Sunday, November 30, 2014

Exploring the City

Last month we went to take a little walk, and it ended up being a long walk exploring part of the city we didn't know existed.

We turned down a street we had never noticed before, that went behind some old buildings that were once the tobacco factories that fueled this city.

Some of the buildings had been abandoned, some had been turned into offices.

This foundation was being held up by rubble!

Behind some bushes we found a gathering of oddly shaped bricks, so we made a little brick boat.

Then we stumbled on some really fancy condos we had never seen before.

And a strange little garden made from those oddly shaped bricks and weird knick knacks. 

This little area we found was right behind some roads we drive on nearly every day, it's  fun to turn down the less traveled roads and see what you find.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Cat Photos Friday #39- Turkey Time

In honor of Turkey Day yesterday, I thought today's post could be dedicated to my own Turkey....

Anyone who knows me, knows that I have a mild obsession with Turkish Angora cats, which started a little over year ago when I found out Cloud was one.  I'd almost had her a year, and since she was a stray I figured she was just a generic long haired cat. But then upon reading a cat breed encyclopedia I realized she fit all the characteristics of the Turkish Angora cat!  That let me to an internet search where I found out some pretty interesting things about this particular breed.

The Turkish Angora cat originated in Ankara Turkey, which was formerly known as Angora. It is an ancient, naturally occurring breed and is thought to be the very first longhair breed of cat, which eventually gave rise to all the longhair breeds seen today.  These cats were a status symbol throughout Europe owned by many royals, including Marie Antoinette! However, people began using the Turkish Angora cat to create new breeds such as the Persian, which got extremely popular and the Turkish Angora cat nearly went extinct due to all the cross-breeding!

In the Early 1900s the Turkish government realized their prized cat was becoming increasingly rare and opened up a special breeding program at the Ankara zoo to preserve this breed, and kept excellent records in order to preserve the ancient bloodlines.  I am pretty sure this program still exists today. For many years it was actually illegal to export white Turkish Angora cats out of Turkey! Turkish Angora cats can come in all colors, but the most famous is the white one.
 It is so crazy to me, to imagine these little cats in a zoo! The painting on the wall is especially funny to me, I had no idea I had such a famous cat!

I would LOVE to visit Turkey one day and see the Angoras in the zoo.

Some people say that Turkish Angora cats remember their regal heritage and that makes them act proud... I'm not so sure about that, but Cloud does act like she's the queen of the house!

I'm not sure if Cloud is a purebred Turkish Angora or a mix, it seems almost impossible to have a purebred cat just show up at your house one day!  But it doesn't matter to me if she is or not, she sure does seem to fit the description though! 

She has the almond shaped eyes

The britches, which is what they call the long hair on the back of the legs. I find that too funny sounding!

I think she'd disapprove of me posting that top picture but I couldn't resist!

She has the tapered tail, which means the hair is longer at the base than at the top.

She has theToe tufts!

And curly belly hair!

She also has the personality they describe too. Turkish Angoras are pretty social cats, and like to be the center of attention. Whenever we have guests over the boys usually hide, but Cloud prances in and acts like she's showing off the house.  I also recently read that Turkish Angoras are "Imp-like"  and that completely describes Cloud!  She gets in these weird moods all of a sudden, and does nothing but cause trouble, and knows exactly what she's doing. She'll race off as soon as you look at her doing whatever bad thing she happens to do, and then she'll sneak back and do something else annoying. She's lucky she's so cute! She's also the sweetest cat I've ever had. Whenever I pick her up she snuggles under my chin, even if she's in the middle of Imp mode! 

A wild dream of mine is to breed Turkish Angora cats and have a whole "Turkey farm" in the country somewhere... There is a strange American version of this cat, that looks completely ridiculous and nothing like the original cat from Turkey. Actually people have genetically tested it and found that it not even close to the actual Turkish Angora, and sadly most breeders in America breed this version. I think many breeders get caught in making each breed look more and more extreme. Especially with dogs! Another reason I'd like to start my own business! 

Okay that's the end of my Turkish Angora rant! 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Current Inspirations- Bonsai!

I've been obsessed with Bonsais ever since I came across a bonsai book at the library almost five years ago.  I was so excited that as soon as I got home I went and dug up a little shrub in my moms yard and trimmed it into a bonsai. 

Sadly I have had terrible luck with growing them and last year my first little bonsai tree got attack by terrible mealy bugs and never recovered. I was so sad and kind of gave up trying to make bonsais. But within the last month I got re-inspired!

I love the classic Japanese Maple ones.

As soon as I saw this chili pepper bonsai, I ran outside and dug up one of my pepper plants!  It's not doing so hot right now though....

I think this is so neat with the little water part.

I am on the hunt for the perfect rock formation so I can make one like this.

I can hardly believe this is real!!

And these are my sad little guys so far. I have two maples, two mimosas, a cluster of willow oaks and one unidentified one.  If I can keep them alive through the winter I think they will be looking good in the spring!

To me it's much more fun to dig little sprouts out of the ground and watch them grow, than to buy a mature tree. (And cheaper too!) I've tired buying little shrubs from garden stores and trimming them into bonsais, but they ended up dying in the great mealy bug attack of '13. -_- 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

What I Wore- In The Leaves

We haven't gotten around to raking up our leaves yet!

 Outfit Details
Skirt: Thrifted
Necklace: Made by me!
Boots: Amazon

In a typical fashion, we had a few nice days of mild weather before it went from 80 degrees to 20 something degrees. This was one of those days!

 I found this skirt at goodwill and it fits me really well, but it's a little long for my liking. That is easily fixed by rolling it up a little bit around the waist and securing it with a belt!I used to have a shirt almost identical to this one, but one day I leaned up against something at work and it got covered in grease. I was so sad.. But a few months later I found this one at the same thrift store so I wasn't sad for long!  It's the perfect autumn color and I love wearing it this time of year.