house rabbits

November

Ah, yes. It feels like it's been ages. I've been lying on the floor drawing in the evenings lately, drinking tea and listening to Discworld audiobooks and fending off the rabbits (who enjoy pencils and watercolour paper for different reasons than mine), instead of lying on the floor typing and drinking tea and fending off the rabbits from the keyboard. It's pretty relaxing. What I've created is a series of black and white pictures that are waiting to be painted or coloured in. My intention is to get prints made and give them away or sell them to give people something relaxing to do on these dark chilly evenings. I'd love to hear what you think about this! On a sidenote, I am sitting in a puddle of long November light. Jeremy is making french toast with panetonne in the kitchen, a gift from my wonderful mother. She also brought us homemade apple butter, and exquisite handmade jewellery for me - thanks Mum!

I'm enjoying this time of year much more than I thought a November could be enjoyed. I love arriving indoors all pink-cheeked and invigorated from the cold. I love snuggling in my wool blanket and my thickest socks. I love thinking about everything I would like to bake. I love the nuthatches and chickadees, downy woodpeckers, flickers, purple finches and others that come to our kitchen window. I love watching squirrels stuffing themselves and the earth with prized nuts, and I love seeing the syrupy light sprawl sideways across the water and through the trees.

all things considered

Well, I'm without a computer for a little while. My laptop had a flash encounter with a mug of hot peppermint-nettle tea and a rambunctious silver rabbit, which, all things considered, is not a bad way to go. Hopefully it's just the keyboard that's been affected and it'll be geeked back into working order over the next few days. I dug out my ancient MacBook G4 the night of the incident, but the internet seems to have left it in the dust.    

invigorating

I've been playing with my spirograph (did I just date myself here? They're awesome.), watercolour and gouache. I could certainly get used to spending my afternoons at my coffee-table studio with the rabbits snuggled up beside me (or quietly removing the side of a bag of flour in the kitchen... ahem, Zephyr...). Spring here is at that delightful indecisive stage where an enthusiastic breeze roars into a bright day, the sky darkens and breaks into rain showers (and that weird tension that you didn't realize was building gives way to relief). Then, still pouring rain, the clouds break and the brightness is blinding even seen through somewhat dusty windows (stand on the porch and take this in). I seem be geekily enthusiastic in welcoming all kinds of weather, but spring weather is invigorating.

Last night after sweet Seven's 3 am check-in, I lay awake thinking about fermented porridge until I got up to start some for the morning. I've mentioned this breakfast before, it's one of my favorites. It doesn't hold a candle to my friend Kyrie's frittata or her eggs benny, but it's exactly the kind of wholesome simplicity I look for in a weekday breakfast, heartier and more flavorful than regular oats or unsoaked steel-cut oats, with the added benefit of a fairly speedy cooking time.

photo 2-1 a b

Night-fermented Steel-cut Oats Adapted from Sally Fallon's Nourishing Traditions 1/3 cup steel cut oats 1 spoonful (closer to a tbsp than a tsp) plain, happy-cow, probiotic yogourt 1/3 cup water (you can also use liquid poured off of the yogourt, which will leave you with thicker yogourt - yum!) Stir ingredients loosely together in a smallish bowl, then let it sit overnight on the counter (you can cover it with a plate or cloth, or tuck it in the cupboard if you like). In the morning, bring to a boil: 1/3 cup water Add fermented grain and simmer until it comes together and oats soften (try a little to check, they will be more toothsome than rolled oats), maybe about 10 minutes. I like to serve this with a pinch of salt, a knob of butter, about a teaspoon maca powder, and a sprinkling of cacao nibs and hemp hearts. It's also very tasty with heavy cream and maple syrup, or topped with granola and milk. If you have stewed rhubarb, don't hesitate to add it. Some days an impromptu coffee date interrupts my intention to make this in the morning and the soaker fares perfectly well sitting out until the following morning, in fact it might even be improved. (Insert Pease Porridge rhyme...)

silver lining

Hi there! The sun has just come out here. This morning was almost dark, so thick were the clouds. Seven is doing okay. We're giving her pain medication and she seeks out her food-sludge and kale pesto on her own now. I've had the great fortune of being able to stay home with the rabbits these past few days, which has meant a lot of time on the sunset-striped blanket on the living room floor, monitoring and supervising and doing art. Not being able to clean the house or rearrange the kitchen (Zephyr would find something to destroy/remake- my yoga mat has been on her list of interesting objects for sampling) has been a surprisingly wonderful opportunity to sketch and paint and cut and glue and generally revel in a world of imagination and colour.

photo 3 photo 4

Seven

I'm hoping to crowdsource healing vibes for my bunny. Seven's misaligned teeth are long and jagged and have started cutting into her gums where they've caused at least one abscess, possibly two. We're waiting for a call from the veterinary dental specialist to find out how soon we can get her in. It looks so painful. I am hoping desperately, fearfully, that she will continue eating despite the pain. She's hiding in a cardboard box right now and I am terrified and anxious and so sad to see her like this. She is the sweetest little curious creature. Please send love her way. Welcome spring, new moon, eclipse. I hope you will be kind to my rabbit. This morning began enjoyably, at least. We had a friend visiting (though I had completely misunderstood when she would arrive so was ill prepared to host), and went for a walk in the drizzle. We were soon joined by coffee and butter danishes, as can happen in our neck of the woods, and paid a casual visit to the ocean's edge. My mum came by with gifts and treasures from my beautiful, quirky late grandmother, and seeds for our garden. We ventured out to the theme of more coffee and pastries (oh what a way to spend a Friday!), and Jer and Ana came back from downtown with more gifts and delectables. Then we wrangled the bunnies into their carrier for their check-in with the vet. Ever since the vet looked in Seven's mouth and found that the situation we thought was six months away and that we were going to prevent by getting her teeth done in the next few months had sped up and was already happening, already urgent, the afternoon has crept by dark and tearful. I picked up more strawberry antibiotics in town and, in a sorry daze, made my way towards the Solstice Cafe for tea and solace. Alas, they'd closed for a special event, so I trudged aimlessly into the square. I almost sat on a bench in the rain to eat chocolates and read my sad and beautiful book - did sit for a moment, but some boys were horsing around on the high railing and spitting and I really didn't feel like listening to them so kept going, into Green Cuisine, where one can be nourished for $6. It was soothing. I sat in a booth near the back, facing a poster of Green Tara and a tree mural. I ate small tidbits each of baked falafel and steamed kale, curried tempeh, vegan lasagna, squash, beans and apple crumble (comfort me with spiced apples please, yes). Afterwards, I sat, unable to read, and gave myself a headache panicking about it all before picking up a pen and doodling in my journal. Never underestimate the therapeutic benefits of making art. It didn't fix everything, but it helped. I drew some trees, gave them leaves, then filled in ground level with flowers and leafy sprigs, and got the idea of drawing Seven in, happy and well. I drew Zephyr too, to help anchor her in this world and because they are constant companions. Next a field of wheat and flowering clover, both bunnies settled happily in the center.

I'm drinking strong peppermint tea, adaptogen extraordinaire. I'm hoping it will help me cope. It's hard to stand up straight under the weight of this, my fear and sadness for my darling pet. The vets know what they are doing, this I trust. I hope that we can get her treated sooner than soon. Now, to think positive and give my bunny love. May she be well.

IMG_6566  IMG_6569  IMG_6568