Sunday, December 29, 2013

Nutmeg

I've always wanted a bunny. Always, always. When I was little, I wore my bunny suit for Halloween after Halloween. I signed my name "Marilyn Bunny." I drew bunnies all over my notebooks and binders at school. I thought I WAS a bunny. As an adult, I have learned to stifle this obsessive bunny-loving. Sort of. But I still love them so much!

Once when I was about 10 or 12, my friends got together to buy me a bunny for my birthday. They got permission from my mom. Then the permission was retracted. Tears were shed, mine and theirs. We blamed my mom (though it was probably my dad's doing?) for shattering all my bunny dreams. She told me I could get a bunny when I grew up and had my own house, but when I grew up and had my own house, I suddenly understood. It seemed like a lot of hard work to have a bunny. I thought I would probably just always have to love them from afar.

Then, on Christmas, I unwrapped this:
"Perfect size for your rabbit," it says. Which is odd, as I don't have a rabbit.

Make that didn't have a rabbit.

Sam, bless him, knew the deepest desire of my heart. He did the research and the information-gathering and the shopping around, all the things that were too daunting for me to have ever undertaken them. And the next day, we set out to get my bunny. We had several appointments to look at bunnies and choose the right one.
I knew him as soon as I met him. He is the little brown one on the end, snuggled up with his furry black brothers. They're just 7 weeks old. He hopped out of his box and I picked him up. Does it sound silly to say I loved him immediately?

I still don't know how to take care of a bunny---I am trying to learn all I can. Sam keeps having to talk me down from the "what-if-we-can't-make-him-happy??" ledge. Sam promises we will make sure every bunny need of his little bunny nature is attended to. I worry because there are so many, so many of us, and I don't want to traumatize the poor thing. But I have taken a cue from Seb's first-grade teacher and told the children that we all have to be extra quiet and sweet to each other, so as not to scare the bunny. We'll see if that works.

I'm much more nervous about doing the right things for him than I was about my babies. With my babies, I counted on my mother's instinct and my child development classes to steer me the right way. But I don't have instincts on what to do with a bunny! Except snuggle him, of course. I told Sam maybe if it was my sixth bunny I would finally start to feel like I was getting the hang of things.

But he is the sweetest, brightest, softest, tiniest little bunny you can imagine. He's perfect. Will you believe me when I say I have already deleted about 20 pictures of him from this post? I just can't get enough of his little furry face, and the way he hops, and the way he washes his face. My OWN bunny! I can hardly believe it.

We have considered many, many names and I think we've finally settled on Nutmeg. He is just the color and shape of a little nutmeg ball. Furrier, of course.
I really love him. I'm so happy with my Christmas present.
I hope I prove to be a good pet owner!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Candlelight, angel-light, firelight, starglow*

Tree-shaped stars!
December raced by so fast this year that many of our traditions had to be sort of incidental---things happening on the way to other things, or sandwiched in between other things. Luckily I get great satisfaction from efficiency, so combining trips feels like a benefit rather than a drawback. :) I was particularly happy that one of the boys' choir performances in Salt Lake fell on the last (relatively) warm day before the dark winter descended, so after the performance, we enjoyed the downtown lights in (relative) comfort.
Cute little choirboys

City Creek (we love this fountain)

The kids liked being enveloped in colored light

We love luminarias

This is cool---one tree covered in red lights, the other just secondarily lit-up with red. You can hardly see the difference!


December is a month in which I really enjoy a big snowfall. This one was beautiful. 

Santa Lucia day

I thought this was the cutest way ever to designate the recipient and giver of a present (Sebby made it for Marigold)

Christmas Eve dinner

*I've always loved the John Rutter song with those words---he slips "angel-light" in so casually, like it's something we might see ourselves someday. Love the unexpected way he changes "light" to "glow" at the end, too.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Three Velvet Bugs

Having three little girls is a delight I never imagined I'd have, and they constantly surprise and amaze me. They are such funny, smart little people! Of course I have them match whenever I can (they still like it, for now)! While wearing this dress, Junie told her grandma, "I'm a velvet bug." I suppose that makes them all velvet bugs!
I love Junie's expression
Not sure what the wide-mouth is all about
Daisy thinks Marigold is her own little baby
Sweet hugs

Matching

For awhile now I've been compiling pictures of Daisy holding things that match. It's a particular pleasure to her when she finds such things (she especially likes if there's a big one and a little one, but two-just-the-same is also nice) and she always reacts with an excitement that is quite delightful to behold. Even when she could hardly talk, she would say, "Mommy! I match it!" every time she encountered something that (even slightly) resembled something else. Then she'd run to get the counterpart of whatever-it-was---because, obviously, something that matches is no use unless you actually put the things next to each other.
She got the little penguin for Easter, then bought the big penguin with her birthday money from grandma (other candidates for this money were "a rainbow dress" and "a beehive").
Little phonebook, big phonebook
Matching books (she will even remember book designs across library trips, and if we've already returned the "matching" book when she discovers the one that goes with it, it's a sad day)
Big tennis ball, little tennis ball
Big stool, little stool
Penguins wearing backpacks
The mommy and baby beaters are doing a little song and dance
Matching animals in the crocheted purses/bassinets I made a long time ago
It was a happy day when she got to have Goldie be her baby bunny
These monkeys, which had previously been hanging in various locations on the tree, appeared like this one morning---the Mad Matcher strikes again!
If she could dress Marigold to match her every day, she would.
She got the third penguin for Christmas, after having spotted it on a webpage I was looking at one day, and subsequently saying every few hours, "When I grow up I'm going to get a job and then I can buy that tiny blanket-penguin and then I can match him with my other penguins!"

Friday, December 20, 2013

Small things

I've been crocheting like a madwoman the last few months. I love to have something relatively mindless to work on while I'm doing something else! And these are especially fun because they are small and come together quickly. I made these little Star Wars people into Christmas ornaments and gave them away. It was quite hard to part with them, especially Yoda (whom Junie calls "Yota"). I got the adorable patterns on Etsy. I have the jawa too, but I haven't made him yet.

I made a nativity set too, which was really fun. I love the kings holding their ball-y gifts! My friend Rachael said she couldn't even conceive of what a crocheted nativity set would look like. Now you know!

The kids love playing with them, especially Daisy, who also has the failed Princess Leia and the strange-looking thumb-Baby that I made. She loves them, poor misshapen things that they are.

I'm learning a lot by making these, too, and getting better as I go. It's interesting how whenever you start doing a lot of something, you realize how much you still have to learn about it. I'm so grateful for online tutorials! They help fill the void left by my dear departed grandmother, who died before she could teach me to crochet. Of course, my mother taught me to knit when I was young and I've pretty much forgotten that, so I suppose even a live grandmother would be no guarantee of proficiency . . . :) I would like to re-learn knitting someday, but it seems so complicated . . . TWO needles??!

I'm not sure about Mary's mouth. I might take it out and do it with a lighter pink. All the mouths have given me no end of trouble! It's hard to hide the ends and to get the placement right.


And a closer look at the Star Wars guys: