Sunday, June 30, 2019

My Purrfect Girl #SundaySelfie

(Don't ask me why she insists on leaning against the dust mop. 
Must be she wants her blogging friends to think she does the house work around here!)

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

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Tortie Dust #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!

Mudpie's answers:

1. Summer is a good time to complain. It must be because Mommy sure does a lot of it!

2. I feel annoyed when people (Mommy) ask me when I'm going to start liking wet food. She's been trying for 4 years and it ain't happened yet!

Mommy's answers:

3. The most recent book that I bought was Loves Garfield: The Semi-Official Garfield Collectors Handbook. It's written by the current holder of the world record for number of Garfield collectibles.

4. I thought I would grow out of biting my nails, but I haven't.

Friday, June 28, 2019

How Is This Comfortable? #PetPhotoFails

Meows from Mudpie!

Another month has flown by and it's time once again for the Pet Photo Fails Blog Hop!

I'm labeling this photo a fail because it horrifies Mommy so much.

During the summer when it's too hot to cuddle on the big girl bed, my favorite place to spend the night is in this pink donut bed on the bookcase in front of the window in Mommy's bedroom. It's the purrfect place to watch all the overnight goings-on in the backyard. (Did I ever tell you that a couple weeks after I moved in a guy on the run from the cops ditched his car and took off on foot through our backyard, crashing through a fence? The neighbors saw it, I saw it, but Mommy slept through it. I knew right then and there it was never going to be boring at my new home!)

I've had this bed since the day Mommy adopted me and it used to fit me like a glove, so all I can think is it must have shrunk over the years because look at how I'm hanging out of it now! (I'm stretched out more than usual because the hots have arrived.)

Mommy cringes at how uncomfortable I look, but honestly I'm not! She has tried to replace it with a softer, bigger bed, but I reject it in favor of my pink donut bed. I spend so much time in this bed Mommy even has to brush it out frequently when I'm shedding a lot.

So what do you this a photo fail (Mommy had a really hard time angling the camera to get all of me in the shot) or is it a bed fail?

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Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Book Review/Author Interview: Endangered Species Superheroes by Dakota Duncan

Teenaged Lindsey loves helping out at her grandfather's wildlife sanctuary, assisting with his research and learning all about the animals. It's a peaceful life until evil villain Mace Zagan escapes from prison determined to destroy her grandfather and all of his research. Lindsey would do anything to help her grandfather and so would her sanctuary friends; a sloth, a marine iguana, and a tapir, all of whom are undergoing some very unusual transformations. Will their new abilities be enough to defeat Mace Zagan before he succeeds with his evil plan?

I think this is the very first graphic novel I've ever read and I'm so glad I stepped out of my literary comfort zone to give it a try. Not only is the story fun, imaginative, and educational, but the colorful illustrations are simply eye-popping. 

This book introduced me to some species of animals I've never even heard of before, but of course my favorite character was kitty Fluffy who plays a very important role. Next in line would have to be Bosco...I'm nuts about sloths! 

Teaching children about endangered species is so important, and stories with fun characters will hopefully encourage them to care enough about the natural world around them to do their part in protecting it for future generations. 


Mudpie has had a lengthy break from her interview series but took time from her busy nap schedule to chat with author Dakota Duncan. We hope you enjoy learning some behind-the-scenes details about Endangered Species Superheroes, and I'm personally super excited about the book series she's working on now!

Mudpie: I am thrilled that there is a cat in your book, but why did you include a cat on a book that features endangered species?

Dakota Duncan: I think a lot of people might wonder about that since domestic cats are not an endangered or even a threatened species. The truth is, Fluffy did not start out as one of the team members of Endangered Species Superheroes. She was a shape-shifting character I'd created a few years ago for a different project, but she really wanted to be in this story. I am glad she demanded to included because I think her role as Lindsey's pet cat and close friend is important. We don't learn a lot about Lindsey's backstory, but we do know she lost her parents and seems to seek comfort from Fluffy whenever she is scared or upset. This is something most people can relate to. In addition, cats are very familiar animals to children, much more relatable than the other animals, like Zoey, the tapir.

I, of course, know that cats have a special way of communicating with humans enlightened enough to understand. How did you learn about animal communication and why did you include it in the book?

Many years ago I saw a local television show highlighting animal communicator, Lydia Hiby. I thought it was interesting, but I was quite skeptical that someone could really “talk” to animals and obtain the kind of information that she claimed to receive. As I recall, she spoke of details about lost animals and illnesses. A friend gave me a gift-certificate to speak with her about my family pets, knowing since it was a gift, I would use it. We did a session over the phone. I told Lydia where we lived, the type of animals we had and that was all. She then invited them speak with her about anything they wanted to. She proceeded to tell me things there was no way she could have known – details about one of our cat's reaction to photographs, some rivalries among our furry ones, a behavior that was linked to an injury we were not even aware of, and more. Let me tell you, I was blown away! I have since done sessions with Lydia and other animal communicators and have learned a little bit about developing my own communication skills.

I wanted to include animal communication in my book because I think it is important that more people understand that human-animal communication is possible. It may not be quite as detailed or simple as it is in my book, but I think it touches on the topic in a fun way. It highlights that just because animals don't communicate in the ways humans do does not make them inferior or mean they don't have anything important to say. If more people would take the time to learn to communicate with their pets, it would not only strengthen their bond, but could help diagnose medical and behavioral problems. Also, it's just cool.

A shape-shifting cat is super cool, but why is Fluffy’s alter-ego a Sumatran Rhino?

The answer is similar to what Fluffy tells Lindsey. A while back, I had wondered what it would be like to have a rhinoceros in the house and created a comic called Rescue Rhino. There was a Sumatran Rhino who wanted to be an indoor pet like the dog and cat she watched but knew she would never be adopted into the family as a rhino. She was able to change herself into a cat and follow the dog home one day. She ends up getting adopted and the human sees her as a cat, but the real cat and dog see that she is a rhino. In the book, I like the juxtaposition of a very common, small domestic cat and an extremely rare, large Sumatran Rhino. It allows the character to have a wealth of knowledge and experiences.

What message do you hope reader’s will take with them after reading Endangered Species Superheroes? 

There are two things that come to mind for me. The first is that I hope this book ignites or fuels a curiosity about animals - especially those threatened or endangered. The second is that we all have our own strengths and weaknesses that make us special and valuable.

Was the character of Fluffy the cat inspired by a special cat in your life?

I had not contemplated this before, but yes, I guess there is! I have had a lot of cats in my lifetime, but right now, our family has two – Max and Jasper. Max chose me as his person. He was the inspiration of the first drawing I did of a cat when I was doing the Rescue Rhino comic. He's a medium-to-long-haired cat; a real fuzzball! He likes watching me slowly pour water from a cup into the bathtub. Sometimes he bats at the water, but often he just watches it. I think this game is a bit of where I got the watchfulness of Fluffy, plus Max has his own secret. He is a cuddle bug, but only with me. Most people never even get a chance to see him because he is the proverbial “scaredy-cat,” disappearing whenever others are around.

What are you currently working on?

I have started a children's chapter book series for ages 7-12. It's a sister and brother adventure series with slightly spooky themes. The first is entitled, My Dog Sees Ghosts and the second is tentatively called, My Cat Hears Vampires. I hope to have the first two published by late summer.

For anyone who wants to be notified when the new books are released, I have a VIP list that they can join. Just go to my website and sign up. As a thank you, they will receive a mini-pdf comic featuring Endangered Species Superheroes.

For anyone interested in Endangered Species Superheroes, it is available on Amazon, or they can follow this link for more information:

About the author: Dakota Duncan is known as “Mom” to two human children, two dogs, and two cats. She has been an animal lover since a very early age and recalls that Jane Goodall was her first hero. She's excited to share her love of animals and nature and hopes to inspire others to be good caretakers of the earth and its inhabitants.

Dakota has always loved writing and recalls writing her first play in the third grade where a classmate was too embarrassed to say the word “pregnant” from her script. Her writing skills helped her earn a Bachelor's degree in her early 20's and then a Juris Doctorate degree in her 40's. Dakota is a member of the Oregon State Bar and currently lives with her wife and children in Washington State. Besides writing and drawing, Dakota loves reading, kayaking, traveling and playing with Legos.

If you are interested in finding out more about Dakota and keeping up with her latest work, please go to her website:

Monday, June 24, 2019

The Songs of Summer #MewsicMovesMe

The theme of this week's Mewsic Moves Me blog hop is summer songs. Seeing as how summer is my least favorite season I had planned to sit this one out, but I ended up thinking of so many great songs that I couldn't resist joining in.

Pickin' Wild Mountain Berries is one of my favorite Conway & Loretta songs, perfectly showing the fun & flirty relationship they shared. This footage was taken from a huge Country Spectacular at Madison Square Garden in 1971. It became a 3 hour TV special called Nashville at the Garden. I've seen several of Conway's performances from the show but sure would love to see the whole thing.

And for the record, I would've gone pickin' wild mountain berries with him anytime he guarantees we'd come back either!

My favorite lyric in this Luke Bryan song? 

Might sit down on my diamond plate tailgate
Put in my country rock hip-hop mixtape
Little Conway, a little T-Pain, might just make it rain

Love that today's superstars still pay tribute to him in their music.

A few other summertime favorites...

We hope you enjoyed our choices this week! 

Let us know if you have a favorite :) 

Sunday, June 23, 2019

Cat World Domination Day Preview #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Did you know that tomorrow is a very special day? It's Cat World Domination Day, a day for us kitties to celebrate our world domination!

Don't forget to visit Summer's blog on Monday to join in all the fun and festivities. I understand there's going to be a pawsome giveaway!

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

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Green Eyed Girl #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. I could use some suggestions for upcoming Purrfect 10 posts.

2. I never refuse Mudpie anything. My mom says she's spoiled rotten.

Mudpie's answers:

3. I hope the rest of my favorite foods never change. In the past 6 months two of my favorite Pro Plan foods have been discontinued with no advance warning. Why do pet food companies do this to us???

4. I would rate myself a 10 out of 10. Everybody telling me how cute I am all the time may have gone to my head...

Friday, June 21, 2019

Feline Friday Flashback: Broken Dishes, Broken Hearts

Some memories bring a lump to your throat more than others.

While browsing through old posts to do a Flashback Friday I came across one from Truffles dated four years ago this week. She was mourning the demise of one of her favorite food dishes, which I had knocked to the floor while cleaning the kitchen sink, breaking it right in half.

This dish had a back story - When Tara went to the Bridge, I packed up all of her things to put in a memory box. They were "hers" and the next cat in my life would get new things all her own. But the day Truffles came home I realized I hadn't bought any food dishes yet, so I went into Tara's box and pulled out the one that had been her dry food dish. (It had already been put away for quite awhile since Tara could no longer eat kibble following her diabetes diagnosis.)

It ended up never getting put away because Truffles loved the dish. I'm sure breaking it bothered me more than it did her - I had a sentimental attachment to it because it started out as Tara's, and went on to be the dish Truffles ate her first can of Fancy Feast in after moving to her forever home with me. It went back into Tara's memory pieces :(

What I didn't know at the time, and what makes the post extra emotional for me to read now, is that 3 weeks after it was written Truffles was gone. This picture of her sitting by the broken dish is one of the last I ever took of her. Maybe the dish was symbolic of my broken heart that was to come.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Playing Footsie Through the Door

Meows from Mudpie!

Today we have some video for your viewing pleasure! Mommy and I play footsie through the side door quite often, and the other day when she returned from cat-sitting she was able to shoot some footage of the game. She ended up capturing a first - I've never tried to bite her through the door before!

Monday, June 17, 2019

June Retro Country Rewind #MewsicMovesMe

This spring we premiered our new mewsic feature "Retro Country Rewind," a look back at favorite songs that hit #1 during that month from 30, 35, 40 plus years ago. We were so happy that you guys seemed to enjoy it! Now let's take a look at June for this freebie week in the Mewsic Moves Me blog hop...

30 Years Ago - 1989, A Better Man, Clint Black

1989 was a banner year for newcomers in country music, producing the likes of Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson. Clint Black was my favorite of the group, and the first country artist to see his debut single hit #1 on the charts since 1975.

35 Years Ago - 1984, I Can Tell By the Way You Dance, Vern Gosdin

I've always been nuts about this song, and wish Conway had been the one to record it.
It is, as he always said, the perfect "Conway Twitty song."

40 Years Ago - 1979, She Believes In Me, Kenny Rogers

45 Years Ago - 1974, I Don't See Me In Your Eyes Anymore, Charlie Rich

Miss Conway? Me too. But he'll be back next month with a pair of #1 records for the month of July!

Let us know if you have a favorite this month!

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Pleading #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

Would you be able to resist this pleading look if I aimed it in your direction?

Mommy helped me snap this selfie the other day when she returned home from cat-sitting our neighbor kitty. It's one more thing added to her already overflowing plate. I was begging her to come inside and have some "us" time.

We feel like we're totally neglecting our duties in the cat blogosphere lately. (You may have noticed we've cut down our schedule to posting on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and the weekends.) Mommy is so overwhelmed by life right now - her work has been insane for months, and now my grandpa has some new health issues that have had to be dealt with. It feels like she and I never have enough quality time to spend together anymore.

If you think this selfie is cute, wait until you see video of the game of footsie we play through the door, which Mommy got at the same time as this photo. That is...if she finds time to upload it!

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

Saturday, June 15, 2019

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 Four-Legged Furballs!

Mommy's answers:

1. I hope brick and mortar bookstores never go out of business.

2. So far, the highlight of my year has been winning 4 Certificates of Excellence from the Cat Writers Association.

Mudpie's answers:

3. Mommy's work and other obligations take up too much time. More on that tomorrow...

4. If I didn't have to sleep, I would spend that extra time entertaining Mommy. But I think she's entertained watching me nap. I'm pretty adorable regardless of what I'm doing.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Unboxing June's CatLadyBox

The theme of June's CatLadyBox was "Tropurrcal Vibes"'s what was inside!

Featured Cat Lady Artist: Alexandra Brodt

Cat Cocktails Tank Top: I think the CatLadyBox shirts get cuter each month, if possible. These cartoon kitties are over-the-top adorable. These are my kind of adult beverages!

Cat-Shaped Beach Towel: I'm not a beach girl so this will be used as an extra blanket on the bed come fall. The fact that it's cat-shaped is just pure purrfection.

Cat Travel Bottles: I'm going to use these to hold lotions in the bathroom since I'm not a big traveler either. Love the colors!

Fabulous Flamingo & Timmy the Toucan Catnip Toys: Mudpie is close to having her own zoo thanks to the CatLadyBox animal catnip toys! She loves the extra nip in the toucan, and can't get enough of the flamingo's pretty pink feathers.


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.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Happy Birthday Darlin' Dolly #MewsicMovesMe

The honorary co-host of this month's Mewsic Moves Me blog hop is Marie, otherwise known as XmasDolly. In honor of her birthday, this week's prompt is a birthday song to her, followed by a song that starts with the first letter of your first name...

To this girl, there's only one birthday song. Conway's Happy Birthday Darlin' was #1 for 3 weeks back in 1979. I love it because not only does he sing the chorus, but he also speaks the verses in that dreamy voice of his. He could read the phone book to me and I would be in heaven...

Both Melissa and Mudpie begin with the same letter, so our choice for a song that begins with the letter "M" is My Elusive Dreams by Tammy Wynette and David Houston. It was Tammy's very first #1 record back in 1967. Songs like this make me ache to travel back in time to when country music tugged at the heartstrings like this...

Happy Birthday, Darlin' Dolly!

We hope you enjoyed the songs we picked out for you.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Box Pawty #SundaySelfie

Meows from Mudpie!

This box is so big I could have a few friends over! Who wants to join me?

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

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Sweet But Sassy #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. A past event that I would like to see in person is a Conway concert.

2. If I were a dog, my breed would be a dachshund. No reason why - they're just my favorite breed.

Mudpie's answers:

3. If I came with a warning label, it would say the following: Too Cute to Handle.

4. I would want to take Mommy with me to a deserted island. Not only for love and cuddles, but I need my purrsonal servant with me wherever I go. (Mommy says she would take you-know-who, and having him all to herself, she would never want to be rescued. Hopefully I could tag along too...)

Friday, June 7, 2019

Torties Like Donuts Too #Flashback Friday

Meows from Mudpie!

This afternoon before Mommy comes home from work she'll be stopping at Dunkin' Donuts for her freebie just as she's always done on National Donut Day.

Five years ago Angel Truffles was quite perturbed to sneak a peek inside the bag to find that not even a taste of custard had been left for her from the Boston cream donut.

Her look said it all...Shame on you, Mommy.

Do any of you kitties like a taste of donut?

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Still Missing You, 26 Years Later #MewsicMovesMe

This week we're joining the Mewsic Moves Me blog hop a couple days late in order to remember Conway on the 26th anniversary of his death. I still remember that tragic day and what I was doing when I heard the news like it was yesterday. I know some people probably think it's crazy to feel such a strong emotional attachment to someone you never met, but short of the loss of close family and my beloved pets, I've shed more tears for him than anyone else. Even after all these years this is a very difficult day for me.

While Mudpie may be thinking, "What is the big deal about you, anyways?," I choose to believe he's growing on her. The way she gazed at my new clock last week touched my heart.

Instead of playing Conway today we decided to play a tribute song by Kelly Lang, wife of country singer TG Sheppard and daughter of Conway's longtime road manager Velton Lang. Goodbye Darlin perfectly says everything his fans feel about him, and always will. It's impossible for me to watch or listen to it without crying...

My fingers ran across a cold lonely stone
Dated June fifth ninety-three
I thought I heard his voice as I turned to go
But it’s only make believe

As I placed a rose, I wiped a tear
I never knew I would feel so sad 
As I came to honor the man with a growl
The best friend a song ever had

Goodbye Darlin’
Though it’s been a long time
You’re still in our hearts
And your still on our minds
Thanks for the memories 
You sang from your soul
Though it’s goodbye darlin’
Wish I could hear you say hello darlin’

A soft caring soul, but a man of few words
And the songs he wrote tore out your heart
Ah he never knew just how great he was
When he left this world he tore us apart

Goodbye Darlin’
Though it’s been a long time
You’re still in our hearts
And your still on our minds
Thanks for the memories 
You sang from your soul
Though it’s goodbye darlin’
Wish I could hear you say hello darlin’

You know you were a legend
Ah you were one of a kind
And you left a void in our lives
When it was goodbye time

Goodbye Darlin’
Though it’s been a long time
You’re still in our hearts
And your still on our minds
Thanks for the memories 
You sang from your soul
Though it’s goodbye darlin’
Wish I could hear you say hello darlin’

Now I’m lying here with Conway on my mind

Conway Twitty: Hello Darlin’

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Book Review/Giveaway: Whiskers in the Dark: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery by Rita Mae Brown

Whiskers in the Dark:

A Mrs. Murphy Mystery

by Rita Mae Brown

Whiskers in the Dark: A Mrs. Murphy Mystery

Cozy Mystery

28th in Series

Bantam (June 4, 2019)

Hardcover: 288 pages

ISBN-10: 0425287181

ISBN-13: 978-0425287187

Digital ASIN: B07H72MD6Z

Death stalks the Blue Ridge Mountains as a centuries-old mystery resurfaces and murder mars the lead-up to an annual beagle competition, in a thrilling new tale from Rita Mae Brown and her feline co-author Sneaky Pie Brown.

A massive nor’easter has hit northern Virginia, where Mary Minor “Harry” Harristeen joins groundskeeping efforts at the National Beagle Club at Aldie as the date for its springtime Hounds for Heroes veterans’ benefit approaches. Harry’s fellow volunteers, including her oldest friend, Susan Tucker, comprise a spirited group of hunting enthusiasts, some former service members themselves. But things take a sinister turn when, after a routine tree cleanup along the Club’s hunting trails, retired foreign services officer Jason Holzknect is found dead, throat slit from ear to ear. Soon enough, another murder in their midst jolts the preparations, convincing Harry that the killer is familiar with the Club—and must be close by, masked in plain sight.

The intrigue extends to the grounds of Harry’s beloved local church, where the identity of an eighteenth-century skeleton wearing precious pearls remains a mystery. The anonymous woman’s neck had been snapped, and marks on the grave where her body was secreted indicate that someone recently tried to remove it, leading Harry to question how well she really knows those around her.

As always, Harry’s crime-solving cats Mrs. Murphy and Pewter, and Tee Tucker the Corgi share her determination to sniff out the foes among friends, even those long buried. Harry will need her four-legged companions’ help more than ever: a ghostly beagle only they can see may hold the key to the culprit.

About the Author

Rita Mae Brown is the bestselling author of the Sneaky Pie Brown mysteries; the Sister Jane series; the Runnymede novels, including Six of One and Cakewalk; A Nose for Justice and Murder Unleashed; Rubyfruit Jungle; and In Her Day; as well as many other books. An Emmy-nominated screenwriter and a poet, Brown lives in Afton, Virginia, and is a Master of Foxhounds and the huntsman.

Sneaky Pie Brown, a tiger cat born somewhere in Albemarle County, Virginia, was discovered by Rita Mae Brown at her local SPCA. They have collaborated on numerous Mrs. Murphy mysteries—in addition to Sneaky Pie’s Cookbook for Mystery Lovers and Sneaky Pie for President.

Author Links

Website -

Purchase Links - Amazon - B&N - Kobo - Google Play - IndieBound

The Sneaky Pie Brown mysteries are some of the first books that got me into cat cozies over a decade ago. So many series have come and gone over the years that I've ended up losing track of Mrs. Murphy and the gang, making Whiskers in the Dark the first I've read in quite awhile.

I've seen a lot of reviews of this series mention that these books feature a lot of political commentary, which I was glad wasn't particularly prevalent in this book. I'm always a huge fan of stories that feature a modern day mystery alongside an unsolved murder from the past, and that's exactly what we have here. I will admit to finding the story line from 1787 a bit complicated and more detailed than necessary in a cozy mystery, but it's certainly something history buffs will find fascinating. I found both mysteries to be solved in a satisfying way, and also enjoyed a behind the scenes look at preparations for a National Beagle Club event. Of course my favorite parts of the book feature conversations among the animal characters.

If you're new to the world of Mrs. Murphy you may want to start from the beginning in order to get a better introduction to these characters, but for longtime readers of the series this 28th book is certain to provide hours of enjoyment with a familiar cast of two-legged and four-legged friends.