Friday, May 22, 2009

Fragile Truce

He's done it again! Brad is acting like one particular middle eastern country. We sign a ceasefire in the morning then he attacked me in the afternoon.
Despite our promise to be at peace this winter, Brad has committed a war crime! No less!
He attacked me while I was resting on my Mama's wobbly tubbly comfy muffin top. How could he? How dare you, Mama scolded him! For, Mama was hurt by me accidentally kicking Mama's tummy with my hind legs because Brad, the #@%^&* scoundrel bit my rump!
So now, I swear I will not be easy on him anymore. If yesterday we could share a blanket, that privilege has been withdrawn. He can call me a selfish @#$%^&* for all I care! I don't care, the very orange but very comfy Ikea blanket is MINE! All MINE!!!

The blanket is now mine...all mine! Lay off Brad! You pest!! Shoo! Shoo!

This is me relaxing on Mama's lap before gradually moving up her tummy. My favourite is when Mama uses the massage chair...such heavenly bosom she has...hmmmm...purrr purrr....

Me at me favourite spot...Mama's lap

Then Brad came and lie on the sofa while resting his head against Mama's thigh. Bet he was jealous that I was on top and he was just down there. Well, in the scheme of things, Brad has the lowest ranking when it comes to position in this family and therefore Mama's affection!!! That was before he decided to take over my position by force. Usurper!

The war is on again!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Winter Madness

When my Mama sent this photograph to Dad, he almost drop his iPhone into a river! "Far out," he said. "No way Brad and Angelina would do this," he lamented. "This is insane," he continued.
Well, Dad and Mama, punish me if you want. I plead insanity! Therefore, not guilty! Call it winter madness, if you want. Brad and I have signed a truce, a ceasefire (for the time being!) It's too cold to do anything other than snooze and keep warm. If by lying close to Brad and sharing the same blanket I get to be punished, so be it. At least I'll be warm and comfy for the rest of the season.
I eavesdrop on my Mama when she was on the mobile with her boss earlier today. She was negotiating with him if she could work from home for the rest of winter as the weather is not good for if!!!

Orange is soooo "in" at the moment! Glorious autumn colours, eh? BTW the position we're displaying is called "Cliffhanger". Some experts on Mornings with Kerri-Anne said that today.

Brad's a Weirdo!!!

What's making Brad hung his jaw like a monkey?

Or his eyes going all agog?

It's a teeny weeny itsy bitsy mite-y mini house spider on the ceiling, for goodness' sake!

Silly boy!!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Bringing Up Cats 101

My Mama is very resourceful when it comes to finding the best ways in bringing up her furkids…She has millions (ok, maybe am exaggerating…I mean…heaps) of books on the subject of cats and their maintenance. We would be spending quality time reading the books together.
My Mama would be consulting me on the subject frequently. She would always ask me, “Is this true Angelina?” whenever she reads a passage that pique her interest. I have posted a picture of one of the best books I’ve read on the matter of cat rearing here. It’s been written and designed like a techie manual, only 222 pages. So fun to read! I guess the writers, American vet Dr David Brunner and Sam Stall are fun people.
Let me give excerpts from the book. This is actually my favourite part – pp 212-216: Troubleshooting. The chapter intro speaks for itself.
“For easy access, this section contains answers to frequently asked questions about common feline behavior issues, malfunctions, and quirks. When problems arise with you model, this should be the first place you look.”
There’s a 5-page table after the intro. Here are some of my favourite items:

MALFUNCTION 1: Cat gets stuck in trees
CAUSE AND SOLUTION: A trick of physiology makes it very easy for cats to climb trees but difficult for them to climb down. During ascent the feline uses its powerful hindquarters and inward-curving claws to gain altitude. But during descent it must rely on its weaker forelimbs and its claws point in the wrong direction to be of use. However, it is unnecessary to call the fire department if your feline climbs a tree. Its finely tuned sense of balance will save it from falling. In time it will escape on its own – often by backing down rump first.
ANGELINA’S 2CENTS WORTH: DON’T CALL 000 IF YOUR CAT’S STUCK ON THAT TREE!!! (unless you have a scaredy cat like Brad)

MALFUNCTION 2: Cat seems to make a point of pestering visitors who fear or dislike felines, yet ignores guests who love cats
CAUSE AND SOLUTION: People who like cats tend to stare at them. Unfortunately, an unflinching stare is considered an aggressive challenge in the feline world. Thus, cats may shy away from people who pay them too much attention. Conversely, they may gravitate toward those who don’t make eye contact – even if they avoid doing so because they cannot stand the sight of cats.

MALFUNCTION 3: Cat meows, moans, howls and makes other sounds constantly, seemingly for no particular reason
CAUSE AND SOLUTION: Cats may engage in “hypervocalisation” for a number of reasons. Some breeds, such as the Siamese, are hardwired to make a tremendous racket. In such cases, the phenomenon simply must be accepted. However, formerly quiet cats who suddenly mount sonic assaults on their owners could be suffering from any of a number of software or hardware glitches. An unspayed female will “call” for mates when in season and an unneutered male may cry out in response. Other causes range from brain tumors to cognitive dysfunction to physical pain. However, in most cases, the cat is probably doing it for attention. Consult your vet if the problem persists.

MALFUNCTION 4: Cat eats grass
CAUSE AND SOLUTION: The cat may extract nutrients from the greens or it may eat them to aid digestion. Whatever the reason, moderate grass consumption is natural and not dangerous – with two caveats. Do not allow an indoor cat to chew on houseplants (many are toxic), and do not allow a feline to dine on lawns that were recently chemically treated.

MALFUNCTION 5: Cat displays complete lack of autonomous function, refuses to clean itself, and displays subpar intelligence
CAUSE AND SOLUTION: Consult your vet. You may have accidentally acquired a dog.

Title: The Cat Owner's Manual - operating instructions, troubleshooting tips, and advice on lifetime maintenance
Authors: Dr David Brunner and Sam Stall
Publisher: Quirk Books (
Price: US$14.95/AU$24.95 (Mama got it at Angus&Robertson)

Owners get a certificate too!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Claustrophobic, not!!! Part 2

Remember what I told you about felines and small spaces? Here's more proof!

Do you see my point about shoe boxes?
Buckets are comfortable too
Have vacuum will travel...
Tom loves shopping too!! He's a metrosexual male, I guess!
Space defying technique required - to fit my nimble body into that small flower pot!
Nikki loves flower pots too...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Claustrophobic, not!!!

One thing about us felines is that we love small spaces. It doesn't matter whether it's a cardboard box, shoe box, even kitchen sinks, we'll always find a way to make it as comfortable as possible.
However, we hate being caged like those animals in zoos. Poor things! Imagine spending life behind bars and not allowed to roam free. Especially if you are millions of miles away from home.
At least for Brad and I we have the luxury of having the entire house as our playground. Mama is useful to have around as she brings home the to speak. Other than that, we're happy being left on our devices...Thus, being able to sleep in a box, however small, is a treat. Not just us, even Mama's other children do the same. And, I know they have a bigger house than ours.
No, yellow is not my favourite colour...
Nicole loves sleeping in the bathroom sink
Tom, you should help Mama fold the clothes, not sleep on them!
At least Brad was trying to do Mama's laundry, unlike Tom!
Going anywhere Tom?
Nikki sleeps anywhere...even in a dish drainer
Nikki loves boxes too

Monday, May 4, 2009

Here's Everyone!

Tried my paws on PhotoShop today. Did a collage of the entire family.

Mama's Travels 5

So near yet so far.
That's how my Mama describes the Hawkesbury Valley, about 80km north-east of Sydney. Took only a bit over an hour's drive for her so she's still reeling over the fact that it's only now she has the time to visit the region. But now that she's started, she can't stop! She's been there thrice, so far. It's only the chilly autumn weather that's keeping her at home nowadays.
What's the attraction, I asked her. Well, Mama says there's plenty to look, see and do there. There's Bilpin, the apple country of NSW, Kurrajong, Mount Tomah, and historic towns like Richmond and Windsor. I'll have to take her words for it as I wasn't taken on any of these outings. Brad said he'd like to try grass carting while I'd really love to climb those yummy looking apple trees...and frolicking with the alpacas...I heard the retreat where my Mama stayed with her friends is pet friendly. Hmmm...maybe next time...
In the meantime, enjoy the pix. I love the photographs, I hope you will too.

Big Fruit Bowl of Bilpin

You'll know you're in Bilpin as soon as you spot the Big Fruit Bowl. There's a cafe, souvenir, fruit shop and toilet facilities nearby too. The main activity that you can do in Bilpin is, of course, fruit picking. The season starts with cherries in November, plums and other stone fruits from December until February while apples will start from February until late April. Citrus is avalable from May onwards. There are also other fruits like figs and persimmons in between the seasons while the nuts (chestnuts, hazel, walnuts) are abundant in April.
There are heaps of orchards that offer PYO (pick your own) along the Bells Line of Road. Some even have lodging accommodations on site. Check out PYO orchards such as Shields Orchard, Pinecrest Orchard and Bilpin Springs.

Royal gala apples hanging regally on the bough...

Persimmons aplenty too

Fuji apples, not quite ripe yet...

The Pink Ladies all a-blushing!

Pick me if you dare, said the Granny Smiths

Uncle A trying to climb an apple tree to get at the good juicy ones up there

Don't touch! These mushrooms look yummy but are poisonous!

The camellias in full glory

Close up of a camellia

The first time she was there, Mama and her friends stayed at the Madisons Mountain Retreat in Kurrajong Heights. It was a cabin with modern amenities right in front of the alpaca paddock. The alpacas are reared for their wool...I checked the retreat's website and saw pictures of shorn alpacas. Phew! Luckily I'm not bred for my fur although am sure I will still look elegant bald. Oh, there are also goats and ducks on the farm.

Don't hit the alpacas!

Alpacas aplenty at the retreat

Nice view at the retreat's grounds

Nice cabins where Mama and friends stayed in, you can choose between a bathroom with shower or jacuzzi

The curious case of Benjamin Goaten...hahaha...the goats thought it was feeding time

Try your hands at making real fire...

For the brave, try grass carting if ever you find yourselves in Kurrajong Village. At just $15, you can zoom away for one full hour on a contraption not unlike a go-cart. How thrilling if they put bales of grass on the "cart" too...

Grass carting anyone?