Friday, November 6, 2015

Sassy's nose is out of joint...

With three dysfunctional cats, one of the first things we do every morning is check litter boxes.  I need to know who did what where.  For the last two mornings we haven't found any poop in Sassy's puppy pad boxes.  We also didn't find any anywhere else.  We wondered if perhaps she decided to use a regular litter box (and wouldn't that be nice?).  Today Carl discovered she'd been using the cat house.  So, he cleaned it up and we put on the odor remover we got from Stanley Steemer.  We may close the door to the cat house when we go to bed, also.  She only does stuff like this at night when we can't see her.  When we're awake, she always uses her boxes.

We're finished with Twitch's ear medicine but now his head is all greasy.  I tried to clean him up yesterday morning but I didn't have enough soap on the rag (I didn't want to get it in his eyes).  I will try again this afternoon.  Petting him is like running your hands through the hair of a 60s greased head. 

Sadie pretty much stays in her room now, although she's venturing out more.  I try to make it a habit to get in there several times a day to pet and play with her.  I also give her treats and try to brush her.  Twitch is still new so she may adjust.  This will be our last cat so there are no more surprises for her.

Since we covered the pond with net we've had some glorious days in the 70s.  Somehow the frogs find their way out from under the net but, of course, are too stupid to find their way back so they sit on top of the net.  We scoop them up with the big net and put them under the pond net but the next day....  One of these days they'll be caught outside and it will get cold.  So, we watch carefully.  We wouldn't like to kill any wildlife just because we are too lazy to scoop leaves.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Life with Twitch...

We've had Twitch several weeks now and it seems like he's always been here.  He's very sweet most of the time considering he's spent so much of his life at the no kill shelter and doesn't have a lot of one on one time with people so he's clumsy and sometimes annoyed with us.  We're still learning his rhythms.  He's so much more curious than our other two.  Sassy and Sadie have NEVER been seen on the tables or counters.  They like their window seats but they've never been where they're not supposed to be.  Twitch, is on everything, in everything.  Open a door, bam, he's there.  He wants in the cabinets, the closets, the fridge.  He loves to watch the water run in the sinks and is fascinated by a flushing toilet.  He sleeps with us every night and even likes to get under the feather duvet.  We've never had cats sleep with us before, so that's new for us.  It's hard to turn over at night without rolling over him.

The dynamics in the house have changed.  Sadie used to live in our bedroom, coming out to go into the cat house, eat and use the litter box.  Now she lives in the spare bedroom and rarely ventures out.  We've added a litter box and her dry food with a water bowl.  Carl takes her wet food there in the morning because she's still taking her pill.  He's cut that down to 1 every 3 days and this morning she actually purred for me.  She really doesn't do that much.  We'd much rather see her traveling the house and interacting more with the other two but whatever makes her comfortable is ok with us.

Sassy actually spends more time searching for, running away from and being close to Twitch.  They play chase and I've even seen them bat at each other and not in a mean way.  Twitch loves to play and so does Sassy so eventually they may even become friends.  They do not sleep together.  Sassy has been really good about using her litter box with the puppy pads as long as we are diligent about keeping it clean.  In fact, after we clean it she can't wait to use it so usually we have to clean it twice in the morning.  We've added a new litter box to the laundry room for Twitch so we're actually up to seven boxes although not all are used everyday.  We've had the carpets cleaned and blocked off the living room so she can't get to her favorite spots to poop.  As long as the gate is up, she's good with her litter box.  Twitch can jump the gate but he's got a litter box in the living room which he uses on occasion.  We're hoping sometime soon we can remove that box and the one in the dining room for good but we'll still leave the gate up until we feel Sassy has lost her fixation with the living room.  Eventually we hope to be down to 2 in the laundry room, 1 in the basement and 1 in the spare bedroom (the rule is 1 more box than cats).

We took Twitch to the vet yesterday.  He was due for shots in early November but he's got some hair loss around his nose and up by his eyes.  He's so pretty, it's distracting and we didn't know if it would get worse.  Twitch does not like shots.  It took 3 of us to hold him.  He's 9lbs, 8oz and long and lean.  I called him 'sissy pants' all the way home.  Sassy just lays there for shots, Twitch not so much.  The vet examined his ears and face and prescribed an antibiotic for both.  We need to squirt stuff in his ears twice a day and massage them to take care of the mites.  He doesn't like it.  The antibiotic is liquid and he needs it once a day.  I'm doing ears (for seven days) and Carl is doing his antibiotic for twenty days. If there is no improvement in the hair loss the next step would be to anesthetize him and scrap the skin so they can tell just what's happening with him. 

Last night we were having a family dinner so all of us were at the dining room table eating chili when Twitch nonchalantly jumps up on the table between my daughter and SIL - just like he belonged there.  Luckily, when we put him down on the floor he doesn't try again.  Maybe in time he will learn 'that's not his space'.

That's the update.  I'll post again soon.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Trick or Treat....

MTC Frame
Penny Black Critter Fright
Distress Inks

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Treacherous Treats

Waltzing Mouse Midnight Feast
Papertrey Ink Center Style Masculine
Clear & Simple Stamps Apothecary: Holidays, Sweets

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Friday, October 9, 2015

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Jingle all the way...

Supply List:
Taylored Expressions Holiday Grumplings
Penny Black Jingle
Distress Inks

Monday, October 5, 2015

Have a creepy crawly birthday...

Jaded Blossom Panel Dies, Spidey Senses, Halloween Panels
Wink of Stella Clear
Distress Inks

Sunday, October 4, 2015

dashing through the No!

Taylored Expressions Holiday Grumplings Stamps and Dies
Zig Clean Color Real Brush Pens
PTI In the Meadow Dies, Sweet Speech Dies
Fiskars Crimper

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Ghostly greetings....

PTI Happy Haunting
Tim Holtz Crazy Things
Beckett Card Stock
Recollections Purple Passion Card Stock
Fiskars Crimper

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

And Twitch makes three...

It seems like forever since I've posted here so let me bring you up to date:

A new family building in our subdivision has a 9 year old that apparently has decided on a life of crime.  She's been stealing from the neighbors, from school and last week she brought a plastic bag and walked off with our best fish while trying to destroy our pond.  Suffice it to say, I was bummed.  One of the fish she took was a 6-7" fantail, the last of three we purchased.  Police were called but I've heard nothing since the officer talked to the father.  Apparently the fish were given to a construction worker and are long gone (why would you steal something and then gift it to someone?).  Since then I can't walk by a window without glancing down to see if she's back, this incident put a dent in my tranquility.

My sister-in-law from California is visiting a friend in Quincy and has stopped by our house for several days.  Reminds me of a George Carlin routine where supply lines are getting longer and harder to maintain.  She has stuff in California, stuff in Quincy and now she has stuff here.  She and her friend, Charla, are leaving here today for Quincy and taking my husband with them.  He'll be gone several days and while he's away....

I plan to adopt another cat and will pick him up on Thursday.  Three years ago we adopted Sassy, our Persian.  As I was walking by Twitch's cage, he reached out both paws and grabbed my arm.  I promised him I would be back for him and have thought of him often.  He's five years old and I know he's been at the A.R.K. for at least three.  I am fixing up our bedroom for him, litter box in the master bath, toys, cat tree and a screen door between him and what could be his harem, Sassy and Sadie.  Fingers crossed that they not only get along, but that Sassy and Twitch become friends.  Sadie doesn't seem to need them, but Sassy loves to play and I'm hoping he will too.  And while we're on the subject of cats, we had all our carpets shampooed last week and removed all the litter boxes from the formal living room.  Since we hang in the family room, the living room is filled with spare furniture, Carl's desk and cat stuff.  We had six litter boxes, three lined with puppy pads since we discovered Sassy has a real problem with litter.  Now, we have two boxes with puppy pads, one in the foyer and one in the laundry room.  We have two litter boxes, one inside an end table and one in the basement.  Sassy has been really good about her boxes, using them exclusively since last Thursday and we are sticklers for keeping her boxes clean.  Sadie likes the one in the basement.  Life with cats is good now but we're following the 'trust but verify' rule and leaving up the gate to the living room for a while.  And all bets are off when we (I) bring Twitch home.

For those of you following the Wookiee, he's mostly finished.  He's been trooping (he gathers crowds everywhere he goes) and my daughter is starting new projects, specifically a Cousin Itt using the same techniques she used on the Wookiee.  People are actually asking her to make costumes for them and they have money in hand so I suspect she's going to be busy for a while.  In addition to her incredible sewing talent, she's becoming a terrific photographer, often taking pictures of the 501st when they're out doing what they do.  She embellishes the photos into works of art.  She's my kid and I'm really proud of her.

There you have all the news that's fit to print.  The nights are getting cooler here, the sun is rotating on its axis, the garden is slowly going to sleep and I'm gearing up cardmaking for an October craft sale in Chillicothe, IL.  All is well in our world.

Friday, September 4, 2015

Halloween Box Card

SVGCuts Plain Display Box from the Christmas Box Cards
Grim Reaper by Bird
Lettering Delights Spooky Tree
Halloween Witch by Bird
K&Company Double Sided Halloween Card Stock

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Over the Hill....

PTI Haunted Headstones Dies & Sentiments; Scene-It: Hallows Eve
Recollections Card Stock
Colorbox Silver Ink
Distress Ink:  Black Soot

I {heart} you this much...

Sassy Cheryl "Come on Get Happy"
PTI Choose Joy
Winnie & Walter The Big, the Bold (&Happy), (&Seasons), (&You)
Recollections Kraft Card stock, glitter paper, Paddywack Paper Pad
Spellbinder Nested Hearts
Copics: R24, R27, R29, B91, B93, B95, N3, E000, E00, E11, R20
Tools:  MISTI, Big Shot Pro, Cameo

Thursday, August 20, 2015

You are aMAZEing...

Doodle Pantry DPMiniMazes1
iCraft Deco Foil Silver
Computer generated sentiment
Pop-tone Blue Raspberry card stock

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Happy Birthday to you...

Hero Arts Butterflies #3
Stampendous Birthday Wish
My Favorite Things Blissful Blooms,
Inkadinkadoo Flower Flourish
Distress Ink:   Hickory Smoke, Tattered Rose, Shabby Shutters
Penny Black Letter Background
PTI Melon Berry Card Stock

Monday, August 10, 2015

Mojo Monday 410

This is my first entry into the Mojo Monday challenge, but probably not my last.  I love the inspiration for creativity these sketches give me.  There is one new technique included in this card.  I recently purchased a Heidi Swapp Minc Machine which I adore.  The paper on this card is from Papertrey's In Bloom paper pad.  I scanned the black and white paper and printed it on my laser jet.  It was then foiled with Opal iCraft deo foil.  You can't tell in the photo but the shine is dazzling.  I am a huge fan of PTI, I have the In Bloom stamps and dies also.  I was trying to use them to make a card on the foiled background when the Mojo Monday e-mail landed in my in-basket... and, Bob's your uncle.

Papertrey Ink Berry Sorbet Card Stock & Ink, In Bloom Paper Pad, Confetti Garland Die, Birthday Basics Stamp Set, Shaker Shapes: Balloon Die, Circle Die
Tim Holtz Crazy Thoughts
Heidi Swapp Vellum, Minc Machine
iCraft Opal Deco Foil
DCWV Glitzy Glitter

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Happy August Birthday...

Papertrey Ink:  Hawaiian Shores Card Stock, Hawaiian Shores Ink, Beautiful Blooms Paper Pad, Pupre Poppy Ink, Beautiful Blooms Stamps & Dies, Birthday Classics: August Stamp Set, Simply Chartreuse Card Stock, Turning a New Leaf Die, Spellbinders Curved Borders Two

Thursday, August 6, 2015

the sky is the limit

Supply list:
PTI Watercolor Wonder; Up, Up & Away; Aqua Mist, Sweet Blush, Enchanted Evening, Melon Berry, Spring Moss Ink
Copics:  R81, G00, YG63, YG61, R22
Wink of Stella Clear
Gelly Roll Clear Star

You are 'cherry' sweet...

Supply List
Flourishes Peaches and Cherries
Papertrey Ink Pure Poppy Card Stock
Zig Clean Color Real Brushes
Martha Stewart Border Punch

Here kitty, kitty...

It's been a while since I've had an update on our garden.  The pond that we installed last spring has come into its own.  The pond plants are lush, and the fish are getting big.
This is the view from the steps to the gazebo looking west.
There is a raised bed at the back of the yard filled with butterfly and hummingbird flowers.
The fenced raised bed on the north side of the backyard contains all the plants the deer like to eat.  Honeysuckle is working its way up the old gazebo frame.
The enclosure we had built for the cats is well used.  Platforms up the sides provide plenty of room for them to sit and watch the back yard.
The enclosure is connected to the side of the house and can be entered through a pet door installed in an acrylic panel that replaced the screen in the window.  Our Persian, Sassy, learned to use the pet door almost immediately.  Our tuxedo cat, Sadie, still has not learned - the door must be pushed for her to access the enclosure.  They both spend a lot of time out there, Sassy spends the most time because she can come and go as she pleases.  We have to watch for Sadie to want to go out.  Who knew that Sassy was the smart one?

While rain was a problem early in the summer, now it's a long stretch between the rains that seem to pummel the north and south of us.   We spotted our first two monarch caterpillars on Tuesday.  The bluebirds fledged five babies in the early summer but did not nest again in either of our two bird boxes.  A small flock of turkeys have spent parts of every day in our yard for some time now.  The feed that Carl throws out every day helps to capture their attention. 

And...we've discussed a new kitten, hopefully a young male which will negate Sadie's territorial issues and give Sassy someone to play with.  Looking after the last week of September.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

To the best kid ever....

Supply List:
Papertrey Ink Harvest Gold Cardstock
Distress Ink: Fossilized Amber, Squeezed Lemonade, Mustard Seed
Spellbinders Circle Die
Hero Arts Lil Hoot
Wink of Stella Clear

Friday, July 24, 2015

On buying art...

Some people don't think of paper artists as artists and I've had people tell me I charge too much for "home made" cards.  Hallmark can charge $5.99 for a card they have mass produced.  There could be thousands of those cards on the market.  I charge between $2.00 and $3.00 a card depending on the amount of time I've spent on it.  Some cards can take all day to color, especially water colors.  And each card is unique.  I never mass produce cards.  I've been numbering my cards since I started making them twenty years ago and I've made more than 2844 individual cards.  I started going to craft fairs and selling because my inventory just kept stacking up.  I sell them in order to recoup some of the money I've spent on supplies:  markers, watercolors, papers, digital images, rubber stamps, ribbon, embellishments, printers, cutting machines, dies, paints, glitter, embossing powder, scissors, pencils, classes, instruction books, and adhesives.  My art is as important to me as any artist who creates with paints, metal, chalk, bricks and clay and I take great pride in it.  Rant over.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Happy Anniversary

PTI Make it Market Mini: Garden Gild, Think Big Favorites #24
Distress Ink:  Fossilized Amber, Vintage Photo, Squeezed Lemonade
Hero Arts Butterflies #3
DCWV The Mariposa Stack

Saturday, July 4, 2015

A good book....

We recently returned from a trip out west to visit Yellowstone National Park and a friend in Bozeman, Montana.  She and I are both great readers so when I decided to make her one of My Scrap Chick's new frames, this image immediately came to mind, along with this sentiment.  I'm so pleased she liked it.

MyScrapChick MS Square Bracket Frame
DCWV The Painted Petals Stack
Emerald Faeries Bindie
PTI Spring Rain & Spring Moss Ink
Copics:  R81, V01, V12, E41, E42, Y32, E000
Faber-Castell 108, 119, 121, 128, 135, 136, 137, 152, 153, 162, 167, 168, 177, 179, 180, 183, 199, 225, 232, 233

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

I was framed....

These frames are new designs by My Scrap Chick.  There are five frames and each one is better than the last.  I created a traditional frame and I'll show that later, this frame is lacking several layers of the original design.  The top two layers of the frame are taped at the top so you can lift those layers up and slide in a new image.  You could use it for a picture, mixed media art or colored images as I've done.  I plan to keep the recipient of this card/frame supplied with new images periodically.  The easel will fold flat for mailing but if you heavily embellish, it would need a box to send.  Unembellished you could probably get by with a bubble envelope and cardboard on top and bottom.  This is the first of many frames I plan to share with you. 

MyScrapChick MS Square Bracket Frame
American Crafts Gerber Dasies
Memory Box Riviera Corner
Marianne Garden Branch
Distress Ink Stormy Sky
Papertrey Spring Moss Card Stock, All Booked Up
Stardust Jelly Roll, Spica Clear, Wink of Stella Clear
Faber-Castell:  101, 108, 130, 131, 177, 179, 180, 183, 188, 199
Polychromos:  Burnt Ochre
Copics:  E000, E41, E42, E43, V0000, V000, V01, V12, BV000, R0000, R29, Y32, B0000, B93, B95, B97, R81, R83, R85 C1, N5, YG05, 0

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Guest Designer for SVG Cutting Files - May 31, 2015

This is my last post as guest designer for SVG Cutting Files.  It's been fun and I hope to be able to do it again sometime in the future.  I think I've saved the best for last.  My husband's birthday is at the end of May and he's the guy that feeds the birds.  We have nine feeders in the yard, I take care of the liquid ones for the hummingbirds and orioles and he does the dry feed:  suet, birdseed, peanuts, black oil sunflower seeds and safflower seeds.  This involves many trips to the hardware store 50 minutes away to buy seed.  He also builds and maintains our birdhouses and just put up a house in hopes of getting a screech owl to nest in our woods.
This card was created from SVG Cutting Files PP-1463 Owl on Coffee Mug.  It sure turned out cute, I can see me making it over and over in different color combinations.  I used Graphic 45s Botannical Tea which is one of my favorite paper pads.  The letters were stamped and cut from Papertrey's Type Strips II and die, the card base was Papertrey's Vintage Cream card stock.  For more projects, please visit the SVG Cutting Files blog and have a productive Sunday.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

To bird....or not to bird....

I have been absolutely obsessed with the Tim Holtz's Crazy Birds stamp set.  I've colored all the birds with pencils, watercolors and copics and can't decide which medium I like the best.  This is my latest card.
Tim Holtz Crazy Birds
Computer generated sentiment
Recollections Cape Cod Card Stock
DCWV Citrus Stack Card Stock
Memento Bahama Blue Ink
My Favorite Things Take the Stage Die
Copics:  Y21, Y26, E87, E84, N10, BG0000, YR65, BG05, W1
Sheer Shimmer Spritz

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

With a heavy heart...

I have to share that we're putting Sadie back on medication.  We discovered she has been marking more places than we originally discovered.  Twice in the kitchen, twice in Carl's workroom downstairs and once in my bathroom on my shower curtain.  She's been with us for a little over two years now and can still be mean although she rarely uses claws now.  She is heavy into growling and running away from us which is something we could put up with but not the marking.  We have enough trouble with Sassy's fear of the litter box.  I envy those people who can adopt a rescue pet and not have as much trouble as we've had.  And it pains me to say that knowing what I know now, we would have gone petless.  Sassy has an amazing personality, she's more fun than a barrel of monkeys but she's been a big trial, too.  We have reached a sort of compromise with her and have had pretty good luck with puppy pads in a litter box.  We have way more good days than bad now, several years ago the reverse was true.  At least poop is easier to deal with and clean up than pee.  We have a whole cabinet of carpet cleaning products for her.  The pee is much harder to clean and get the smell out so we'll stick with the medication but every other day instead of every day.  If that stops the marking, we'll stick with that.  Stay tuned.

Monday, May 25, 2015

I am loving the new Tim Holtz Crazy Bird set more than any stamp set I've purchased this year.  The poses and expressions are perfection and they're fun to color - or not.  This is a really simple quick card, but I love it.
Tim Holtz Crazy Birds
Art Impressions Moutfuls Frog
DCWV Card Stock, Tahiti Beach Stack
PTI Double Ended Banner, Hawaiian Shores Card Stock
Spellbinder Card Creator Dies
Copics:  B0000, BG05, BG01, BG02, BG000, Y26, YR23,

Chipmunks and seeds and rain, oh my....

It's back to raining again today...and yesterday...and while our weather could be so much worse, it's getting tiresome.  We still have spring gardening work to do between raindrops and the weeds are getting a big jump on us.  I will have photos to share as soon as we get some good weather, the gardens are growing well and the annuals were planted yesterday: mammoth sunflowers, cleome, tithonia, cosmos, zinnia and flax.  I actually planted them in a little bed in the back of the house between the chimney and the water barrel, it's up about sixteen or eighteen inches off the ground which will keep the rabbits out and Carl installed one of our famous 'removable' fences in front to keep out the deer.  But this morning, 24 hours after planting, the chipmunks had already dug holes in it.  We've purchased extra large containers of cayenne pepper that works but must be reapplied after every rain and it rains and rains and rains.

On a cheerful note, the baby bluebirds have all hatched, the first was on my birthday on Saturday.  Mom and dad have to hustle to feed five, especially when the rain keeps the insects hiding.  The dove that was nesting on the 2x4 is gone and so is her eggs.  She had built a nest inside the clematis but the winds blew the clematis over and exposed her nest.  I don't know what happened to the eggs, perhaps another bird got them, they were not due to hatch for a week yet.  It amazes me the dove population is as high as it is, they really choose bad locations for nesting.

And on a sad note:  Sadie has started marking around the doors, and food dishes again.  We had spread out the dishes in each bathroom so each cat could eat in peace, but this morning I found Sadie had peed on my bath mat and shower curtain where she eats and peed on the washer in the laundry room where Sassy eats.  That started a check of the house and we found she had peed on the front door, too.  We have had Sadie on meds for about a year because of this issue.  When she's drugged, she doesn't mark, she's calmer and less aggravated.  We had thought when we weaned her off of the meds that the issue had gone away.  But, now she hisses and growls at us; not all the time, but enough that it gets old.  She won't allow us to remove knots or groom her.  We've been hearing more snits between the cats lately, if one comes around the corner and encounters the other one, there's hissing and growling, mostly from Sadie.  We hate to think we have to go back on meds, but sending her back to the no-kill shelter is the only other option.  We can't keep cleaning up cat pee especially when the other cat wants to do it, too.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Guest Designer for SVG Cutting Files - May 24, 2015

I have a good friend who was born on the 4th of July, a real Yankee Doodle Dandy.  So, every year I try to tie the 4th into her birthday card.  This little rocket file really helped.

This file is from SVG Cutting Files - PP-599 Kawaii Rocket Slider Patriotic, the sentiment pulls out of the rocket.  Have you ever seen a cuter face?

Supplies used were:  DCWV Nantucket Stack, AC Specialty Paper Foil, Colorbok Textured Snow White, Impression Obsession Greetings Top Edgers Die, Viva Glitter Liner and Spellbinders Nested Stars.  SVG Cutting Files has something for your every need and don't forget their facebook page

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Guest Designer for SVG Cutting Files - May 17, 2015

This card is really special to me because it's my anniversary card to my husband for eleven years of wedded bliss.
There's a story behind this card.  My husband believes that flamingos are not classy.  When I learned that early in our relationship, I started never missing an opportunity to hit him with a flamingo.  In his bathroom, in his curio, in cards, yard get the idea.  He has been inundated with flamingos.  And this is another one.  The file is SVG Cutting Files PP-626 Flamingo.  The card base is SVG Cutting Files PP-556 Center Step Edged Curved Card Base which I love.  The feathers are Papertrey Feathered Finery, the paper is DCWV The Bella Armour Stack, and I added some Opal Liquid Pearls on the feathers.  The sentiment was computer generated.  Please visit the SVG Cutting Files blog for other great projects.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Hope springs eternal...

Sassy has only had two accidents since May 5th.  She's exclusively using the boxes with the puppy pads in them.  I just ordered 200 more puppy pads and I'm perfectly happy to continue using them for the rest of her life.  I've noticed that she tries to cover up her business even though there isn't any litter in the box, she didn't do that in the boxes with litter, she would just poop and leave.  Perhaps it was all about the scratching and being declawed.  It's really too soon to declare victory but she seems to be happier, running around the house like a whirling dervish.  And we're happy we don't have to keep locking her up because clearly that wasn't working.

This is the newest addition to our house, an enclosure the cats can use to go outside, it's accessed from a window in our family room.
 It has an acrylic roof to let in the light, a door we can use to clean it, and a lock so it doesn't accidentally get opened.
 It has plenty of perches to separate each cat.
It occupies a portion of our courtyard (which is much cleaner now).  This area was just dirt when we moved in.  Carl put landscaping tiles down, he put some timbers on the left to hold mulch, we installed pots in that area for our vegetable garden, he bought fencing to keep the deer out and this year on the right side I planted a new fragrant viburnum this year.  Our bedroom window is above this courtyard so we will benefit from the fragrance.
Sadie is clearly happy with it.
Even though the pet door isn't installed yet, she spends a great deal of time out here - we just open the window and tolerate the bugs.

This is their view from the top perches.  They can see the pond and the birds.  We plan to install a small feeder in the courtyard to attract birds for them to watch, too.