Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Our Secret Paws Package Is On It's Way!

Okay, Mommy. I'm done shopping for my Secret Paws* and everything is in this bag. (Darn, that toy really looks like fun. Wish I'd bought one for myself too. I wonder if Mommy would notice if I slipped her credit card out of her wallet again...) I'm gonna need you to help me with the wrapping.


I wanna use this paper and these labels. And make sure they know everything is from Mudpie!


Did you get everything to fit? Holy cats, this box is stuffed!


Good job, Mommy! Have fun at the post office...and please don't wake me when you get back home. I'm exhausted...


Our Secret Paws package is winging it's way to it's recipients as we speak! I sure hope my friends enjoy everything I picked out for them!

* Secret Paws is a Secret Santa gift exchange for us kitties who have a blog in the Cat Blogosphere

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Cat Coloring Books Make Purrfect Christmas Gifts (with Giveaway!)

When I was a little girl I was obsessed with coloring. Any visitor to my house, friend or family member, had to color with me. It was a rule.

One Christmas I received a 'Twas the Night Before Christmas coloring book from my aunt and uncle. It was so big I could only work on it at the dining room table. Each year in December I worked on one page and my mom dated it when I was done. I still have that book too...a cherished piece of my childhood filled with so many memories.


Coloring is cool again and more popular than ever...for adults! It's finally being recognized as the amazing stress reliever it is, as well as a creative outlet for children of all ages.

The best news? Cat coloring books are among the most popular, and they make pawsome Christmas gifts! Here's some of our favorite cat coloring books of the year...and there's a giveaway at the end too!



To me, there's nothing much cuter than cats paired with food. (Or cats named after food, hence Mudpie and Truffles.) This book is filled with hysterical images of cats cavorting in the kitchen and pretending to be a variety of gourmet foods: tucked inside a taco, popping out of a pie, chilling with an ice cream cone on their head. It's impossible to thumb through this book without grinning from ear to ear...and feeling a little hungry!



This is no ordinary coloring book. It also features the true "tail" of Instagram's @smokeyfromtheblock and the experiences of author Laura King as a feral cat caretaker in Harlem. The illustrations are beautiful, the story is heartwarming, and the TNR message so incredibly important. The NYC Feral Cat Initiative, a program of the Mayor's Alliance for New York City's Animals will receive a portion of the profits. I love this book so much that I bought a second copy for my Secret Paws this Christmas!


While this book seems to be geared towards children, I think the pictures are intricate enough for adults to enjoy too. Plus it's the perfect size for stocking stuffers and to keep in your purse or glove compartment.



The purrfect book for anyone who loves cats and Christmas. These kitties are helping Santa get ready for the big day!



Each illustration in this book depicts house cats engaging in a mixture of human-like behavior such as enjoying ice cream cones, chilling in front of "Catflix", playing video games and having a pizza party, as well as kitty activities such as playing in laundry baskets, hanging with their human and napping anywhere and everywhere. Many of the drawings are accompanied by popular cat quotes from Charles Dickens, Ernest Hemingway and Garfield creator Jim Davis. Embrace your inner slug...these lazy cats are!



Oskar may be blind, but that doesn't prevent him from going on giant epic adventures with his brother Klaus! A portion of each sale goes directly to Milo's Sanctuary, Inc. for special needs cats.




World-travelling adventure cat KeeKee the calico stars in her very own coloring book, featuring scenes from her award-winning book series.

Giveaway: 3 winners will be chosen to receive a copy of Cooking with Cats! (Open to US and Canadian residents.) To enter simply fill out the Rafflecopter below.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

This post contains affiliate links.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Make Your Holidays POP With A $150 Pop Your Pup Gift Card

This post is sponsored by Pop Your Pup

Earlier this year we were super excited to have the opportunity to introduce you to Pop Your Pup, a company that creates one-of-a-kind products of your pet in pop art. When they contacted us last month asking to collaborate with us again on a MASSIVE holiday giveaway, Mudpie could barely contain her purr! 

To refresh everyone's memory, Pop Your Pup offers shirts and wrapped canvas using a favorite photo of your pet that is easily uploaded to their site. The customization process is so much fun because Pop Your Pup has tons of choices for the background of your piece, from a wide variety of solid colors to flowers to pop culture slogans to fun themes like tacos, ice cream cones and candy skulls.


The holiday season brought with it a whole new batch of backgrounds including Christmas trees, reindeer and winter hats. This time around we chose the snowman background, not only because as proud Vermonters we love the snow, but also because it's more wintry than "Christmassy" and therefore can be left hanging on the wall longer! 

Once your selections have been made a link to your proof will be emailed to you within 1 business day. Crazy fast, right? Every order is created by an in-house artist with no photo filter apps or gimmicks. You work one on one with a real artist who will make your fur baby truly POP! Plus they offer unlimited revisions until you are 100% happy with your pop art! Products are not printed or shipped until it is viewed and approved by you. Once everything is finalized the printing teams goes to work and your order will be printed and shipped out within 1-2 business days from your approval. In our case no revisions were necessary as the proof that showed up in my inbox was just perfect, and in no time at all a tracking number arrived in my inbox.


The canvas arrived at my door just after Thanksgiving as I was putting the finishing touches on my Christmas decorating. Since I chose the small canvas this time I've been moving it around the house quite a bit in search of the purrfect spot. It started out in the main hall hanging alongside two of my favorite kitty Christmas signs, but then I decided it needed a place of honor all it's own in the living room.

Do you remember me saying that all of my Christmas decor right down to every ornament on my tree is cat-related? Well something with a generic cat on it is great, but something with your own cat on it is pure purrfection, and I can't guarantee that you won't still find it hanging in the same spot come the fourth of July!


If you're ready to proudly show off your fur baby on a shirt or hang her portrait on the wall, check out Pop Your Pup at their web page, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. And for your chance to win a $150 Pop Your Pup gift card simply fill out the Rafflecopter below. (US residents only please.) Now that's gonna be one fun shopping spree for the lucky winner!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


This post is sponsored by Pop Your Pup. I am being compensated for spreading the word about Pop Your Pup's customized pet artwork and wearables as part of their holiday program for bloggers, but we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers. Pop Your Pup is not responsible for the content of this article.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Frosty Tortie #CaturdayArt

(Created with PicMonkey's Snowflake effect, then LunaPic's Frost & Snowflake border)

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!


And now our weekly answers (answered by Mommy) for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and McGuffy's Reader!

1. The best part of last week was the packages that were delivered. My poor UPS man and mail carrier. My CatLadyBox came, my packages from Olive & Rye's Small Business Caturday sale, fun review goodies from Chewy, some stuff from World Market that I ordered on Black Friday. Phew!

2. The worst part of last week was a nagging headache on Tuesday and Wednesday that ended up making me feel nauseous.

3. Continued decluttering is a Winter project that I will be working on. (How ironic given my answer to #1.)

4. A holiday gift that I always buy for someone is a box of chocolates. Not very original but who doesn't love chocolate?

Friday, December 8, 2017

Temptations Provides Holiday Dinner For Cats #ChewyInfluencer

Meows from Mudpie!

I wouldn't trade life as a cat for anything in the world, but every now and then I find myself a teensy bit jealous of my woofy friends. I've noticed lately that more and more pet brands are putting out holiday-specific dog food - Santa Snacks, Santa Stew, Boo Bars, Howl O' Ween Stew...how fun! But, alas, nothing for kitties.

Until now.


I found out a few weeks ago that Temptations released a limited edition plastic tub of Holiday Dinner cat treats and immediately assigned her the task of finding me some. All hope seemed lost when trip after trip to big box pet food retailers in our town resulted in her coming home empty handed. These things were harder to find than a parking space at the mall! Then I finally thought to check in with my friends at Chewy.com and within 48 hours the treats were delivered right to our door!


Now I'm not a treat junkie like Angel Truffles was, although I do have my favorites, and I've never met a package of Temptations that I didn't like. These Turkey & Sweet Potato treats are no exception. They are lip-smacking good and a steal at under $8 for a 16 ounce tub! Every good kitty around the world deserves to find these under their tree on Christmas morning. I just hope Santa shops at Chewy.com because that's the only place he's gonna find them!


Hey, I just had a pawsome idea! Why not ask your human to add a couple Temptations bins to your next Chewy order, keep one for yourself and donate the second one to your local shelter? There are enough treats in one of these bins for every kitty waiting for their forever home to enjoy a taste of holiday dinner!

It is the season of giving, after all!

Disclaimer: We received product compensation from Chewy.com as part of their Blogger Outreach Program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own and we never recommend a product we don’t fully believe in.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Jackson Galaxy's Butterfly Ball Brings the Great Outdoors Inside (w/Giveaway)

Meows from Mudpie!

All through the spring, summer and fall months you're most likely to find me parked in a window watching the world go by. The birds, the bees, the butterflies, the squirrels...there's an endless supply of creatures to while away the hours watching.

Now that winter is here it's a whole other story. The bugs are all gone and the critters that are still around rarely make an appearance.

I'm bored, but lucky for me the nice people at Petmate sent me a brand new toy, purrfect for bringing the great outdoors inside to kitties everywhere year round! It's Jackson Galaxy's Butterfly Ball, and it earns the Official Mudpie Paw of Approval!


Seriouslies, this toy is certain to rock any indoor cat's world. What's not to love? Inside the terrarium is a scene that replicates the world outside our windows. The ball is designed to keep us kitties entertained for hours with a realistic fluttering butterfly that flies around each time we paw at the ball, and the weighted base provides a fun wobble while keeping butterfly upright. It's the very best of Cat TV, tapping into our natural instinct to observe and track prey.

For this review we figured the best way to show everyone how much I love my new toy is with lots of video and action shots (blurry tortie time!) of me playing. (I know you'd rather look at me than read a lengthy blog post anyways!)









You read that right...thanks to our friends at Petmate one lucky kitty (or kitty family) in the US is going to win a Butterfly Ball of their very own! I hope you don't think I'm lacking in the Christmas spirit by saying you can't have mine, but I really, really, really love this toy! I have no doubt that whoever wins my giveaway and any kitties lucky enough to find a Butterfly Ball under their tree on Christmas morning will enjoy it every bit as much as I do.

To enter simply fill out the Rafflecopter below. Good luck, everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: We received a free Butterfly Ball from Petmate in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are our own and we never recommend a product we don’t fully believe in.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Crafty Christmas With Mudpie Fur

I am officially the least crafty person you will ever meet, but every now and then I happen upon a project that I'm pretty sure I can handle. Last Christmas our friends at My Brown Newfies posted instructions for a DIY Heart Keepsake Ornament using a plain ornament that can be opened up and filled with your pet's fur.

My first thought was, "I can do that!"

My second thought was, "I wish I had one of those ornaments for all my cats that now spend Christmas at the Bridge."


It's never too late to start a tradition though so I immediately started gathering Mudpie fur in a sandwich bag each time I brushed her. It didn't take long at all before I had enough, and then I proceeded to simplify the project even more. I found an ornament for $1 at AC Moore and wrote Mudpie's name on it using a silver sharpie!


I think it turned out really pretty, especially with the lights shining on it, and I love that (hopefully many, many, many years from now), when Mudpie is no longer with me, a part of her will still be watching over me from the Christmas tree.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

A Few Of My Favorite Things...Available At PawZaar ($50 Gift Card Giveaway)

Mudpie and I are so excited to announce that throughout the month of December we have not one, not two, not three, but SIX big giveaways coming up! Some are for cat people, some are for cats, all are pretty darn pawsome! We're so happy to be able to do this as a great big THANK YOU to our readers for being such an important part of our lives.

It all begins today with a fab giveaway from one of our favorite places for cat (and dog) people to shop...PawZaar.

This post is sponsored by PawZaar

PawZaar is an online gift shop featuring items for both cat and dog lovers that was launched by the travel-writing, pet-loving, husband and wife team of Paris Permenter and John Bigley. The couple expanded into pet writing in 2008 with the launch of DogTipper.com and CatTipper.com, and now using their global contacts to locate the best artisans around the world, they are bringing handicrafts of special interest to pet lovers all over the world via PawZaar. These are unique items you won't find everywhere else, the purrfect way to show your love for animals and shop for interesting gift ideas.

Along with shopping for one-of-a-kind products, you'll also have the opportunity to help animals at home and around the world with each purchase through PawZaar's #PawPromise donation program. 10% of the proceeds from all PawZaar products benefit animal shelters and rescues, and every week a nominated group is selected to receive that week's proceeds. They also sponsor shelter pets and with each order you'll receive a card showing the animal that your purchase helped to sponsor!

If this isn't reason enough to shop at PawZaar for all your pet-loving friends (and yourself!) we don't know what else is, and today we're showcasing just a handful of our favorite items they're currently offering...








PawZaar is currently offering FREE US shipping on ALL ORDERS and an extra 15% off on orders over $30 using the coupon code CATS.

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GIVEAWAY

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway is sponsored by PawZaar. I am being compensated for featuring this content but we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers. As members of the PawZaar affiliate program we earn a small commission if you purchase something using one of our links.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Tortie Shorties Book Reviews


From the publisher: As a pet care professional how many times have you had a client that just received the news their pet is terminally ill, has died tragically, or is dealing with pet loss?

And how many times have you had to deliver the news yourself? You are not sure what to say, but you want to be compassionate and helpful. You are literally either lost for words, feel like you said the wrong thing, or would like to be more effective when delivering the news.

It is critical to know how to help your clients when they are faced with pet loss death and grief. With the increasing growth in the pet care industry veterinarian medicine is changing--as are all pet care professions. There will be more demands on you and your business. This will make it essential for you to make it a daily practice to take care of yourself to deal with work related health issues. Compassion fatigue and burnout are real, and they both have a way of sneaking up on you.

Once you buy and read this comprehensive guide for all pet care professionals you will know exactly what to do to prevent burnout, support clients, and manage the business of grief.

It is your resource to gain a basic knowledge of—grief and loss, self-care, how to support your clients within your scope of practice, and the business of grief.

Tortie Shorties Review: While this book is targeted to pet professionals it has information that all of us can take to heart and use, especially when it comes to comforting someone who has lost or is in the process of saying goodbye to a cherished pet. No one can claim to understand the depth of another person's grief because we all grieve differently making it incredibly difficult to know the right thing to say. I'll never forget the night I lost Truffles in the ER. I know the vet tech meant well and when she told me "it was just her time" she was trying to ease my mind that there was nothing anyone could do, but I just wanted to scream, "IT WAS NOT HER TIME! SHE WAS 4 YEARS OLD!!!" 

The Pet Professional's Guide to Pet Loss contains helpful information on what to say versus what not to say, how to identify abnormal grief and navigating the 7 stages of grief. Acknowledging that grief "changes and never really ends" and how to deal with that fact is something anyone suffering a loss or trying to comfort someone who is needs to understand, and this book, written by a pioneering leader in the field of pet loss grief support, lays it all out in a compassionate, heartfelt, and practical way.



From the publisher: Life is tough when you are a little stray kitten. Bubbles, a beautiful black and white cat, shares the antics, challenges and fun in her life that make her part of the eternal cat story. After being abandoned as a kitten, this little stray persists until she finds her forever home. This brave little warrior diligently keeps her chosen helper happy, protects her boundaries, and faces her fears. Ensuring that there are lots of brushes and naps along the way, she never gives up. Her optimistic approach to life and the love in her heart touches all who meet her.

Tortie Shorties Review: Told entirely from precious Bubbles' point of view, readers tag along as Bubbles goes from a newborn kitten in the care and comfort of her cat mom and siblings to a brief time of abandonment and finally as she finds her forever home with her "helper" (as she refers to her human). She chronicles the busyness of her daily life with a nice nap required following each activity. The final page tore my heart out but that's to be expected at the end of any animal story. Any cat lover will enjoy following along on this darling feline's adventures accompanied by lots of pictures of the real Bubbles!



From the publisher: From the New York Times bestselling author of A Dog Named Christmas comes this heartwarming Christmas story about the power of family and the strength and love that comes from our pets.

In this fourth installment of the poignant stories of the McCray family and their lovable canines in rural Kansas, matriarch Mary Ann McCray is determined to shake up Christmas by accepting the role as Crossing Trail's first woman Santa Claus. Mary Ann, always a bit of a rebel, is looking to offer a more progressive voice in the staunchly conservative town at Christmastime and has a few ideas up her red velvet sleeves.

Tortie Shorties Review: I've followed the Dog Named Christmas saga from the very beginning through each book and movie. Noelle is the fourth in the series and begins as a puppy mill pup faces an uncertain future because she doesn't fit the mold of what a purebred dog should look like. Thankfully she ends up in the care of Todd McCray who aims to turn her into a service dog. It doesn't exactly go smoothly, and how she earns her name is adorable. Todd returns home with her to Crossing Trail where he has a new job helping to run the new no-kill shelter in town while also facing big changes in his personal life with longtime girlfriend Laura. At the same time his mother Mary Ann reluctantly accepts the job as Crossing Trail's first woman Santa, and she has huge plans for her new role as "Anna Claus", while elsewhere in town a young family is falling apart thanks to a painful divorce with young children caught in the middle. There's a lot going on with several different story lines, yet they all come together to form a heartwarming holiday "tail". This is the stuff Hallmark Channel Christmas movies are made of, and I look forward to seeing Noelle follow her predecessors' paw prints onto the small screen.


Disclaimer: I received free copies of these books in exchange for a fair and honest review. As members of the Amazon Associates affiliate program, if you click on our links and buy something Mudpie gets a little money for her piggy bank!

Saturday, December 2, 2017

Snow Globe #CaturdayArt

(Created with LunaPic)

Visit more artsy kitties at Athena's Caturday Art blog hop!


And now our weekly answers (answered by Mommy) for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and McGuffy's Reader!

1. I can’t believe cigarettes are still sold. I'm all about the free market and personal responsibility but there's just no legitimate reason for these cancer sticks to still be available.

2. I have never bought or sold anything on Craigslist.

3. Going into December, the weather outside is a roller coaster. Some days are sunny & unseasonably warm, others are freezing cold and wet. Back and forth, back and forth...

4. My current weakness is hard-boiled eggs. Weird, I know. Egg salad has always been my favorite sandwich and I've been known to have "breakfast for dinner" in the form of a couple eggs with butter, salt and pepper, but lately in an attempt to find healthier snacks I've boiled a few extra to keep in the fridge for a quick nosh. 

Friday, December 1, 2017

Unboxing November's CatLadyBox

The theme of November's CatLadyBox was "The Cat Lady Collection"...this is what was inside!


Featured Cat Lady Artist Lee H. Keller: It will probably come as no surprise to anyone when I say that when I removed this card from the box I gasped out loud. TORTIE ART!!! I just found out it's available as a larger print on the artist's Etsy shop which you can be sure I'll be ordering! 

Cat Cutout Convertible Tote & Clutch Bag: This bag is pawsitively divine. It can be used as either a shoulder bag by attaching the included strap or as a clutch purse. I will be toting it to all my holiday activities this year! It's incredibly soft and versatile.


Decorative Wire Bowl: Too cute for words. I haven't decided yet if I'm going to use it in the kitchen to hold fruit, the living room to hold various odds and ends, or I may just hang it on the wall as a decoration. 

Kitty Cat Collage Socks: I always need more cat socks! There are some famous faces on this pair too :)


Purrfect Pinecone & Argyle Pumpkin Catnip Toys: Mudpie is crazy over her little purple pumpkin!

Not a subscriber yet? Visit CatLadyBox today!

Interested in purchasing individual items from past boxes? You can do that too!

Disclosure: I receive a discount on my CatLadyBox subscription as a thank you for my monthly review. Regardless of compensation received, we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers.