Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year to Everyone in the World!!

Thanks to anyone who has ever followed this crazy story from Barn Cat Mansion.

What do we love most about our barn cats? 
   1.  We have no hair on the furniture.
   2.  We have no cats on the table
   3.  We have no hairballs on the living room
         floor.
And our absolute favorite??!!
   4.  We have no litter box to empty.
All the best for 2014 from BCM and FF. :)

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Now that was close.....

Now that was more luck than good management!!

We all heaved a sigh of relief when Big Kitty popped his head up.  The King of the Mansion had fallen asleep, alone, in his royal blue king sized sleeping tub. By the time he heard all the commotion, Whiskers had slunk quietly from the scene and Big Kitty was none the wiser.

Whew!!  Another Christmas catastrophe avoided.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Whiskers in bed with the girls!!!

This looks bad! 
I mean really, really bad!!

After Christmas pictures, the party moved back into the Mansion.  Party Mix, Temptations, Milk Bones......you name it, they ate it.  Some passed out on the floor.  Some fell asleep in the straw.  A couple of them even toppled into bed with Chick and Blue.

But in the morning, this is what we found and it's not going over well with Big Kitty!!

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Have a very Merry Christmas!!

A few minutes later, we were back on track.  Big Kitty took his customary position next to Freezin' the frosty snowman, and put on his best Bumble Butt look ever.
Chick ran back to the Mansion, tail between her legs.  Don't worry, we invited her to sit in on the photo shoot, but she said she had better things to do than sit around with a bunch of pussy cats on Christmas Day.  Hmmph!

Chick, go home!!

Christmas is our busiest time of the year, at least where decorating is concerned.  Firstly, we shake the dust off the bag and grab some Party Mix.  Every cat in the Mansion picks up a garland and gets to work.  This year
December 25th is a warm and comfortable day, so we take the party outside.  Just when we have everything ready and are about to start snapping a few shots, we get

PHOTO BOMBED!!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Our lucky day!!

In our eyes, 13 is a lucky, lucky number.

A day like Friday the 13th, 2013 wouldn't have  a beautiful sunset if it was an unlucky
day.  BCM cats loved Friday.  It marked the first day of Christmas Break and suddenly sitting on posts became a "Freestyle" event.

Sit wherever and however you like, Pinkerton.....for a couple of weeks anyway.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Class clown!!

H"C"S strikes an almost perfect pose as she demonstrates what she learned in PS 101.  Granted, her tail position is far from perfect, but she didn't graduate with a PhD or anything, just a simple diploma!!

Again, Pinkerton is goofing off!!

He's making faces at Whiskers, who is about to be cuffed along side the head by our notorious instructor.  OT may jump just to be safe!!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Tutorial: Demo 1A

Post Sitting 101

Demo 1A
Big Kitty practises every possible post sitting maneuver.  Perhaps "over exaggeration" for Pinkerton's benefit is the only way to get that Hillside Warrior to forget about future conquests and pay attention in class.

1.  Jump up on the fence.
2.  Climb to the top of a tall post.
3.  Carefully lower front legs, one at a time.
4.  Place back toes close to edge of post.
5.  Squarely plant front feet on top plank.
6.  Raise head and look alert.

...to be continued.....

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Nope!! That's not it!!

Under the watchful eye of Big Kitty, Pinkerton has ignored his first post sitting lesson of 2013. 

He just doesn't get it!!

The first mistake?  He picked a post that is even with the plank in front of him. 
Pinkerton!  Look for a post that's higher than the fence it supports.  That way. you can get the proper back end to front end support and the tail will sit quietly in a cute little curl beside the back feet.

Big Kitty!!!  Demonstration please!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Enroll today!!!

Post Sitting 101

Introducing the Class of 2014.

From left to right:
     Little Orangey Blue Green Eyes
     Pinkerton
     Timbit

Side note:  Pinkerton's original class 
graduated in 2012.  Maybe he should open his eyes and pay attention!!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

The challenge begins.....

Winter is the absolute best time for post sitting.   Sun warms the wood and wood warms the cat.

Big Kitty is a Professional Post Sitter!

It took 5 years, but he finally trained OT.  Here you see her butt on the post, her front feet placed squarely on the top plank and her tail curled in a relaxed position.

As winter progresses, we'll see if Big Kitty can train the rest of the cat herd.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

No harm, no foul???

Poor little Timbit!!

What in the world happened to our resident beauty? 

That ear got caught on something, or by something, and we didn't even notice.

Lucky thing it wasn't ripped up any worse or Dr. T would have had to get the sewing utensils out.

We'll never know what happened, but we do know this:

You're lucky to be alive, Timbit!!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Morning at the Mansion...

The sun rose awhile ago, but it never shines on our side of the hill until 10:30 AM at this time of year.  OT and Big Kitty thought they'd have some time alone, but they have company on top of the hay bale.  Timbit is skulking around behind, hoping to sneak by without notice, but Pinkerton isn't quite that smart.

He thinks if his eyes are closed, no one can see him but...really, OT heard him coming...

Thursday, November 21, 2013

I'll take the mud!!

There you have it!

H"C"S and Whiskers each picked up a foot while sacrificing 6 other feet to the bitter cold.

That was yesterday.

Today we have +2 C and Saturday they say we'll hit +6.  Believe me, that is going to be a toasty warm day.

Mansion cats will be basking in the sun cleaning mud off their toes by Sunday.

Cold feet vs. muddy toes?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

He's fired!!

So guess what!

The weatherman lied!  It's not warmer today......it's 10 degrees colder!! :/

It's surprising to see the cats out in the snow at all on a day like today......tough old barn cats I guess.  Who do you suppose is trying to warm their toes, one foot at a time today?  By the way, that was the Big Kitty yesterday.  Good guessing, people.:)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Warm 'em up, one at a time!!

Winter has landed in Southern Alberta.  We're looking at -15 C as a high today.  Maybe warmer tomorrow, warmer than that the next day and then back into the deep freeze for Friday and the weekend.

Its no wonder Barn Cat Mansion cats are getting cold feet!!

Do you have an idea who this cold footed critter might be?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Oh My Gosh!!

You can't even imagine our relief when we figured this out.  Look closely behind LOBE on both sides and you'll see something recognizable.....

...TIMBITS TOES!!!

She obviously jumped up to scare LOBE and yell

BOOOOOOOO!

but was moving so fast the camera captured her as a ghostly apparition.  Whew!!!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

An unwelcome guest....

The mini Whiskers  moved when LOBE wouldn't.  Our one little girl kitten jumped up to finish what her brother started.

That's when it happened!!

A ghostly apparition appeared behind LOBE and he didn't even notice.  Big Kitty was right.  Those things really were left behind.

NOW WHAT!!??

Do they hang around until next Halloween waiting for someone to pick them up?

Friday, November 8, 2013

Move over!! (please)

The little Whiskers look alike got bored with the lecture and directed his attention to the task at hand.

That task became an obsession.

What is the task we're talking about?

Simply to count the growth rings in the stump on which they sit!  How does one small cat complete such a delicate task with a big galoot like LOBE sitting on half of the stump?
Maybe just politely ask him to move!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Where??

LOBE showed no emotion when Whiskers' "Mini Me" said he was bored.  LOBE didn't move a muscle when the little cat asked him to play.  LOBE didn't even care that it was late and soon darkness would envelop the BCM Sports Field directly behind him.
He just didn't care!!!

He was listening intently to a lecture presented by Big Kitty and Orangey Tail regarding ghosts, ghouls and goblins left behind by this year's Halloween.
"You mean they're still here???"

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Stop fighting!!

Give it a rest, you two.  After all it is

Halloween!!

Big Kitty and Pinkerton started arguing as soon as they finished Trick or Treating.  Pinkerton says he saw a "real" bear.  Big Kitty says it was someone dressed up as a bear.  Way out here in the middle of nowhere, where we have NO
 "people" Halloweeners, I'm inclined to believe Pinkerton.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Out the door!!

We really did think Big Kitty was a female when he stayed in the house for his first Christmas!  He moved out shortly thereafter.
Telling the girl cats from the boy cats when they're little is difficult, but it really doesn't matter when they live outside.  The males can mark their territory and the females can have a litter of kittens.  We introduce new bloodlines, and if necessary, give away females sired by the dominant tom.  If there are too many toms, they find a new home or Dr. T sharpens her knife.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Looks are deceiving!!

Big Kitty wasn't always a stoic looking Tom Cat.  Once upon a time he was a clean and fluffy little female who lived in the house.   This was the first time we EVER thought of having a house cat. 

She was sooooo cute!!

That first Christmas was exciting.  New Dora toys for Peyton and a new hiding place for our darling little house cat!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Life and Times of Big Kitty

Big Kitty doesn't mind sharing his space on the deck with a bit of snow.  He's been around long enough to know that snow comes, and it goes.  He's entering his sixth or seventh winter (we're not good at keeping track) and will spend a few days reminiscing about the charmed life he lives at Barn Cat Mansion.  He's the only survivor in a litter of four rescued by Peyton in the horse pasture.  The mama cat must have been moving the family when a bad old coyote caught her.

Monday, October 14, 2013

......they'll take care of this.

Big Kitty heard that the decorations are coming down today.

"Why in the world don't we use them for Halloween" he said.

Timbit got all wide eyed and picked up a front foot as if getting ready to bolt.  She said, "If those decorations don't come down, I'm running away from home."

You must be getting old, Big Kitty.  Just leave it to the younger generation........

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Battle of the Toms...

Well behaved and trained by the soft and caring hands of a ten year old, the cat family sat quietly.  Big Kitty didn't find a turkey, but a big, fat bag of Temptations seemed to taste just as good.  Everyone enjoyed the morning feast.  Everyone except Pinkerton. 
He says the turkey got away from Big Kitty!  He says Big Kitty is a wimp!  One "gobble" out of that turkey, and everyone ran home -
Pinkerton included. :/

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Good luck with that!!

We had no plans for Thanksgiving until Peyton showed up.  She gathered the decorations, assigned a crew to help arrange them, and did her best to train the clan in advance of the "sit down meal".

By starting the fall/winter party season now, she might have everyone trained to sit still when Christmas arrives.  Whiskers quickly left the scene when Big Kitty said,

"Real toms don't decorate.  We're off to catch us a Thanksgiving Turkey!"

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Just think about it...


Big Kitty gave up.

He gave up on having his annual quad ride when no one could find just a little bit of gas to get it running.

No problem.

Soaking up a few rays while sitting quietly on the old loading chute is a safer way to spend the day.

So, he just thought about his happy life at Barn Cat Mansion - good food, a warm bed and a family of upstanding cats and kittens is all a Big Kitty needs.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

I'LL DRIVE!!!!

It was a sunny September day and all Big Kitty wanted was a ride on the quad.  To feel the wind against his face, the fresh air travelling into his nostrils and restricting his ability to breath, and balancing precariously behind the seat without a seat belt in sight.
Tipster and LOBE called "shotgun" and took their places in front of the handlebars.  OT stared at the ground and realized how much pain is involved if she falls off travelling at ludicrous speed down the driveway.  Whiskers shouted, "I'll drive", but they were finished before they even started....
.......the quad was out of gas!!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

........WINTER!! (yuck)

A sunset to mark the end of summer and beginning of fall. 

Fading light sparkles on barbed wire, creating the idea of rich silver strung between simple posts planted just to hold it up.

Haha!  My idea of descriptive literature! :)

Anyway, fall is here and will lead, again into my least favorite season of the year.......

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Save a spot for me!!

Smart little kitten!

What you see here is one of two "sleeping tubs" supplied for the benefit of all cats living in Barn Cat Mansion.  We take a broken water tub, create a soft mattress
base of empty paper feed bags,  twine cut from bales fed to animals outside, and a well worn chenille blanket to provide soft and luxurious comfort.

Generally, five or six cats occupy each tub, although sometimes, if it's really cold, everyone piles into one. This kitten has claimed a spot in the warmest tub and will have a toasty winter.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

It's so disappointing.....

Colors of Fall

Take 3!

Reports of a mouse running past the photo session proved to be true.  Big Kitty took off like a shot, even though he hates mice.  Well, he likes to catch them if they're close, but doesn't EVER go out of his way to chase one.

Not this time!!

Now we have to start all over again.....

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

He saved the day!!

As we all know, Pinkerton had no intention of catching and/or devouring the kitten.  He was only watching out for it's safety. 

Although it may be too big, you never know how nasty a magpie might be.  One could fly through the door at any moment and swoop the little critter away.
Pinkerton quickly directed the baby back to its hay bed and asked it to stay hidden for a few more weeks.

Good boy, Pinkerton! :)

Monday, September 16, 2013

The hunter...

NOOOOO........

Pinkerton!!

That's not a mouse!  It doesn't have beady little eyes and round ears!  It has hair on its tail and nice, big fuzzy paws.

It's a KITTEN!!

Quick......get around to the front and take a look at that innocent little face!

Surely Pinkerton can tell the difference.....
   
At least we hope he can!!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Surprise!!

So we were wrong!!

We do have a small litter of summer kittens.
It was such a surprise to see H"C"S move her babies into the square bales in the barn.  In fact, they may have been born there!!

Tricky girl, H"C"S!!

Whiskers isn't impressed.  He was taking a good old "cat nap" when these little munchkins wandered out to take a look around.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Timbit!! Not now!

Ginger Cats, Colors of Fall

TAKE TWO!!

After some rearranging and trying to co-ordinate a specific color pattern, everything was good, and the photographer prepared for the shot of a lifetime.

Well.....THAT didn't happen!!

Timbit spotted one lonely treat wedged deep within the stump, and you know the rest.....

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Try again later.

This month, we were hoping to photograph our cats in families of color.

This was to be called:

Ginger Cats, Colors of Fall

But look what happened!!  Flag jumped up on the stump and no matter what Tipster said, she wouldn't get down.  So officially, this is not an official photo of ginger cats!!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Taking the good with the bad......

It's harvest time in this land we call home.

Heavy rain caused loss and devastation with the flooding to the north of us, but at least one bright light shines through:
heavy crops, high yields and lots of cattle feed both in the form of bales and roughage left on the fields.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Don't make a scene.....

As darkness descends on the tranquil valley, H"C"S and OT scan the area beneath the loading chute, hoping to catch a glimpse of Pinkerton, Hillside Warrior.

BP's distractive behavior overshadowed the fact that someone should tell Pinkerton it's safe to come out and carry on his warrior lifestyle.

Pinkerton knows he's been granted a reprieve, but refuses to bring attention to himself until Big Kitty is safely tucked in bed.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

The law of physics.....

High above the Town Hall Meeting and totally oblivious to its outcome, BP stalks the pretty little bluebird we saw sitting on the wood.  Corral planks are, at most, 2" wide and the space between posts is roughly 8'.

So we're questioning the sanity of BP.

Even if the bluebird is distracted by say, something important like another bluebird, when BP takes the giant leap to nab the little critter, only the worst can happen.  Bluebird flies away.  Cat "attempts" to land on a 2" board and crashes to the ground.

DON'T EVEN TRY IT, BP!!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Tails up for Pinkerton....

Count them.

Five Tails Up.

Big Kitty is the only one with a tail down.
With added votes from Pasha, Trout Towne and Pinkerton, it's official.

PINKERTON STAYS!!

And as for you, Big Kitty?  Get over it.  We never want to hear of this again.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Who'll count the ballots?

YES!!!  We'll have a vote!!
LOBE laid down the rules:
     1.  Only one vote per cat
     2.  Pinkerton is allowed two votes.
     3.  BP, who is on top of the pole watching 
          a bluebird is not allowed to vote.
     4.  OT has excused herself because she
           might be in love with Pinkerton.
     5.  Votes shall be displayed in the form of
          show of tails.
(Here LOBE tells Whiskers not to use his paw for voting or his vote will be invalid)

Thursday, August 22, 2013

"Don't make me leave! :(

Pinkerton sat behind the post, quiet as a mouse.  They were talking about him.

Big Kitty said:  "That Pinkerton has to go!

Between yawns, Whiskers disagreed and told Big Kitty:  "Leave him alone.  He's just a cat."

Big Kitty said:  "I used to be able to catch him and hang a lickin' on him.  Now he's too smart and fast.  I can't keep running like this!!

H"C"S piped up and said:  "Let's vote on it". 

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Eavesdropper....

Cat meetings always include cats that don't want to be there.  The Chairman is making faces at the crowd.  Timbit is ready to pop Whiskers on the butt if he falls asleep one more time.  Big Kitty scans the horizon for that pesky Hillside Warrior who wasn't invited due to the delicate nature of discussions.  H"C"S is bored half silly.  And, tucked in behind everyone (look closely behind H"C"S) is Pinkerton!

Out of sight, but not out of mind!!

Monday, August 19, 2013

Above the crowd...

Here's another one of those pretty little Rocky Mountain Bluebirds, but this one isn't very smart!
It landed in close proximity to a *gaggle of BCM cats! 

Below and a little to the left, the cats were having a meeting on a beautiful summer evening.  Big Kitty handed the duty of Chairman over to Little Orangey Blue Eyes Gone Golden.  Pinkerton was banned from the meeting.

And this became the topic of conversation:

Why is Pinkerton never allowed to mingle with the commoners?

*We know a group of cats is not really a gaggle!!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

It's a lonely life out here!!

No new news about that strange cat spotted on the driveway at Fox Farm, but these BCM ladies heard about it by the time it was old news.

They have mixed feelings about this. Never, in a lifetime, will THEY ever see a stranger walk down the driveway.  That would be pure excitement at Barn Cat Mansion.

Barn Cat Mansion is so far away from anywhere.......maybe it's too far away from everywhere!!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Cat Alert!!

Socks claims Tom Cat Supremacy over Fox Farm and surrounding area.

This just in:

Socks was informed of new people moving into the farm house across the road and they brought along a CAT!!  This cat was spotted running down the driveway, away from Fox Farm and towards its new home.

More details to follow......

Thursday, August 15, 2013

We can adapt...or adopt!!

This looks like a cat with two heads.

What are the chances of two kittens with the same shade of orange sitting so perfectly aligned as to look like a cat with two heads?

It's weird!

Here are a couple more kittens that crawled out of the woodwork at Fox Farm.  It's a good thing they had kittens, because Barn Cat Mansion is having a "very few kitten" kind of year.

We had the litter of four early in May and "that's all she wrote!!"  We thought Big Kitty and Timbit were "getting it on" but she changed her mind.  Oh well, like we said before, there's always next year.....

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

There's always next year! :)

The rainy season started in June and hasn't gone away.  Clouds like this are a common sight over Barn Cat Mansion.  Gigantic cumulus clouds carrying torrential rain and hail.............worst of all,

HAIL!!

Lots of gardens and grain crops are wiped out.  Saskatoon blossoms promised a bumper crop of wild saskatoons, but with a couple big hail storms, the berries are gone.