Category: Newborn Critters


“Lower-Phylum Guardian Angels”

I firmly believe that every one of us has at least One Guardian Angel.  And, if the truth were known, we probably have ‘groups’ of them hanging around us constantly.  How else can you explain all the unexpected  protection, or guidance, or love that we feel “from Somewhere’?

One of the many things I studied over the years was just What angels were, and where they were, and what classifications there were, and what they looked like.  I found many surprising things, including that Some angels Do, Indeed, Have Wings!  There are many different ‘levels’ of angels, depending upon their ‘job’.  One of my very Favorite levels is what this Post is about…the “Lower-Phylum Guardian Angel”.   This is dedicated to some of these Guardians that have been a part of my Cousin Mary’s life.  Thank God she had the presence of mind to get pictures of them to share!  The ‘stories’ are by Mary.

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“This is Cha Cha:  b.1976, d.1990.  She was our hellion.  She came from a wild litter and she never really lost that wildness.  We gave her that name cause that cat food commercial was so popular at the time… Cha cha cha!! ”

Chillin' for the camera

“Jasper: b.1993 d.1995.   We only had him for about 18 months. He died from surgery complications. The little stinker would eat anything, and I don’t mean just food.  During  his operation the doctor found 32 cents in his stomach.  He was loved even if for that short time.”

"Can I have those pennies on the table? Or a shoe lace? Or Something?"

“Sambo: b. 1974 d,1988.   Our 20lb plus cat!.  We had him before we got Cha Cha.  They bonded right off and when Cha Cha got hurt, Sambo (“Sam”) nursed her back to health.  Cha Cha and Sam we got while living in Hawaii and brought them both back with us to Okla.”

"I used to be a Panther....before I shrank."

“Skipper:  b,1975, d. 1993.  He was our first ever Peke!  He was given to us when he was already at least 10 yrs old.  He had been abused but settled into our home and hearts.  And how he was loved!  He would sleep on top of John’s pillow at nite.  He was definitely John’s dog.”

"I Love John! I Love John! I Love John's pillow!"

“Taz (‘White Tazmanian Devil’)  b. 1994, d. 2010.  He was our charmer.  The name really didn’t fit him at all but that is how we had him registered.  One spoiled dog I can guarantee that.  He never really knew he was a dog. ”

"I am Beyond Cute, and I Love You So Much!"

“Trixie ( ‘Trixie Southern Belle’).  b.1995 d.2010.  She was definitely my dog!.  Girl-to-girl is what it was. She would pick on Taz continuously…and Taz just ignored her big time! ”

"Pardon me, Sugar...did you want to capture of photo of little, ole me?"

Finally we have  Angel.  This sweetheart  belonged to my Mom until she passed, then went to live with Mary whom she adored and who  loved her back just as fiercely!

"This is my 'Forever Home'."

“Each one of these special pets gave John and I love and compassion, and total devotion.  God gives us His animals to take care of and love…and we wouldn’t have missed any of it!”

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I am willing to bet you have had a few “Lower Phylum Angels” in your life, too….and you just didn’t suspect  it!

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“Are We There, Yet?”

“So…..so…..sleepy…..

....Can't keep my eyes open ...(photo by Mary/Mom)

….let me know as soon as we are done with snow, ok?”

Even though it has been only a few short weeks, I have grown to love the Robin clan.  The parents seem to be very “Pro-Family”….a Character Trait that a lot of us  two-legged critters appear to be lacking lately.  We  could use more of that Now than ever before.  Even though Robin Hood is brave, and teetering on the edge of a glorious new life, I get the feeling his siblings will be close on his trail-blazing butt!

Mary:  A couple hours ago took a look and only saw 3 babies. They are all grown up and leaving home this week. What a sad grandma! Will keep you up on the count as this week progresses.

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Mary:  Well they all did what big brother did… about 8 this morning there were still 3 babies in nest. An hour later all gone    11:06 AM
Me: Can’t you just ‘hear’ the typical “Mother Response” to that:  “So, just because your big brother does it that makes it all right for you to do it too???!!”

Me:  And, they kind of scoot right out of photo-taking range very quickly, don’t they?

Mary:  They have all flown the coop! Did get a pic on one chick hopping around the yard. Will send it later.

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Mary:  This is Peep-a-Boo, the last to leave home.  he/she just sat there and posed for me.       11:09 AM

So Tiny, and So Ready to Take on Life photo by Mary

Me:  Wow!  Blends in well with her surroundings, huh?  It looks like she is looking up at you!

Me:  Omg…I am SO smiling! She just sat there and said “Good bye”, didn’t she? No fear, just “Laters, Gramma.”

Mary: …or:  “I am a big girl now.”   I saw Robin Momma nearby, but she was not worried in the least about me taking pictures.  Like:  “I know you wanted a photo or two, so you Go, Girl.”   11:17 AM

Almost ready to leave... photo by Mary

Me:  I see Peep a Boo…on the handle of the hose reel!  Beautiful!

Mary:  And then there is the ever-patient Angel…getting one last look at What She Can Never Have!

"If I could only get outside for a second..."

Me:  lol….can almost feel her tension!

Mary:  This has been so much fun!    11:18 AM
Mary:  I have the  ivy already trimmed some what and will see if parents come to raise any more.  For now, I have This to look at:

SO empty....and sad... Photo by John

Me:    Oh, oh….getting a little teary eyed…    11:18 AM.
Mary:  I am sorry hon!  I have had a few more years with that than you have, but it is still teary for me when my kids visit and leave again.  That never goes away. We just adjust.    11:23 AM
Mary:  AND, as I have gotten older I want them back again… or at least closer to us.  Full circle!  11:24 AM
Me:  I’ve just decided to get an actual Print of that nest and frame it and hang it where I can see it at all times, as a reminder that All Life is basically running on the same path!
Mary:  God is Good.. all things come back around hon.    11:25 AM
Mary:  I’ve seen families re-united after years and years of separation.    11:26 AM
Me:  omg…We are writing my last post about what the Robin Family Saga was preparing me for….
btw…you and John have just played a major role in one of my more difficult learning experiences. ..Letting Go…THANK YOU!
Mary: Very good!  Omg… again our “Father” has provided…    11:27 AM

Mary:  Maybe you need a little Happiness….

A little bit of Heaven... photo by Mary

Me:  Ah, that worked.  Thank you!
Me:  Mary, I feel as if I am leaving something huge behind …but it is ok…    11:32 AM

Mary:  Each and every day another miracle or Blessing is going on in our lives    11:32 AM

Me:  Well, that was not only a very pleasant Miracle, but a fun one!  Mary, and John, thank you for making me a part of all this!  xoxox

Mary:  I’m worried.  There seems to be too much ‘bird’ for the size of the nest!

Me:  Wow!  They’ve gotten that big so soon?

Mary:  I really hope these pics show the true situation. those babies are sooooooooooooo crammed into that nest they have no room to move.  out of survival they will have to leave soon. lol lol lol

Mary:  The first pic shows where the nest is in the ivy….

Beautiful location, Robin Mom and Dad photo by John

Mary:  It is kinda hard to see it is so deep in the vine.  You can see the kitchen window Angel (cat) sits in and watches….till someone catches her on the counter!

Mary:  In this next picture is very easy to see the nest absolutely full to brim with kids!

Perfect view....a full nest! photo by John

Me:  Looks like they are oozing out!

Mary:  AND, when it gets This full…..one “Robin Hood” says:  “I’m SO outta here!”

"Wait a minute....if I leave, no free eats!" photo by John

Mary:  Boy oh boy!  Robin Hood is liable to leave home anytime now.  glad we had the opportunity to get this pic.   enjoy!

Me:  Well, let me take a look while I still have a chance….  Beautiful!  How sad…another child ‘flies the coop.’

Mary:  Soon but not yet!  lol lol  still a head count of 4

Yes, but for how long…..?

Mary:  I just took my first peek today at our babies.  omg they are getting huge!   I got right up close and was able to look eye to eye with three of them.  Our little Peep a Boo sleeps alot but that one is the youngest.  lol

This whole story is unfolding ‘way too fast!  Next thing I will hear from Mary  is that the babies’  feathers are in, and they are teetering on the edge of the nest contemplating “The Dive.”   I really hope John catches a lot of really good photos when they are fuzzy, and speckled, and ready to leave home.

Mary:  Ready for another picture?  How about this:

Growing, and very hungry! photo by John

Me:  Adorable!   I can see some speckles, Mary!  Tell John Thank You, and to keep that camera focused!

You just Know that involving yourself with any kind of wildlife can be fun and exciting, but it can also be very nerve-wracking.  That being the case, I was not surprised to get the following message.

Mary:  Panic, panic a while ago.  I looked out window and momma/papa was acting funny. flapping wings like mad but not going to nest. my first thoughts one of our babes fell from nest. so when parents flew off i did a head count and 4 are still in nest.
Then it dawned on me… do you think they were trying to coax babies from nest?  I have a hand rail across from lattice where nest is and that’s where momma was flapping and flapping. she also had food in her mouth.
seems a little too soon to be coaxing them away from nest.
Just “grandma” worrying about her kids. lol lol
Stay tuned. xoxoxoxoxo

Ok, if you have been following my blog posts for any length of time you Know that I am, by nature, a Rescuer.  How the heck am I going to rescue baby robins in another state?  I don’t know, but all it took was that message.   I was sure going to try something!  The message had come in a couple of hours earlier, so I needed details.  Geesh, Allie….

Me:  Were the two birds fighting?  Was one of them a stranger, perhaps, and the other one a parent protecting her/his babies?  Did you see a rodent near the nest?  Did you see a strange bird nearby?

Mary:  that’s just it, didn’t see anything else around.  hasn’t happened since and have seen a parent going to nest feeding babes a little bit ago. really strange whatever was going on.   there was no fight. so guess at this time all is okay with our family.
Could have been something down on ground between rail and where porch starts.  After parent flew away and I checked on babies, looked on ground and didn’t see anything, but whatever could have taken off by that time.  so u dont think parent was trying to get babe to go to her for food?

Me:  I really have no idea (just a lot of frustration, even though I wouldn’t have been able to do anything anyway if I Could “magically appear 1000 miles from here in a flash”….which I dearly wanted to do!). Did you put him back in? Are his eyes open? Maybe parents bitching him out for being such a pig? Oh, ya…..Hi, Mary!    7:36 PM
Me:  Maybe the parents were yelling at the other kids to be more aggressive about getting some food?    7:38 PM
Me:  Or, maybe he was in trouble for breaking curfew?    7:38 PM

Mary: He never fell out, just almost. boy I came close to reaching out for him tho. lol lol but cant do that. momma would then abandon him.     7:48 PM
pic on its way!    7:52 PM

Phew!  Another Crisis successfully averted.  Oh, don’t ask!  Just go along with me on this.

Another message from Mary:  Check your e-mail….picture coming!

Four Beautiful Robins...all Hungry photo by John

Mary:  Chick to far left of pic is Robin Hood,  chick to the very far right (can barely see that one) has got to be peep-a-boo.  enjoy!   lol

Omg…their eyes are open, they look healthy, and this photo has got to be one of the very best I have ever seen.  Excellent work,  John!  I  am SO looking forward to the fuzzy-chicks photos!  This is almost as good as being there!

Now Mary, how did you decide “Who was Who” in this photo?

Went back and counted:  This is the 14th Post about the Robin Family.  Wow!  Got kinda caught up in all of this.  And, again I’ve Been waiting for any word about the baby robins.  I am expecting some pictures very soon.  John has done a great job of catching rare photos of the most-of-the-time-hidden chicks.  So, if there is any activity not totally guarded by both the Robin parents he will undoubtedly be witness to it, and capture some excellent pictures.  Meantime, I wait.  Then, a message from Mary…

Mary:   I caught Angel {Mary’s cat} looking out the kitchen window this afternoon…she was down and running before I thought about my camera!  lol

Oh, oh….Angel must be watching for signs of activity just as much as John and Mary are.  I can almost hear her excited ‘chatter’  (Human translation:  Let me at ’em! Let me at ’em!)

Next message from Mary:  What do you think about names for these kids?  Any more suggestions?

Mary and I have spent many nights laughing and passing names back and forth.  The pictures these names conjured were priceless.  We came up with a whole lot of really cute ideas, but they were lacking one thing:  The individual personality that matched it.  We had enough choices,  but getting to ‘know’ the new family members and matching one of the names to the chick that ‘earned’ it would have to be left in Mary and John’s hands.

Being so new, most of the babies were keeping low in the nest……all except for the one that John snapped a photo of and sent to this blog.

Me:  So, Mary, has This chick earned one of the names, yet?

Mary:  He looks like a “Robin Hood” to me…The Hero (the first to assert himself), and very Brave.

Me:  Sounds like you have a match!

Mary:  And then there’s the little chick I can barely see looking over the edge of the nest….I think her name is Tweety Pie!  She is all Sweetness and charm…but definitely looking for her mouthful.

Me:  I am so glad this part of the “Saga” is in YOUR lap, Mary!

Mary:  John will be getting pictures, and it will be easier to see why I think these names are so fitting!  Oh, yes…then there is Chicken Little, totally trying to hide like maybe the “Sky Really IS Falling!”

Me:  You are doing fine, Mary!  Just let me know when  you see the fourth chick….and if you think it has earned one of the names on the list, go for it!

Mary:  Will do!  Pictures as soon as possible.
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Mary:  update: 10:55am May 19th, took a head count and there really Are 4 babies… picture to follow.

Four sleepy robin babies photo by John

Me:  Oooooooooo, they are so precious! Love it! John take this one?    9:23 PM

Mary:  yup. mainly cause he can do it without using the flash.     9:24 PM

Me:  Oh, yes…definitely.  Nothing to perturb parents…..    9:24 PM

Mary:  Those babes are really laid back. never hear a sound out of them. Momma robin a good momma. 9:24 PM
Me: Omg…..Mary,  I just realized what this last baby’s name should be!  How about Peep-a-Boo….as in: ‘Surprise, Here I Am!’

Mary:  Love it!        Happy Birthday!  our kids are 1 week old today.

And, they have their names:  Robin Hood, Chicken Little, Tweety Pie, and Peep-a-Boo!  Any takers on which one will be climbing out of the nest first?  Well, we shall see….

Short and sweet:

Mary:  Update: 10:55am May 19th, took a head count and there are 4 babies. picture to follow later.     11:52 AM

Yay!  Now we need to name them.

Storms out their way today and tonight, so maybe pictures tomorrow.  We have 4…..Way To Go, Robin Momma!

It’s been very quiet for a couple of days.  No news from Mary about the babies, but I can be patient when circumstances call for it.  Mary and John are trying to respect Robin Momma’s privacy.  They do, however, watch from a distance…waiting for that magic moment when a spectacular photo is their’s for the taking.  Then, a message from Mary:

Mary:  hey,
just got in  from a fun day running around .  i took a peek at our babies while mom/dad were off someplace(making more babies?) lol and kids were sound asleep, beaks wide open waiting for food. they are soooooooooooo much fun to watch.  hope to get a good pic in next few days.

Great message….all seems to be well with the Robin Clan.

Then, a little while later this message from Mary:

Mary:  here is a cutie!   love this one.  stay tuned! John said he will probably give it a few days now before taking anymore pics.

Ready, and Waiting photo by John

Mary, my Sweet Cousin, this is too wonderful for words!  Does John have any idea how Good he is at capturing the perfect picture?  Probably not.  I just hope he keeps this up….especially when they begin to feather-out and hop around the edge of the nest.  What fun this all is!

So, will the baby in the picture be the biggest, strongest, or just the Loudest?   And, will Mary name this one, and it’s brothers and sisters…..?

As Mary said:  Stay Tuned….I will so let you know!  lol

Is this what Robin Momma's children will look like? photo S. Bryan

Mary:  isn’t that just the cutest?

Me:  Beyond sweet, Cuz!

Mary:  this is really sooooooooooooo much fun. what we are really looking forward to is when all those chicks are big enough to be stretching their necks our of nest and yelling “feed me” “feed me” lol
going to get a good pic then    5:05 PM

Mary:  love to know how many folks may be following the story    5:07 PM

Me:  I don’t know for sure how many are visiting for the updates on the robins, and how many are just surfing.  I DO know some people who are anticipating cute little baby birds as much as we are.   I think we just need a little relief from all the bad and depressing stuff in the news, so…..

Mary:  hey we need to put names to these kids!    5:26 PM
eeny, meeny minny moe.take your pick. lol lol later coz    5:30 PM

Me:  Maybe I should ask our readers to volunteer some names?   It would be something to do while they are waiting.

This is such a hoot!!  ( Oops, wrong bird!)

Ok, folks, feel free to leave any suggestions…..we could use your help!