Showing posts with label cats. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cats. Show all posts

Alycat and the Cattywampus Wednesday -- Review & Giveaway


Disclosure: I was sent a digital copy of this book for this review. I am working with The Children's Book Review and Alysson Foti Bourque and will receive a small stipend for this review. All opinions are my own.

Have you ever had one of those days where everything seems to be all mixed up? Today I am sharing a new picture book with a young cat that experiences one of those days and bonus the book has cattywampus in the title! Great vocabulary word for you and for kids! The book is Alycat and the Cattywampus Wednesday by Alysson Foti Bourque and illustrated by Chiara Civati. There is also a giveaway and cat craft round-up to go with the book!

Meow Is Not a Cat -- Book Review & Giveaway


Disclosure: I was sent a digital copy of this book for this review. I am working with The Children's Book Review and Kelly Tills and will receive a small stipend for this honest review. All opinions are my own.

As a former teacher and someone who has volunteered and worked at my daughter's school, I know there is always that child that thinks outside the box and sees the world in a different way. The child does not want to do anything wrong and probably does not even think he or she is doing something wrong but drives the teacher crazy. Today's book is for all those kids out there and for the adults in their lives! The book is Meow Is Not a Cat by Kelly Tills and illustrated by Max Saladrigas. It is recommended for ages 4+. 

Oi Gets Lost -- Book Review, Cat Craft Round-Up & Giveaway


Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I am working with The Children's Book Review and Bright Light Books and will receive a small stipend for this post. All opinions are my own.

Do you have a cat lover in your house? We are all cat lovers here and have two cats in our household including a kitten (at least for a few more weeks). Most kids love animals including kittens. If you have an emerging reader you will want to check out today's book. It is Oi Gets Lost by Lorna Likiza and illustrated by Yeveheniia Melnyk. 

Fantastic Felted Cats -- Fun Needle Felting for Cat Lovers


Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

It has been a while since I shared some needle felting. I'm a bit out of practice, but I got some new needles as well as more wool batting and more. However I am in love with these adorable needle felted cats. The book is Fantastic Felted Cats: A Guide to Making Lifelike Kitten Figures by Housetsu Sato. 

Losing a Beloved Pet -- RIP Pumpkin Girl


Today my heart is heavy and my home is a bit emptier. Last night Steve and I had to make the difficult decision to put our sweet Pumpkin girl down. We noticed she was losing weight and not eating or drinking water like she usually did. She also had changed her spot to spend most of the day. She wasn't being her normal self. I moved her vet appointment up a week because we were growing increasingly worried. She was due for a well visit next week. When our vet saw her she knew something was wrong. After a quick examination she told us she needed to get an x-ray, bloodwork and some liquids into her. She was very dehydrated. She asked us to give her about 20 minutes. We sat on the porch of the vet clinic and waited. When she got all the results she called us in and brought Pumpkin to us. She was fighting tears as she told us that Pumpkin definitely had cancer. She had liquid in her chest and abdomen. We had two options. Take her to a vet hospital ER and let them try to remove the liquid and start chemotherapy or put her down. We couldn't imagine having our sweet Pumpkin girl spend nights in a cage away from us while the poked and examined her, so our decision was clear. It broke our hearts to say goodbye. 

Books to help kids train their pets -- National Dog Day is tomorrow!


Disclosure: I was sent copies of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Did you know tomorrow (August 26th) is National Dog Day? National Cat Day is October 29th and January is National Train Your Dog Month. In honor of these "holidays" I am going to share two books from National Geographic Kids about training dogs and cats. Since tomorrow is National Dog Day we will start with Fetch! A How to Speak Dog Training Guide by Aubre Andrus and Gary Weitzman, D.V.M. 

It's Raining Cat and Dog Books

Disclosure: I was sent copies of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Well it is raining out, but inside I'm surrounded by cat and dog books literally. Last week we celebrated National Cat Day and somehow I didn't get this review written in time. So sorry. I did celebrate by sharing these previews of Statement Canvas Wall Art on my Thirty-One Facebook page. (Note: I am an independent consultant of Thirty-One and will receive a commission from any Thirty-One purchases through my website.) These are our two fur babies. 

Informative Animal Picture Books & Activity Books

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of these books in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Do you have an animal lover between the ages of 4 and 8? I have some fun books for you. There are three domesticated animal stories and four wild animal books. The first is actually a wordless book called Pip & Pup by Eugene Yelchin. 

Fairy Animals of Misty Wood

Disclosure: Macmillan Publishing sent me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Do you have a new reader who wants more than picture books but is not ready for a big novel? I have the perfect books for kids ready to start the chapter books. These books are sweet stories with fairy animals that help spring happen and learn lessons in the stories. They are the Fairy Animals of Misty Wood Series by Lily Small. I was sent three of the books (one of which has three stories in it) to introduce myself and you to this fun series. The first one we read was Bailey the Bunny

Fun Facts about Cats for World Cat Day

Did you know today (August 8th) is World Cat Day? To honor our furry friends (we have two) I am sharing some fun facts about cats. There are so many interesting things about cats out there so I divided them up into categories: General Facts, Cats in History and Around the World, Cat Records and Cats versus Dogs. 
Fluffy Napping with Hazel and Steve

Books about Pets

Don't forget to sign up for our US state postcard exchange!!
Disclosure: I was sent copies of these books free of charge to review. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Do you own a pet? Does your child want a pet? What kind? Today I am going to share some books about three of the more typical pets: dogs, cats, and fish. Each has a fun story and a bit of a lesson in its own. We will start with Big Cat, Little Cat by Elisha Cooper. 

Merry Chrsitmas, Hello Kitty! Activity Book & All I Want for Christmas Is You -- Book Reviews

Disclosure: Penguin Random House Books gave me a copy of this book free of charge for this review. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation.  As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Are you getting ready for Christmas? Here are two fun books to help your little ones get ready. The first is a wonderful activity book, Merry Christmas, Hello Kitty by Leigh Olsen.

This sticker activity book is packed full of activities, crafts, games, recipes and more! It comes with a poster as well as postcards.

Halloween Decorations

Today I will share a few more Halloween crafts we have made. Now remember I hate the blood and gore and scary side of Halloween, so our crafts are much more friendly. Like these adorable black cats pictured above made from toilet paper rolls. I wish I could remember where I saw it. Sorry!! (If it was your blog, please let me know, so I can add a link!!) I had planned to make the adorable owls at Family Fun Magazine, but Hazel made one sort of that way at Sunday School on Sunday. We may do it still though.
Hazel's Sunday School Owl (studying Solomon)
Then we made an adorable mummy from a paper towel roll. We got this idea from All New Crafts for Halloween by Kathy Ross. It has beads on pipe cleaners (with straws to help stabilize them) for eyes. I wrapped it with crepe paper instead of toilet paper since it was already a nice width and I had some in the craft room.
Making Mummy

Hazel also decorated a foam pumpkin with some new glitter glues.
Hazel also informed me that her baby doll Pocahontas was going to her first Halloween party as a fairy princess. She had picked out a baby doll tiara and wand at the craft fair at the Pumpkin Patch this past weekend. We decided she needed some fairy wings to have a complete costume. So I took some floral wire (bought at the dollar store) and made wing shapes. Then we glued on some tulle to both sides. While the glue dried, Hazel decorated them with glitter glue. Then I cut them out the next day and tied a piece of elastic cord to them for her arm holders. 
So what do you think? It was a pretty easy costume for a baby doll. If I had been making them for Hazel I would have sewn the tulle rather than glue it, but we were looking for a quick way to make them.

Hope you will join us tomorrow night for Sharing Saturday!! Come share your child-oriented activities and crafts and get inspired by all that is shared!

Huckabuck Bread, Felted Can Opener and Wet Kitty

Fluffy in one of her favorite places
Since we do not have school this week or next, I decided we would make Huckabuck Bread on our own. I have the recipe the teachers use each week. Somehow ours does not turn out nearly as good, but todays was pretty good. Hazel has been asking to make it at home for awhile. She was not happy about me taking pictures however. And she quit part way through on me.

Huckabuck Bread


Frothy Yeast
  1. Dissolve the honey in the warm water. Then stir in yeast. Set aside to get frothy.
  2. Combine the flours, salt, cinnamon and cardamom in a large bowl.
  3. Combine oil, molasses and honey in another bowl.
  4. Add yeast mixture to dry ingredients and combine. Then add oil mixture. You will need to mix with your hands. Then turn out on lightly floured surface and knead the dough for at least 10 minutes.
  5. Put into oiled bowl and cover with cloth and let rise for 30 minutes (I let it rise for over an hour).
  6. Punch down and knead on lightly floured surface and shape into rolls. Place on greased baking sheet.
  7. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes. (I found I needed to bake it longer, but I was not using a small toaster oven like they do in the class.)
  8. Kneading the dough
  9. Serve with honey butter (ok, I didn't make the honey butter today, but we do have it that way at class).

Before Rising
After Rising
Out of the oven

I also made Hazel her can opener for her kitchen. I decided to needle felt it. I was trying to make it so she could turn the handle and spin one of the buttons, but my method broke after I spun it a few too many times (apparently).
I used a hook button for the handle and two round buttons for the cutters.

I think she will like it when she sees it tomorrow. What do you think? I made it the same colors as mine (except mine does not have anything wooden on it).

And our crazy kitty, Fluffy was hanging out in the sink again. This is the bathroom sink in what we call Hazel's bathroom (it is the main floor bathroom that is not the master bath). She actually lay there while the water was running for a bit too and then decided she wanted a drink. She loves to jump into the bathtub after we have showered or bathed so she drink the water or roll in it. She is a bit of a crazy cat.

Hard to Say Goodbye and Some Other Links I've Been Trying

Simba playing in his younger years
Yesterday, we buried the ashes of our beloved Simba. I first got Simba as a kitten in 1994. He is the first cat I can say was truly just mine. Steve of course adopted him and they loved each other right away, but I had from 1994-2006 alone with him. Yesterday we finally got around to buying a plant in his memory and burying his ashes underneath it. We are also making a stepping stone to honor him to place next to it. It is still curing and then I'll paint it and seal it, so pictures will come at another time. We had to put Simba down at the end of July. He was in too much discomfort to keep him alive anymore.

Simba "helping" sew a quilt
Simba was the best cat I had ever known. He loved to be with people and loved to play. He would greet me when I came home and follow me around and sleep with me every night. When Steve and I decided to start a family we adopted a kitten, so Simba would learn to share our attention before a baby arrived. He accepted Pumpkin pretty quickly. At first he followed her around and would meow at her whenever she did something against my rules. It was rather cute.
Simba and Pumpkin (as a kitten)
Simba and Pumpkin getting some fresh air
Simba at Dawn
Simba was at first afraid of Hazel and kept his distance, but in the end he would let her pet him and would come to cuddle even if she was with us. I think some of it may have been he was too slow to get away anymore and just wanted some love.

When I was beginning to quilt I took a class on watercolor quilts and made this wallhanging depicting my favorite cat doing one of his favorite activities, looking out the window. It hangs over our bed now, so we know Simba is always with us.

Okay, enough of the sad stuff. On a positive note I won a blog contest. Sew Happy Geek had a wonderful contest for her third blog-iversary, and amazingly I won. I am getting one of her patterns and all the fabric to make the quilt top. Now to figure out who to make it for. I can't wait to get the package.

Here are some other blogs/ideas I have been playing with:
1)  From The Enchanted Tree -- Bendy Dolls
2) From Living, Loving, Learning Naturally -- Ice Cream for Breakfast! I tried this recipe this morning using frozen mixed berries instead of the banana. I really liked it. Hazel didn't seem to eat it and Steve did not give me his opinion. We had it over waffles. I personally thought it was a fun way to jazz up the waffles instead of syrup. I used skim milk and couldn't tell.
3) From Poet in the Pantry -- Brownies to Heal the Soul. Haven't tried these yet, but trust Carrie's (and her family's) opinions. She also has a PB Fudge recipe that looks delicious.

How about you--any good ideas to share?

Been on vacation

So my dear husband, Steven has been off the last two weeks. Somehow his vacation made me have no free time. We did go visit my parents at Cape Cod for a week. While there both of my sisters came at different times and an uncle and cousin (and her family) also visited though they were staying somewhere else. It seemed that every day someone was coming or going. Needless to say Hazel did not nap while there and was too excited constantly. It was not the most relaxing vacation we have had.
Hazel sitting out on the deck

 Hazel took this one of me on the deck of my parents the view!

Hazel swimming with my sister

 Out to lunch!

Hazel and her one and only first cousin, Ian

My beloved Simba helping me quilt
A couple of weeks ago, we put our beloved 17-year-old cat down. He had been sick for quite awhile and we did not want him to suffer anymore. Today I took Hazel to the animal shelter to adopt Fluffy. She had picked the name Fluffy around the time we put Simba down. We went to the shelter and saw it as a sign from God that one of the 5-month-old kittens was named Fluffy. We brought her home. Now we are going through the process of introducing a new kitten to the house and to Pumpkin.

Hopefully soon I'll be back to making crafts with Hazel. Until then...enjoy!!