Following a tough afternoon chasing field mice, Emma, the Palace Pussycat, likes to relax by the fire. This time of year she does a lot of chasing (and, frightfully, a high percentage of catching), after which she curls up in the firewood basket if it’s empty. If it’s not, she mounts her throne. We have four other animals on the premises if you don’t count the undomesticated kind: a sweet little house pooch (Clara), and three outside security yappers (Rex, Sara and Kajtek). All of our furry family members were strays from the village — we just couldn’t turn them away.