next month, one of my bosses is going to meet me to discuss longterm plans. this is something i've been gunning for for the past six months. during this time, i've been working my ass off on everything she has thrown at me. i guess i've passed the test. this is also the reason why i'm not saying yes to the third project yet. i don't want to compromise on the quality of my work.
and also of course, i need some time for my kids. :)
lucien is about to moult again. she's the biggest bub, and the most well-developed one. when i'd first scooped her out of lucy's jar, she was the biggest amongst everyone. that very first night in her own pink jar, she'd spun herself a very large (for a newborn bub) hammock almost immediately. the hammock was amazing well constructed for a newborn bubba. that was when i knew lucien was on to great things. :) she has proved that right. she eats well, and attacks everything with gusto. she is nice and fat, and is so well structured she looks just like a mini-lucy right now. a few days ago, she dragged her old hammock off the ceiling with her fangs. just when i was wondering what she was up to, she started to build herself a little palace, spanning half the height of her entire jar, complete with walkways! i handle her almost everyday, just to see if she can be domesticated, also because she is the most calm of the lot. she now seems to recognise my hand as a safe landing place, where she doesn't hesitate to jump on. she is currently standing at 2cm, including leg-span. i can't wait to see how big she gets after this next moult. :)
next biggest bub is bib. bib is sporting girl-colours but behaving more like a boy - less enthused about food and spooks very easily. problem child, this one. i believe she's a girl though, the colours can't be wrong. bib has a strange habit of eating in the night. she would run away from the frisky food all day. then at night, when i sometimes sneak a peek at them sleeping, she would be standing outside her bed, with the frisky food in her fangs. she is much less developed than lucien, due to her irregular meals and intake of nutrients.
tiga is a boy! my first confirmed boy. :) his previous moult was the one that did the trick - previously they all looked the same, with baby-colours. then one time, he took a really long time to moult. he was hiding for about a full week before finally moulting. rested in his bed for a day and a night. the next morning, i woke up to find him hiding on the floor behind his water filter - with the other bubs standing on their walls and staring at him! haha. it was rather funny. but i knew he was scared stiff and now everyone gets a paper divider between their homes. he was so obviously a boy and i knew immediately that bib was a girl (i was suspecting bib to be a boy because of her strange behaviour). tiga is almost 80% jet black, with obvious boy palps (those little 'arms' that they wipe their fangs and face with). he has been eating quite well, compared to bib, and sports a nice fat tummy. when he grows bigger, he will gradually stop getting so fat, as boys are usually skinnier. i shall be trying to fatten him as much as possible as a bubba, to get him to grow to his maximum size.
dot is having her first day out after her recent moult, and her first meal as well. she's sporting lucy colours and looks very much like lucien's little sister. :) dot is a little like missy (munster's girl), a little prissy and is a little temperamental, but hunts well when she feels like it. but she is eating well compared to bib.
last bubba is scout, from lucy's second clutch of bubs (the other four are from the first clutch). scout moulted last night, and i think he's a boy. because i have tiga as a reference, even though scout is still very very small compared to the rest, i can tell by his palps that he's going to take after tiga, even though he is still sporting baby-colours. previously, it was impossible for me to tell the gender at a stage where scout is currently at. now i know. :)
i believe changing their diet has also made a tremendous difference. i'd been trying to hunt down pinhead crickets for the longest time (a few months) to no avail. the ones in the pet shops are humongous and would probably eat my bubs instead. besides, they really freak me out because they look just like roaches. finally, i put my foot down on the situation by getting my nephew to drive me out to the farms in pasir ris. got a few strange looks - what are two people in a flashy sports car doing in lalaland over there? we went door to door till we found a cricket farm, which was actually only the third place we tried. there were millions of crickets there! and of all sizes too! there was a lady feeding the cricks and i asked to buy a small amount of pinheads. she said, "how about 50?". I said, "okay!". she went and scooped about 200 pinheads from the nearest tank! i objected... and she was like, "it's okay, i give you all for $2". i guess it was more troublesome for her to pour them back.
so, i had shitloads of cricks. hansel made sure i tied the bag well before we got back into the car. haha. anyway, to cut a long story short(er), this was the best $2 i've ever spent. cricks are great as food because i can gut-load them with good nutritious stuff (carrot, oatmeal, crushed corn). i believe that's what's making my kids develop well. especially obvious with scout - at this stage of growth, i shouldn't be able to guess the gender yet.
the only problem the cricks have given me, was the one time they all busted out of the bag. haha. it was a disaster. for a whole month, they'd lived in the bag obediently, only to chew a hole through the bottom on the one night i'd gone out for dinner. goddammit. i was home for almost a whole month working, and they chose that very night when i wasn't home. mother rang me halfway through dinner and we laughed so hard i could hardly eat. friends are convinced that the cricks had planned the whole thing. salsarina came home with me to help hunt down the naughty escapees. the hunt lasted till 1am.
that brings us up to speed on the current situation with lucy's kids. pictures (lots of them) to come when i'm breathing easier after this weekend's submission.