It was a beautiful, beautiful day and we spent much of it outside relaxing, and just enjoying the sunshine.
Annie actually allowed me to photograph her relaxing too. Usually she wants to lick the camera, or me, and I never get a good picture of her doing what she loves to do best.... which is sleeping!
The sun was bright and warm, and while I relaxed outside in the sunshine, Annie chose to find a nice cool spot in the shade.
It was a lovely day for a snooze!
Roger agreed. He chose to snooze on the front steps, in the shade too.
Oh to have the life of a dog!
In the afternoon, my family treated me to a nice dinner at Olive Garden. It was a very special time, and amazingly, we pretty much just walked right in! When we arrived, my heart kind of sank, because there were tons of people milling around outside. I told my family that if the wait was too long, we would just go somewhere else. But, my son went in to see about the wait, and came back out with a beeper. They told him 15 minutes. He had just gotten back in the vehicle, where we decided to wait, as the restaurant and outside areas were full, when the beeper went off! We literally didn't even wait 5 minutes, and we went in and were seated right away! That was a real treat in itself!
We enjoyed all the food, but most especially the desserts!
Sicilian Cheesecake -- ooh it was so good! I couldn't finish it all, so brought it home as a treat for later.
Going out to check on our sitting hens and I found another amazing surprise! The baby chicks had hatched!
What excitement! We didn't get to see the process, but here they were - right on time for Mother's Day!
At first I only saw one.
So sweet and chirpy! It seemed it had been born several hours before, because it wasn't wet, but completely dry and happy.
Then I wondered ... are there more? What was Momma hen hiding from me?
Sure enough, I began moving the hens - who got VERY angry with me about this! - and discovered two more baby chicks, another yellow one, this one with little brown stripes down its back...
... and the cutest little black one! Unfortunately, as I looked around the coop, I saw a sad sight. One little black chick had hatched itself out of the egg, but met an unfortunate ending somehow, and it just broke my heart. As I stood and watched the chicks with the mothers, I realized that some of the hens weren't being very nice and wondered if perhaps our little black chick that didn't make it was because of the way some of the hens were treating the chicks. We decided to remove the three chicks and bring them inside.
Here they are all warm, safe and comfy.
It was obvious that they didn't feel safe, as they all crowded into one corner together, huddled and trying to understand their new surroundings.
I can imagine it was quite a shock to be taken away from the safety of their mother's wings, however, I was worried about the other hens not being so nice to them, so it was in their best interest to come inside with me.
Welcome to your new home! They were unsure of their new home without the safety of their mother's wings, but after I turned the red heat lamp on, they began moving around and chirping happily.
They found the food and water bowl and began eating and drinking and chirping quite loudly.
This one is really the "poser" of the three. The other two didn't really care for my camera, but this one was curious.
This sweet little chick has a very, very loud chirp and when it decides to chirp, it chips so loudly, you can hear its voice through the house! I just wonder... is this a rooster? LOL!
We had a mishap a week or so ago with Annie. She got loose from our yard, and ran over into our neighbor's yard, and killed 7 of their hens. :( It was terrible. So, our neighbor and I agreed that when our chicks hatched, I would give her 7 chickens from them. Only problem being is that I think we are only going to get 3 chicks from this batch of 18 eggs, which is not a very good hatch rate. Our friend who brought us the eggs said he had a 40% hatch rate with all his in the incubator. He thinks his rooster wasn't "doing his job". LOL... So... that meant a trip for me down to the feed store to buy 7 little chicks to raise and give back to our neighbor. And that means all the excitement of 18 possible eggs, may translate only into 3 new chicks for us.
So here are the 7 little chicks I got from the feed store. They have adapted somewhat well to their surroundings, but still freak out if I try to touch them. I suppose it will take them a while to adjust to this new environment, after being through so much handling, and scary adventures from hatching, to the feed store, and now home with us.
But my 3 little babies hatched by our hens do not move away in fright from me at all, and even hop into my hand when I offer it outstretched.
And this little yellow one really enjoys the camera!
I am already calling her a "her", and hope that she is a she! LOL!
"She" lets me hold her in my hand quietly and seems to enjoy being touched and talked to.
I will never cease to be amazed at the circle of life, and how a beautiful little life like this comes from an egg! I am told that we will not be able to tell the difference between sexes probably until their chirps change and you will hear a rooster make its signature call, and then you will know just who is who. So for now, I have not named these sweet little ones, except that I really do hope that "she" is a she! lol!
These lovely pieces of joy served up a lovely and wonderful Mother's Day spent relaxing, and enjoying the special day with my family, and that was made quite memorable by the arrival of three little fluffy peeps. :)