday, October 29, 2021

Friendly Fill-Ins and Photo Fails

Hello, friends! I'm sorry this is so late. Not only did a crazy day at work happen yesterday, but then I made the rookie cat mom mistake of leaving my laptop sitting open and exposed. Thimble took advantage of the situation, as she always does, and found a way to lock my keyboard. I could not use the keyboard at all, and I didn't know why. I finally discovered she had turned on something called Filter Keys, and apparently the way to fix it is to hold the Shift key down for 8 seconds. I had never heard of this before, but that didn't stop Thimble from figuring out how to do it. She certainly enabled it much, much, much faster than I figured out what had happened and how to fix it.

Anyway. We're back up and running, finally, and now we're ready for the Friendly Fill-Ins. Please feel free to join us! My co-host Ellen of 15andmeowing came up with the first two fill-in statements, and I came up with the second two.

1. My main concern right now is _________.

2. I plan to _________ for Halloween this year.

3. If I saw a ghost, I would _________.

4. This time of year, _________ is a personal tradition of mine.

My answers are below in bold.

1. My main concern right now is finding a good work-life balance.
(Despite my best intentions and many failed efforts to fix this, I've bene struggling with my work-life balance for many, many months now, which regulars to our blog have probably noticed with our late posts and plethora of other blog inconsistencies. That said, blogging about my furry family is a hobby that I'm not willing to give up because it means a lot to me. So do my hobbies like drawing, writing, reading, and so forth. We had an especially lengthy busy time at my work this year, which was followed up by one of my best co-workers giving his two weeks' notice after he received a wonderful opportunity in another state. I've already mentioned all of this, so I'll stop being a broken record now. The point is, now that my new co-worker will be officially be starting at his new position on Monday, and therefore things at work can start to resemble some semblance of normalcy, I will be doing everything I can to stick to routines and schedules that allow me to put time and effort toward my hobbies with just as much consistency as I put towards my full-time job. I've mentioned before that when it comes to my full-time job I am the type of person who is not willing to live to work, but rather to work to live. Did I ramble enough there? Yeah? Good.)

2. I plan to dress up as a black cat as I hand out candy for Halloween this year.
(I did the same last year. I have a black cat onesie, complete with ears and a tail, and so obviously I'm a black cat.)

3. If I saw a ghost, I would hope it was my calico angel Rosie.
(I have no doubt she would be a friendly ghost, and I'd love to have a real, true visit from my Rosie.)

4. This time of year, visiting a local jack-o'-lantern display is a personal tradition of mine.
(A local family who grows and sells pumpkins at their pumpkin patch always invites hundreds of people to come out and carve hundreds of pumpkins, and then for a couple of days around Halloween they put them all out for display at night. My mom and I visit this every year, and we're visiting it tonight. I look forward to this so much, as for this reason and that, jack-o'-lanterns are one of my favorite things about Halloween.)

Now it's your turn!
To add your link to the Friendly Fill-Ins Linky list, just click HERE!
You can also click on the badge below to add your link.

You are also welcome to complete the fill-ins in the comments below,
or in the comments on Ellen's blog, 15andmeowing.


And now it's time for the Pet Photo Fails Blog Hop, hosted by none other than Melissa and Mudpie of Melissa's Mochas, Mysteries, & Meows.

As always, our resident blooper queen Eddy is more than ready to share some photo shoot outtakes. Today's star not only Eddy, but that strangely stuffed black cat who's been hanging around our house. Don't worry, because Eddy found some bloopery ways to photo bomb the fellow.

Happy Friday, friends!


Halloween Flashback Doodle of the Day

So here's where I did a personal no-no sort of related to my fill-in #1 above. After a hectic day at work yesterday, and then after having to research and fix the weirdness that innocent little Thimble did to my computer, I not only failed to get this post topped off and scheduled yesterday, and I not only am getting it posted late this morning, but I apparently forgot to upload my new Halloween doodle for today. Now I don't have access to the scanned file, and so we're going to have to break the chain of a week straight of new Halloween doodles. I haven't decided yet if I'll now share today's intended doodle tomorrow or Sunday in addition to those day's doodles, or if we'll just extend Halloween a bit more and share it with a couple of other Halloweenish ones early in November.

Anyway, I at least have an apt flashback that I haven't yet shared. I believe this one might be from 2018. I created it as a banner for our blog that year, and it stars none other than my calico angel Rosie, who I mentioned in fill-in #3 today.

Tip of the Day

If you think it might be fun and festive for your furbaby to get in the Halloween spirit with a chocolaty treat, consider getting them some goodies made with carob. Carob is a chocolate alternative, and it can give items such as candy and baked goods an appearance and even flavor that is similar to chocolate. What's more, carob does not contain the component found in real chocolate that is toxic to cats and dogs. There are carob pet treats on the market, and even items such as cookies for furbabies are sometimes made with carob. So, if you think your kitty or pup might enjoy some chocolaty treats of their own while you enjoy some candy on Halloween, then consider the safe and festive alternative that is carob.

Thursday, October 28, 2021

Thoroughly Poetic Thankful Thimble Thursday

We didn't mean for any of our Halloween week posts to go up late, but life happens and here we are. Hopefully later really is better than never. That said, we're ready to rhyme for Angel Sammy's Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge.

As always, our host shared a photo prompt to help guide us. This week's prompt is this intriguing image here:

As has been the case for weeks now, I wanted to try to twist this into a Halloween poem and illustration. Which resulted in this silliness:

To Be a Witch

It was none other than Halloween night,
A time for all things fun and fright.
In her attempt to acquire all treats and no tricks,
Young Anna wished to dress up as a frightfully festive witch.

There was just one problem that Anna had,
A problem that made her feel anxious and sad.
While her furry friends Kitty and Mutt were far ahead,
Kitty dressed as her black cat self and Mutt as a ghost not yet dead,
Anna had not even a witch's hat to place on her head.

It was Anna's grandma who noticed her plight,
And she said, "What has you so blue on this Halloween night?"
"I want to be a witch," was Anna's reply,
"But my costume is nonexistent, I cannot lie."

"A witch, you say?" Anna's grandma asked,
And then added, "Perhaps I have at least a hat."
Anna noticed her grandma grin and chuckle,
And then she followed her as down the hallway she did shuffle.

Anna's grandma opened her closet,
Into which all of her clothes she did secretly deposit.
Anna had never seen what lived inside,
But now that she did her eyes grew wide.

Her grandma wore heels that high?
And her grandma wore wigs that wild?
Anna was in a little bit of shock,
So much so that she barely noticed the turning of the clock.

"Do you want to dress as a witch or not?" her grandma asked.
In her hands, Anna's grandma was holding out a pointy hat.
Then she gave Anna just the right pair of boots of black,
Though their heels were the absolute opposite of flat.

After Anna's grandma then gave her a wig a bit wild,
She was soon dressed like a witch with the most perfect style.
Kitty and Mutt were meowing, barking, and ready to go,
Apparently wondering why Anna was moving so slow.
There was a good reason, actually,
And it was that the high heel boots left her in, well, agony.
Is this what it took to be a witch?
Anna wasn't sure whether her feet hurt or itched.

In truth, after half a block Anna wondered if the boots were a bad call.
She was honestly certain that she was going to fall,
And then she would have to trick-or-treat in a crawl.
What a wonderful Halloween that would be, would it not?

To speed things along, Mutt carried Anna's candy bucket for her,
Which the ghostly little pup was more than fine with, for sure.
In truth, it made him smile ear-to-ear,
And it also made some of the candy disappear.
Kitty resorted to a perhaps judgmental stare,
And when a boot heel landed on her tail, she most certainly did glare.

When the bucket of candy was full of treats,
And when blisters covered both of Anna's feet,
She and her furry friends headed home.
Anna removed the boots, knowing that in them she would never again roam.
She also removed her grandma's wild wig.
She wondered, Is this really the style my grandma digs?

None of that mattered now, though,
Because Anna's candy bucket deliciously overflowed.
Anna feasted on sugar, and snuck some to Kitty and Mutt.
Until in a sugar coma their eyes did finally shut.


Of course, we are now ready for Brian's Thankful Thursday Blog Hop.

Can you guess what Thimble is grateful for today?

Thimble is thankful that she can look the other way when strange black cats are forced into her photo shoot. She's especially glad she can ignore the freaky feline when this here human didn't even bother to take a lint roller to it. Sorry, Thimble.


Last but not least, how about the fill-in statements for tomorrow's Friendly Fill-Ins challenge? My co-host Ellen of 15andmeowoing came up with the first two, and I came up with the second two.

1. My main concern right now is _________.

2. I plan to _________ for Halloween this year.

3. If I saw a ghost, I would _________.

4. This time of year, _________ is a personal tradition of mine.

We'll see you tomorrow, friends!

Tip of the Day

We mentioned yesterday considering getting your kitty or pup a festive new toy as a Halloween treat and distraction, of course as long as said toy is safe for your furbaby to use. Similarly, you can typically find your furbaby some Halloween treats of the edible kind. Some companies come out with specialty holiday treats, for example. In addition, many pet stores will sell cookies, at least those for pups, and oftentimes such cookies will include those designed and decorated for certain holidays, including Halloween.

You don't just have to go for store-bought goodies in order to give your kitty or pup something festive and tasty on days like Halloween, though. There are a great many treat recipes available online, including those festively made with pumpkin or those simply cut into festive shapes. I've even seen people go for simple yet effective holiday treats that merely include cutting a wedge of paté canned food into a festive shape, such as a pumpkin.

Many of the options for festive treats are aimed toward aesthetics that humans rather than furbabies will appreciate, but as long as the ingredients are safe, your kitty or pup can enjoy a tasty Halloween treat just as well. So, check labels or recipe ingredients to ensure any treats you select are safe for your individual furbaby, and then let them chow down on a festive Halloween treat on Halloween night. Of course, if your furbaby has any ailments or you have any concerns about feeding your kitty or pup certain treats, do consult your veterinarian.

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

The Weird Friend on Woof Woof Wednesday

Pup Astrid had her turn investigating the strange feline friend that's been hogging our blog these past couple days. Well, more like she had her turn getting her space invaded by it.

Astrid and the kitties are annoyed to learn that this strange and stuffed black kitty will be staying out at our house year round. Good grief.

Happy Wednesday, friend!

Halloween Doodle of the Day

Today's doodle is a recreation of one from a couple years ago, and is inspired by one of my favorite terrible horror movies.

Tip of the Day

Do you want to give your furbaby an extra fun treat for Halloween? We're thinking most of you already know that pet stores typically offer festive toy options around the holidays, including Halloween. Nevertheless, we're reminding you to consider looking for the pet store's festive holiday section, or for festive options in the general toy aisle. If necessary and feasible, you can even use such festive new toys to help distract a furbaby who gets anxious or excited by the sounds and overall hustle and bustle of Halloween night festivities, such as trick-or-treaters visiting the house. Of course, if you are handing out candy, festive new toys should be given in a safe area of the home, away from the door. And, yet another caveat is to always check new toys for any potentially dangerous parts and pieces. You know your kitty or pup best, so when picking out new festive toys for them, always keep in mind their tendencies to chew on or eat certain toys. It's fun to be festive, but it's also very important to be safe.

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Terror Tonks Tuesday

You know that strange stuffed black cat Toby and Evan have been hanging out with and investigating the past couple of days? Well, Tonks isn't so sure about the fella. She's so unsure of it, that this was how she spent her time during the weird little visitor's photo shoot.

Do you see the hiding calico?

Tonks hopes your Tuesday is far less terrifying than hers!

Halloween Doodle of the Day

This is the least Halloweeny, least spookyish doodle we'll be sharing this week. But, I scribbled this up for my parents' anniversary this past weekend, using pumpkin-carving to make a parody of their different personalities, and so I figured I might as well share it.

Tip of the Day

Today's tip in our Halloween series is one that we have given before on many different occasions. In case an unexpected escape happens on Halloween, such as if your furbaby gets out of the house when the door is opened for trick-or-treaters, be sure that they have ID on them. A collar tag and microchip with your contact information could potentially help a lost furbaby get back to you more easily and quickly. Of course, don't only make sure that your furbaby is wearing identification, but also make sure said contact info is up-to-date. If your address or phone number changes, do not hesitate to put the correct one on your kitty or pup's collar tag and to update their microchip information. No one ever wants to think about their furbaby getting loose and lost, but accidents can happen, especially on busy nights like Halloween. So, always err on the side of caution and have your furbaby identifiable in case of an escape.

Monday, October 25, 2021

A Strange and Spooky Mancat Monday

It's Mancat Monday. Evan would give you his attention and say hello, but he's quite busy investigating a certain visitor.

Who is this strangely stuffed black cat? Evan is trying to figure that exact thing out.

Good grief. After he figures out this weird friend—if a friend it actually is—Evan will then have to move on to that pumpkin up there with the freakishly friendly face. Evan really wants to know why so much weird stuff keeps showing up at our house this time of the year.

Evan hopes you all have a far less weird Monday than he's having!


Now, we are finally sharing the poem and doodle for last week's installment of Angel Sammy's Thoroughly Poetic Thursday challenge.

The photo prompt our poetic host shared for this past week was this one here:

As has become the norm, I took some major liberties with this one. To be honest, as I was brainstorming some ideas for this prompt, I also saw this image online:

I've actually been seeing this image floating around a lot lately, probably because I'm a member of a lot of weird and wacky online groups, and I just can't get that witchy kitty imagery out of my head. And so, I tried to make my poem match both Angel Sammy's prompt and that image there. The result was this silly rhyme and illustration here:

The Witching Hour

The witching hour was really quite a busy one.
The witches had so much to do before the rising sun.
Helga needed to stir up a brew or two,
In the cauldron set up by Millie on Moonlight Avenue.

The elder of the witchy crew was a gal named Margot,
Who of all witchy things was quite an advanced pro.
Like all the witches in that busy hour,
Margot had so much to do that she was beginning to feel sour.

In a hurry to get things done,
Back and forth on her broom Margot spun.
She grabbed the spell books and of course the sage,
And don't dare think she would forget the wolfsbane.

So that she and her coven could do their witching hour duties,
Margot flew while other folk slept in their nightcaps and booties.
She brought Helga her potions and Millie her hat,
But there was one thing she had forgotten in all of that.

Though everything else was ready and in place,
There was one furry thing Margot forgot in her rushed race.
Every witch needs a loyal feline familiar,
But Margot forgot to find whiskered friends for the other witches and her.

She stopped her broom and, in truth, cursed just a bit,
But she didn't get far throwing a tantrum or a fit.
As if her witchy wisdom sensed her dilemma,
In front of her a solution was suddenly presented.

Though she had not realized it before,
Margot had stopped just in front of a certain building's door.
By the light of festively placed pumpkin lanterns, she saw where she was at.
She stood in front of the animal shelter, where a witch could indeed find herself a cat.

Just then, Margot saw motion from the corner of her eye,
And then she could not help but turn to the side.
In the animal shelter's window was something nothing short of cute,
Though its meows were certainly anything but mute.

Margot found herself face-to-face with the cutest little kitten,
It was fuzzy and black and with it she was immediately smitten.
The kitten put its cute little paws against the window's glass,
And Margot could not help but try to reach for it even when blocked by that.

And then, suddenly, there was more motion in the window.
Margot could see it all unfold in the frightfully festive lantern's glow.
Behind her new little friend appeared, well, more.
There were suddenly two kittens, then three, and then four and more.

Margot called over Helga, Millie, and the other witches.
Who, like Margot, were immediately smitten.
The witchy gals all began picking out their kittens,
And that was when a little puppy then appeared in their midst.

It was a witch named Annie who cried, "A puppy!"
And just like that the little canine became her familiar so trusty.
There were so many kittens and of course a puppy to take home,
That through the streets with full wagons and strollers the witches did roam.

And that was how Margot and her witches found their best friends,
And how a great many kittens' and a puppy's time in the shelter came to end.
It was fortunate that this tale unfolded in time for the witch's witching hour fun,
But they were grateful for far more reasons than just that one.

Tip of the Day

We've been giving all sorts of tips related to pet safety during trick-or-treating and other Halloween festivities. And, today, we have yet another tip related to that. Then again, it is almost Halloween, so perhaps it's permitted.

Today's tip is to help your kitty or pup get rid of some extra energy by engaging them in some form of activity before any Halloween festivities begin. This way, your furbaby would have less pent up energy and therefore less anxiety or frustration while they are tucked away somewhere safe while you hand out candy or celebrate this spooky holiday in another way. Helping your kitty or pup use up that extra energy of theirs could involve playing a game such as fetch with them, or directing their attention to interactive toys. If your fubaby is one who needs or likes walks, then you can also drain and prevent pent up energy by taking them for a walk prior to trick-or-treat hours. This would again enable them to release some of their energy before being secured in their safe room while you hand out candy. All in all, pent up energy can lead to issues such as anxiety or frustration in a cat or dog. This is why it might be a good idea to take your kitty or pup for a stroll, or to play with them in the house, prior to locking them up somewhere safe and away from the door on Halloween night.