The Rabbit Archives

The wedding is done. The kitchen is finally clean again after months of crazy – a word I have come to use all too much to describe our goings ons and I do think it’s time to come up with an alternate word for that word.

Cockamamie?

I put up Christmas lights yesterday. This isn’t something I usually do before December but it felt normal and right and we had used some of the lights at Kait and Vince’s wedding and I didn’t feel like putting them all away just to get them out again in two weeks so now we’re the cockamamie people on the block that are already decorated for Christmas.

[there should be a picture here but I failed and it’s light outside now so you’ll just have to wait]

Rabbit and I stood out on the lawn just after dark last night and looked at my creation. He eyed the roof of the house and said in all seriousness, I’m thinking maybe we should add some up there, and I realized that we are in the honeymoon stage that happens after a wild patch and we’ve got to be careful not to do too much because nobody is going to want to take all these lights down come January.

Did I mention that my daughter is married?

Wow.

And the entire wedding was perfect and beautiful and I can’t wait to have pictures to post. Our photographer is a family friend and she has had numerous weddings over the last couple of weeks so we’re going to sit and be patient but I know they turned out terrific.

We left on vacation the day after the wedding. We didn’t leave town, basically staying in our own backyard but Pensacola Beach is quiet and beautiful this time of year and the weather was perfect and we didn’t have to drive very far.

And the view from our condo was perfect.

Hot lemonade and favorite blankies on the balcony on a cool, breezy evening…  Who knew that was all it would take to appease these two little ones.

I will be honest and say that I was very happy to be back home after the four days at the beach but the vacation was so good.

And now to our last order of business to get everything caught up…

I mentioned before that we became foster parents in September, a task we took on at probably the worst possible time but we absolutely do not regret it one bit.  Our current placement is just the cutest child imaginable. I wish I could post her pictures and tell you all about her but that just can’t happen. What I can tell you is that she is the sweetest 2-year-old with a very uncertain future but she is doing amazingly well with us. Many of you have asked if there is anything we need or anything you can do to help and the truth is, if you would add her, her sibling, and their bio parents to your prayer list that would be the most helpful thing you can do right now.

And one last thing…

I am so sorry to all of you who have sent me messages after reading one of my posts here or on Facebook. I have been so overloaded with foster care appointments and meetings and wedding stuff and Lanie’s therapy and normal family things that I have had to cut out a lot of my social activities recently. But things do seem somewhat calm for the moment so I’ll hopefully do better.

And one more last thing…

We got Lanie a posterior walker. People, she is the cutest thing ever. Expect a video soon. 

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What happened while I had a weekend

I wrote this post this morning but I needed to add pictures but Lanie woke up cranky and with an incredibly stuffy nose and I wasn’t able to get the pictures uploaded.  Now it is almost 8 pm and I fixed Lanie’s nose and ran and went to a Labor Day pool party and came home and put Lanie down for a very late nap and made dinner and got the pictures uploaded and the moment you have all been waiting for has arrived. You’re welcome.


Today is Labor Day. and while Labor Day is just a day off for many people, for my kids it’s the highlight of the year or something because all the little ones came running up to me shouting Mom! Happy Labor Day! when I got up this morning. I have never heard anybody say happy labor day before so this was unusual.

We are going to a friend’s house to swim and maybe that has something to do with it.

Over the weekend we had many plans to work on the kitchen and finish the table and clean out the closet but none of that happened.  The kitchen has been put aside in favor of getting our table done so we can use it again because all these kids eating on the floor in the living room is no longer working for me.

The table is almost finished. I’ve been saying almost for about 2 weeks now but I think almost is finally actually here. Just a couple more coats of urethane and it should ready to use.

The kitchen will get there. It’s just not happening as fast as I had thought it would because every time we get back to it something else needs to be done.

And I completely ignored the closet in favor of…  I don’t know. I don’t remember what I did instead.  Maybe I was cooking or something.  I feel like I am always cooking.

After church Rabbit washed the cars yesterday and that was super awesome and then he took the kids to the ball field.

We’re more of a football family and have never really played much baseball so Rabbit spent some time giving pointers on how to pitch and bat.

The boys were all like, Woah, Dad, you’re really good! Did you play on a team when you were younger or something?

Rabbit puffed his chest out a bit and answered them.  Yeah, I played a bit of Little League back in the day.

We only have three gloves so while some played ball, the others went to climb around and swing at the playground.

If you ask Maggie what she’s doing she’ll always, always, always reply, not swinging high enough!

I wish I had been able to go but Lanie was sleeping. Also, cooking food without children asking me 100 questions about what I am doing and why I am doing it and will there be mushrooms in it againThe opportunity to cook alone was just was too enticing.

Today’s tip: My kids like cauliflower rice better than actual rice so I make fried rice with cauliflower instead of rice. Last night we had bacon friend cauliflower rice and today everybody has gas.  I don’t know what my tip here is but I’m just saying, if you feed your kids cauliflower rice watch out.

 

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You know how you start your day out early, in a good mood, after a decent night’s sleep, and then everything falls apart about 3 hours in when your kid’s orthodontists surprises you with a $600 down payment for a set of braces he has already had but needs again? Yeah that happened.

Here’s a rundown of my day. It’s a little ranty. I’m sorry.

  • Matthew’s mouth was somewhat complex to sort out and he’s had an expander, braces, a holding arch thing, a couple different kind of retainers that weren’t doing their job. With all the things he has needed to have done I think I was just confused about all those layers and when I took him in because the holding arch had broken and to ask for a better retainer they said, New molars! Looks like he’s ready for his phase 2! Braces again to straighten things out! We’ll need $600 to start this phase! Thanks!
    I took a couple of deep breaths and went about the rest of my day.
  • Lanie had two appointments together at the same place. They called a few hours before hand and asked if I could come in an hour early. I said sure. What I didn’t know was that they wanted me to come in an hour early for the first appointment, and then sit for an hour and a half and wait for the second one. Lanie became restless, I didn’t bring a stroller because I didn’t think I’d need one, and I couldn’t reschedule because it took 3 months to get this appointment. I became what you might call very put out.
  • They want to put tubes in Lanie’s ears. Recent studies have suggested that in most cases tubes are not really all that helpful. I’m going to do some research and see if we can reduce the fluid in her ears here at home before we resort to cutting into her eardrum.
  • She most definitely needs surgery to remove her adenoids and tonsils. This was not what I wanted to hear but Doc did say we could wait on the surgery for a few months and try two meds to try to shrink her oversized adenoids and tonsils. I said yes please.
  • Went to get her prescriptions. Turns out, Tricare won’t cover one of them or its generic. Great. We had to pay for that sucker. But that was okay because if we could keep her from needing surgery I was willing to try it but I was still not thrilled with another surprise payment in one day.
  • At home later I was reading through the pamphlet for Lanie’s meds. The expensive one, a nasal spray, says not to use if you have had cataracts or glaucoma. I’m not even kidding. If you want to know why this is an issue read here.

Now that I’ve done all the complaining. I should add that there were a great many positives that really did drown out the frustrations.

  • Rabbit has been on leave and has a nice salt and pepper beard that I find quite attractive.
  • Sam made me a crown with Rubies on it.
  • Deep fried peanuts. What will the south come up with next? Also, this is why I love the south. Also, DEEP FRIED PEANUTS, PEOPLE!
  • Ben kept me company at Lanie’s forever appointment yesterday and Lanie was incredibly cute.
  • My table looks fabulous. Rabbit had to sand it again because of a problem with the stain and we loved the look so much that we’re going with it. It’s so unique and really gorgeous.  I’ll get a picture and blog more about that later. but for now I’ve gotta go because I’m already an hour later than I like to be starting my day. We have therapy and more ortho and groceries and I need to run and Tropical Storm Harvey is still making the rounds.

It’s going to be another fun day.

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A few things this morning.

-I mentioned yesterday that I wasn’t sure if I should include Kait and Joe when I say that I did something or whatnot with 10 kids because neither of them are kids anymore. In fact, Kait doesn’t even live here anymore and will be a Mrs. in 2 months. However, it feels weird to not include her in my kid head count when I’m writing about our day because even though she isn’t a kid anymore, she’s still my kid.

This same thing goes for Joe but he still lives at home and so it isn’t as weird for me yet. Hm.

-I had a weird dream where all my hair fell out and, while I didn’t like that it happened, I wasn’t alarmed by it at all. This alarms me.

– The rest of our sod was delivered last night right as I was finishing up cooking dinner. The guys got to working and I served dinner outside on the patio table. It was a nice, cooler, 78 degree evening and everybody seemed to be much happier laying sod than on Friday. My backyard looks amazing.

– Rabbit has finished sanding and the table has been stained, praise God from whom all blessing flow.

We’re using this dark brown gel stain. I like it so far. The color is rich and reminds me of a chocolate bar but it leaves these paintbrush lines even though Rabbit doesn’t put it on with a paintbrush. It’s weird.  I’ve read that it just needs another coat, or that the wood was sanded too fine, or that it wasn’t wiped off quickly enough, or that gel stains just do that, or that or that or that…  We’ll get it figured out.

– My kids have adjusted to not watching movies or playing video games every day. I know they are over the withdrawal because they have become happy to find other things to do. They have now formed a club and it is very important and intense and there are passwords and disguises and drawings from a hat. It’s quite entertaining to watch.

– I cleaned out the pantry.

It was a crazy mess of expired baking products and empty granola bar boxes. There were three opened jars of peanut butter, 3 open containers of raisins, 3 opened containers of corn starch…  apparently we open things in threes.  Ben and I filled more than two trash bags full of unnecessary junk. I should pay attention to the pantry more often.  Rabbit asked how long I thought it would stay this way. I said about 24 hours.

– The reason I cleaned out the pantry was because we have had all these gnat-like bugs flying all over our house and they are making me crazy. I wanted to make sure there wasn’t any spoiled food attracting them. There wasn’t. We’ve cleaned and bleached and sanitized but they still show up in my coffee if I don’t drink it fast enough. I’ve decided that they must be coming in from outside because my kids don’t know how to close exterior doors. They are really good at slamming interior doors though. Go figure.

– I’m getting rid of our microwave. Probably today.  It is very small and we rarely use it and what we do use it for can easily be done on the stove or in the oven, which makes more sense with the number of people in our family anyway. I’m the only one who cleans it and I don’t even like it so it’s going away.

– This post has become much longer than I originally planned so I will go for now. It’s almost 8am and time to run.

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I woke up at 6 am yesterday morning. This may not seem super early to most of you but for me this is like a 6am-er waking up at 3. Lanie doesn’t usually fall asleep until after midnight and as hard as I’ve tried to change her bedtime she just keeps reminding me that Lanie does what Lanie wants and the rest of us here are just along for the ride.

Also, since being sick she has gotten into the new habit of waking up to eat at night. Sometimes twice. Normally, my typical children would have never gotten away with this at 17 months old but Lanie is a different story. Anytime she will eat, I will feed her because failure to thrive is one of the scariest things and she still has trouble gaining weight and when she does gain weight it is difficult to keep that weight on her.

Back to my story…

So, I woke up at 6am after having gone to bed at around 12:45 and after being up with Lanie for more than 2 hours in the night and tucking Maggie back in after she had to get up to go potty and I would like to interject here that I love not having to buy pullups anymore.

I think I probably got about 3 1/2 hours of sleep. Normally that is fine and I function alright but it’s been many weeks of bad sleep and yesterday I was mostly sleep walking which was perfect because this was delivered at about 7am.

We needed to put all those squares of grass here:

So I made a bacon and spinach quiche for breakfast and then went on a run and then went out to see this:

And I realized that this was going to take forever.

Good thing the weather was a nice 70 degrees. Perfect for a long day working in the yard.

Until about here.

All of the sudden it was 95 degrees and super humid. All the kids were out working in full force, along with one of the older boy’s friends (Thanks, Danny!).

But these guys just pushed through while I made food and took care of the littles and took pictures of marginal quality.

Maggie really wanted to help so she put on her “work clothes”, which consisted of an oversized pink t-shirt and a long pink skirt.

Laying sod required a lot of wheelbarrowing. Or barreling according to my younger kids.

Some people may have died.

But the transformation was amazing.

We miscalculated and still need two more pallets of but sod even with that section not being completed I am so happy with the yard and I can’t believe we actually have grass!

Next project? Paint the bathrooms. Or maybe edge and put red mulch down in the front garden. Or maybe print some pictures out for the plain white walls throughout my house.

No, finish the table!

Wait, cabinets…

I’m going to have an anxiety attack.

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Still sanding…

And when Rabbit can’t be here to sand because he has a job that actually requires him to go to work, he uses a stand in replacement (Joe-19) to keep the job going.

This job has proven to be incredibly taxing and detailed and truly annoying. I am thankful for my 14-foot long table, I really am, but this is maddening – and I’m not even the one sanding!

And because we’re realistic, we knew from the start that this job would have to be done in the house and not the workshop where the sawdust belongs.  But even with the sander’s dust collector, there is this light dusting of sawdust on everything and that is particularly irritating.  It is a full-time job keeping the dust from taking over our lives. I am so glad this is almost finished.

I am so glad this is almost finished.

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72 hours later… still sanding.

Refinishing this table is kicking his arse.

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It has become our normal on Saturdays now to get a project done or partially done or maybe just a tiny bit done because it’s a huge deal to make all new kitchen cabinet doors and we keep getting sidetracked because there is always something shiny catching our attention.

We’re redoing the kitchen right now, which is a terribly large and time-consuming project and because we’re a glutton for punishment last week Rabbit and I decided we would add to the ever-lasting job by sanding and restaining our 14-foot long dining table which had become sticky and glittery (don’t ask) and gross. This sanding job that we thought would take a day or so after the help of urethane and stain stripper has turned out to take more than a week and “required” the purchase of a fourth sander and so much time that we could have been using to shop at Target.

We now have two sanders on the job and the hubster and I have both been working on the thick layers of stain and urethane that heavily coat this huge table and my hands are still vibrating and Rabbit says his fingers feel like they have springs in them.

I should add here that when I say I have been sanding, I mean I sanded once for like a half hour. Just enough to say I helped sand.  In my defense, Lanie has been sick this week and she requires me to squish and squeeze her and kiss all over her cheeks when she’s not feeling well so I really couldn’t do much to help anyway.

I’ll get a picture of the kitchen cabinets we’ve been working on for the last month and write up that post later if I have the time. They’re going to be beautiful.

Someday.

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Out at the farm

We’ve been more busy than usual lately and while that means that I have much more to blog about, it also means I have less time to blog.  I used to be able to hammer out a blog post in 3.2 seconds flat but something happened to the writer in me and I am no longer able to do that for some reason.  I still love to write. I long to write. I just can’t seem to fit it in but where there is a will there is a way or some such nonsense, right?

We went to a friend’s farm on Saturday.  They weren’t in town but Kait was farm sitting and there were a ton of baby animals that Maggie just had to see.

She couldn’t even be bothered to stop for a picture because COWS! so I barely got this picture of Lucy and her.  She wasn’t able to hold still enough for more than that.

lucyandmaggie

Until we were getting ready to leave and she became very upset and made many statements about her feelings.

maggiesad

“I just want to stay here with Kaity.”
“I just want to stay here and pet the cows.”
“I just want to stay here for a really, really long time.”

Turns out that all the mamas had put their babies down for their afternoon naps.  The sow was very protective over her piglets and you don’t mess with a mother pig. The calves were sleeping too and a couple of the mama cows made it quite clear that we’d better not wake their babies.  I experience this feeling every single day so I understood.

Kait said she was taking a picture of a different cow and this gal just walked up behind her and nudged her shoulder for a selfie.

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And she got some pictures of the babies while we weren’t there.

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The 1-year-old was clearly annoyed by his younger brothers’ antics.

And the piglets.  Kait said she sat on a fence at a safe distance because that’s a big angry pig right there.

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Hopefully, I’ll be able to take the younger kids back out there this week for a better look.

One particular cow took a liking to Rabbit.

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A serious liking.DSC_0486

She kept trying to rub her face on him and wrap herself around him. He told her he was a married man but it seems she took that as a challenge. It was quite humorous.

Joe met a Lady.
joeandgreatpyr

Lady is a dog.  She’s a Great Pyrenees and she is so sweet and much larger than she looks in this picture.

Super friendly cow again.

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And Gabe with Lanie.  He was holding her most of the time so I could take pictures.

lanieserious

She was super smiley until we took her over to see the animals. Then she just stared and stared at everything and everyone.

gabeandlanie

Before we hiked it out to the animals I got a bunch of pictures of her being super happy and adorable in her new Carters duds.

laniesmile

I’ll write about my new love for Carters and Oshkosh in another post because what they are doing in the T21 community really deserves some extra attention.

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She’s growing and learning and achieving milestones and I’m so proud of her.
And just like her typical counterparts she’s curious and wants what she wants…

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And often what she wants is to put leaves in her mouth so she is actively learning the word no.

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I had a picture of everybody walking out to the pasture but it disappeared and that is disappointing to me.

Can you tell I have a better camera? I appropriated one of Kait’s Nikons and now if I snap enough pictures I can usually get a few decent photos. That’s the type of photographer I am.  Just point and shoot and shoot and shoot.

And hope for the best.

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We’re at a change of command dinner which is usually fancy and formal but is not this time.

It’s a beach theme and for some reason this meant to somebody that each table should come stocked with mustaches.  That was all fine and well until I made the mistake of saying they looked like uni-brows and Rabbit heard me.

image

Looks totally natural, right? I bet you’d never guess they were fake, would you.

Seriously though, I can’t take this man anywhere. Not even to an official military function.

Here is another one.

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He is having a serious conversation in the above picture.

This is who I married, people. I know you’re at least a little jealous.

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