Next thing on my shopping list for Brucy is definitely a Neko Chigura! Neko Chigura or Neko Tsugura is a car bed/cradle hand-made in Japan out of rice straw. It is a whole folk craft popular in a town Sekikawa, Niigata and the weavers are called neko chigura kai (the cat cradle committee). In this area, there was a custom of using rice straw to make baskets for babies and then they thought of trying to weave cat baskets as well! Interestingly enough, the baskets become the town’s main source of profit during the winter months, when they stop selling rice.
The baskets quickly became a massive success for their original design (pot-shape) and natural materials. The cats love the baskets as they keep warmth well and are nice to dig claws in. The baskets are available in different size starting from US $60.
Each cradle takes around a week of work but there is currently a one year waiting list to get a cradle! So, if you are looking for a perfect Christmas present for your cat for next year – order now!
So excited about Christmas and I am forcing Brucy to get into Christmas spirit too! The poor little thing again had her asthma attack this night, so this year, all I will be wishing for Christmas is healthy for my little fur ball!
I looove Christmas baking! Our fridge is all full of fruit cakes and today I decided to bake some Christmas, star-shaped cookies with cranberries! Brucy obviously helped and participated! The recipe is below:
1 cup (226 grams) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup (200 grams) of sugar
1 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
1 tsp of cranberry extract
1 tsp cinnamon
2 2/3 cups (345 grams) all purpose flour
1/2 tsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup (175 ml) dried cranberries, chopped
1) Beat the butter and the sugar with an electric mixer until light and fluffy; continue mixing and add one egg
2) Beat in the extracts
3) In a separate bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt
4) Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and work the dough until even
5) Add the cranberries and shape the dough until the cranberries are evenly mixed
6) Shape the dough into a ball and leave it to rest in the fridge for 2 hours
7) Later, preheat the oven to 375° F (190° C) and roll out the chilled dough
8) Cut the dough into cookies and leave the cookies to rest in the freezer for 10 mins.
Ahh Christmas is coming so soon and I still have so many presents to get!! Including presents for Brucy!! I am torn apart while picking her gifts – should be a new bed? Or a scratch tree? Or new toys??
The holiday period is coming up and before you say anything, NO it’s not too early to put up a Christmas tree! We’ve put ours up yesterday but immediately we were faced with a challenge – how to keep our Christmas tree save from Brucy?
First advice – try to avoid crystal, glass decoration balls. The first thing Brucy did was jump on the Christmas tree and try to knock down as many balls as she possibly could. It was then that we realised that plastic balls was a good solution.
Second, maybe stick to a plastic tree. Yes, the real ones smell nicer. Yes, the plastic ones don’t look natural… But if your cat, like mine, loves eating all plants- it will be better for you cat and your Christmas tree to stick to fake one.
Thirdly, do not make gingerbread cookies. I love decorating Christmas trees with baked cookies, but as Brucy eats EVERYTHING she finds, I decided that this year, I will avoid doing this..
I hope those Christmas tree tips will help your Christmas tree survive through the holiday season! How are you preparing for Christmas?
Are you looking for an original Christmas present for a cat-lover? Nothing beats those stunning cat embroided shirts made by a Japanese designer Hiro Kubota! Those orginal shirts are sold at $250 on his profile, at Etsy. Unfortunately, due to their popularity, the shirts are sold out at the moment, but I am not loosing hope that they will reappear for the Christmas period!