An assortment of kitties in an assortment of baskets enjoy the warm part of an October afternoon, clockwise from the top: Sienna, Basil, Hamlet, Mr. Sunshine. they may not look too excited, but I can tell you that everyone’s nose is hard at work and ears are alert, except maybe Mr. Sunshine. I love to turn and look from my work at the computer and see what’s happening in this favorite nap space.
Each autumn I take the screens out of the windows and store them over winter and I replace the screen in each door with a window. It’s surprising how much more light shines in the windows when I remove the screens, and even though both my front and back doors have glass nearly to the floor it’s still nice to have the full-view door of the storm doors for kitties to enjoy. This was once a September activity, but with warming temperatures it’s October at the earliest, and last year it was November. Last weekend when the daytime temperatures stayed in the low 50s I took out a few screens downstairs and started changing out the storm doors, but I thought about last year and how nice it was to have fresh air in here on the warm days, especially in the kitchen when the sun shines onto the deck and warms it up. I checked the forecast, and sure enough we would have a couple of warming trends before the end of October. Though a frost is forecast for tomorrow night I have the windows at the ready for the storm doors and the screens are still in place. Even just a few minutes of fresh air for kitties is welcome and exciting, or calming depending on what you’re up to.
The birds make an appearance.
Photos from previous years
Windows Open for Birdwatching, 2022
It’s been a little too chilly to open the windows the past week or so, but today we have a warm front before the cold front and it almost felt summery when the morning was sunny. Always a good reason to give us all a little extra environmental enrichment. Boys were all caught up in the drama of birdwatching just inches from their noses.
Keeping some eyes on me today, so I don’t get up and run off again.
From the Garden and Beyond
Photos from previous years
That Last Warm Day, 2021
Mariposa loves her front row seat for birdwatching, as well as the sun in the afternoon and warm breezes when they are available. Especially after we’ve had some cooler days and nights, she is right on those open windows! You can tell by her eyes that she has a lot to tell us about what’s happening at the bird feeders, in the trees, in the ground cover, and out in the neighborhood!
No kitty photos from Tuesday—I had a full day of errands and visiting kittens to be socialized! We’ll catch up on Wednesday’s post!
From the Garden and Beyond
Catch That Sun
My neighbor’s cosmos look as if they have their heads back and are reaching up to catch the sun on a warm autumn afternoon.
I walked down to Main Street for a little lunch get-together with a friend on a gorgeous day last week. Often October gardens are the most beautiful. See this photo on my photo blog Today, and see many others too!
Photos from previous years
It’s Furnace Day! 2020
It’s furnace day! Everyone is confused about why the basement door is closed and there’s a litter box in front of it. And now, there are scary noises in the basement and outside. That’s okay, we’ll be very glad to be nice and cozy warm in the coming months. It’s all worth one slightly scary morning and afternoon, and everyone will stay safe and out of the way.
Mewsette is celebrating #whiskerwednesday.
From around this date in past years
A Day in the Life, 2019
Bella worships her purrsonal kitty keep-warm lamp on a cool foggy morning.
This is the funniest thing she does, of all the silly things she does. She loves the warmth from this little lamp and she literally bugs it, leans up to it and curls up next to it. This usually ends with it falling on the floor, and she runs off. But until then she puts on quite the show.
All of today’s photos were first posted on Instagram. I’m having fun just kind of wandering around now and then, and today was a real rest day. Decided I should do that for at least one day!
Below, Hamlet demonstrates some tricks I can do with my shower stool. Of course I can’t lick my back nor chase my tail through the handholes, but it looks like so much fun! Therapy cats are the best!
Mimi is happy, and that makes me happy. Nice to take some time to sit in the sun on an autumn afternoon.
The two kitties who are NOT black have apparently NOT had enough quality lap time since I’ve been home. Sienna and Mariposa are taking advantage of my lap.
Photos Shared on Previous Years
Office Cat Watches You, 2018
Office cat says I need to sit down and get to work. And that work is providing a lap for her. My that Sienna is getting bold, and what a talented model too, providing us all with this unique photo!
I walked in the door and, as always, glanced around the room to locate all the cats who were there. Sweeping around past the desk I saw just this. What a photo! But I had no device at all handy, and if I walked too close to Sienna to get my smartphone she would get up and want pets. But I wanted the photo. My DSLR was closer and she actually stayed there while I got it ready with the zoom lens though I expected her to be curious and come over. She looked right at me when I called her name and took two quick shots…and then she got up. But I got the photo.
Sienna loves my desk and waits for me to come to work there, plus, in these extended warm days, she has two large open windows and a nice cross breeze. Such a nice kitty!
Over the Weekend
What do nine cats do when they get together? For starters, they DON’T all look at you at once. The reason for the gathering? I was out for a while. I came home. They are trying to convince me it’s time for dinner.
Mimi and I saw this rainbow at sunset on Saturday evening. Look closely, there’s a dimmer second one above that my phone couldn’t catch. Luck, maybe? Maybe a reward for constantly cleaning up water in my basement.
I feel kind of left out because I have NOT received another friend request from anyone at all on Facebook. I DID, however, have someone access my Facebook account through Instagram, which means they also hacked my Instagram account. I’ve changed all my passwords and I’m pretty annoyed because I have better things to do, like sort out this tangled pile of black cats. I was just about to set up a shop on my Facebook page, but if Facebook can’t keep things like this from happening, including on Instagram, I’m keeping it all to myself.
From Previous Years
Wordless Wednesday: World’s Best
Mewsette in Greens, and More, 2017
Mewsette is a very contemplative kitty. She likes to find a place to sit and ponder, and after exploring the yard to the length of her leash, she sits down to do just that. I know she’s watching something, probably a bird in a neighbor’s tree, but I always get the feeling she’s having flights of fancy. In any case, she’s lovely.
Below, she’s pretending to be a wild kitty and giving me a skeptical expression, as if I might do something to her. She likes to pretend sometimes too. All the time, she is quiet and gentle and a little bit silly.
Catching up with Instagram
We’ve been having some lovely days lately, perfect temperatures, sunny, quiet.
Bella is my supurrvisor even when I’m outdoors.
Sunny autumn afternoon to enjoy.
Basil has a nice warm bath at the end of a sunbeam.
The looks I get when I ask if they would wash out their cat food cans and prepare them for recycling so I can get to work.
And something Mimi and I found out front.
Bright as a feather.
Sweetness X 4, 2014
Their cuddles are legendary, and each is different and special. Sunday night/Monday morning I was up late/early/whatever, framing artwork for submission to a juried show the next day, working on commissions, packing orders, just getting ready for Monday. All Five were upstairs, kittens quiet in the bathroom, and Mimi kept me company while her children slept deeply on my bed.
Mimi and I went into my room where I keep packing materials and the boys were cuddled at the foot of the bed, noses together, Mewsette a distance away in a ball. Though it was late and I wanted to get to bed before the sky grew light, I stopped to photograph their cuddles.
As I quietly, as not to disturb their precious beauty sleep, retrieved the materials I needed, Mewsette got up, stretched and sauntered over to her brothers. It’s one of the things I love about them that there is always room for one more. Though they were tucked tightly together she stepped between Sunshine and Bean and lowered herself down, settling comfortable in between and was greeted and welcomed by a brotherly bath from Sunshine.
A few more minutes of grooming and stretching and sighing and purring and Mewsette was settled in, four black cats in a row, sleeping pressed together in very similar positions, seeming like one.
And their happy sleepy faces all in a row.
I actually wanted to sketch them, but was so occupied with watching them I just couldn’t move to get my materials. I can always do something later.
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The Blue Door, 2013
Generations of cats have posed before The Blue Door—little did I know when I painted it that particular shade to keep the evil spirits away according to lots of traditions that 20 years later I’d still have a blue door with lovely cats posing before it. I also like the way the screen and wire guard cast geometric shadows along with the leaves and their organic shadows.
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Mewsette in Blue, 2012
I always seem to get these moody images of Mewsette on the weekend, deep shadows, non-objective portraits, silhouettes and mirror shadows, and odd colors, but I adore these more abstract images. Mewsette was enjoying the little parallelogram of morning sun by the back door, but I had left my camera on the filter for incandescent light from the night before. Without the yellow of the light, the filter’s blue cast is stronger than any other light, and the white sunlight remains white but the shadows take blue. For other examples of Mewsette see “Mewsette Mixed Whiskers” and “A Moment With Mewsette“.
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Improvised Cat Bed, 2011
Mr. Sunshine curls up in the basket of rags in the corner of my studio. Really, what could be a better bed? They are clean and dried outdoors so they smell fresh, soft from use and made from my old clothing and household stuff that’s very familiar, like the sock that’s hanging out of the side of the basket, and the basket was filled to the top before Mr. Sunshine curled up in it so it’s nice and fluffy. And the basket itself is just the right size for him when he curls in a circle.
And until I came in and turned the lights and radio on it was dim and quiet, but he didn’t even from my activities. I just happened to notice that something in the room wasn’t quite as it should be, and really, a black cat in a room of pretty much all light-colored things shouldn’t be all that hard to find!
I do have cat beds, quite a few, in comfortable places, but they always manage to find alternate sleeping arrangements. Mr. Sunshine is quite inventive and loves my studio. He also loves tools and found one lone dark-colored wood screw on the light wood floor and has been practicing his slap shots by constantly rolling it around on the floor and slapping it against the baseboards and cabinets, then running out onto the landing and announcing his accomplishment in his wonderful sing-song voice, “Mmmmmrrrrrow! Mmmrrrrrrrow row!” Sometimes he gets so excited that he runs all the way down the stairs and through the kitchen with a puffed tail and sings his song out the door to the back yard, then turns around and runs back up and starts it all over again.
This vehement play may have been the need for a convenient nap spot. And I enjoyed the zen of a deeply sleeping cat in my studio while I worked. Then the wood screw hockey began again.
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Feline Artwork from Portraits of Animals!
But I wanted to be certain to capture that short little face, delicate chin, the swept-back ears and whiskers, the highlights as the reflected north light washed her face and the window was reflected on her eye, and her paws, at rest, but ready at any moment to leap up and fly at the window screen. Read more, and purchase.
All images and text used on this site are copyrighted to Bernadette E. Kazmarski unless otherwise noted and may not be used without my written permission, although links to your site are more than welcome and are shared. Please ask if you are interested in using and image or story in a print or internet publication. If you are interested in purchasing a print of an image or a product including it, check my animal and nature website Portraits of Animals to see if I have it available already. If you don’t find it there, visit Ordering Custom Artwork for more information on a custom greeting card, print or other item.
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Weekly schedule of features:
Tuesday: Rescue Stories
Thursday: New Merchandise
And sometimes, I just throw my hands in the air and have fun!