Kittens, pure and simple
This is the final Furry Friday for 2012. And it's a tradition here on Four Legs Good, going back as far as, oh, 2010, that we end the year with kittens.
Because as we wind down, and up, for a holiday, what's more festive and full of life than a kitten?
Because as we reach the bottom of the page of one year and get ready to turn the leaf to a new one, what's more optimistic than, yes, a kitten?
Take your time and enjoy the kittens. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, happy holidays, thanks for reading, see you again in a couple of weeks' time.
The cover-kitten is a gold-eyed white-and-tortoiseshell named Florence.
The disproportionate ears, eyebrows and whiskers of young Henry.
A blurry dab of orange named Crush.
A baby photo of Fergus - who's since grown into a vigorous and sharp-eyed cat who enjoys a garden full of bugs and flowers. He must be loving these endless evenings.
Next in the lineup of sleepy kittens is Wallace.
Lost in duvet-land, Carli.
Delphi. Melting yet?
Clyde has extra toes.
Tessie, tired out.
Ernie thinks outside the box, and his body follows.
Wells (short for Wellesley) finds his niche.
Bosco with that "whoa!" expression that goes with every new discovery.
Buddy in a Bud box.
Van checks that there isn't, somehow, a crumb of food left in there.
In play mode: Princess.
On his first day in the new home, Tui dashed behind a couch and stayed there for 24 hours. When he finally emerged to sit on his dad's lap, an earthquake struck and sent him couchwards again for another eight hours. But it was worth the wait. Here he is, a litle braver.
Olly assists with gardening tasks in a supervisory role.
Chateau Diesel 2012 - a vivacious vintage with a good nose on it.
Kristo is into extreme sports, such as fridge-diving.
Louie's switch is set to Naughty.
Patrick learns to use the hard landscaping to his advantage.
Tucky's curtain call. Great photo, Christina.
One of those moments when cuteness pays - Joshie scales the clothes horse.
Flint has acres of bare floor available for playing with the ball of string. But where are the indispensable chair legs?
This is Jersey, on her first day at home a couple of years ago. Reader Kathryn says: "She was very laid back, and with myself on one couch and my partner on the other, she went back and forth from couch to couch purring like a tractor and cuddling each of us in turn. We made her a nice nest of blankets to sleep on in a smallish box, but she chose to sleep on my pillow right next to my head for the first month we had her!"
Swimming in a hectare of bed is Smooch.
Theo would like you to come on and just try it.
A quiet but alert moment in Smudge's young life.
Kittens hunt in pairs. They also gaze and yawn in pairs - as Rosalie and Emmet demonstrate.
Another kitten named Diesel, this one a blue-eyed looker.
Ruby is mistress of the living room.
Whisper does not appreciate the interruption.
Rosie is all eyes.
Finally it's Diesel again - Chateau Diesel, that is, having left a spot in the wine rack to find somewhere to relax over a drink. And making such a perfect and tidy job of it, too.
* I can understand it if these photos have made you fall in love with the idea of a kitten. If you have, there's a surfeit of them right now at any animal shelter, so check them out. But please be sure you can take the responsibility in the long term, including the costs, and think about those aspects before surprising someone at Christmas with a kitten as a gift.
Thanks to all for posting your photos. Please email me your own photos, or go to the Four Legs Good Facebook page and use the Upload Photo button. While you're there, browse through the 2000 photos that readers have posted by clicking the Photos link.