As most of you know, Vasili and I have been the temporary residence of three baby ducklings this past month – Bugsy, D(uck) Rose, and Lil’ Suzy It’s been so much fun bringing them along to my sessions, and the kids & families have had so much fun playing with them but alas… they’ve been growing at lightning speed and we’ve realized that it’s time to give them a far better home than we are now able to provide. Thankfully our friends down in Carbondale, IL have a big farm and were kind enough to let the duckies make a new home there. I think what made me the most happy about leaving them with our friends is that they are now part of one big Farm Family of Love. Currently part of the ‘Farm Family’ is a donkey named Stella, lots of goats and sheep that just gave birth to their own little babies, roosters, chickens, turkeys, bunnies (who also just had babies!), barn cats that sun bathe and catch mice all day, and even a few dogs who guard everyone against outside dangers. They all live in complete harmony and love each other, love people, and truly just spend their days enjoying life.
We also missed our friends so much and couldn’t wait to spend time with them and catch up with baby Iris, who was just about 2 months old the last time we visited the farm. Now at 15 months old Iris is walking and even learning sign language! I can’t even describe to you the feeling I had being able to communicate with her despite the fact that she is still so young and not quite able to talk a lot yet. She would sign for ‘mom,’ ‘dad,’ when she wanted to go play ‘outside,’ when I left the room she signed for ‘friend’ wondering where I had gone, and she even signed for ‘water’ when the duckies were waddling down to the pond.. It was pretty awesome. Not only is baby Iris growing super fast but she loooooves babies. She was already really excited playing with the baby duckies, petting the baby bunnies, and even meeting the new baby goat that was born the night we arrived (yep, she would sign for ‘baby’ too!). I was on cloud nine as I followed Iris around the farm with my camera and playing with everybody..
The day we left, I woke up really sad knowing I had to say good bye to my trio.. I went outside on the porch and made my usual “beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep!” call for them but they were no where to be found. I panicked for a second thinking that maybe they had somehow wandered off and gotten lost during the night, until I looked over and saw Iris and her dad in the distance feeding all the animals and the ducks trailing right behind them.
Anyway, here are some of my favorite pics from the two days we spent with our friends and letting the duckies get used to their new home. I don’t think I have words for how thankful I am to you Mike, Jess & Iris for taking good care of my furry little friends. As always, we had way too much fun seeing you and we can’t wait to come back SOON XO
(NOTE: I’d like to follow this post by saying to any photographers out there who are now thinking how totally awesome and cute it’d be to have your own baby ducklings for your sessions next Spring.. you should know they require hourly feedings and water refills for the first week or two and LOTS of play time every day.. and much like newborn babies, they cry their brains out when they’re not getting all of the above. Please be prepared for this if you ever decide to have your own duckling family. And with knowing that, let’s say you do decide to go ahead and take the plunge, be sure to bring them only around children 1+ and only under careful parental supervision as babies younger than 1 can unknowingly grab, squeeze, choke and/or do serious harm to the ducklings).
above: checking out their new pad with big ole’ Mogley following not far behind. I just love how they always walk in a line together!
above: the first morning after we arrived I took the duckies out and walked them down to the pond. Clearly all my bath time with them back in Chicago paid off.. Without any hesitation they jumped right in and made themselves at home.
above: a little dancing and tunes. I love when Vasili plays the piano, he is soooo so good! I keep telling myself we have to start saving for one.. (unless you or someone you know happens to be giving one away any time soon? *wink, wink*hint,hint* )
above: humans, bunnies, goats, duckies.. you name it, there were all sorts of babies on the farm. Needless to say I felt like I was in heaven being surrounded by so many furry little creatures. If you know me then you know I LOVE animals. For example, even though Vasili and I arrived to the farm at midnight, I made him come outside with me and say hi to them all lol (and after typing that, my first thought is that’s totally something my mom would do. She routinely calls me to tell me how she’s rescued a number of random animals from the side of the road, or once she called hysterically crying because she accidentally ran over a squirrel and felt awful she didn’t stop to be with it while it died. It’s probably the quality I cherish most getting from her )
above: D(uck) Rose and Justin Bieber meet each other for the first time.
above left: Mogley and Chloe. They’re huge, furry and so so loveable.. but they also guard everyone on the farm from any outside dangers. They’re like the fat guys that stand outside of a night club but much more snuggly hehe
above: Iris picking some Irises!
above: the night that Vasili and I arrived, one of their goats gave birth to her baby! Did you know that baby goats are super soft and wag their tails when they’re happy?? They’re like little puppies!
above: I think these pics of baby Iris with the farm’s new baby goat are just about the cutest pictures I’ve ever taken. No, really. I challenge you to find something cuter
above: Mogley taking a nap on the porch. Oh the life of a farm animal… such a rough life.
above left: Iris signing for ‘water’ as the duckies were headed for the pond!
above: I always say how much I can’t wait to own my home so I can have a hammock to take naps in and read outside. Vasili and I took a nap for a couple hours together on our friends’ hammock in the shade, it was beyond wonderful. (as a side note, I’m also totally obsessed with Hunter rain boots. In fact, I love them so much that if you or your child wears them during a shoot with me, I’ll throw in a free print )
above: if you follow my blog, you know how much I cherish nursing time.
above: ahh, one last picture of me with my trio before saying good bye.. thanks Vasili for taking this