Sioux got here about 11, I had barely been asleep so I gave her a hug and went back to bed. Saturday we got up and ate an amazing breakfast that Sioux had made. In fact Sioux brought a cornucopia of food. Fried chicken, potato salad, corn pudding, crab cakes, spinach salad with blueberries and almonds, herb muffins, corn bread, blue berry muffins, pear/apricot tart, grape olive oil cake, caviar with all the fixings, and oh, I am not sure what else, I know I am missing something. She wanted to make sure that we had plenty of food while she was here, but she also wanted to leave me with food.
After breakfast we bought chick food and then drove to McClay Gardens in the toy with the top down. It was a glorious day, clear blue skies, perfect temperature, a gorgeous garden at the peak of the blooming of the azaleas. We walked and oohed and aahed and looked up and down. Everywhere we looked it was glorious, absolutely glorious. It felt invigorating to get outside and walk and stretch out my arms and legs. To stretch out like the plants around us. Stretching out cold tired limbs that have spent a winter stagnant, and now with the warmth and sunshine reach up and out.
We came home and rested for the afternoon, talking and watching movies. In the evening we drove over to Casa Luna and had cocktails with Ms Judy who was house sitting while the Moon's were at Gatorbone. On the drive back the super moon, big and round and orange danced back and forth across the interstate, playing hide and seek through the trees. Then the final curve and there sat Mr. Moon right over the interstate close enough you could pick it out of the sky and pop it in your mouth like a butterscotch candy.
This morning Sioux left after a breakfast of caviar and headed south. I slipped around the house and yard doing this and that until time to go down to the Opera House. We had a wonderful rehearsal and now I am home and soon to bed.
Chick update. This is hard raising peeps. I don't have to do it every year, but last year between the foxes and opossums, and possibly a rogue Jack Russell Terrier (just kidding) I had lost my rooster and all but 3 of my hens. Dealing with the circle of life can be hard, very hard at times, but oh so worth it. Do I need a dozen hens for egg production? Heavens no, my three hens produce more eggs then I can consume now. No, I love a flock of chickens, scratching and pecking around the yard. Weeding, little Entomologist fertilizer makers, that is what chickens are, and they produce eggs, and of course people eat chickens. I have eaten 3 of my roosters, but I have never eaten any of my hens. My roosters were possibly the best chicken I have ever eaten. I knew everything they had eaten because I fed them. I knew everywhere they had been and what a wonderful happy life they had lived and how much they were loved. But four roosters in my coops is way too many.
And with this batch of baby peeps hopefully there were be a rooster. Chances are that there will be several roosters in the group. I like having a rooster. I have had ferocious chickens before that would just as soon kill you as well, that was all they wanted to do. And I have had roosters that have been very protective of their hens, and yet be so gentle to people. I like it if something gets into the coop the rooster will scream for help and then do his best to protect his harem. And if I am able to get out in time I can help the rooster to keep everyone safe.
I like having a flock of chickens because not only do they make me fertilizer and give me eggs, but they are wonderful pets. Some let you pet them like a cat, others follow you around like a dog, some are aloof and air headed as most people think of chickens. Each has their own personality and each flock has a personality. And they make me smile. They are a lot of work, I guess. When you love your family, whether human, plant or other animals, you don't think of it as work, you just take care of them. And I do love my chickens. I guess that is why I got peeps. I know it would be easier to adopt older birds, maybe teenagers or so. But I like to bond with them when they are tiny. I like to watch them to see who is a hen and who is a rooster, and who are the alphas of the group.
Some don't make it. For whatever reason they do not grow as fast as the other peeps and you loose them. Not many, but there can always be a few. It is a long commitment you make to take a peep up to being able to be put out in the coop and make it outside like that. Now they are in the tub in the guest bath room. Easy to clean up after, easy to keep warm and easy to keep them safe. For now. But soon they will be hopping and jumping and the tub will no longer hold them. So I will have to get the cage out into the one side of the coop to put them in to keep them safe until they are big enough to be in the coop all night with out an extra cage.
I am in a place where I can take on this commitment to these tiny balls of fluffs. Whose wings are stretching out longer each day and the first hints of feathers are starting to prick out. They peep and eat and scratch and sleep in a big pile, the light replacing the warmth of a mother's down. They huddle together for that warmth and for companionship. They rely on each other, not their mothers. Domestic birds, bred to live with humans. A flock of friends, sisters mostly, a few brothers, who will become one brother. The others? No, I am not going to eat them. The people will take them back and trade for hens. And this flock will have a pecking order and the rooster will have favorites, and their will be an alpha hen, who at the moment is Zora Neal, and she will probably be the mother and alpha of this flock as they blend in with the 3 older hens, and there will be never be another flock like this one, and its personality will shift and change through out the years as the older ones die, or predators feed their family with them. They are in a strong coop, but things can still happen, no matter how hard you try and keep your babies safe. At some point you have to let them grow up and love them for who they are.
Final item to report is that my liver is giving me trouble. Like confusion, getting turned around easily, pain in my side, nausea, headache, terseness and exhaustion. The rash on my face is quite uncomfortable. it is not hideous, in fact when I say that it is uncomfortable, people look at me and say, "I don't see any rash." Well, I guess I am glad that it is not obvious and disgusting, but it feels like what I think is psoriasis. It is dry, red, itchy, burning, with bumps. Tomorrow I go to the doctor for blood letting so I can talk to Bobbie, his wonderful and adorable nurse and tell her that I have the rash and can I get some of the cream for it. And I will tell her about my liver situation. She will tell Dr. M, and he will know what to do. The lab results will also help guide him on what to do for me.
And now to bed, it always takes longer to write this then I anticipate. But I do not write this as much as try and search for things I need to record. What do I want to remember, what do I need to get off of my chest, what insists on being recorded. It was a glorious weekend. I got to spend time with a dear friend, and still get some rest. And then to play with friends at the Opera House, and talk to family, and stretch in the warmth and sunshine, and walk through glorious gardens on one of the most glorious days of the year, and then to be driving up the Interstate with the top down on the toy, a sky filled with stars and a moon as big and round as anything you have ever seen, and to share that with a friend. Sigh, what a wonderful life I have.