Wagyu beef sliders this ain’t

Misty is surprisingly uninterested in people food, which is a great relief.

But sometimes she will sit like this, and the reproach is clear. No, I don’t want to jump up and lick the butter. But this? Really?

If only she was just a little less plump around the middle we might even feel sorry for her.

Tiny bubbles

Here in NZ, it’s all about “stay safely in your bubble” as we enter the fifth and hopefully final week of lockdown.

We got this happy kitty picture from back in Vermont. It’s nice to know that Deja and Vu are safe in their bubble and even safer because they have their own bubble wrap supply.

Cat got your cart?

We’ve been really happy with this little cart we got to haul our farmers market finds. It’s easier now that we’re too old to care if we look like old people pulling a cart.

Misty is a great fan of anything with a string attached.

Te Whare Ngeru

This fine cat lair appeared at work the other day free to a new home. Grabbed it!

I was hoping the Maōri word for cat would be Katto or something… since they didn’t have cats on the island I thought it could be a Maōri-ized English word. Then Te Whare Katto would have blended nicely with Te Whare Ka in the last post. Oh well, Ngeru it is, according to Google Translate.

Misty still hasn’t appreciated the new house much, other than as a scratcher.

You say potato, I say couch

We bought this couch used about two months ago. The proximal reason for needing a new couch was that our landlord warned us that if Misty damaged his leather furniture we would be liable. Fair enough… our cats have ruined multiple sofas over the years.

Since there was an element of sacrificial lamb in play, and since being renters makes us wary of investing too much in house stuff, and since things are just insultingly expensive, the decision to buy a used one was easy enough. And anyway, we like the hunt. The one we found has good bones, but the upholstery was in bad shape, sun faded and starting to shred in a few places.

We were encouraged by YouTube to believe we could re-cover it. Lee has done quite a bit of sewing back in the day, and has time these days, so why not?

So, then, what fabric to use? We went to a bunch of stores, and looked at zillions of fabrics, but there were really only a few that we liked. The grey nubby fabric we picked got instant cat approval.

Of course, we also needed a sewing machine, but that’s the subject of another post…

Lee started with the cushions. She was able to re-use the zippers, and soon all six cushions were done.

For the main body of the couch we had to decide between a slip cover or a true reupholstery job. Slip cover won out. Easier, and due to the couch’s relatively square shape we felt it would look good without a lot of tucking and gathering.

It turned out great! We sat on it for a few weeks and then Lee made a few adjustments and put the bottom hem in place last week. If you look carefully of course you can tell it’s a slip cover, but basically it looks great. And it’s long enough to take naps on, something the old sofa lacked.

When we add up the cost of the couch, the delivery service, the cost of buying more upholstery fabric than was actually needed, and even the sewing machine, we’re still comfortably under the cost of a new sofa from the store ours came from. And so far, Misty hasn’t felt the need to abuse it (much), so we should get to enjoy Lee’s handiwork for a long time.

Play Misty For Me

A week after getting the landlord’s OK to have a cat, we met Misty on our second trip to the SPCA. Since Misty happens to be one of my clarinet tunes, it seemed like fate.

She’s about two but when she got home she acted like she was 12… friendly and cuddly but really listless.

Besides being stressed from all the upheavals in her life, it turned out she a cold or something. After 10 days and some antibiotics she has completely come around.



As we get ready to start our third year in Auckland, it’s time to think about whether we might want to move or not.

Buying is probably unwise at this time for various reasons, and besides we really couldn’t afford anything we’d want to live in. So, renters we remain.

Our place was an amazingly lucky find… it could be a little bigger, maybe on a quieter street, but it checks almost all the boxes for us. Of course, lower rent would be great… and we really miss our kitties and would love to have one here.

So when the landlord sent us the lease for next year, with “only” a $25 per week increase, we had a tough choice.

We looked at a lot of ads. Pet-friendly is the hard one… landlords can be picky on that front without it being considered illegal discrimination. We finally found a house that seemed like a real possibility, and got a nice walk-through, shown above. There were some quirks, but it seemed like a real possibility. The ad said “pets negotiable” but it turned out that meant “no pets”, so “no deal”.

So, back to our own landlord… we offered to stay another year if we could have a cat. He agreed!

Stay tuned…

Barista Cats

We miss Deja and Vu a lot. They are well cared for in our absence, spoiled in fact, so they might not miss us as much.

As a surprise last weekend, Lee took me to Barista Cats for an hour of cat therapy. It’s a cat café / rescue facility that provides a nice home for rescue cats with special needs who probably wouldn’t find a regular adoptive home.

A view of Vu

We got a nice update from Corey that the cats are doing fine in their new home after a period of adjustment. As we expected, they seem to have him well trained already as concerns nighttime feeding requirements, playtime, etc.  This pose, which we recognize very well, indicates the need for the human to come rub the royal tummy, whilst preparing for some friendly biting and playing, as long as the cat isn’t actually required to do any work.

IKEA-bana Vu

Ikebana is some kind of fancy flower arranging. 

IKEA-bana is when you put your flowers on top of your IKEA cabinets. This time with a much more stable vase. 

And IKEA-bana Vu is when your cat is instantly up there and ready to ‘accidentally’ rub up against them. Again. 

Screen Shot

This is what happens when you put a dramatic silk flower arrangement on a high spot, leave the iPad on the counter, and mix in an unknowable combination of a curious cat and air currents. 

The first thing we did was to make sure that duct tape was not a feasible solution. 

The Apple Store wants a whole lot of money for a new screen, the local repair shop wants less but still hundreds. We can buy a replacement kit for under $30, so we’ll try that first.

Merry Christmas 2016

We had a wonderful Christmas morning at home, with presents and treats for all. The cats are basically drunk with flowers and ribbons and paper everywhere. 

Even the birds got a fresh batch of seeds. 

The tree gained an octopus and a seal, because why not?

It was a snowy pre-Christmas, and today we’ll have more melting. 

We are thinking of friends and family near and far, and how fortunate we are this day. We wish everyone who sees this a merry Christmas and a safe, healthy and happy new year. 

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