A bunny bonding adventure

Last weekend, we adopted a new member of the family: Jazzy! I’ve wanted to get my bunny Albus a bunwife for some time, but it hasn’t been feasible. We had two cats and were already a bit overwhelmed with pet care duties. Our cat Donovan was older and had a lot of issues… he needed regular steroid doses and had recently gone blind (he was also deaf). He was my dude and I loved him so much. When he passed away in April, it broke our hearts. We buried him in the rose garden and I found a beautiful orange poppy to plant on the spot.

I was hoping with Albus and Gerry the only pets left, that they’d become closer. The fact of the matter is that Albus loves his feline friend, Gerry, but the feeling isn’t mutual. Most days Albus just finds a place to hide (his current favorite is behind the ironing board in the guest room) and would give us love for a few minutes a day. Based on things I’ve read, I started to think that a bunny companion might improve his quality of life. So the search began.

Jon and I have often joked that all we wanted in a bunwife for Albus was a spayed female mini-lop around 2 years old named Penelope. Shockingly we couldn’t find such a bunny. Jon really wanted a mini-lop (that’s what he wanted when I talked him into getting Albus instead), but they are few and far between, and I have yet to find a spayed female.

Meanwhile, I had been following a rabbit rescue in Lamoine, Maine, called Cottontail Cottage Rabbit Rescue. I don’t even know how I found them, but I follow them on Facebook and they do such good work. I’ve been wanting to visit the shelter for years now, but the 2 hour drive was a bit of a deterrent. Well, a few weeks ago, they posted a photo of what looked like a female Albus in brown. Her name was Jazzy. I emailed them, asked if she was available and sent them a photo of Albus. Then, I worked on convincing Jon that Jazzy was the one, and that we need to drive up to Lamoine!

He played it cool, and I wasn’t sure he was going to go for it, but in the end, he agreed. We drove up, met her, and fell in love. Now, the hard part begins… bonding them.

Bunny bonding seems to be more of an art than a science and there is a lot of conflicting info out there. I’m following instructions from the shelter manager at Cottontail Cottage as they certainly have a lot of experience with bunnies. She instructed me to put Jazzy’s cage next to Albus’ and let them get used to each other for at least a week. So far it’s been a few days, and all seems to be going well. They’ve sniffed each other, watched each other, even kissed each other. But I’m still nervous about what will happen when we finally put them together.

We’ve been told to try it out in a neutral space for 10 minutes and separate them if they fight. I’m soooo hoping that they just love each other and start cuddling. Probably unrealistic, but I can hope!

Anyway, I’ll keep you posted on the progress. I think Saturday is the day.

It’s a bunny butt wreath!

Bunny butt wreath

My creative whimsy is usually something where I have an idea in my head, and then I try to figure out how to make it. Then, I usually realize I can’t do what I actually envision, so I look for ideas online and then adapt and meld different ideas I find.

Albus the bunnyThis bunny butt wreath is one example of this. I have a pet house rabbit named Albus (yes, like in Harry Potter). He is an adorable white lionhead with ruby eyes. Since I adopted him two years ago, I’ve become a crazy bunny lady (in addition to already being a crazy cat lady). Yes, I am one of those people who yell “bunny!” anytime I see a bunny – real, in a movie, or on a trinket at a store. A popular meme on social media is “bunny butt Friday.” To really make your day, go to Instagram and type in #BunnyButtFriday into search and you’ll be delighted by all the fluffy bunny butts!

This past Easter, I was in a hard-core anti-consumerist mode – a mode I call “austerity measures,” which usually coincides with me trying to “balance my checkbook” (metaphorically, of course – nobody actually balances their checkbook anymore, right?)

I have never noticed how many bunny things are out in stores around Easter. Before I had a bunny, I must have just ignored it. But this year, it was a constant struggle to not buy all the cute things, from pillows and statuary and cards, etc. At one point, I went in Michael’s – just to see what they had – and they had a really cute bunny wreath. It was $10, made in China. But cute. But in true LoveLarisa fashion, I thought to myself – I’ll make it myself, and spend 5 times that amount! (but really make something special).

Bunny butt wreathSo after much research and thought, I came up with a design for the wreath. There are some ideas on Etsy for bunny butt wreaths (take a look) but they weren’t quite what I was looking for. But I did find this crochet pattern – and luckily I had just recently learned to crochet (follow your bliss!).

So I ordered the pdf pattern and crocheted the bunny. I opted not to include the legs. They are super cute, but it just seemed a bit too much.

For the wreath itself, I really wanted yellow daffodils because they really say “Spring” to me, and they make me think of my mother because she loves daffodils. But after searching online, the artificial daffodils I found were quite expensive, so I settled on yellow carnations instead. Then I bought a Styrofoam wreath form.

Materials I used:

Bunny Butt Crochet Pattern

Case of 100 light yellow carnation with picks  from www.afloral.com

Green artificial corsage leaves from www.afloral.com

14” foam wreath form from www.afloral.com

Sprightly yarn and crochet hook

From there, it’s mostly self-explanatory. I followed the directions on the crochet pattern (omitting the legs as mentioned above). I put some 20 gauge copper wires in the bunny ears to keep their shape, and then used the same wire to attach the bunny parts to the wreath form. Then, I trimmed the yellow carnation picks so they weren’t so long that they poked through the other side, and just covered the entire wreath form with them. The door where I hang the wreath is glass, so I can see the backside of the wreath from inside. If you have a one-sided door, you could just cover the front of the wreath. This project took basically all 100 carnations.

Then, I found some super cheap hollow easter eggs at Target ($1!)  and attached those using glue and the copper wire, and added a ribbon to hang the wreath with.

So… in the end it was quite expensive and time consuming, but I really love it, and I can use it every year. Plus, I learned some new skills and had a fun project to work on – and that’s what it’s all about.

Does this inspire any other ideas from you? I’d love to hear them!

 

xoxo LL