Thursday, September 29, 2016

9/29/2016: Fixated on the "roundy-round"

Hi, all!  Sorry I haven't written in... over four months?!?  Wow.  A lot has happened here:  I was a vendor in a huge bead show, and making a bunch of new kits was very stressful.  At the same time, Pixel was sick and had a biopsy.  We feared it would be cancer, but it turned out to be a form of Irritable Bowel Syndrome.  We've changed his food, which means we now do scheduled feedings instead of everyone eating whenever they're hungry.  That has been a huge change.  Right after the bead show, I got Bell's Palsy on the right side of my face (I've been saying that all the stress froze my face).  The eye strain was debilitating, but fortunately it didn't last too long.  In trying to recover from and deal with all of that, this blog has slipped.  I'm so sorry.

But today our Clinchy was being especially cute, so I've come out of hiding.

Some days he fixates on a particular activity.  There's something he hasn't done in weeks or months, like go up in the cubbyholes in the dining room, then all of a sudden he's all over it.

Today's fixation appears to be the "roundy-round" (Does this thing have an actual name?) under the end table:

This is the scratching/ball toy that we brought home with Clinchfield.  We have another one in the dining room (flat on the floor) that he plays with sometimes, but today this one has intrigued him.

A long time ago, we put it on top of the bed to get it out of the way of the vacuum and left it there after one of the cats played with it.  We shrugged and figured that was a good enough place for it.

That has led to a few interesting sights, including this one of Fe:

I don't know how she crawled in there without disturbing anything.  She's a big girl.

Today, I was sitting in my studio with Pixel on my lap, and I kept hearing this weird sound.  I knew Clinch was up to something, and after a while I decided to check it out.  The roundy-round had slipped, and he could only push the ball up a few inches.

After he left, I fixed the toy so it was straight on top of the bed and came back to my studio.  A few minutes later I heard the ball roll around, and sure enough, he was back under there:

He left again, and a few minutes later he was back:

He's so lackadaisical, isn't he?

Just so Pixel doesn't feel left out, here he is playing with our other roundy-round as a baby in 2005:

Goodness, was he a little thing back then.  Here he is today, after gaining back most of the weight he lost when he was sick:

He's a little overweight now, so we're adjusting his food and Prednisone to help him lose weight safely and to keep him healthy.  We're so glad he's doing better!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

5/11/2016: Nothing is off limits

A few months ago I purchased a gorgeous ornament in an antique store.  It's a cloisonné with purple and pink flowers on it.  I hung it from an iris hook in our hallway:

Here are a few close-ups of the ornament:

Isn't it pretty?  I got it for a good price, too!

I thought it would be too high up for Clinchfield to mess with, but oh, how I was mistaken.  Steve shot this video while I was sequestered in my studio.  If you turn up the volume and listen real close you can hear me yelling at Clinch.  He only stopped and fled the scene when I started sliding the door open:

This was the second time Clinch has done this.  The first time he jumped down before Steve could get his phone out.

Is nothing off limits or sacred in this house?  I'm guessing no.

Monday, April 25, 2016

4/25/2016: Laundry "helper"

Today's post will be very quick.  We were away at a bead show for my business this past weekend, so Steve took today off to rest and do laundry.  Except the lawn needed to be mowed, so he's outside doing that, and he had some errands to run this morning.  I'm helping with the laundry, and I had a helper of my own.

Clinchfield jumped in the dryer while I was pulling clothes out and hanging or folding.  He loves gnawing on dryer sheets, so as soon as he found one he came out with it.  I took it away, and a few minutes later he was back in the dryer.  This time, though, he started "making bread," kneading the clothes and purring like I've never seen him do before.  I don't think the clothes were very warm, but he found it very comfy!

He was so cute so I shot a video for you.  One of these days I'll remember to turn the phone.  Sorry.

Soon after this he noticed another dryer sheet and took off with it.  I let him keep it while I finished moving the laundry along.

Monday, April 4, 2016

4/4/2016: Clinchfield is ONE today!

It's been a few months since the last Clinchfield Report.  Sorry about that.  For the most part, he's been good.  There has been some running around and jumping up on things he shouldn't, but he's always been too quick, and I haven't been able to get any pictures or videos.

Recently we started getting Loot Crates, mystery geeky things that come every month for a nominal fee.  We're not going to do it for long, but we were curious, and the stuff has turned out to be pretty neat.  I put the "crate" on my desk one day to get it out of the dining room, and Clinch decided it was his.  Since I was able to bead for long periods of time without him trampling all over everything, I've decided it can just stay there.  We recently received a bunch of Star Wars Angry Birds stickers (thanks, Carrie!).  Steve decorated the first box with evil characters and the second box with good characters.  Here's Clinch when we just had the first box:

Taken 3/16/2016

With both boxes on the desk now, he loves being on both (since he is half-on cat).  Here's a little taste of that:

Taken 4/4/2016

I had to lure him up there, so he didn't stay long.

Here are a few other pictures I took of Clinchy today:

You can't see it in this picture, but it snowed today.  On April fourth.  This weather has been crazy.

He's getting so big, isn't he?

You can see one of his favorite toys in this picture - the light blue milk ring.  We have so many milk rings, frozen juice container rings, and straws (usually in triangle form and sometimes linked together) in this house.  Clinch loves to chase them and bat them around.

We are so happy Clinchfield is here, and we wish him a very happy birthday and many, many more!

Friday, February 12, 2016

2/12/2016: Resolutely resolute

All the cats know they're not supposed to go on the cubbies in the dining room, the dining room table, the kitchen table, and the kitchen counters.  They know this, but they do not care.  We're constantly chasing Clinch off of all of those things.  We've yelled, we've made other loud noises (usually while we're yelling), we've squirted, we've shooed, we've poked (sometimes with things like a remote control if he's out of reach), and we've bodily lifted.

Some days it's a constant struggle, especially when he finds new places to go.  A few nights ago, while I was up reading and Steve was sleeping, Clinch discovered the top of our games cabinet where we have Steve's hourglasses and a few other breakable items.  I got him down, but he knocked over a glass vase at some point while he was walking around.  I'm glad it didn't break, mostly because I don't want him hurting himself.

The next night, I was lying in bed reading while Steve was watching TV, and all of a sudden Steve comes in with the kitten.  Clinch got plopped down on my chest, and Steve said, "Talk to your son!"  "Hi, baby!  Mama loves you!"  "Talk to him sterner," Steve said.  In a lower, sterner voice, I said, "Mama loves you."  Turns out Clinch had been up on the games cabinet again.  Steve decided to put up guard sheep (plush Settlers of Catan toys) with a Han Solo bobble head we recently received lying in wait:

You're not going to believe this, but I just heard a noise while typing that last paragraph, right before I uploaded the picture.  I went to investigate, and...

Han Solo and those sheep are really crappy at their job!

I wish I had been recording a video, but I took a number of pictures:

Sheep down!  Sheep down!

...and he's down (after knocking over the decoration).  I put the sheep and decoration back up, leaving Han Solo out in the open so maybe he can protect the cabinet better next time.

We had a guard sheep up on the top of the bookcase in our bedroom, too, since Clinch had expressed interest in jumping up there.  However, I found the sheep on the floor this morning, so it is also crappy at its job.

This wasn't even what I was going to write about today.  Back to that subject, so you can see how truly resolute our boy can be.

I boiled some eggs this morning.  Yes, such a thrilling life I lead.  They were ready to be cooled off, so I went into the kitchen to do so.  I found this waiting for me:

This is new.  I tried to reach him to pull him out, but there's a reason we have nothing back in that corner, as you'll see in this video:

I'm glad that he's easily distracted.

However, not three minutes later, as I helplessly watched from the bathroom (yes, I leave the door open when I'm home alone!), he was back up on the counter.  By the sounds of it, he was checking the eggs out.  I yelled, "Clinch!  Get DOWN!" but it was of no use.  Right before I walked into the kitchen, I heard a loud "THUMP" which means he decided to get down before I chased him down.

And what is he doing now?

Ah, he's so cute when he's doing what he's supposed to do!

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

2/1/2016: Clinch's magic carpet ride

One of my first posts in this blog was about Clinchfield's fascination with messing up the bathmats.  If you missed that or need a recap, you can catch up here.

A few nights ago Steve and I were getting ready to go to bed, and I noticed that Clinch had messed up the mats again, but this time instead of pushing them both against the wall, one of them was sticking out in the hall.  That was new, and while we pondered it, Clinch walked up and plopped down:

He didn't budge as I walked around him, taking pictures.  He didn't even twitch when I turned on the light to get this slightly blurry picture:

Steve decided to see what would happen if he straightened the mat out with Clinch on it.  Would he jump off, or would he enjoy the ride?  Let's take a look:  (The video was done with my phone, so if you want to hear the few things said, you'll have to turn your speakers up a lot.  Sorry about that.)

It was nice of him to point out that the other mat was disheveled, too, wasn't it?

"Thanks for straightening things out, Papa!"

Since then, I've had to fix the mats no less than four times.  He sure likes to keep us busy!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

1/19/2016: Unhelpful cat ends up helping after all

Every cat since the dawn of time has intruded on humans' workspaces.  Yesterday I posted such a picture on Facebook of Clinchfield eschewing the empty space on my desk in favor of my bead mat.  Faithful Reader Wille Thompson commented that his household calls it "felix interruptus," and now our household will, too.  Today, I needed to take some pictures of a necklace I made yesterday, and I was having problems getting everything in focus.  Clinch came up to see what I was doing:

"What's that?  Looks tasty!"

I uploaded the pictures to the computer, and in a twist of irony, the best picture of the necklace was one of the ones Clinch was in:

"I'll just lay right here."

I cropped the kitten out, did a little color balancing, and this is what I got:

I may have to let him help me more often!  Uh, based on the clanking sound I just heard from the kitchen, maybe not.

(The beads for this necklace will be part of a demo I'm doing this Saturday, 1/23, from 1:00-4:00 at Knot Just Beads.  If you're in the Milwaukee area that day, come on by!  Tell me Clinchfield sent you.)

In case you're not friends of mine on Facebook, here's the picture I posted yesterday:

I have to keep my bead mat folded over so he can't get the needles, thread, or beads.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

1/16/2016: The Half-On Cat

Pixel likes to sit on our laps - Steve's while he's on the couch and mine when I'm at my desk.  If we're lying in bed chatting before going to sleep, Pixel likes to lie on our chests and walk all over us.  When I sleep, he drapes himself over my legs.  I flop around a lot, so that doesn't work very well.  We end up twisted around each other like malformed pretzels stuck together during the baking process.  I'll give you a second to process that image...  All done?  As I'm sure you can imagine, it's not very comfortable, and I'm glad he doesn't do that every night.

Fe loves Steve's lap, too, and sometimes she gets jealous of Pixel.  She doesn't sit on my lap, but she will sit on the back of the couch I sit on, and sometimes she sits behind me on my office chair.  It's kind of uncomfortable for me because I'm perched on half the chair, and sometimes it's cold, because she paws at my sweater wanting a "tent", so (like I did the other day) I have to take my sweater off and drape it over her.  The things we do for our kitties!

Clinchfield, though, is a "half-on" cat, most of the time.  His front half goes on the raised part of the bathroom counter with his back half on the lower part.  His front half is on my nightstand with his back half on the steps.  Stuff like that.  Recently, he's started being half on us.

Last night we went out to dinner with my mother and stepfather, John, for his birthday.  We ate a lot, and when we got home we just collapsed on the bed and watched a stand-up special by Demetri Martin from Netflix.  Clinch joined us, and I took well over 40 pictures of his half-on-ness over the course of about 50 minutes.  No, I won't show you all of them.  Just the highlights:

Just getting settled

Steve had wiggled his toes

Blowing Mama a kiss (or grooming, whichever is more plausible)

"What's going on up there?"

Doing his Linda Blair impression

Falling asleep sitting up

Oh, no!  He fell over!

Steve tickled Clinch's paw

Immodest kitteh investigates the intrusion

Oops.  Sorry!

Then he fell back asleep, but only for 20 seconds or so.

Steve's leg was starting to get numb, so after Clinch woke up, he pulled the kitten all the way up on  him.

Steve helped Clinch hide his under bits.

Clinch did not approve of forced modesty, so he moved.

Shortly after this, Clinch left for all of 10 minutes.

"Let's try the other side of this leg!"

Clinch watched the rest of special with us.

He seemed riveted by Demetri Martin's last bit.  It must have been the guitar and the harmonica.  Clinch has never heard a harmonica before.

I like that he's starting to cuddle, even if it's only half of him doing it.  I have hopes that soon he'll be a "full-on" cat, like he was for ten minutes a few days ago:

Sorry for the crappy picture - I had to use my webcam.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

1/13/2016: Nap time!

Clinchfield and Pixel love hanging out on the bed at any time of the day or night.  Usually they don't lay near each other, but sometimes I catch them being cuddly like I did on Monday:

I was going to nap this afternoon, and Clinch joined me.  He's been enjoying roaming around under the covers lately, so I threw a corner of the comforter over him to see if he'd burrow.  He decided that he'd rather settle in like people:

It didn't last too long because he heard a noise.  Or maybe he was just irritated with all my moving around and turning the lights on and off.

I tried going to sleep, but Pixel jumped up and trod on my legs.  He does this a lot, circling around and around until he settles down on top of my legs.  It's not bad until I roll over (which I do a lot), then it gets a little pretzeley.  In mid-trod, I got a phone call, and when I was done (with the call and with what the call was about) it was too late to nap.  I checked in with the boys and found them like this:

They had been wrestling, and it looks like Clinch got tuckered out mid-bap.