Long time no see

Should our human be ashamed? Definitely! We didn’t get to post our pictures and opinions for a long time! That’s not how social media are working, aren’t they? When you’re offline, you’re gone. And then some new kitty turns up, takes your place and thinks she’s most beautiful which is of course all wrong – but how is she supposed to know if she’s not seen our gracious looks and heard of our powerful realm?

However, we need Mom’s thumbs to type this posting, so I helped her cover up. And aren’t our tails a perfect match? Then again… I never got why she calls her tail ponytail. Eh? Human logic, anyone?

Our typist has promised to post regularly from now on, and she’ll eventually start commenting on your blogs again. To be fair – her 2017 was horrible so far. Serious illness and death in her family, termination of our tenancy agreement (and we were AGAIN forced to move), serious water damage in our new apartment followed by weeks of heavy construction work, financial troubles and a lot of stuff in her private life, too. So I guess she had all reason being too tired to work on our blog, but then again … we’ve also suffered a lot, and we’d have loved to complain on our diary here. Bah.

 

Sometimes a belly is all you need

Tessa and Kajsa were helping me through a day full of anxiety attacks after bad news from my family today. They are very patient listeners, and oh they know how to comfort you: a purring cat on your chest, massaging your anxiety away, is hard to top.

However, there’s something magic about a belly of an excited cat that wallows in valerian.

Even if you’re not allowed to touch this beautiful belly.

 

Katzenauge

Did you know that reflector is also called cat’s eye (Katzenauge) in German? My dictionary claims that you can also say so in (British?) English, but I had problems finding a better reference. Many of you are English native speakers, can you help me here?

Two real cat eyes and two fake. Good to know that all 4 are working!

According to the Finnish law, pedestrians must use reflectors during the dark months of the year. I know that wearing reflectors for improved safety is very uncommon in most countries, but I encourage you to give it a try. I admit that I thought it was a bit silly when I came to Finland. I had lived in Northern Norway before moving to Southern Finland, so Helsinki wasn’t dark for me in winter. However, I changed my mind when I drove a car for the first time in Finland: it really makes a big difference!

If you’re interested to think about it: the Finnish Road Safety Council has a great animation where you can compare how well you’re seen with and without reflectors. Change the distance as well, 20 meters (default setting) isn’t a long distance – and you want to be seen as early as possible when walking in the dark.

 

It’s the user, not the system

Sigh. Any construction relies on its user’s mental capacity and on the constructor’s foresight.

I’ve now replaced the basket with a cardboard box. I fastened the box with nails to the white shelf, and it has stayed on its place (at least until now). Cardboard isn’t of course the best material for nailing, so I’ll invest in a wooden box if this doesn’t work out.

Are you ever done with cat-proofing?!? (Not 100% sure if I really want to hear your answers and stories to this question… hehehe)

 

Catify your hat rack! DIY

We live in a 45 m2- apartment (485 ft2), so I wanted to utilize any space for the cats. The hat rack belongs to the apartment, and I immediately decided to catify it. The result turned out well, but was much more work than I thought!

The surface of your hat rack is important when you want to turn it into a platform for cats. If you have a similar rack like ours, you’ll need a shelf to give your cats a safe landing strip. Cats are balancing masters, but they need an even surface for a safe landing.

It doesn’t matter what shelf you take, but keep in mind that you have to fix it to the hat rack. If the hat rack is your own, you can simply bolt the shelf on it. If it’s not your own, you probably don’t want to drill. This Lack wall shelf from Ikea consists of two parts, which is why I could fasten the shelf with a string to the hat rack.

I was surprised that the cats couldn’t jump from the brown shelf to the rack! I tried to tease them with their favorite treats, but they didn’t dare to jump. I still don’t really understand the problem. I wonder if the “jump path” is too straight? It can’t be height because they leap higher to other places.

I built a very simple cat ladder to help them.

I bolted two longer and four shorter bars to a ladder, and wrapped sisal ropes around the bars. I bolted the ladder to the white rack, but didn’t tack it to the brown shelf.

Both cats climbed the ladder without problems, but it was very difficult to get from the ladder to the white shelf because its surface was too slippery. I nailed a white bathroom matt to the white shelf to give their claws something to grip. I wasn’t sure if nailing was a good solution in the long run, but the matt has now been there for over 6 months.

Success! They could finally get to the hat rack themselves, and it soon became one of the most popular spots! The ladder also works as a scratching post although they normally prefer cardboard to sisal.

I was first worried that Tessa doesn’t have a second exit to escape Kajsa, but it actually never became a problem. Then again – Tessa found of course a second way to climb down…

The hat rack was worth the trouble, but I was surprised that human furniture need so much adjustment for cats. The material wasn’t expensive, except the sisal rope: I spent about 20€ on sisal here, and this ladder is quite short.

 

Dangerous Theft

Ups. I forgot to close the cupboard.

Looks like they had some fun. I tried very hard to not become hysterical when Tessa threw up parts of the packing. I observed her very carefully for some days though.

What would you do if this happens again? Was it naive that I didn’t go to the vet immediately?

 

Bad Neighborhood

We already know that we can’t rely on Mom’s judgement call when it comes to apartments. We’ve now found out why we hardly see squirrels around here – it’s because of our bad neighborhood!

Mom took these pictures about 600 meters from our house. This tree looks like an ordinary fir, and Mom’s instincts are so badly evolved that she didn’t pay any attention.

But somehow it even crossed her mind that she often sees squirrels and birds here. So Mrs Super Brain had a closer look… just look what’s behind the branches: a squirrel and bird paradise! Snow-free, dry and hidden, that’s what these little suckers like. Is it any wonder that they don’t hang out at our place?

It’s so important to check your potential neighborhood before moving somewhere, even though Mom claims that Finland is a very safe country without any real bad neighborhoods. Bah. And what is this??? We’ve neighbors who are spending time and money on a secret bird and squirrel restaurant!!

We think she should take us to this place, but Mom said “I’m afraid our neighbors won’t appreciate when I walk cats to their feeding station”. So she is afraid of our neighbors? How can she still claim that there’s nothing wrong with our neighborhood?

 

Insomnia

My shrink decided to change my meds – which is probably a good idea in the long run, but not funny for the moment.

I’m so tired, but at the same time suffering from insomnia. I wished I could sleep through the night. Ok, this is one of the reasons my psychiatrist wanted to change my medication, so I can’t blame the transition of old to new meds for that.

My nursing staff is most excellent.

Warmth, love, coziness. Something to laugh about, and a reason to keep up. I’m lucky enough to have family and friends, but they don’t live with me. And they certainly don’t need me to go to the kitchen to feed them. It’s often hardest to get up, to do something at all, but when I’m already in the kitchen, I fix some food for me too.

 

The perfect wardrobe for cats

We forgot to mention some important “details” yesterday. In fact, it’s only fair that we’ve free access to “her” closet.

We had a very cat-friendly wardrobe at our old place. Just look! No walls, no doors, only curtains!! We kitties could go and leave as we please and we had a great platform on top of the wardrobe! Mom again had a dust-free storage for her clothes. We’re sorry for the bad quality, Mom took these pictures on the very last evening at our old place, because she suddenly remembered that she always wanted to blog about our wardrobe.

We’re still angry that Mom sold this perfect cat wardrobe because it’ll be very hard to get the same again. Mom bought it second-hand many years ago. All her friends admired her wardrobe, but they couldn’t get it themselves because Ikea stopped the production at some point in the 90s. So why on earth did Mom not move it to our new place?!?

She says that our new flat has enough (hear hear) built-in cabinets, and that she won’t storage furniture for potential future apartments. She made a big mistake there, and we know that she’ll regret it some day. Bah. So the least she could do was to give us free access to the new closet?

 

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