Monday, May 21, 2018

Tortie Shorties Meets Mewsic Moves Me

Confession time - for the past couple months I've been in a bit of a reading slump. It's not that I haven't been enjoying my usual diet of cozies, it's just that I've been reading too many of them, one right after another, and eventually they all started to resemble each other so much that I was having a hard time staying awake while reading.

I knew I needed a change, and it came in the form of a pair of books that have been sitting on my bookshelf for far too long. This post is a bit different from our typical Tortie Shorties Book Reviews, but it also segues into our Mewsic Moves Me choice for the week, a blog hop we're having a lot of fun with!

I'm going to assume that most people have heard a Conway Twitty & Loretta Lynn duet at some point as they were the most successful and most awarded male/female duo in country music history. Both were superstars on their own, and when they collaborated over the course of 10 studio albums it was pure magic. It's no secret by now that Conway makes me melt into a puddle, and Loretta has always been my mom's favorite singer, so Conway & Loretta were practically an institution for me growing up.

The Conway Twitty Story: An Authorized Biography was released in 1986 and I have a first edition hardcover! (Used copies of both the hardcover and paperback are selling for pretty crazy amounts but I'll never part with my copy!) He never had chance to write an autobiography, and he was such a private person that he probably wouldn't have anyways, so I'm very thankful for this book which is comprised of interviews with him and his inner circle. I found myself respecting him even more as a person, not just an artist, after reading it. He wasn't like so many country singers of that time, hard partying, getting drunk or stoned, landing in jail. He was a family man who worked hard for everything he achieved and never took his success for granted or let it change him. He ended up working until the day he died.

Still Woman Enough is actually Loretta's second autobiography, released in 2002. The first, Coal Miner's Daughter, became an Oscar-award winning movie that I've seen dozens of times. I have the paperback book that my mom received from a friend to read while she was in the hospital recovering from a C-section after having me! Loretta has had an incredibly difficult life filled with pain, loss, and a husband who treated her terribly that she still remained loyal to. Many of the stories in this book she never would've been able to tell if he were still alive. Her life has been what country songs are made of.

Conway & Loretta were never romantically involved, but Loretta always said they were soul mates. Their story came to a heartbreaking end in June 1993 when Loretta's husband was in a Springfield, Missouri hospital recovering from open heart surgery. Conway, on his way from Branson back to Nashville, made plans to visit them in the hospital, but became a patient there himself when he collapsed on his tour bus from an abdominal aneurysm. Loretta's memories of their final moments together were heartbreaking. There's no other explanation for the chain of events but that they were meant to be together one last time.

This video is from an early '80s TV special. I'd give my right arm to have had him serenade me like that!!!

Today Loretta isn't in the best of health herself. She's 86 now, had a stroke last year, and then fell and fractured her hip earlier this year. I hope she's still with us for years to come but when it's her time I have no doubt Conway will be the first to welcome her with a hello darlin' in that unforgettable voice.

The theme of this week's Curious as a Cathy Mewsic Moves Me blog hop is "songs about remembering or forgetting." The song I chose is I Don't Remember Going Crazy from Conway's 1988 Still In Your Dreams album. For some reason it was never released as a single, but it's so beautiful.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Purrfect in Pastel #CaturdayArt

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


And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. Happiness is a book in your hand and a cat in your lap.

2. Cat love is the best medicine.

Mudpie's answers:

3. Ten years ago, I don't think my birth mom was even born yet!

4. Most people don’t know that I don't like Mommy to rub my tummy. I let my grandma do it, but usually kick Mommy's hand away. 

Friday, May 18, 2018

Unboxing May's CatLadyBox

The theme of May's CatLadyBox was "Cat Mom's Day"'s what was inside!

Featured Cat Lady Artist: Olive, Rye and Fig's ultra-talented humom Laura Kicey!

Cat Collage Purse: I gasped when I pulled this out of the box. It looks so stylish no matter what you're wearing. I love the versatility of being able to carry it as a clutch or cross-body. (And notice the tortie smack dab in the center?!?!?!)

Cat Mom Necklace: This delicate necklace is such a sweet and simple way to advertise your most important role in life.

Cat Mom Tattoo Set: I haven't tried these out yet...but one day!

Catnip Teddy Bear & Purrfect Greeting Card Toys: The bear is so cute I'm temped to add him to my small teddy bear collection. Mudpie especially loves the crinkle of the card, and I love the purple kitties on the back!

Blooper time!
Oh, am I in the way of your photographing the box?


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.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Spelling M-U-D-P-I-E In Song

We need to start out by thanking our friend Cathy Keisha for introducing us to the Curious as a Cathy Mewsic Moves Me blog hop. Ever since we decided to participate a couple weeks ago by doing CK's "getting to know you" meme using only song titles from one artist or band, I've found myself listening to more music than I have in a long time, something that's been missing in my life. In my teens and early 20's music was one of my greatest passions, and rediscovering that passion has been a real joy.

This week's theme is "your choice" so we're going to participate in last week's challenge, which was spelling out your name using song titles. M-U-D-P-I-E to the tune of classic country from the 70's and 80' we go!

M- Meet Me In Montana-Marie Osmond & Dan Seals. No particular reason, but I've always loved this song.

U- Unwound-George Strait. King George's first big hit!

D- D-I-V-O-R-C-E-Tammy Wynette. When I was a little girl there was nothing I loved more than rocking a pair of shorts and cowgirl boots while belting out Tammy Wynette songs. This was one of my favorites, although I'm sure I had no idea what it meant. (My parents have photographic proof of this somewhere...hopefully it's permanently missing.)

P- Pancho & Lefty - Willie Nelson & Merle Haggard. This is such a great story song, and the video is like watching a mini western movie.

I- I May Never Get To Heaven-Conway Twitty. Any musical challenge we do on this blog will always include Conway. He's "it" for me in every way, and if I was ever told I could only listen to one artist's music for the rest of my life, I wouldn't even need to give it a second thought. This particular song is one of my top 5 favorites of his, and it went to #1 on the Billboard chart on my 2nd birthday in 1979! I chose this video of him performing it on Hee Haw because he's so insanely sexy in it.

E- Eleven Roses-Hank Williams Jr. I'm not a huge Hank Jr. (or Sr.) fan but I do love this song. It was a very different sound for him.

Who else is ready to give this challenge a shot? 
We'd love to hear what you come up with!

Monday, May 14, 2018

Meet the Cats of the Beatrice Young Cozy Cat Mysteries by Alannah Rogers

It’s supposed to be the happiest time in 64-year-old Beatrice Young’s life—she’s finally planning a wedding to marry the man of her dreams. But when a shocking surprise shows up at her bridal shower, she knows a heinous villain is determined to ruin everything.

As the amateur sleuth scrambles to send out invitations, choose the perfect dress, and design the menu, her enemy is one step behind, spoiling every single moment in the most fiendish ways possible. Thankfully, Beatrice’s best friend the sheriff is hot on the case as well as maid of honor-zilla Zoe, who won’t let ANYTHING stand in the way of the bride's happiness.

In the end, the stalker’s fatal weakness might be the perfect opportunity for Beatrice’s four crime-fighting cats to save the day and turn a nuptial nightmare into wedding bliss.

This novella is the 14th in the Beatrice Young cozy cat mystery series and the purrfect choice if you only have an hour or so to spend reading on a busy day.

There's nothing but joy for Beatrice as she's getting ready to remarry the love of her life, until a box containing a grisly gift arrives at her bridal shower. This event throws her into the thick of a perplexing mystery once again, and it's up to Beatrice and her beloved felines to save her upcoming nuptials...if she manages to stay alive that long! I love how Beatrice's cats play a major role in everything she does, especially crime solving. Each story in this series is a rollicking adventure and I only hope the senior sleuth never decides to slow down!

In the Beatrice Young cozy cat mysteries, 64-year-old amateur sleuth Beatrice has 4 cats who help her solve crimes and track down bad guys in her small town of Ashbrook, New Hampshire. The series starts out with just Hamish and Lucky; Petunia and Simon join the series later on. Here, in their own words, they tell you all about themselves:

Hamish: Hi, I'm Hamish--a Maine Coon cat with golden eyes. I was here first and now somehow I've ended up with 3 cat siblings. We all get along okay, though I'm my owner Beatrice's #1. Helping her solve crimes is a lot of fun but my top priority is always to protect her. She is always ending up in scrapes and it's up to me to prevent tigers from eating her, bad guys from poisoning her, and a million other things! Protecting Beatrice is a full-time job but she's my best friend, I would never in a million years wish for anything different. Except for when she dresses me up in costumes; I could really do without that.

Lucky: I'm Lucky and I'm Beatrice's #1. Hamish likes to think he's #1 just because he got here first but I secretly think Beatrice likes me best. I'm a small black cat but what I lack in muscle I make up for in being able to sneak into small spaces and spy on people in dark rooms. Hamish is the brawn and I'm the brains of the operation. My favorite thing in the world is snuggling up on Beatrice's chest with my head under her chin. I don't even mind when I get put in costumes, I get more attention that way!


Petunia: I'm Petunia and I am the most beautiful cat in the world! I'm a fluffy Himalayan, all creamy fur with tawny paws and ears and the bluest eyes you've ever seen. My main occupations are eating, looking pretty, and napping. Sometimes I help Beatrice with her sleuthing if she's in a real fix but I usually prefer not to get my paws dirty. It's not work fit for a lady! Beatrice rescued me from one of the bad guys she was hunting down and I much prefer my new life. I have my own feather bed in the sun and all the treats I want--what could be better?

Simon: Hi, I'm Simon and I'm the best cat ever! I'm a year old, which means I'm so much stronger and faster than all those other cats. I'm smart too, and I help Beatrice solve every single crime ever! Beatrice is my best friend and she likes me the best because I'm the cutest and most useful cat. She could probably get rid of those other 3 cats and we'd all be happier! Anyway, Beatrice rescued me from a bad guy and taught me how to follow her everywhere without a leash. I love roaming around with her. Car rides are my favorite. Did I mention I'm a ginger cat and I'm the most handsome cat ever? It's true!


One lucky winner is going to win a pair of box sets containing the first 10 books in the Beatrice Young Cozy Cat mystery series! To enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Mother's Day #CaturdayArt #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Since I'd like to have a little extra quality time with Mommy for Mother's Day, I asked her if we could do just one blog post this weekend, combining our Caturday Art project with my Mother's Day message/Sunday Selfie.

Happy Mother's Day to all the pawsome cat moms out there!!!

And now our weekly answers for the Friendly Fill-Ins challenge, hosted by 15andmeowing and Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. I spend too many hours per day online. Basically I'm online from shortly after I get up until just before bed, between work (for my day job, blog and freelance projects) and recreational activities. Even when I'm not specifically doing something online the iPad is always in front of me. I'm an addict.

2. When I go online, I use my desktop at work, and my iPad, laptop and Kindle Fire at home.

Mudpie's answers:

3. Mother’s Day should celebrate moms of all kids, whether they have two legs or four.

4. I wish all kitties had a Mommy like mine.

See you on Monday with a fun giveaway!!!

Friday, May 11, 2018

Fun Feline Finds: Garfield At 40

Garfield has been a part of my life for as far back as I can remember. The original "crabby tabby," I identify with him in so many ways...we both love lasagna, hate mornings, and enjoy spending hours curled up in front of the TV doing nothing.

Through the years I've collected nearly every Garfield book that's been released, numerous stuffed animals and figurines, household items like mugs and teapots, and my favorites...Garfield Christmas ornaments. (In the early days before the strips were collected in book form my mom would clip them out of the newspaper and glue them in notebooks for me. I still have those notebooks and will always treasure them!)

On June 19th Garfield will turn 40 years old and he continues to spread his mirth and girth far and wide! Some new merchandise is starting to trickle out to coincide with this special occasion and I can already see my collection growing larger!

I'd say Garfield has aged quite well, wouldn't you?
What's your favorite thing about the original grumpy cat?

This post contains affiliate links.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

In the Kitchen with Mudpie #ChewyInfluencer

Meows from Mudpie!

Whenever the opportunity to receive something from Weruva shows up my monthly Chewy influencer email, you can bet this not so little tortie isn't going to turn it down! It's one of the very food wet foods that I rarely turn my nose up at because it's loaded with delectable gravy!

This time around I received the Cats in the Kitchen Variety Pack. I was already pretty familiar with most of the flavors: Chick Magnet, Love Me Tender, Mack Jack & Sam, Pumpkin Jack Splash, Pumpkin Lickin' Chicken, and 1 If By Land, 2 If By Sea. Such fun names! The box comes with 2 of each flavor, purrfect for us fussy felines because they allow us to try new flavors we might otherwise miss out on.

These recipes are inspired by the family kitchen, which is the heart of the home, and each gourmet recipe is made with love and care to keep your kitty feeling great.

Key Benefits
  • Convenient, easy-to-open pouches feature gourmet recipes that are high in protein and low in carbs.
  • Contains taurine which helps guards the heart and added vitamins and minerals for a complete and balanced diet.
  • Recipe contains no grains, gluten, GMO ingredients, MSG or carrageenan, so it’s great for cat with allergies.
  • Variety of delicious flavors help to entice picky eaters with real, deboned meat in a luscious gravy.
  • Helps cats stay properly hydrated, and can be served as a standalone diet or as a topper for dry food.

I'm sure you're not surprised to hear that I lick the gravy clean and leave the meaty chunks behind. I have a reputation to uphold as Miss Picky Pants and don't want anyone thinking I'm transitioning over to wet food! Mommy is happy that the gravy is giving me extra hydration so she tries not to get too frustrated with me when I refuse to clean my bowl.

The Cats in the Kitchen Variety Pack is currently on sale at Chewy for $16.99. Chewy offers FREE 1-2 day shipping for orders over $49, and with over 500 brands in stock they have something sure to make every cat or dog happy. Tell them Mudpie sent you!

Disclaimer: We received product compensation from 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.

Monday, May 7, 2018

Tortie Shorties Book Reviews: A Pair of Cat Classics

Meows from Mudpie!

Today we're reviewing a pair of cat classics, dating back to the 1950s and 1970s. 
Mommy was born during one of those decades (the latter one) and I think she's a classic too!

Morris : An Intimate Biography by Mary Daniels

From the publisher: At last the intimate biography of one of today's most famous TV personalities-the feline superstar, Morris. In this authorized biography, Morris fully cooperates with Mary Daniels and discusses those details of his life he has been so reluctant to reveal in the past. Here is the truth about his discovery-only twenty minutes before he was to be put into his next life in a Chicago animal shelter, the facts behind the scandals that clouded Morris' pre-acting days, the circumstances behind his 9-Lives triumphs, ...and more.

Tortie Shorties Review: Anyone who loves the iconic Morris the Cat needs to track down a copy of his 1974 biography. I bought it to find a few little known facts about him for our recent Purrfect 10 post and soon found myself scouring YouTube to revisit all those classic commercials I loved growing up. My favorite stories included those about his mattress commercial debut which didn't go according to plan, details about his love life, and especially a very special moment that happened when he paid a visit to the shelter he was rescued from and placed back in the cage where he was discovered. There are a bunch of photos too including a devastatingly handsome centerfold that belongs on every ladycat's wall!

From the publisher: A little gray kitten with a taste for adventure stows away on an airplane, and the daring stunt turns out to be his first step toward becoming … Space Cat! The plane's pilot, Captain Fred Stone, names his fuzzy new friend Flyball and welcomes him to an experimental station set up in the middle of the desert. Flyball enjoys supervising the station's workers and takes particular interest in the big rocket ship that he's not allowed to explore. Regardless of the rules, the kitty is determined to hitch another ride, and before you know it, Flyball's wearing a custom-made pressurized suit and headed for the Moon.

This new edition of a charmingly illustrated storybook from 1952 is the first of a four-book series starring the intrepid feline known as Space Cat. Young readers will delight in taking a look at space exploration from Flyball's point of view and following his escapades across the solar system.

Tortie Shorties Review: The allure of space travel captured the imagination of a nation in the 1950s, and I dare say it still does. The four books in this sweet series chronicling the adventures of a cat named Flyball and his human companion Captain Stone are being released this year to a new generation of readers and to those who wish they still had their childhood copies from decades ago. In Space Cat the dynamic duo visit the Moon and Flyball becomes an unlikely hero when disaster strikes hundreds of thousands of miles away from home. Obviously the science is quite outdated, but the story is still as charming as ever. The illustrations (especially those depicting Flyball in his space suit) are just adorable too. Space Cat is guaranteed to leave you thinking you see a cat's face when you look up at the moon tonight!

This post contains affiliate links.

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Caught in the Act #SundaySelfie

Yep, I'm sneaking a lick of Mommy's frozen burrito ;) 
Hey, it was Cinco de Mayo!!!

We're joining our friends at The Cat On My Head for the Sunday Selfies blog hop!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Run for the Roses #Caturday Art

Meows from Mudpie, and Happy Derby Day!

Do you plan to watch the Kentucky Derby today? We will be even though Mommy watches horse races with one eye closed. She says NASCAR is her sport of choice because when the drivers crash they aren't destroyed like the poor horses are when they fall. She loves the Triple Crown races though - they're really all she watches - and she's so thankful she got to see a Triple Crown achieved in her lifetime just 3 short years ago. We hope it happens again, but more than anything we just hope for a safe race.

For my Caturday Art project this week I decided to wrap myself in a garland of roses just like the winning horse will receive. I may never run in the Kentucky Derby - I'm too old at this point anyway - but I bet I would be fast enough to give those horses a run for their money!

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

Do you watch the Triple Crown races?

Friday, May 4, 2018

A Pair of Fun Feline Finds

Today we're super excited to tell you about two pawsome projects that we're supporting and hope you will too!

The first is CatLadyBox's new shirt campaign... Neuter is Cuter! For every one of these shirts purchased, CatLadyBox will make a $5 donation to help spay/neuter a cat!

The shirts are only $15 and they come in gray and pink. You get an adorable shirt and help a cat at the same time!


With kitten season officially here, CatLadyBox is launching a special "Neuter is Cuter" shirt campaign to raise money for spay and neuter programs. When you buy this shirt, you're not only getting an adorable shirt... but they'll also donate $5 from each shirt to help spay or neuter a cat!

You can get the shirts here:


Spaying and neutering animals is the most humane and effective way of controlling cat overpopulation. For every cat that you can help get fixed, we're preventing hundreds of kittens from being born, and helping community cat colonies to stay under control.

An unaltered female cat can have several litters of kittens a year. This leads to more cats having more cats, and also to more cats ending up in shelters. With shelter overcrowding, this sadly also leads to more cats being killed in shelters. The best way to help stop this is to stop the reproductive cycle by spaying and neutering! Each of these organizations does amazing work to educate the public about TNR (Trap-Neuter-Return), provide assistance when possible, and/or offer spay and neuter services and surgeries for community cats. With kitten season in full swing, shelters and rescues are inundated with orphan, homeless, and needy kittens. We hope you'll join us in supporting their very important efforts by purchasing a "Neuter is Cuter" shirt!

Proceeds from this shirt campaign will benefit:

Operation Catnip - Gainesville, FL
Fix Our Ferals - San Francisco, CA
TrapKing Humane Cat Solutions - Atlanta, GA

I got my shirt yesterday and I thinks it's going to draw lots of attention whenever I wears it!


The second thing we wanted to tell you about today is a Kickstarter campaign we recently pledged on. 

A Cat Never Tells by Laura Seeley is a gift book for cat lovers of all ages, celebrating the love a woman has for her cat as we witness events of the life they share. Then one day the cat goes missing and in her profound sadness the distraught woman wonders where her beloved pet could be.

The full color illustrations are stunning, and the lyrical story takes readers on a whimsical journey of fond recollections and magical imaginings. I don't pledge on many crowdsourcing projects, but when I saw this one I acted immediately. I'm so excited to see the finished product.

Visit Kickstarter to pre-order A Cat Never Tells and support the project. It's getting super close to reaching it's goal!

Have you come across any fun feline finds lately that we need to know about? 
Tell us in the comments!

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

National Truffle Day

According to the National Day Calendar, today is National Truffle Day.

Who doesn't love those tasty little nuggets of chocolate perfection? Legend states that the first chocolate truffle was made on Christmas Eve 1895 in Chambray France by French patisserie Louis DuFour. Looking to create something new in addition to the usual Christmas chocolate treats, he made a delectable chocolate ganache, shaped it into small spheres and then rolled them in cocoa powder to make them easier to handle and not as likely to melt in a person's hands.

Today the main types produced are American, French, Belgian and Swiss. Each type of truffle has a slightly different twist, but they all include a creamy ganache filling and a topping like cocoa, coconut, nuts or drizzled chocolate.

While reading up on the history of the chocolate truffle for this post, imagine my delight to see this ad asking readers what they think of when they hear the word truffles! After voting I learned that 54% chose the chocolate, 33% chose the fungus, and 13% chose the cat name.

I guess it goes without saying that while I could nosh on truffles all day long, my favorite will always be my sweet, beautiful, missed beyond words angel Truffles...

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Unboxing April's CatLadyBox

The theme of April's CatLadyBox was "Feline Groovy"'s what was inside!

Featured Cat Lady Artist: "Peace Love Cats" by April Murphy

"Live Love Meow" Tank: I don't typically wear tank tops but this one is super cute. I'm looking forward to layering it with a regular tee underneath this summer.

Cat Tie-Dye Duffel Bag: I almost wish this bag was more purse-sized than a duffel bag so I could use it on a daily basis. The vibrant colors and design are just incredible.

"Live Love Meow" Car Magnet: This magnet never made it to my car. I would be afraid of it getting stolen! It's on the fridge with the rest of my cat magnet collection.

Groovy Guitar & Cat Peace Sign Catnip Toys: As soon as I opened the box Mudpie was desperate to climb inside. I pulled out my loot not realized the catnip toys were still in the wrapping paper, but she laid right down on top of them. "Step away from the toys" is written all over her face in this picture!

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.