First, in June 2008, came a young sorrel Abyssinian cat called Sen-Chan and a slightly younger English Springer Spaniel called Tom. In October 2008, they were joined by Tama-Chan, a ruddy Abyssinian girl kitten. The three lived so happily together, playing and cuddling in the French countryside with their mistress, known as #1. But in early January 2009, tragedy struck and Sen-Chan went to the Bridge at not yet 18 months. For a while, it was just Tom and Tama-Chan and #1, remembering sweet and gentle Sen-Chan, and the one who came before him, the fierce and noble Ikkyu. But then, in April 2009, a little red furrball, Sei-Chan, joined the family! She was followed in October 2009 by Yuu-Chan, a playful but very mellow little sorrel boy. And then Tama-Chan had kittens and little Bibi, a ruddy male, stayed with us. Sadly, we lost our beloved Yuu-Chan in September 2010, but we soldier on and live and love in our little corner of rural France. And we now have a big little brother in Vidock, a Percheron stallion, a little little brother in Genji, a blue Abyssinian, and a big little sister in Violette, a Percheron mare.
Tama-Chan: Now that I don't have a bunch of kits after me all of the time, I can devote much more of my attention to looking utterly beautiful. Needless to say, with the warmer weather approaching, it is most important to have absolutely beautiful toes!
The weather has been fairly stinky overall, but we did have some sunshine yesterday so I got to go out in the run for a while:
Otherwise, I like to sit by the window in #1's study, and admire the birds. At the moment, we have lots and lots of European goldfinches at the feeder
When I need to do some acrobatics, I love to leap up on to the beam that hangs over our entrance hall:
And guess what? Today, we got an email from my little daughter, Hime-Chan, with a photo. She's beginning to look quite grown-up, isn't she?
Finally for today, we would like to invite our friends who are not familiar with doggy blogs to go and check out our friend MAXDOG's blog and read about the amazing portrait of him by Kathleen Coy that was commissioned by his blogging pals all over the world. It is a wonderful story.
Tom: Sorry we're late posting again. We had an unexpected trip to see Dr. C, our vet, today. #1 noticed last night that I had a bit of a bump under the skin on my chest and wanted to get it checked out. It turns out it is from a black thorn prick, and it should go away all by itself, so nothing to worry about. Phew!
We have some photos to share with you, of course. It is very manly for a dog to go to work with his mistress, and I was very proud to accompany#1 to the Percheron Horse Society one morning last week.
My pal Eve was at the neighbours' until Thursday, se we got in lots of playtime:
But of course, the most fun was having #1 try out her new camera on all of us. Here is a photo she took of me the first day!
BUILT FOR SPEED!
And don't I look debonnair in this one?
Yuu-Chan: Would you believe it, she took me to the vet too! All bcause I had two strange-looking bald patches on my inner left thigh. Needless to say, I sang (actually "screamed at the top of my lungs") all the way there and back. Dr. C said it was nothing bacterial or hormonal or stress-related, but it looked as though I had been rubbing against something, probably in the run. I am in fabulous shape otherwise, so no meds at all. It's shedding time and should grow back with all the new fur.
Here I am, engaging in the very manly activity of watching over my big sister, Tama-Chan, as she naps:
Playing manly games with my (almost invisible) little brother:
and resting after so much hard work...
Bibi-Chan: I went to see Dr. C last week so I didn't need to go again, and it befell to me to protect my two older sisters from any possible intruders whilst #1, Tommy and Yuu-Chan were gone. I am supposed to be only a Mancat-in-Training as I am not yet 4 months old, but I thought I did a grand job!
And on the subject of mancatlines, how many even fully grown mancats do you know who love to play bitey-face with their woofie friends?
I was also fearless in facing the Trial by Fire, or if you prefer, sitting by the fireplace...
And, with a little bit of help from my friends, I can do extraordinary feats!!!
Sei-Chan: It's me again! I get to post two days in a row!!!! The reason is that I have the best snuggle shots this week. I have been spending time with my Tommy, of course...
I just love my Tommy! He is the best snuggle-buddy ever, something which Bibi-Chan was pretty quick to figure out!
Although he of course spends a lot of time snuggling with Yuu-Chan too...
In case you're wondering, Tama-Chan is taking a rest as she feels she did more than her share of snuggling when the kits were around...
Now onto other subjects. We had mentioned that #1 spent today at a workshop on braiding and turning out Percherons for shows, so I shall hand the keyboard over to her so she can tell you about it.
#1 here. First of all, the setting which, despite the nasty weather, was rather lovely:
Percheron horses in France have their manes and tails braided with wool. Tails are never docked (it's illegal). These horses have extremely thick manes and tails, so it's quite a job! I don't have (yet) any photos of me trying my hand at the mane, but here is the tail:
And here is my first effort:
And, for comparative purposes, here is what it looks like when done properly!
Sei-Chan: Guess what? We have a new camera! So it's now officially Sayonara Sony, except for the older back-up camera. Please meet Lumix-Chan:
#1 is very excited by the X12 optical lens! She has already started taking pictures, including a portrait of of me:
And one of our forsythia which is coming into bloom...
...even though the weather has been seriously nasty this week.
The weather has been so changeable that #1 will open up the run because it's sunny and we will all pour out into it, and five minutes later, it's pouring with rain. We have been getting some nice rainbows tough!
and the occasional ray of sunshine for me to bask in!
But when it's raining, in keeping with my name, Sei-Shonagon (she was a very famous writer of a thousand years ago!), I like to nap in the tatami space...
Wishing you a dry and sunny SEIturday! Tomorrow, #1 is going to a day-long workshop on braiding and turning our Percherons for shows, so we will probably be late in both posting and visiting.
Yuu-Chan: I have decided that there is nothing better in life than having a little brother (please take note Pierro!). When I got a little brother in Bibi-Chan, I got not just a new family member but a great friend! We love to nap together:
And play rough together as boy kittens do!
And then hang out together!
Remember our little buddy Tora-Chan? Well, it seems that his big brother, Kaze, has also made the same discovery as me!
Back at Poupounette Central, Tama-Chan and Sei-Chan are once again hanging out together:
And Tommy has had a great time hanging out and playing with his friend Eve this week:
Today's post is going to be a joint effort because we have been tagged by our friends Tiny and Lautrec for the Beautiful Blogger award, which requires us to tell you seven things about ourselves.
1. Tommy is extremely well-behaved around food and never begs at the dinner table or when there are guests around.
2. Tama-Chan is absolutely crazy about the feather wand and is very agile and athletic. The problem is that when #1 starts playing with her, Yuu-Chan jumps in and knocks everyone else out of his way...
3. Sei-Chan is very shy but there is one thing that will always get her to come running: she absolutely loves ham. Other than that, she generally eats dry food. Oh, and she loves to ride on #1's back. Whenever #1 bends down, Sei-Chan hops on!
4- Yuu-Chan is a great talker. He is always going on about this and that. He is also very pro-active about cuddles, and he sometimes simply jumps into #1's arms when she is standing there!
5- Bibi-Chan adores Tommy and loves to play bitey-face with him!
6- All the "Chans" love the run and wait eagerly for opening hour in the morning!
7- Tommy is unfailingly sweet with everyone. He has never been heard to growl or shown aggression towards any living creature.
We also need to finish up the previous meme from our same friends, the photo one. We already did Tama-Chan and Sei-Chan's 10th photos, so that leaves the three boys.
Tommy's 10th photo is this:
It was taken on the day that he came home from his breeders. He is coming down the stairs to the living room for the very first time. He was 3 months old.
Yuu-Chan's photo is this:
Yes, he is a garbage boy! he never misses an opportunity to investigate when the trash bag is taken out of the bin and before it's tied and taken outside. He was 4 months old when the photo was taken.
Bibi-Chan doesn't yet have his own album, so we took the 10th photo from the "Tama's Kittens" album:
The kittens were 6 days old at the time. We are not sure whether Bibi is one of the three shown, but chances are he is!
Both of these memes/awards have been doing the rounds for a while, so we will not name any further recipients. But if you have not told us all about yourselves yet, please do so!
Tama-Chan: I need to start today with my portion of the photo meme that Lautrec and Tiny tagged us for the other day. So the 10th photo in my folder is this:
I as about six weeks old at the time...
Moving right along, I have been having a fabulous week in the run. Yuu-Chan mentioned yesterday that we do compete for the sky hammock but everyone knows who is queen around here: MOI! So, without further ado, here is my current sky hammock series:
Of course, it's not all relaxation out in the run. I have to do my share of tail poofing...
I also spent some time on Sunday playing and cuddling with Uncle U: