A slight obsession with books

Reading and Fibrecrafts


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Animal Kingdom & Rosie

More scrapbooking and this time I’ve done one of Rosie when she was quite a bit younger and smaller. I have a pad of cat-themed papers that I’ve been working my way through and the colours in the pad are perfect for Rosie. I also have quite a large stash of cat embellishments that I bought when we were thinking about getting cats again, so it’s nice to be able to use them now.

I love the way Rosie was posing for this photo. It’s one of my favourite pics of her.
I’ve also been working my way through some more Holiday photos from last year and have done a couple more layouts of Animal Kingdom.

This one is going to be the section divider for AK.And this one is just to show off two of my favourite photos from the park.Both of those layouts are using some very old papers. The black/Kraft one is probably the newest one of them and that was dated 2008! It’s great to see old stash being used finally.

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Fun in the snow

The cats loved playing in the snow last weekend. Two of them did, anyway. Sammie refused point-blank to go out in it. Frodo was outside for most of the day, with a short interlude for a wash and a snooze on my lap. Rosie was outside for a fair bit of the day although she wasn’t as keen on the snow falling on her and didn’t like the sound of the snow crunching under my wellies.

This photo was taken on Saturday before the snow really came down on the night. There was just a sprinkling so it gave them a chance to get used to the idea before playing out on the Sunday in the deeper snow.Frodo had a whale of a time. He was chasing snowflakes, helping Stephen to shake the snow off the enclosure roof and stalking Rosie. Rosie was a bit more cautious but didn’t seem to mind the snow underfoot. It was great seeing them have so much fun and it definitely wore them out as Frodo spent the evening cuddled up next to me, fast asleep, while Rosie curled up in her favourite bed on the cat tree.


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Cat flaps

The cats are loving their new enclosure but it was getting a bit chilly having the back doors open for them to go in and out. Because of where we’re situated, and because Rosie tends to panic if she can’t get in and hide if she needs to, we couldn’t just close the doors and leave them out there.

We’d been talking about having a cat flap for a while but couldn’t decide where to have it. The options were to go through the wall in my craft room, which would be a big job but would only need one flap. I was worried about getting a draught in there though as it’s a cold room to start with.

The other option was to go though the kitchen door. Then to either go through the conservatory wall, or though the door, which is double-glazed. If the latter, we’d have needed to have a new glass bit made with the cat flap already in it.

We’d been going back and forth on it for ages so eventually we found a company online that looked reputable, (Facebook reviews/good website etc) and gave them a ring. They turned out to be a godsend as not only did they give excellent advice, but fitted two flaps the next day (last Friday).

We had one in the kitchen door and one in the conservatory door. We had the glass panel replaced by a solid one as the door wasn’t wide enough to take the cat flap and still be strong enough. It looks a bit odd having the glass on one side and a solid panel on the other but I can live with it. If it does bother me, I can always get the other panel replaced to match.

The company we used is All Glass & Glazing, and we’ll definitely use them again if we need any glass work done. They were fast, efficient and friendly and left absolutely no mess at all. They supplied the flaps, which we chose from their website and they’re plenty big enough for the cats.

Frodo got the hang of using them straight away. I’ve been trying to get a pic of him but he’s so confident that he goes through them at about 90mph. He’s loving it.

Stephen made a little step for them outside as we thought the drop might put them off using it.

Sammie took a little longer to use the flaps and would still prefer for us to open the door instead, but she has been using them and has been in and out a few times today.Rosie is the most reluctant. She has used them but isn’t keen on trying to push them open. There are magnets holding the flaps steady, so they don’t blow in the wind. The cats do have to push a bit harder than if there weren’t any and that is what Rosie is struggling with. She’ll soon get the hang of it though.I’m noticing that the back door needs cleaning. Everything got a bit grubby out there while the landscaping in the enclosure was being worked on. Now it’s pretty much finished, I’ll have to get my scrubbing brush out!

I’ve been taking photos of the enclosure and I’ll post them soon. We’re really happy with it, and so are the cats.


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Adventure playground – progress

We’re still landscaping the new cat enclosure and it’s taking a long time. We’ve had to remove the top layer of soil to make room for the hardcore that needs to go underneath the artificial grass. That’s pretty much done now but it still needs a bit of levelling.

We’ve had plenty of help from the cats though. They love it if one of us is outside with them especially if there’s a wheelbarrow involved.

Rosie has definitely got over being nervous about going outside. She runs up and down the ladders as much as the other two. Frodo loves to lounge on the shelves and keep an eye on what’s going on.

Sammie loves it up high too.

The shelves make a great spot to watch the birds and squirrels from as we’ve got bird feeders outside the pen.

We have had a bit of a problem with dirty cats as both Rosie and Frodo think it’s great fun to roll on the ground and Rosie has been digging for worms which she then plays with.

We’ve started to get a few grasses, ready to plant once the artificial grass is down. I’ve got them on the patio for ease of watering and the cats love to get in between them. I can’t wait until we’ve got them growing all over the garden so they can hide in them.

The enclosure was definitely worth getting. The cats love being outside and we’re happy knowing they’re safe.

Hopefully it’ll be landscaped soon it looks a bit nicer than it does at the moment.


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Kitty Angels

Before we’d even booked our last holiday, we’d talked about how the cats would be cared for while we were away. We looked at several options but quickly decided against a cattery. The cats are used to having the run of the house and I knew they’d hate being confined to a small space. Plus Sammie would be really stressed by strangers and noises.

That left a cat sitting service and after doing a lot of research, we contacted Kitty Angels. They arranged to visit us and spent some time with us telling us about the service and asking us lots of questions about the cats and their habits. Tony filled in a questionnaire with all the details of how we wanted the cats fed and cared for. We were very impressed and went ahead and booked with them.

They’ve got brilliant reviews on Facebook, which was just as reassuring as the various documents that Tony had brought to show us, such as insurance and DBS checks.

We had another visit a couple of weeks before we went on holiday, this time from Andrea who would be the main visitor. We showed her where everything was and she made sure she had all the information about the cats that she needed. She also met the cats and made friends with Frodo straight away.

What I loved about the service is that they set up a WhatsApp group so that I could receive twice-daily updates and ask any questions. With every update I got a chatty account of the visit telling me what games they’d been playing and including lots of photos and the odd video. Because of the time difference, the first update was there by the time that I woke up so it was lovely to be able to see how the cats were doing first thing in the morning.

Andrea and the other Angels took some great photos. These are just a few of them.

They played with the laser pointer, the flying frenzy and a piece of string. They got down on the floor and played with mice. They fussed them and cuddled them and talked to them. Even timid little Sammie had a fuss and some playtime.

They cleaned up any mess, even getting the vacuum out and took any waste away with them so there was no smell. They let us know that the cats were eating well and using their litter trays. On bonfire night they put my iPod dock on a timer so there was some music to block out the fireworks.

I’ve already booked them for next year. I came home to happy, healthy, well-fed cats and you can’t ask better than that.

 


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Snipped ‘n’ chipped

Rosie went to the vets recently┬áto get spayed. While she was there they chipped her too, as it’s easier to do it while they’re under the anaesthetic. She shook off the effects of being put under really quickly and after an evening spent sprawled across my lap, she perked right up.

rosie130916-01_bOnce she started moving around, she decided that she really, really didn’t like the collar so used all four feet and just pushed it off. We hate the things and the way the cats react to them so looked for an alternative, rather than keep putting it back on her.

After doing a bit of research on Google, I sent Stephen to Asda to pick up a babygro. He had no clue where they were in the shop, or indeed what one looked like, so he asked for help. He then had a bizarre conversation which went something like this:

Stephen: Can you point me in the right direction for a babygro please?

Asda assistant: Sure, they’re over here. Is it for a boy or a girl?

Stephen: Ah, neither actually.

Asda assistant: ???

Stephen: It’s for my cat.

Asda assistant: *pause* So, is it a girl or a boy cat?

Yeah. Full marks to the Asda girl for not being thrown by that one. She also asked the cat’s name and recommended one that had flowers on, as they looked a bit like roses. Love it!

rosie140916-01_bI cut the babygro thing as recommended on the internet. I’m thinking it was too large for her though as it lasted five minutes before she took it off. I then tried a smaller one from boots but that didn’t even last five minutes.

We gave up at this point and as she didn’t seem to be licking at the wound, we didn’t bother with any more babygros or collars.

Unfortunately she must have either licked it or maybe damaged it by leaping around as when we took her back to see the vet for the stitch removal, it was quite scabby and the stitch had to be left in. The vet was keen for the collar to go back on, but knowing how much Rosie would hate that, we shelled out for the special bodysuit. In hindsight, we should have got that to start with.

rosie220916-02_bThis was much better. It only affected her ability to run and jump a little and she couldn’t get it off. I rolled it up to her front legs a few times, to give her a good brush, and it was easy to redo up afterwards. It also did the job of protecting the wound as when we took her back to the vet, it was all healed and a couple of days after that stitch came out, the bodysuit came off too.

I gave her another really good brush, which she enjoyed, (she really loves being groomed) and she spent the rest of the day giving herself a thorough wash.

We think the vet may have inserted some springs while they were operating as she seems even more bouncy than before. She ‘s full of energy and apart from a bare bit where she was shaved, is completely back to normal.