This is for my concerned reader who is a doting mother herself :)
Generally, domestic cats (which include both house pets and feral cats) do not have a pack mentality like other animals. They hunt alone and fend for themselves. Mother cats will usually leave their offspring to fend for themselves -- also called "scattering" them -- as early as 12 weeks and as late as 10 months (sexual maturity). As much as I convince myself otherwise, cats and other animals are unlike humans because their instincts tend to carry little emotion. Just as her birthing them, caring for them, and being protective of them are instinctual, so will separating from them be. It's such a difficult concept for us to grasp, especially you mothers out there :) But it's the reality, and so it's best to think about the fact that without my and Divine intervention, the scattering would happen on Flora Avenue, right by the highway, instead of into safe and loving homes!
On that note, I think I have my first official adoption of one of the babies! They haven't picked one out yet but the mother of one of the sweetest boys in my kindergarten class says she wants one! The little boy has a twin brother and the mom is a vet tech so I can't think of a better home for one of my babies!! On the flip side, my heart sank for a minute, thinking of having to give up (and separate) my tiny furballs. But it is obviously what I will need to do; I can't very well have 5 cats :p I passed along my number to the mother and hopefully she'll come with the boys to visit the babies when they're a bit older, and pick out her kitten! I will likely send them to their new homes at somewhere between 8 and 12 weeks old. So I've got at least two months to love on them :)
One down, four to go! Remember Flora needs the loviest home. She is so incredible. I wish I could keep her above all.