Tuesday, January 14, 2014

At Home With Bunny and Kate

Uh. . . Happy New Year, everyone! 

A bit late in the game, I know, but I've been sorta anti-bloggy this fortnight. 
Not a lot to write about - I mean, there's always the weather, but why give it more air time than it's already had (and doesn't deserve)? I guess I could sew something and talk about that, but my sewing machine and I are currently estranged. And I've lifted all cardboard sanctions until the kids agree to throw out more of our old cardboard stuff to make way for new.

So I've been reading instead. It's nice to feel somewhat literate, even if I'm reading way below my recommended reading level (they're children's books). I've also been mending clothes (hence the aforementioned estrangement).

In the midst of all those bleak midwinter happenings, however, I've been hanging out with Kate in the afternoons when she's done with kindergarten and before her older sisters return from school. I've also been hanging out with Bunny, who is Kate's best friend.

In case you'd forgotten, this is Bunny:

and you all know Kate:

I never thought making a rabbit would also mean making an entire imaginary world that included scrapbooks, food, furniture, clothes, and a passionate devotion that resulted in Kate sometimes begging to bring Bunny to the most unfeasible (and sometimes unhygienic) places just so they could stay together. 

"I did that?" I'd wonder to myself. "Did I make that happen because I sewed some fabric limbs and ears into a toy?"

No. Kate did it - she and her mind and her heart and all the rest of her being. 

Incidentally, Kate has already made end-of-life plans for Bunny: she's been scrutinizing Bunny's fur with the assiduousness of a surgeon, diagnosing that mange (from being washed too many times) = imminent death and, therefore, I need to get to work making a Replacement Bunny ASAP.

Someday she will be all grown up. She will look back on her fantastical kindergarten years in disbelief and, understandably, accuse me of gross exaggeration or a bad case of SappyMotherlitis. So I thought I'd record it here, because these are beautiful days and bring me much (bittersweet) delight at the thought of how simultaneously charming and fleeting they are. 

One of her earlier Kate & Bunny books:

Very spartan, plot-wise. Almost like a memoir and caption in one.

Also very succinct.

Here's a more recent one, that she started in school.
The BUNNY made a gingerbread BUNNY. He popped out of the oven. Stop! Stop!"

The gingrbread BUNNY Ran fRom the Bunny the cat and the dog. "Stop! Stop! Stop . . . 

And just like that, she leaves us with a cliffhanger. 
(I've gotta make her finish that book.)

Last week, we made clothes for Bunny from old leggings and scrap knit. I'll show you how in a later post. Notice that Bunny looks a little less pristine than when I first made her - evidence that she is indeed much loved.

At her behest (and somewhat bossy dictation), I drew three pages of Bunny Necessities & Accessories. She spent her post-school afternoons this week coloring and cutting them out,

and keeping Bunny gorgeous, entertained, socially connected,

and not starving.

As I am writing this, Kate has just made a paper mobile for Bunny's crib (Bunny needs a nap because she didn't get enough sleep the night before because she didn't eat enough food at supper and had to sneak out of bed to get carrots from the fridge).

Do your children have stories like these? Or am I the only mom lucky enough to watch what innocence looks like, played out day after day in her living room?

Here are our coloring sheets -

we thought other Bunnys (and Bears and Dogs and Cats and Dolls) might enjoy having their very own electronic keyboard, cellphone, MP3 player, wall art, cosmetics and food buffet. Grab your camera, fellow parents- someday when your little ones leave days like these behind them, you might be glad you did.  

P.S. For more Adventures of Bunny and Kate, see this post.


  1. So cute! Looks a lot like my house except most of the time it's my 7yo helping my 5yo while I watch and take pictures. In fact my 7 yo asked me the other day why I take pictures of everything...lol :)

  2. My 8 year old son had a Teddy Panda that still has a very full life. I thought he would be done with it by now, but no. Teddy Panda is still a very real part of the family. My 6 year old daughter on the other hand is always saying, "That's not real." So different.

  3. Wow, what a great imagination. My 3-year old has never really bonded to a specific doll or stuffed animal, but she has had an imaginary friend for almost 2 years. It's so fun to watch her interact with her. Children have such amazing creativity and imagination.

  4. Aww... Bunny! He's almost as loved as The Velveteen Rabbit! Has Kate heard that story?

    How creative Kate is... her mommy's creativity is rubbing off nicely. :)

    Courtney may need those coloring sheets for her Fairytale dolls. Thanks!

  5. I just gasped aloud at the cuteness of bunny gazing up at a mobile handcrafted by her mama. Oh my. Marvelous.

  6. LOL my 11 yr old has "duckie" who has been his love since he was 6 mo. old. Poor duckie is green now and very well loved. He remains at home in T's bed but is still much loved nonetheless.

    DD is in 2nd grade now and I miss those fun kindergarten drawings and stories. I love seeing their little imaginations grow :D

  7. Oh, the sweetness! I just loved reading this post. I can only hope that my little girl will grow up to tell such stories with her lovies.
    ~Natalie (QSOgirl)

  8. Reading your story reminded me of this past Christmas and how fast time goes. On Christmas eve I give the kids a little present, make hot chocolate, track Santa Clause on the computer and read The Night Before Christmas. My oldest grandson will be 13 and his sister is 12. I am sure that was the last year they let grandma keep them little :) So enjoy those time, and they will be great memories for when the are older.

  9. It is the first time I write here after following your blog - especially the cardboard stuff - for some time...
    I would like to suggest you this book quite famous here in the UK:
    It's a funny story about a little girl called Emily, her old rabbit Stanley, and a young queen who would like that beloved bunny for herself.
    It resonates so much with the story of your Kate...

    Thank you for all the inspiration, and for opening up a world of possibilities with cardboard.

    1. Chiara,
      Thank you for your comment and book recommendation! We actually just checked that book out from the library and Kate does indeed love it. She's had me read it to her close to twenty times already!

  10. Thank you on behalf of my daughter's bunny. Just this morning she scolded me for not making clothes for her bunny and insisted that Grandma will be buying Bunny some for Christmas next year. She is going to make a Christmas list for Bunny, too.

  11. kate's best friend is really really cute. I used to have a little grey bunny when I was a kid, which was also happened to be my closest friend at that time. This post brought some nice childhood memories, thanks for sharing!

  12. bittersweet, indeed. Wish I could snuggle my kindergartner who is currently in school. . .

    My kids play together with dollies and animals and they live various lives together. I'm going to print out the coloring pages - my kids have drawn their own, but they will be charmed by yours.

  13. This is why I blog - to make sure I take photos of things like this, so that I have them forever.

    When Johnny was a baby, he became incredibly attached to some small green plastic counter bears (the kind you use for math). It was a very convenient attachment, because they all look identical so I always had a spare (or two) in my bag. This week Anna became attached to the same bears - only the yellow ones. Last night she had trouble falling asleep because she had a bear in each hand, but she would inevitably drop one out of sleepiness and then have to search around for it. I finally convinced her to leave her bears on the bedside table - but first this morning she woke up and asked for her "beh" back - and was so thrilled when I understood and gave them to her!

  14. Yep, my almost six year old has a lovey too. But get this - its a little dog that she named Meow. She has been obsessed with cats since before she could talk. She was convinced this little stuffed animal was a cat 'even though it looks like a dog'. It got named Meow because when she wanted it she would toddle around the house going "Meow? Meow?" till she found it. Whenever people would tell her "Oh, what a cute little doggie you've got there!" she would respond with, "She's a cat and her name is Meow." Oh the preciousness of it all! My 8 year old has a Dolly too - bought at a garage sale for 50 cents when she was probably less than two years old. Still loved and slept with and carried around the house daily. Dolly and Meow will always be part of our family because when the girls are done with them (?!) I'll give them a home on a shelf in my sewing room!

  15. Oh yes! Just like my little girl :) We too have a much loved Bunny. She was looking pretty tired and grey after 6 years of cuddles and activities, so we took her on a trip to the Bunny Spa. She had a lovely relaxing soak in the laundry tub filled with nappy sanitiser and has come up looking a treat - ready for the next round!

  16. She'snotthe only one.. My son got a Heffalomp(from Winnie The Poo) at the age of 3 when he was at the hospital. This Lomp has been with him ever since, he is now 10.. They sleep together every night and has been his best friend. He even has his own suitcase when we travel abroad or visiting Family and friends. Right now we are all afraid of loosing him since he has become a Family member..

  17. My father had a teddy bear named Winnie the Pooh, though the bear didn't look anything like Christopher Robin's teddy. The bear, complete with the scarf my father knitted him when he was six, was still around when I was a child. When our family moved abroad Winnie the Pooh was adopted by a friend's family where he looked down on them from a book case for another fifteen years. Just before my father died, teddy bear and long time friend were happily reunited!

  18. Thank you for the bunny accessories. Four little girls here were so happy to color, cut and play with all these tiny things !


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