Saturday, 31 December 2011

Christmas Presents

My humans didn't take their Christmas presents for each other with them to Andrew's brother - who they spent Christmas day with.  So, they forgot about them completely until last night.  Both presents were Disney memorabilia.  Andrew's for Mikki was a Lennox statue of Mickey Mouse holding a lovely big heart.  Mikki's for Andrew was this statue - of Tinker Bell!!  (Well, they didn't have one of Figaro).
Apparently this was made to commemorate 25 years of the Disney Store.  I must admit it is quite striking.  It has something of the idea of a trophy or award to it. I think Andrew may put it on his desk in his study so he can pretend it was something he was presented with.  Don't worry, Andrew, until they give awards for weirdness, you are quite safe. 

Oh.  I have a few comments of my own before anyone asks.

1.  Tinker Bell is not running away from me.  Nor, sadly, is she turning round to stroke me.  She is an ornament.  It's just how the photographer chose to place her.

2.  Mikki insists Andrrew would get every award for "best husband" she could give.

3.  Did I tell you my humans were nos. 11 and 12 through the door of the first Disney Store to open in London?  Yes, they've been weird for a long time.

Back to business and to wish everyone a happy, lucky and successful 2012. I'm looking forward to a lot of new pictures with characters starting in just a few days time.


Thursday, 22 December 2011

Merry Christmas: Ho, Ho, Ho.

This is my last post before Christmas and may be my last of the year.  Tomorrow, I am off with my humans to join other members of Andrew's family for the Holidays.  I have to say I'm amazed how much work I have done this month and I won't mind a little time to relax.

So Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays from me and my humans.  I hope Santa brings us all what we have asked for and we all have a happy and prosperous time in 2012.

Figaro the Toy Cat.


Wednesday, 21 December 2011

We Are Not Alone: and Christmas Wishes

I was planning to put up a photo of Figaro's Christmas stocking just before Christmas - but I had not expected that I would already have received some lovely presents myself.

Warm welcome to Brian who has started following me (and to Ellen and Brian who are following my picture on Andrew's tweets).  Hope they forgive me, however, if I reserve my most special Prrrrrr for Buttons the toy rabbit.  He also has a Blog on Blogger. A Rabbit's Ramblings.  Meet him at:

Buttons is my first real toy friend in this wonderful world of the internet and social networking.  It is taking my humans (OK, I mean Andrew) quite a lot to get used to and I am way behind the times.

Still, it would be very nice to hear from any other cuddly or chatty toys out there who would like to join us.  Felines of all sorts welcome but so too are all bears, sheep, hamsters, mice, horses, etc - even d*gs.    You don't have to be Disney.  Buttons isn't.

Meanwhile, here is my picture of Figaro's Christmas stocking - which we saw as part of a display of Geppetto's workshop in the Contemporary Resort in 2009.  See that!  The humans have put me where it looks like I'm a puppet and Geppetto is controlling me.  The things we stars have to put up with.  They've also got too much flash in my face.  Sometimes stars even have to work with amateurs - and it does make me look very clean and white.

What would I tell Santa I would like in the stocking?  I was just looking forward to a few more cuddles but a new friend has been a lovely early bonus.  Happy Christmas, Buttons.


Saturday, 17 December 2011

Life's Tough When You're a Star

It's one thing that my humans seem to enjoy dressing up and looking silly but when they do it to their toys it needs explanation.

The humans went out last night (Friday) and joined friends and neighbours in a large party for Christmas dinner in our local restaurant.  There was lots of good food and joking  (I am told) - and Christmas crackers to pull.  Well, my Mikki pulled hers and took out the paper party hat - but found it had been glued in the wrong place and was tiny (with a long tail).  She immediatly announced it was my size - and that she would prove it with a photo on the web.  Soon another human found an eye patch as the novelty in their cracker.  Mikki said I would like that too.  So here I am:  on my Blog and another photo on Twitter,  @andrew1987Young.  I think it is the very first picture Andrew has put up there.

It all seems rather humiliating in some ways.  Not only do they dress me up like this but put me up on the mantelpiece next to mere ornaments.  And they're ornamants of mice and a pixie!  There's a nice Armani statue of a really cute kitten on the end of the mantelpiece but they're not showing that.  They've even put a Christmas card in front of it!  Meeeoow.

It's taking a lot of work for me to remain calm and dignified.  After all, Figaro is not just any Disney character:  he is a star.  He has short films of his own - and his own little song to accompany them.  I know people like to see me and, like a true star, I must keep the fans happy.  Besides, the least I can say is that the humans were thinking about me when they were out last night.

And the hat's actually a bit big - but we stars sometimes have to cope with ill-fitting costumes, don't we?

I think I deserve a cuddle now.


Friday, 16 December 2011

Preparations Continue

The humans are still busy getting ready both for the Festive Season here and the trip to Walt Disney World.

Mikki has been playing Christmas music in the car for a few days now but she hasn't yet completed one "tradition" of making a fresh compilation.  She has been waiting for the "Military Wives" CD.  It is due to be released on Monday but Amazon have just sent an "e-mail" to say it has been dispatched (so we expect it tomorrow).  That'll be that job done.

For the holiday (by which I mean vacation, not Christsmas!) Mikki is downloading the latest US maps for her SatNav (GPS).  She did a great deal when she bought it in the USA:  free US map upgrades for life.  Now we just have to keep visiting to use them.

For my picture, I've chosen another of those small discreetly decorated trees that you find all over WDW :).  Seriously, they do work hard and do a great job. This one was at the Grand Floridian Resort.  DVC have just sent Andrew an e-mail saying they are going to build villas there. "Knew that" said Mikki.  Perhaps we will have somewhere new to go to in a few years time.


Thursday, 15 December 2011

December in Florida

It's cold and miserable outside here in England so I'm cheering myself up with a picture taken on one of our previous December trips to Walt Disney World.  Those in "the north" (UK or USA) just imagine the warmth.

This is at our "Home" DVC resort of Old Key West.  Of course, when my humans joined it was just "The Disney Vacation Club".  And there was a sales centre ("The Commodore House") where the building behind me to the right of the picture is.  My humans remember looking out at that fountain while going through the papers and talking about buying.  They say that in those days it was the softest sell in the world.  All that was a long time ago: 1992!  That's so long ago that it was before I had even gone to live with my humans.

The picture is a lot more recent.  Since then, Disney has carried out a major refurbishment of the interior - which has quite spoilt it for us.  We will not be staying at Old Key West during our January visit.  But outside, it still looks idyllic.

Yes, yes.  It's sunny in the picture but how warm was it really?  I can't remember:  I'm only a toy cat.  So it probably wasn't as warm as in the summer.  It still makes you wish you were there, though.  Doesn't it?

Now I wish for a little cuddle, please.


Monday, 12 December 2011

Places Friends can Take You

Christmas is a time to remember your friends, and my humans and I have made a lot of friends through our interest in Disney. 

One December visit a friend was able to do something special for us.  He worked for GM, the sponsors of Test Track, and he was able to get a group of us into the VIP lounge there.  You can probably see Mission Space on this picture but the most spectacular thing is the cars wizzing past just below the window.  I was content to have my picture with the Christmas Tree.  Andrew is holding me nicely and Mikki says I look really good (I always do, don't I).

We are looking forward to seeing some friends in January.  Mikki is hoping to see lots more in October.

When I look through my pictures I see lots with friends from Disney.  there are a lot of nice people out there!  I have had lots of nice cuddles.


Saturday, 10 December 2011

Christmas on Main Street, USA

Happy Holidays from the heart of Walt Disney World - Main Street, USA.  Here is my human, Andrew, holding me right in the middle of it.  This picture was taken a few years ago but is the most recent I have of the decorations on Main Street.  Don't you wish you were there (less than 4 weeks to go).

It's also a lovely reminder that even at this time of year it can be nice and warm in Florida - well, warmer than here anyway.  The sun was shining today when my humans went round the village delivering the village newsletter and some Christmas cards.  I went in the car to supervise and keep them company but didn't get out.  It was jolly cold.  There was quite a lot of slippery ice on the paths.  Fortunately, the humans only found this with the soles of their shoes!

Back home now for a nice warming cuddle.

Brrr, Brrr,  Prrrrr.

Friday, 9 December 2011


It's back to Disney Christmas with this picture of me with a snowman (not real snow, of course).

At home, the humans have erected our artificial snowman in the living room.  This year, he is on a little table so he can be seen from outside.  We're jolly glad we didn't put him outside, although he is supposed to be for indoor or outdoor use.  The wind yesterday was very strong.  He would have been at serious risk of getting damaged or blown away.  The neighbours had a gate broken and the whole village had the power out for a couple of hours (the power company said it would be 9, so I suppose we should compliment them).

Today, it's calmer but colder.  Toy cats don't need to go outside.

You can see me with our snowman in my first Post of January this year.

The snowman at the top was set up for a "Merry Mixer" party for members of the Disney Vacation Club.  It's only fair that you get to see some of the other "folks" we got to merrily mix with.  Donald and Daisy Duck came along.  Daisy is giving me a nice little tickle.  Yes, that's right.  Now up a bit.  Good.


Wednesday, 7 December 2011


More good days for a toy cat to stay indoors.  It's just started raining (again).  Forecast is of gales today and a warning of severe gales and heavy rain coming to our area tomorrow.  Let's think of somewhere much warmer where we will be in January.

This picture was taken during our last "January" visit to Wald Disney World.  Here I am on the balcony of our room at Kidani.  Just look at the giraffes behind me and imagine the baking African savannah.

OK, central Florida in January is not quite "baking".  My humans were wearing jackets a lot of the time.  I did say, "imagine", and if you're not wiling to free up your imagination you probably won't make the most of Disney World.

I am pretty sure I can look forward to it being warmer than here.  We will be spending part of the time at Kidani again, so I can also look forward to some new pictures of me watching the animals.  And, I am looking forward to lots of cuddles.  Of course, I don't have to go to Florida for them - or wait until January.

That's it.     Prrrrrr.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Internet Serious Stuff

Oh, Dear.  I should have guessed there would be a price to pay for being allowed to get chatty on my Blog.  My human, Andrew, says I should care about the future of the Internet.  Well I'm a toy cat, so that's difficult.  But I trust my human Andrew and I think he has done a little research of his own since he was asked to get involved..   

It seems there is a law being proposed in the US Congress which lots of serious Internet people think would have damaging and unintended consequences.  It goes under acronyms like SOPA or PIPA.  It's supposed to stop piracy.  This piracy is not about "Pirattes of the Caribbean" (which I like) but protecting copyright owners like tv companies and film studios who invest lots of money in creating the content we like.  As so often with laws, "the Devil is in the Detail".  People like Facebook, Google, Twitter and ebay have got together to say it will both fail in what it is trying to do and make life far too difficult for them and their users (like me). 

Anyone in the USA is asked to get involved by doing things like writing to their US senators.  You can find out more from Mozilla:  Look them up or (if you're foolinsh enough to trust a link given to you by a toy cat) go to:

Outside the USA?  You can sign an international petition.  Look for AVAAZ or go to:

You may like to check out these sites yourself to make sure you want to sign up to their ideas, get on their e-mail lists etc.  Figaro's Diary accepts no responsibility . . . . . . etc.

Is that all the serious stuff I have to do?  I'll just put up this little picture of me in California with the ocean behind me.  Andrew's using this for his avatar on Twitter - @Andrew1987Young.  I think he's still a little scared of putting up his own face.

Cuddle now please.

Christmas Hamper

Now that my humans live in a small village, they do quite a bit of shopping by internet and post - so a parcel delivery is quite common.  Mostly, though, they know what they are expecting.  So it was a delightful surprise when a large box was delivered yesterday.  "What's this", called Andrew to Mikki.  "It's a lovely hamper", replies the delivery man.  Oh wow! The label said it came from Fortnum & Mason.  And here's the contents.
 I'm a toy cat:  I don't eat.  But I think all this looks jolly yummy for humans.  Biscuits, two types of tea and one of coffee; wine mulling spices and lots more.  It's a super Christmas gift from Mikki's sister, Julie, and her family in Bermuda.  Thank you, lovely people.  I think my humans plan to keep some of the items for themselves at home and to take some to share with Andrew's family who we are joining for Christmas.

Less than a day later (and it's raining outside again) but the humans are already planning what they will do with the empty basket - which has "F & M" clearly printed on the lid.  If the UK gets any summer next year, there could be picnics on their own decking by the river.

Come along now.  If you are going to spoil yourselves with all these treats, the least you can do is give me a little cuddle.


Monday, 5 December 2011

Christmas Warmth

Here is another Christmas picture from our trip to WDW in 2009.  This is my human Andrew holding me in front of a display at the Walt Disney World Dolphin suggesting a lovely warm Christmas on the beach (make your snowman a sandman).

Outside here, now, it is raining.  Higher ground in England - including Andrew's brother's house - have had snow overnight.  Crisp fresh snow can look very pretty but driving through snow isn't part of the fun of being with family (my driver, Mikki, says).

I quite like the idea of a nice warm Christmas.  I think we might have to go even further south than central Florida to guarantee Christmas on a real, outdoor, beach (and I don't really like real sand in my fur).  Truth is that it doesn't matter that much as long as we're all together, and I'm getting lots of cuddles.


Sunday, 4 December 2011

One Month to Go

A month from now, we will be on our way to Walt Disney World.  My human Mikki is planning how to ride Big Thunder Mountain Railroad as much as possible while it is open.  I am just thinking about a nice relaxing time and a few more pictures with characters.

The picture was taken on our last trip out in October 2010.  We were Upper Class on Virgin Atlantic.  Sadly, this is not how we will be travelling this time - but a toy can reminisce and dream can't he?

We all loved it.  We started with breakfast, massage and mimosas in the Upper Class lounge at Gatwick.  Onboard, the food was lovely and the humans could lie down and sleep while we toys could chat with the friendly cabin crew at the bar.

The flight was the result of the humans using a Virgin credit card and accumulating quite a large number of reward points.  I don't think it will be happening again soon (and Virgin are cutting back on Upper Class anyway).

On another subject, thank you, Ellen, for thinking of me and sending my Mikki the cartoon of the Dalek with a cat.  My humans have two radio controlled toy Daleks they were given one Christmas.  All they seem to want to do is exterminate each other.  Petting is OK but I prefer proper cuddles - and from proper humans.  Yes, you two, that means you.


Saturday, 3 December 2011

Christmas Preparations Continue

Preparations for Christmas continue in our house.  Andrew has been up in the attic getting down boxes of decorations and Mikki is sorting out what she wants to put up first.

There are some nice soft toys/beanies that are all dressed up in Christmas costumes and have to spend most of the year in st***ge.  It's nice to see them out, even if they are all mice (and one d*g).

Andrew has now set up the snowman (see "Snow has Gone" in January).  He is staying indoors this year.  Too warm outside!

Meanwhile I have been comforting the humans with cuddles as they both started crying.  They were watching the new video of the Military Wives Choir.  Look at:
My humans have already ordered the official song and are sending some money to military charities.  I'm not sure I understand, but it seems this is the world's chance to show we want to help our heroes more than we want to support someone called Simon Cowell.
For my picture, I am still in Walt Disney World.  This tree was in the foyer of the Beach Club Resort.  I think whichever of my humans was taking the picture was trying to be artistic by framing me with two of the big chairs.  Don't worry.  The picture'll be fine.  It's got me in it. 
Later today, the humans will help erect the tree in our village.  The official lighting ceremony is this evening.
There, there. Calm down.  Let me give you another cuddle.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Lights of Winter

According to the UK Met. Office, "winter" starts officially today for weather purposes.  We're looking forward to better weather in Florida in January but meanwhile here is another picture of Christmas at Walt Disney World.

It's of the "Lights of Winter" the lovely light and music show at Epcot that has now been retired.  It is quite difficult to get a good picture of the show so my human Mikki was very happy to find a good one in the middle of her new book from "Celebrations" magazine.  This picture was taken a few years ago.  It's the best of my humans' I could find, but I can't help thinking there's something missing.

Meanwhile, preparations for trips to WDW continue.  Mikki is now looking at a second visit - in October.  That is so she can be there for the 15th anniversary celebratons of "Intercot", the web discussion board where she is a moderator.  It's about 11 months away so Mikki has started thinking about things like flights and booking DVC accommodation.

Yes, there is something missing from the picture.  But it is quite difficult to get a good close up of a toy kitten and have the light display in focus too.  I'll forgive them for now - provided I get a cuddle.