Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Jingle Bell Christmas Countdown - Red and Silver

Here's Bella wearing the fuzzy red scarf her Aunt Anne gave her.

This was the 2006 Christmas card picture.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Jingle Bella Christmas Countdown - Holly Wreath

You are getting sleepy...very sleepy...
Christmas kitty profile.
I think this is the picture I actually sent out in 2005.
4 more days until Christmas!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Jingle Bella Christmas Countdown - Thoughtful Cat

Bella thinks peaceful Christmas thoughts.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

It's the Jingle Bella Christmas Countdown!

I It's 5 days until Christmas. And since I seem to have an unlimited number of Yuletide Bella pictures, I'll be posting every day from now until Christmas. These pictures were taken in December of 2004, the first year I started torturing people with pictures of my cat in my Christmas cards. This first picture was the one I sent out. The other two didn't quite make the cut. Wait. The other one. There was a third (and it was good, too!), but I just accidentally deleted it.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Of Cat Lairs and Cathedrals

Bella has the coolest grandparents ever.  This past Monday she received a Christmas present from her Mimi and Papa in the mail.  It was a little cat hut with a springy ball to play with and enticing feathers to bat.  

Bella was so taken with it that she climbed in before I had a chance to fully assemble it.

I couldn't put it together right away because my aunt and uncle were picking me up to go to the Festival of Lessons and Carols at St. Andrew's Cathedral.

The cathedral is beautiful on the inside.  Really big, with soaring vaulted ceilings.  There are golden stars painted on parts of the ceiling.  I found the big dipper.

At any rate, the carols were sung by the Grand Rapids Choir of Men and Boys.  They did an excellent job.  The lessons were read by choir members and people from the community.  One of them was Uncle Charlie, from Children's Bible Hour.  That was a pleasant surprise.

When I got home, Bella was champing at the bit for me to finish off her house.  As you can see, she loves it.

Thanks, Mimi and Papa!

Stay tuned for the Jingle Bella Christmas Countdown!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Cutting Holiday Calories

Instead of putting M&Ms in this lovely little candy dish,

I've filled it with red and green paperclips.  All the festivity, and considerably fewer calories.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Things You Need to Trim a Tree

1.  A tree, for sure.  And a black and brown tabby cat.  I guess the tabby is technically optional, but I don't see why anyone wouldn't want a nice tabby along for the ride.

Here's Bella stalking our untrimmed tree.

2.  Christmas Music.  I'm not sure it's possible to trim the tree without Nat or Bing or someone crooning in the background.  The London Philharmonic or Mannheim Steamroller will do nicely, too.

Don't you just LOVE Christmas music?  I do.

3.  Lights.  I like the simplicity of white lights.  But the multicolored ones are nice, too.  I'm not crazy about the blinky ones, though.

Pardon the unsightly vertical blinds.  They sure don't make for the nicest backdrop.

4.  A garland of some sort is nice.  You can use tinsel, or cranberry or popcorn strings.  I like this beaded garland.  Bella likes it too.  In fact, sometimes she tries to be helpful by untrimming the tree.  One year I found her all the way down the back hall of my apartment, dragging this garland in her teeth.  So far this year she's left it on the tree.

Maybe if I let her wear it before I put it on the tree, she'll leave it alone.

5.  Ornaments, of course.  This little guy has been with me since my second Christmas.  He's my all-time favorite.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here.

And with a live Colorado Spruce, it smells a lot like Christmas, too.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

If Cupboards Could Talk

A while back, I decided it was time to give the spice cabinet a makeover.  Things were getting out of hand - you can see the Montreal Seasoning and the Onion Powder jockeying for position.  And the Curry Powder's about to jump ship altogether.  Clearly, it was time for a change.

So I started with new jars.

Next, labels.  My creative side wanted something fun.  But I couldn't find anything suitable.  So my practical side gave in and I picked up a package of plain rectangular labels.  Two seconds later, my creative side beat down my practical side, and I put back the plain labels.  I vowed to keep looking.

Sometimes you have to do that.  You have to keep looking, or your spices will remain silent forever.  I'm pretty sure that's an old Tanzanian proverb.

And minutes later, I found these!  I used the bottom ones, which were blank.  Cheaper than the blank rectangular labels, and so much more fun.  And noisier, too!

Some of my spices are straightforward talkers.

Some of them are thinkers.  These guys are sensitive.

And some of them are chatty, life-of-the-party types.  

And wow!  These are some self-confident spices.  They're nothing if not excited!

While I know the red pepper flakes mean no harm, I have to be careful not to put them next to the cinnamon.  The pepper's innate brashness is liable to crush the cinnamon's introspective little soul.

It's such fun to see their little personalities blossom.  And now there's never a dull moment in the spice cabinet.


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Pod Cat

I was working at the computer and heard a bit of a ruckus over in the dining area.  I looked up to see this:

Bella was trying to operate Hopkins, my iPod.  She started whining; saying she's the only one of her friends who doesn't have an mp3 player.  She needs her tunes, she says.

Boy, first the new fur-style, and now this.  Back when I was her age, if we wanted music, we had to make it ourselves.

Please just tell me: are all the cats parting their fur and sporting iPods?  Because I don't want to be a stick-in-the-mud, but I have a feeling I'm being played.

In the meantime, Hopkins is being played, too.  To the tune of the Jingle Cats

Friday, November 14, 2008

Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow

Bella is now parting her fur down her spine.  She says all the cats are doing it. They say you have to pick your battles, and since I've made my share of hair mistakes, I'm trying to be patient. But I'm sure this is one of those things, like bright blue eyeshadow, that she will look back upon and regret.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Name that Movie

"She could peel an apple . . .  in one looong, curly strip.  The whole apple."

In the spirit of the Bloggy Giveaway Carnival that seems to be making the rounds of the blogosphere, I will give away a paltry $5 gift card to the first correct responder.  A gift card for what?  I don't know.  I haven't figured that out yet.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Exercising in My Head

I've been trying to be a bit more disciplined when it comes to physical fitness.  Not everyone in the household has gotten on the bandwagon, however.  This is what Someone Else is doing while I'm slaving away with my exercise DVD.

Don't mock me.  I'm exercising in my head.

You may laugh, but the Ironman Triathlon's going on in my brain.  I'm burning 1,000 calories a minute. 

You're distracting me.  I just tripped over a hurdle.

Well, pardon me, Bella.  I'll go back to my T-Tapp.  Just tell me when you need me to drive you to the medal ceremony.

No need.  That'll take place in my head, too.