Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Tortie Shorties on Tuesday

Welcome to this week's belated edition of our Tortie Shorties book reviews!

We hope you enjoy our choices.

Death by Vanilla Latte (A Bookstore Cafe Mystery) by Alex Erickson

From the publisher: Ever since café owner Krissy Hancock settled into a relationship and—mostly—forgot about old flames, life has become surprisingly serene. Too bad her father, famed mystery writer James Hancock, had to pay an unexpected visit to Death by Coffee and brew up a batch of trouble...

While caught off-guard by her dad’s presence, Krissy never dreamed he’d become the biggest murder suspect in town. But that’s exactly what happens when James’s boorish agent—a man he allegedly fired just hours earlier—is found cold and lifeless, a still-warm vanilla latte resting by his hand...

With Pine Hills divided over her father’s innocence and a fanatical fan keen on locking the author away for safe keeping, Krissy must end the madness and identify the real criminal—even if that means meeting an ex or two along the way. But as her social life becomes increasingly chaotic, Krissy may be caught in a case that’s far too hot to handle...

Tortie Shorties Review: This is a series I fell in love with thanks to the covers, only to find myself slightly underwhelmed after starting to read them out of order. This is now the fourth book in the series and I'm happy to say that I enjoyed it a great deal.

Set in Krissy Hancock's cozy little bookstore cafe, Death By Coffee is a place any book and coffee lover would be happy to visit. Life takes an unexpected turn for Krissy when her father James, a famous mystery writer, shows up in town with his agent and agent's assistant in tow. Agent Rick has always had a bit of an unnatural fascination with Krissy, and when he makes unwanted advances towards her James is understandably livid. He promises to take care of the situation, which only makes him the lead suspect when Rick is found dead the next morning at the B&B he's staying at, covered in blood and his ever-present vanilla latte. While James is a mystery writer he's always wanted to help solve a real-life crime, so father and daughter team up to catch a killer. Turns out there's no shortage of suspects, including most of the members of the local writing group who wanted Rick to check out their work.

I really enjoyed the addition of Krissy's father to this cast of characters and hope he visits Krissy again in the future. His scenes with busybody Rita (who is rather obsessed with him) are quite funny, and I also find myself liking Krissy's flamboyant neighbor Jules Phan more and more. I do wish the kitties in this series - shop cat Trouble (on the cover) and Krissy's orange cat Misfit - had a larger role in the story. The next book in the series is a Christmas-themed story (Death By Eggnog) so that makes it an automatic addition to my TBR pile!

From the publisher: All is not what it seems…Mighty is stuck in an elegant waiting room which he calls a dungeon even though he gets plenty of fresh water and food. When Mighty’s parents pick him and his brother up, Mighty decides that he will find a place where cats are treated like kings. 

One day clumps of yellow goo start falling from the sky, and cats are attacked by small rodents. No one knows why the rodents are attacking cats.

The two feline brothers see their dream destination on TV and want to have fun there. The attacks and mysterious yellow goop falling from the sky give the two feline brothers another incentive to flee to their dream land. 

On the way to Cat Land, Mighty and Brennon meet a cat who acts like a human. They fight a naughty cat, and also encounter black and white grazing animals which look like aliens to Mighty. They rescue a group of cats from an attack as well. 

Mighty finally captures a perpetrator and discovers that his secret is only fur deep. Mighty uses this secret to trick others into thinking that he and Brennon are dogs, for a good cause. 

Despites all the obstacles Mighty and Brennon overcome, nothing could have prepared them for what they experience in their dream land. 

The brothers’ parents get a phone call to pick their cats up, and the two felines receive the worst punishment that a cat can get for running away: a bath. 

Not all is dreary as Mighty and Brennon help put a stop to the attacks. They also have a shot at getting to another dream destination.

Tortie Shorties Review: I'm about 30 years beyond the target age for this book but that didn't diminish my enjoyment of it one little bit. Children of all ages will find themselves smiling throughout this "tail" of two house cats who are eager for adventure and find it in spades on their journey to heaven on earth for felines, otherwise known as Cat Land. They learn more than one lesson along the way though including the fact that the grass isn't always greener on the other side of the street. The ending opens the door to Mighty and Brennon's new plan, and I can't wait to see what kinds of mischief the dynamic duo gets into next!

Disclaimer: 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! I received review copies of both of these books in exchange for my fair and honest opinion.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day 2017

Photo Credit: flickr creative commons/Chris Yunker

"It is, in a way, an odd thing to honor those who died in defense of our country, in defense of us, in wars far away. The imagination plays a trick. We see these soldiers in our mind as old and wise. We see them as something like the Founding Fathers, grave and gray-haired. But most of them were boys when they died, and they gave up two lives — the one they were living and the one they would have lived. When they died, they gave up their chance to be husbands and fathers and grandfathers. They gave up their chance to be revered old men. They gave up everything for our country, for us. And all we can do is remember."

~Ronald Reagan

Sunday, May 28, 2017

The "Nose" Have It #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Mommy says that we get lots of comments from people saying how cute my splotchy little nose is. I aim to please my fans in any way I can so I decided to snap my selfies this week with a focus on showing off my snout as much as possible.

How'd I do?

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

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Beachy Caturday Art

Meows from Mudpie!

Since this weekend is the unofficial start of summer and lots of you will be hitting the beach, I went over to Dreamscope and chose the Seaside effect for my Caturday Art project. I brightened it up even more in PicMonkey to make the colors really *pop* and then added a frame.

Blue is probably Mommy's least favorite color, but on me she thinks it looks divine!

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 McGuffy's Reader!

Mommy's answers:

1. My idea of roughing it is no WiFi. I *am* a blogger, after all.

2.I never get sick of talking about cats. Is there anything else worth talking about?

Mudpie's answers:

3. My youth is being spent loving life in a forever home, as every kitty's should.

4. My “golden years” are hopefully still many years away!

Friday, May 26, 2017

We're Members of the Kitterati!

Earlier this month we wrote about the Cat Rescuers documentary Kickstarter campaign which is now fully funded. As a matter of fact, the original goal was exceeded by more than $10,000 enabling the film to get finished faster and into the hands of people helping cats!

We were also offered the opportunity to participate in a feature on the film's website called Kitterati where they interview influencers in the cat industry about the importance of cat rescue.

We were happy to share our thoughts and so excited to see it published earlier this week. Interested in reading it? We thought you'd never ask!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Bloodline: A Witch Cat Mystery by Vicki Vass Blog Tour

From the publisher: Fleeing from the witch trials in Salem, Terra Rowan finds herself in modern day Asheville, North Carolina. A dark spirit from the past hunts this last witch of Salem. With the help of the ladies of the Biltmore Society, Terra must discover the secret within the forest to preserve the bloodline.

This is not one of the cutesy witch cozies that are so popular today. It's a complex novel rich with history taking readers all the way back to the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. Beginning as Terra Rowan flees through the woods with witch hunters on her trail she seeks shelter in a cave and drinks a potion that her friend Elizabeth guarantees would save her. It turns her into a cat, and now 325 years later she is still trapped in the feline form and living in Asheville, North Carolina. As a cat Terra is able to communicate with Mrs. Twiggs, owner of the Leaf & Page shop, as well as a mysterious young girl named Abigail who is on the scene when Terra's dear friend, homeless man Lionel, is murdered in the alley. As the story goes back and forth between past and present the connection between Terra and Abigail deepens and when evil descends upon modern-day Asheville the coven faces it's greatest challenge in centuries.

The gothic atmosphere of this story is chilling and each character is well-developed and intriguing. The rare moment of levity comes in the form of Pixel, Terra's familiar who is also a cat. He serves his purpose as a witch's familiar but also has very cat-like qualities that are just adorable. His pure innocence is heartwarming and the part he plays in the climax of the story is riveting. Bloodline is a paranormal mystery unlike any I've read before and it stayed with me long after the final turn of the page.

Guest Post by Author Vicki Vass

Who doesn’t love cats? I do. Two years ago for my husband’s birthday, we adopted two shelter kittens, Pixel and Terra. They are now my writing companions, either helping me type by walking across the keyboard or laying on it. I have often wondered what is in their heads as they invade my space.

This curiosity of mine grew stronger when we brought our Australian shepherd puppy, Atticus, home last summer. Both cats had grown up with a dog. Our previous Australian shepherd Bandit was 12 when we brought the kittens home. Bandit was inclined to ignore the kittens. Often preferring to sleep the day away.

However, Atticus was not so inclined. True to his herding nature, Atticus enjoyed chasing the cats around the house. They, however, were not having it. They decided to fight back in their own way. Terra constantly plotted and Pixel became her willing accomplice. She brought treats to the puppy as if paying homage to him. Instead these treats were meant to have dastardly effects. There was a water bottle cap, a sock, a screw and many more items. She would drop them by his nose and then sit back watching him, waiting for him to eat it. I would rush around, pulling items from his mouth, watching her to make sure she wasn’t giving him treats.

I never thought they would become the friends they have. Now that Atticus is a year and has calmed down, I have occasionally found them sleeping together. But then we brought another Australian shepherd puppy, Tracker, into the house. Tracker loves to chase the cats. We are constantly pulling him off the cats. Terra has returned to her favorite pastime—bringing him treats—a sock, a screw, a bottle cap—whatever she can find. I was continuously fascinated by her devious nature and how willing Pixel is to support her endeavors.

Out of their antics grew the main characters for my new series, Bloodline: A Witch Cat Mystery. Both Terra and Pixel play major roles within the story, which crosses the line between reality and paranormal, spanning generations of time and space.

And, within this story, place plays a major role. My husband and I have traveled to Asheville, North Carolina, a lovely community surrounded by the Blue Ridge and Smoky mountains. The fog from the mountains provides an atmospheric quality to the town, often engulfing it and giving it its own mysticism. In the downtown area, are various tea shops, healing stone stores and advertisements for witch circles. I wanted to draw on all those images for this book so this book truly combines paranormal, mysticism and slight versions of alternate reality. I hope I do Asheville justice within its pages.

I also wanted to bring to light some of the ancient remedies that were used within the mountains by the local healers. I spent time researching and reading about these fascinating treatments and share some within the pages of the story. In future books, I plan to share more.


About the author: Vicki Vass traded in her reporter’s notebook to pursue her passion of writing cozy mysteries. Her Antique Hunter series was a finalist in the 2016 Mystery & Mayhem contest. Bloodline is the first book in the Witch Cat Mystery series.

Vicki has written more than 1,400 stories for the Chicago Tribune as well as other commercial publications including Home & Away, the Lutheran and Woman’s World. Her science fiction novel, The Lexicon, draws on her experience in Sudan while writing about the ongoing civil war for World Relief.

She lives in the Chicago area with her husband, writer and musician Brian Tedeschi, son Tony, Australian shepherd Bandit, kittens Terra and Pixel, seven koi and Gary the turtle.

Author Links –

Website – http://www.vickivass.com/

Blog – https://vickivass.wordpress.com/2015/07/04/heading-home/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/vickivassauthor

Purchase Link – Amazon

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Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

The Purrfect 10: Things To Know About Microchipping Your Cat

We love reading and researching anything and everything about cats, and wanted to find a fun and unique way to share the interesting facts we learn with you! Since top 10 lists are very popular in the blogosphere, we created The Purrfect 10 as a way to present 10 educational or fascinating tidbits about a wide variety of cat-related topics, everything from health issues to cat breeds to famous felines.

There's nothing much more terrifying than the thoughts of a beloved cat or dog going missing. Even indoor pets aren't immune from getting lost because accidents can and do happen to even the most vigilant pet parent. While a tag providing your phone number is great, collars can fall off or be removed, which is what makes the addition of a microchip so important.

In honor of National Chip Your Pet Month, May's edition of The Purrfect 10 features what you need to know about microchipping your cat...

1) A microchip is a small computer chip containing information linking you to your cat. It's about the same size as a grain of rice and comes enclosed in a glass cylinder.

2) Inserting a microchip takes only a few seconds and can be done during a routine vet visit. No surgery or anesthesia is required although if your pet is already under anesthesia for a procedure such as spay/neuter it can be done at the same time.

3) The microchip is inserted subcutaneously (under the skin) between the shoulder blades using a hypodermic needle. It's no more painful than a regular vaccination although the needle is slightly larger.

4) Kittens can be chipped as young as 5 weeks old although the health and stability of the cat is the most important factor in determining when to go ahead with the procedure. Most shelters wait until 8 weeks old (and about 2 pounds) before inserting the chip.

5) Microchips are not tracking devices but rather radio-frequency identification (RFID) implants that provide permanent ID for your pet. They also don't require a power source like GPS. The chip is activated when a shelter or veterinarian waves an RFID scanner across a cat's body where the microchip is embedded. The scanner activates your pet's unique ID number that is used to retrieve a pet parent’s contact information from the pet recovery database.

6) The most important part of a cat's microchipping is registering the device with your contact information so you can be notified when your lost pet is found. At this time, there is not a central database in the U.S. for registering microchips; each manufacturer maintains its own database. Fortunately, microchip scanners display the name of the microchip's manufacturer when the microchip is read. There is also a Universal Pet Microchip Lookup website maintained by the American Animal Hospital Association which identifies the registries a microchip is enrolled with. Remember to keep your contact information up to date whenever you move or change phone numbers. Since more and more shelters today are implanting microchips into every animal that's adopted, make sure your new pet's microchip number is included in your adoption paperwork so you can get it registered in your name.

7) While a microchip is permanent identification, it is not recommended to take the place of a collar and ID tag. When a person sees a cat or dog with tags it's obvious they belong to someone. With a quick phone call your pet is back home where she belongs. A microchip requires that someone take the extra steps to bring the animal to a vet or shelter to be scanned, if they're even aware of microchips in the first place. Wearing both gives your pet the best possible chance of getting home safely.

8) A microchip is designed to last for the entirety of your cat's lifetime because it is composed of biocompatible glass that will not degenerate over time. Since they require no power source and have no moving parts there's nothing that can wear out or need to be replaced. It's still a good idea to ask your vet to scan it during yearly check-ups to ensure that it's functioning as it should.

9) In rare occasions microchips can migrate (although since it's inserted under the skin it can't travel to any major organs), so shelters and vets will scan a lost cat or dog’s entire body to check for a microchip. A microchip will also show up on an x-ray, so that's another way to look for one.

10) Cats that are microchipped are more than 20 times as likely to be returned to their owners!

Is your cat microchipped?

Monday, May 22, 2017

Tortie Shorties on Mystery Monday

Welcome to this week's edition of Tortie Shorties on Mystery Monday!

We hope you enjoy our choices.

From the publisher: Blorange tabby Max and ragamuffin Dooley are on the case again. This time a world-famous reality star has been found murdered in her own bed, and it looks like the crime just might be terror-related. The Kenspeckles, stars of the well-known reality show Keeping Up with the Kenspeckles, are in town to film a new season of their show, so the case soon turns into a complete media circus, with the Kenspeckles insisting the entire investigation is filmed for their show. Odelia Poole, Hampton Cove’s premier reporter, teams up with Detective Chase Kingsley to catch the killer, but with cameras filming their every move, and every Kenspeckle a suspect, they’re not making a lot of progress. Good thing Odelia’s cats Max and Dooley can sneak around undetected, tracking leads and hunting clues. But first they have to pacify Shana’s French Bulldog Kane, who just might be in possession of the clue that breaks the case. And they have to outsmart Chase’s black tabby Brutus, who has his own reasons to find the killer. Will Max and Dooley solve the case? Or will Brutus beat them to it? And will Dooley finally get to first tail with Harriet? Find out in Purrfect Revenge, the third installment in the funny cat mystery series The Mysteries of Max.

Tortie Shorties Review: It's no secret how much I adore this series and I couldn't be happier about how quickly the stories are being released. This third book takes place in the cut-throat world of reality TV when Shana Kenspeckles is beheaded in her family mansion. There's no shortage of suspects in a house with as much drama as the crazy Kardashian family. Once again Odelia and Chase team up to work the human angle, while kitties Max, Dooley, Harriet and Brutus do a little undercover investigating of their own...and just who do you think ends up with more successful results? Along the way there's trouble in paradise for lovebirds Brutus and Harriet, while Brutus and Max are forced to make an unlikely alliance. It's almost like a mini kitty soap opera and I just can't get enough.

From the publisher: 

A dead mayor.
A wacky aunt.
An uppity millionaire romance author.
And a town full of explosive secrets…

It’s one headache after another for witch and café owner Ginger Westbrook.

When Mayor Penelope Ashby rolls her car off a driveway and into the ocean, everyone in the small, sleepy seaside town of Broomfield Bay, Oregon is shocked.
Everyone but Ginger’s Aunt Vivian, who “saw” the grisly death coming long before the unlikable mayor plunged into the Pacific.
But when it’s discovered that the death may not have been an accident, accusations start flying and Ginger and Vivian find themselves smack dab in the middle of a modern-day witch hunt.
Because strange things are afoot in Broomfield Bay this summer, and it will take all of Ginger’s powers – supernatural and otherwise – to keep the small town’s pitchforks and torches at bay.

Tortie Shorties Review: When Mayor Penelope Ashby's car goes off a cliff everyone comments on the treacherous roads surrounding her home, claiming they were an accident waiting to happen. But when it becomes apparent the crash was no accident, her brakes were cut, cafe owner and witch Ginger Westbrook is thrown into the thick of things thanks to the long-running feud between the mayor and her beloved Aunt Viv. Penelope certainly made more than one enemy in town, especially during a meeting of her exclusive book club where members were unwillingly locked in her home all night. When Vivian is arrested and is as nonchalant about it as can be, it's up to Ginger to be the responsible adult and find some answers.

Every character in this new series is so richly drawn and complex, especially newly-separated Ginger reuniting with childhood sweetheart Eddie (and the loads of history between them) to the quirky, carefree Stevie Nicks fanatic Vivian. Of course every good witch needs a cat, who in this case is orange tabby Lindsey Buckingham, and there's even a mysterious broom that plays a key role in the outcome of the story! The ending features a twist I never saw coming, perfectly setting up the second book in the series which can't come soon enough for this reader!

Disclaimer: 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! I bought my copy of Purrfect Revenge, and Ginger of the West was sent to me by the author.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Caturday Art

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 McGuffy's Reader!

Mommy's answers:

1. I have googled medical symptoms that have convinced me I'm dying. Who hasn't? Scarier still is googling a cat's symptoms so I try to avoid it.

2. I have bought quite a few things but never sold much on Ebay.

Mudpie's answers:

3. I think Mommy and I should hit the road next year for BlogPaws in Kansas City. I can see the headlines now...Mudpie Takes Missouri!

4. Mommy thinks we'll most likely be watching the festivities from home once again. She says there's not much chance of us going unless the conference comes to the northeast. Party pooper. 

Anyways, we'll most definitely be watching the Nose to Nose Awards tonight curled up on the couch and cheering on all our friends!!! 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Unboxing May's Cat Mom CatLadyBox

With Mother's Day in our rear view mirror, it's finally safe to reveal what was in May's Cat Mom's Day CatLadyBox!

Featured Cat Lady Artist Dany Lizeth: The self-taught artist is only 19 years old, and this particular piece was created for her mom who inspired her to start drawing.

CAT MOM Tattoo Shirt (CatLadyBox exclusive): Another pawsomely soft and comfy CLB t-shirt. You better believe I wore this on Mother's Day!

Color-Changing Cat Light: I've gotten every single box since the beginning of CLB, and this is one of my favorite items ever. It's made of silicon which makes it feel really cool to touch, and the warm glow of the light is the purrfect cozy touch to any room. Just a tap turns it off and on (or switches from white light to multi-color) and I can hardly wait to see it light up the room on a cold winter night. Plus it's just too adorable for words!

Gold Trim Cat Trinket Dish (CatLadyBox exclusive): This delicate little dish is just the right size to hold your keys or jewelry, but I love the idea of using it as a cute dish to serve cat treats in too! 

Mom Cattoo & Catnip Daisy cat toys (CatLadyBox exclusives): If Mudpie had a tattoo I definitely think it would honor her Mommy, just like if I ever work up the nerve to get one myself it will be a paw print! 

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.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

A Decade of Tortitude: The Magic & Mystique Of My Heart Cats

Throughout the spring of 2007 I found myself visiting the PetSmart adoption center whenever I drove by. It seems unfathomable to me now, but at that point I'd been a little over a year without a cat and I was feeling the urge to bring a new fur baby into my life. My tuxedo beauty Sashi had gone through a long illness prior to her passing and I needed the time to heal.

I had my heart set on either a Siamese or a tortoiseshell. My mom was urging me towards a tortie, and while I wouldn't have turned my back on any cat that I felt a connection to, I found that I was leaning more and more in that direction.

On May 15th I walked into PetSmart and saw a cat named Kelly (who would soon become Tara). I audibly gasped at the sight of her. My mom was waiting for me in the car so I ran out to get her. She told me later that the look on my face told her that I'd found "the one". Mom went into the store with me and was also instantly smitten.

I filled out her adoption application the next day, was approved the day after that, and brought her home on May 20th. I remember standing in line at PetSmart that afternoon picking up a few last minute items for her, and while waiting I noticed a couple young men standing at the cages admiring her. I was so excited I just wanted to shout out, "Be careful around my cat!!!"

I didn't know it at the time, but life changed for me that day. I've known people through the years who've adopted the same breed of dog over and over and always wondered in the back of my mind why they didn't want a little variety in their life. Now I'm that girl when it comes to torties.

Typically when I embark on a new adventure in my life my research-oriented mind kicks in and I read everything I can get my hands on about the topic. After 30 years of living with cats prior to Tara I didn't think a tortie was any different than any other cat. Boy, was I ever wrong! Their uniqueness extends far beyond their color, and most people don't understand how special a tortie is until they bring one into their lives. Tara's feistiness caught me completely off guard and before long I was scouring the web for anything I could find about the cat I had given my heart to. These are some of the fun facts that I learned:

1) Due to genetics, approximately only 1 in 3,000 torties is male. When a male tortie is produced it's the result of a genetic mutation. These males are typically sterile.

2) The distinctive colors that make up a tortie's brindled coat include black, brown, red, chocolate, cinnamon, and amber. Dilute torties have lighter colors like lilac and cream, while one with a lot of black is referred to as a chocolate tortie. (Which is how Truffles and Mudpie earned their names.) A torbie has tortie colors intertwined with a tabby pattern. A calico has tortie coat colors with added white sections. They are white, but with solid red and brown patches. In the United Kingdom, what we refer to as a calico is called a tortoiseshell and white cat.

3) A tortoiseshell is not a breed, it is a coat pattern. Persians, Cornish Rex, and the Japanese Bobtail are just a few of the many breeds that can produce a tortoiseshell coat, both long and short-haired.

4) Torties are often mentioned in folklore. In the United States they're referred to as "money cats".  In Scotland and Ireland it's seen as good luck when a tortie comes into your home, but that goes without saying! An old English wives tale says you can cure warts by rubbing them with a male tortie's tail, and Japanese fisherman believe bringing a tortie onto their boat protects them from storms and ghosts. The Khmers of Southeast Asia even developed an explanation as to the origins of a tortie: they came from "the menstrual blood of a young goddess born of a lotus flower during a magical ritual".

With the exception of the 6 weeks after Tara passed away before I adopted Truffles, and the month after I lost Truffles so unexpectedly before finding Mudpie, I've lived with a tortie for ten years now, and in that time they've become the cats of my heart. Even my father, who more or less "put up with" my mom's (and subsequently my) cat obsession, became a cat lover thanks to my "girls". A few days after bringing Tara home he told my mom in private that she was "a really nice looking cat". He stayed by my side in the emergency room the night I had to let Truffles go and my heart was shattered into a million pieces. The day I told him I'd chosen Mudpie his first question was if she was a tortie, and she has stolen his heart like no other cat before her. That's a testament to their magic.

On more than one occasion I've heard shelter workers say that torties tend to be overlooked by prospective pet parents. They're victims of that silly black cat stigma, and so much is said about "tortitude" that leads people to believe they're difficult. It breaks my heart that people don't know what they're missing out on.

What makes a tortoiseshell cat pure purr-fection (in my eyes)? Everything from their exquisite beauty to their fun and playful personalities. Tortitude is real...but that's what makes them so unique and special! They are also the most loving cats I've ever had the pleasure of living with. Tara, Truffles and Mudpie have all become exceptionally attached to me in ways I haven't experienced with other cats. They've all been very vocal cats too...and there is nothing more fun than chatting with a tortie! They just have so much to say, and they're not afraid to say it either! One of my greatest regrets is never having had the opportunity to get Truffles' adorable little voice on video. We just didn't have enough time, but I've already made sure not to make the same mistake with Mudpie.

Over the past 10 years I've discovered that torties spark a great deal of passion among their devotees. We can't imagine life without these magnificent little creatures and can barely remember a time before they ran our lives. I can say from personal experience that once you "go tortie" there's no going back. Tortitude has made my days brighter and filled my heart and home with love and laughter.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

It's Cutest Pet Contest Time!

Meows from Mudpie!

I'm entered in a Cutest Pet Contest at Mommy's chiropractor office. Do you see me on the wall?

The grand prize is a Vermont Teddy Bear, but the most important thing is that all the money raised goes to our local shelter.

This actually isn't the first contest I've been entered in. I've been in a couple others but haven't won anything. Mommy says this just goes to show that some people have NO TASTE! It's impossible for anyone to be cuter than me. She's a bit partial though.

Wish me luck! (And if you happen to be on Williston Road in South Burlington, drop by Dr. Marko's office and stick a buck or two in jar #12, m'kay?)

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

The Rescued Interviews: Piggy

Meows from Mudpie!

Back in 2015 Angel Truffles started interviewing the cats featured in Rescued: The Stories of 12 Cats, Through Their Eyes, an anthology of rescue cat stories compiled by Janiss Garza, who writes the Sparkle Cat blog. She was unable to see it to completion but I was more than honored to continue the series once I settled into my forever home and took full reins of our blog. Now Rescued Volume 2 is on store shelves and it's my goal to interview as many of the kitties as possible once again! (If you missed our review, it can be found here.)

Each author featured in the book has nominated a cat rescue and was assigned a month to promote the book, with a third of the profits from that month going to their rescue. May's spotlight is Piggy, a social media superstar and author of her very own book! Piggy went through a lot early in her life, but she sure hit the jackpot with the family she's living with today!

Welcome Piggy! Thank you so much for taking time to chat with me today. Could you start by introducing yourself to us and telling us what made your story such a good fit for the Rescued anthology?

Hello Mudpie and Melissa. Thank you so much for having me as a guest on your pawsome blog. I got my start in life as a cat that was unwanted and neglected. My mistrust of humans made me shy and backward for a very long time. With the love of a really wonderful Daddy, however, I became a sassy Facebook diva and food connoisseur. What some people don’t know about me is that I also am an author and poet. There’s a fiction book that I helped co-write, simply called “Piggy” about the fun adventures of me and a crazy mouse named Melvin. I was kind enough to let my human make it into the story as well. On my Facebook page, I post pictures and writings daily about me and my sister cat Goober’s true antics. Every so often, if you’re lucky, I will break into rhyme with some really silly poetry. We love making people laugh. I think with my writing being a mixture of poignant and humorous was why it was a good fit for the Rescued anthology.

Your "tail" of going from an abused and neglected, seemingly unwanted cat to a Facebook diva really touched our hearts. Without giving away too much, how did you find your way to your forever human, Matt?

Matt’s Uncle Rick adopted me and my step-sister cat, Vision a few years back. We both had come from deplorable conditions. One of the saddest things was that I actually had a litter of kittens that I was unable to nurse due to being malnourished. I think that may be why I am so motherly. Anyway, I’m getting away from the question. Matt was staying with his uncle for a while. Both of them were wonderful. However I couldn’t resist Matt’s playful attitude, sense of humor, and the warm, cuddly covers on his bed. We bonded so much that when he made the decision to buy his own house, it was never a question of where my loyalty lay. I said goodbye to Uncle Rick and began a new adventure with Matt.

Given your name, I take it food is very important to you, likely because you went hungry for so long. What are some of your favorite things to nosh on and how do you have fun with your reputation as a food connoisseur? 

My love of food is what actually gave the humans the idea of what they jokingly wanted to call me. Then of course, the name stuck. And yes, once I began having bowls filled to the brim with cat chow, and all the treats a kitty could want, I put aside worrying about my figure and gave in to the chubby girl within. I’m living proof that a lady does not have to be a stick figure to have a slew of gentleman cats calling upon her.

I am particularly fond of crunchy cheesy Doritos, and Spaghettio’s, those tasty little rings of pasta. On occasion, my newer step-sister Goober and I are known to heist chicken, hot dogs, pretty much anything Matt leaves unattended for a few minutes.

Your dad's job is so cool!!! Tell our readers why the name of your story in the anthology is "The Claw Machine Cat".

Grammy Karen, my co-writer and Matt’s mom, tells me that he has been obsessed with skill crane machines in arcades since he was a little kid. He was always really good at winning plush toys.

Matt went to college for filmmaking, and when he got his first job, decided to save enough money to purchase his own claw machine. He began studying it from the inside out and filmed himself as a “teacher” of sorts on how to become better at winning prizes. With his talent, he began putting arcade videos on YouTube and the rest is history. My Daddy actually does this for a living has almost one million subscribers now. I’m pretty proud of him.

How did you become a social media superstar?

When Matt’s YouTube popularity skyrocketed, many of his fans began to send letters, cards and gifts. Then I noticed that a lot of the mail was for me! Kids were drawing really neat pictures of me and sending little treats and toys also. Matt made me my own Facebook and YouTube accounts to keep up with all of the new friends. I’m very fortunate to be so loved by people from all over the world actually.

What shelter have you chosen to receive your proceeds from the book this month and why?

Since I feel very blessed to live in a nice, warm home and to have such a wonderful human that adores me, I think about all the feral cats out there that aren’t so fortunate. I’ve chosen My Ferals of Evansville, Indiana. They are a non- profit agency committed to helping feral cats live better lives through trap/neuter/return and bringing awareness and education to the community concerning feral/stray cats. Miss Jeannie, their human, has a heart filled with gold and catnip!

What do you hope people learn from your story and what would you like your lasting legacy to be?

We want people to come away knowing that their kindness to an animal in large or small ways can make a difference. Never pass up a shelter pet because they aren’t pretty enough or outgoing enough. Some of us average-looking shy kitties have the biggest hearts and just want to be loved and to show love.

Also, laugh a little every day. Because me and my human are all about making kids happy, we hope that by our story, others will want to follow in my pawprints and make a difference too.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Lazy-Ass Cats Coloring Book Blog Tour

A couple weeks ago I went through a period of about 5 days where I didn't feel like doing a darn thing. I enjoy my job but during that time it was a struggle to get through the day. Even this blog, my passion, didn't motivate me, and I only did what absolutely had to get done.

It wasn't that I was didn't feel well, I just felt blah. I needed something new and different to spark my creative juices that didn't require too much brain power, and that's when I remembered my new coloring book that had recently arrived in the mail: the Lazy-Ass Cats coloring book. Better still, these cats were looking adorable being lazy slugs just like me!

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. Now that coloring is back and cooler than ever with adults, it's so exciting to see it finally being acknowledged as the therapeutic activity I've always known it to be.

While flipping through the pages of the Lazy-Ass Cats coloring books, it's impossible not to end up with a big smile on your face. Each picture 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.

What I love is that each page can be colored in a single setting. It takes longer than a picture out of a child's coloring book, but it's not so intricate that it will take you hours upon hours to complete. Some books on the shelves today are so overwhelmingly detailed and elaborate that just looking at it stresses me out! I'm into instant gratification...give me a page that will guarantee a finished product in a decent amount of time. Maybe that's just more of my laziness, but I'm choosing to embrace it!

Lazy-Ass Cats Blog Tour

Join us on the Lazy-Ass Cats blog tour!

May 11: Craft Buds
May 17: That Cat Blog


Through June 1, 2017, Lindsay is offering 20% off all orders placed on LazyAssCats.com with the coupon code purr20. Coloring books make a great gift for cat lovers, people who love to color, and even those who don't consider themselves to be creative. Save now.

You can also pick up your copy at:

Retailers, would you like to sell Lazy-Ass Cats? E-mail Lindsay for wholesale info!

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Lilacs of Love Mother's Day Art

Meows from Mudpie!

Between Mother's Day festivities and an anniversary party, Mommy has a super busy weekend planned. Because I'd like to have a little quality time with her too we decided to 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 McGuffy's Reader!

Mommy's answers:

1. My favorite cereal is Trader Joe's Pecan Pumpkin Oatmeal.

2. My prom was missing an attendant...me.

Mudpie's answers:

3. The best thing about life with Mommy is all the kisses and cuddles.

4. I cannot help insisting on being an only cat, but maybe one day I'll change my mind. Far, far in the future...