A Fighting Chance

 If I never hatch (or assist hatch) eggs again it'll be too soon. Okay, it's been years since we've hatched eggs out - I guess I was super uncaring and cold back then?? I don't know, there's just something about baby chicks that tug at my heartstrings. They're so pitiful and helpless, I can't hardly stand it.

We've had 6 very successful hatches and one that didn't make it. There was one other egg last night that was trying to hard to hatch, but he just couldn't. The shell had hardened significantly due to loss of humidity, so this little one was in the fight of his life. I know you're not supposed to intervene until the very last minute, but this guy pipped several hours before and wasn't making any type of progress. So around 8 or so last night, I decided to help him along.

I'm not going into details, but I ever so gently chipped away at his shell until his beak was exposed. I was careful not to touch the membrane where the veins or yolk was. This went on until nearly 3:30 this morning until the little one finally broke free from the hole I made in his shell. He still had to fight really hard to get free of the membrane, but there was no way he would've made it out alone.

His cord was still really red and looked terrifying, so I couldn't help thinking that he might not make it. Thankfully when I got up today, he was alive and fluffed up! He cried and cried, but when he was put with his 6 siblings, he was happy as a clam. He's still very wobbly and almost pigeon toed a but, but once he gains more strength, he should be good to go. 

Talk about a stressful ass night. 

I really think that's all I have to share - it's been too rainy and wet to do anything with the garden, so I'll leave you with some random photos that not only I took today, but LaVaughn as well. Enjoy!

These photos I took:

These rest of these, LaVaughn took:

One of my fave pics of Clem.

My watermarking software wasn't working, so these are untagged.

Welcome To The World

 Yesterday was complete and utter insanity. As we were leaving Perryville, I had to run in Walmart to get a few things for my aunt, which was the only stop there. After that we had to make our way to Farmington for a grocery pickup. That was fine, went off without a hitch. After that I had to run into Rural King for some chick starter and to hopefully find an heirloom tomato plant and a few more pepper plants. Well they didn't have the type of heirloom tomato plant that I wanted, so I settled for some yellow cherry tomatoes and a banana pepper plant.

This is where it got terrifying. Last week Starbucks opened in Farmington which is super exciting, but not so much for the employees or the people waiting in a never ending hell that we call a drive thru. I used the mobile app to order, but you still have to use the drive thru to pick it up, which is fine. Well when we arrived, the line was backed up to the road and it stayed that way until we left. I've worked fast food before, I know how terrible it is to be wrapped and literally never get a break.

I'm not joking when I say we were in line for a minimum of 25 minutes. It would've almost been worth it if they had the caramel ribbon crunch, but oh no, they were out. Maybe next time, because the java chip is not worth the price or waiting in line for.

Since we hadn't had White Castle in ages, we decided to get that for dinner. After all, they have a 10 sliders for 5.99 deal going on right now, so totally worth it. Unfortunately the line for WC was almost just as ling. The waiting time there was around 20 or so minutes. 

After that, we had the 50 minute drive home. Fun!

All of the chaos aside, we did have 5 baby chicks to come home to! That made it (almost) all worth it. They're so stinking cute too, I just want to squeeze them to death. Unfortunately we couldn't really handle them too much, but today is a different story. Another little one started hatching out last night, but didn't fully hatch until after 9 this morning. He's SO cute and so dark!

All baby chicks are cute, who am I kidding.

Speaking of baby things, while I was un Rural King a group of around 5 people were looking at the baby bunnies. Apparently the youngest girl -- couldn't have been younger than 11 or 12 -- threw a fit when no one would buy her a rabbit. I'm talking full on screaming and crying and stomping off like a 2 year old. I would've been beat if I pulled something like that with my mom. Kids nowadays, so entitled.

In today news, I planted the cherry tomato plant and pepper plant earlier today. They fit right in with the other 48 tomato plants and 8 pepper plants. We have all our cucumbers, okra and half the zucchini planted, so while I was outside I went ahead and planted the other 5 zucchini plants. 

I'm not sure what's happening, but all the cucumber plants looks sickly. Some of the okra too, but mainly the cucumbers. I'm worried they're all gonna die out and we're going to end up buying more. I hope that's not the case, but it wouldn't surprise me. And tomorrow and Thursday it's supposed to rain. Not just light drizzles, I'm talking flash flood warning type of rain. It's going to really piss me off if some of our tuff washes out.

Hopefully that doesn't happen, one can always hope and pray. I'm going to leave it at that and share some pics of the baby chicks. Enjoy!

Here's 5 of our baby chicks.

The other guy is in the incubator still.

Winds Of Change

 It's been so windy, rainy and just plain nasty outside today. It's the type of weather that drains you of all your energy and forces you to do nothing. I'm serious, I had quite a few things that I needed to do today, but due to the dreary weather, they went undone. It's very cold today (and rainy), so planting in the garden today was delayed.

I did manage to vacuum the house yesterday, then I used the Garden Weasel in between the tomato fences and on either side. After I finished doing that and LaVaughn finished picking up rocks in the lower garden, we proceeded to pick up rocks in the tomato rows. All of this was for nothing, though, considering it's too cold and wet to plant today. I'm sure the magical garden gnomes will replace all the rocks by next week.

We do have lots of potato sprouts and lettuce coming up, which is very nice. I'm pretty sure that's the only things that's sprouting as of right now, hopefully after things warm up next week we'll see more. I'm getting really anxious about not getting all the sprouts in the garden planted, but we had freeze warnings late last week and early this week -- not to mention the snow -- so we really haven't had a chance to plant anything out doors. 

I guess that's all for now. It's Friday and packing for the work weekend is in full swing. I managed some photos earlier this evening, just random things from around the yard. I think I only have one dandelion seedhead in the mix, that's after I deleted the other 4 that I intended on sharing. 

Only dandelion seedhead pic in this post.

This is some of the lettuce that's starting to sprout.

Oops, I lied. I honestly forgot about this one, so here's another pic of the inside of a dandelion seedhead.

Potato sprouts!

I'm still not sure if this is just a growth on the maple leaf, or if it's some type of egg.

Beautiful red tulips.

Tulips are some of the prettiest flowers.

Well, I'm a liar times two. Yikes, I honestly didn't think I had another one.

Some type of pretty yellow flowery weed.

There were bugs all over this fire bush that I had to walk under.

These yellow wildflowers are so pretty.

I think they're Butterweeds.

I can't be too certain.

They look more like something out of the quantum realm.

I think I'll stick with Butterweed.

Snowfall In April

 If you live anywhere in my vicinity, then I'm sure you received a significant amount of snow yesterday. We're a little further south than most, so we didn't really even have anything that covered the ground for more than an hour. Places a little further north, like Perryville, actually had a decent accumulation. A friend of mine from St. Charles sent me a few photos and they got close to an inch or more.

I mean, this isn't record breaking or anything, but snow this late in April isn't common at all. We have our overpopulated earth and global warming to thank for our topsy-turvy weather. 

Yesterday and today both were very lazy days for me. I've been kind of off the past couple weeks, so I'm just trying to chill out a bit. It's been too cold to really do anything in the garden, so it's not like I'm losing opportunities to be busy outside. Tomorrow is a different story - it's supposed to be warmer, so it's time to get things ready to plant Friday. We should be out of freezing temps and frost warnings, so it's time for plants to go in the ground. 

I guess that's all for now. I do have a handful of photos to share that I took today, nothing special and no dandelion seedheads... today. 

Beautiful lilac blooms.

I didn't get too many photos of these guys today, it was super windy.

Almost blooms.

Pretty yellow weeds.

These things are all over the back of the house next to the blackberry bushes.

So this was a very difficult attempt. I wanted to photograph my eye with this 40mm macro lens for a while, but it's extremely difficult to get this close without shaking or squinting my eye. I had to face the sun or the photo was too dark. So yeah, here's a macro shot of my eyeball.

Tree blooms.

It was almost too bright for these, but I went for it.

Dandelion Romance

 I am 100% infatuated with photographing dandelion seedheads. I've never had the capabilities that I have now, so I'm really soaking in as much of these gorgeous little puffs as I can. I'm just amazed by this macro lens and everything that it can do. I'm finally figuring out the best setting for certain types of photos and lighting. It's taken some time, believe me, but I think I might have the hang of it now. 

I was in a very unnatural position to get some of these photos - it's times like these that I'm so thankful that we don't have neighbors that live next door. Definitely one of the many perks to living so far away from people. I mean, we still have our culty neighbors that live across the lake, but we live in a valley, so there's no spying on us. Unless, of course, they can get some type of areal view. 

Spying neighbors aside, I managed some really awesome photos today and I'm really thrilled with how they turned out. I could edit them in Lightroom to really make them pop, but I think that's unnecessary.

I also stumbled upon a spider when I went to bed the chickens. It was in stasis, or sleeping, when I first found it. I tried to get as close as I could, but the closer I got, the more my knees began to shake. Then it awoken from its slumber and stretched it's legs. I managed one more pic before darting away to safety. 

Then stupid me was showing my sister the last (and best) photo that I took of the spider when I decided to delete it. The delete button and back button are side by side, so it's easy to accidentally delete something, but you have to hit delete twice, which I did. Stupid, stupid, stupid. I quickly found some type of recovery software and, thankfully, was able to recover it. You may think it wasn't worth all the trouble, but considering I looked death in the face and managed to get a photo of it, it was definitely worth it. 

Well I guess that's all for now. 

I'm not going to caption all these pics, but this is definitely one of my fave dandelion seedhead pictures.

This is the my favorite, I think. I love how the 40mm Nikon lens can execute pictures like this. The sun set perfectly behind this dandelion seedhead.

Close second dandelion seehead.

I also forgot about this one. I'm just in love with photographing dandelion seedheads. I'm so thankful for my macro lens and being able to get shots like this.

I also like this highlighted dandelion seedhead pic.

Tiny spider I found on the gate.

This was the stasis-mode spider.

This was the pic that I deleted by accident, but it's the best that I was able to get. I could've gotten closer, considering the 1:1 ratio on this lens, but there was no safe way for me to get that close - I was terrified. Hopefully down the road I'll have the 105mm macro lens that I want and will be able to get up close photos without getting, well... up close.