Thursday, September 22, 2011

Stars and chickens

I have long been remiss in not mentioning the Star family. We have known them for many years and they are very dear to us.

Mrs Star is actually Dr Star, and Mr Star is from Brazil. In addition to being Venus' Godparents, they have three gorgeous girls of their own. Jellybean will be eight soon and is at school with Mars. She is lithe, loves gymnastics and excells at it.  Miss Mouse is five, two months older than Venus, and is by far the biggest rascal of the three. Then there's little Pumpkin. She is two years old, beautiful of face and beautiful by nature.

A few months ago the Star family got some chickens. Three were hens, but one, Pecky, turned out to be slightly more of a rooster than they would have liked, so he went back. He was replaced by a lovely hen, who also turned out to be a rooster, who also went back. So currently the numbers stand at three hens.

Their names are Brownie, Dirty and Skinny.

Last week they started to lay eggs, and Jellybean took one to school on Monday for Show and Tell. Venus and I dropped Mars off at school, and on the way back to the car this happened.

"Mummy, why did Jellybean bring an egg to school for Show and Tell?"

"Because their chickens have just started laying eggs and it's very exciting."

"But what happens if the egg gets broken while it's at school?"

"It probably won't get broken. I'm sure Jellybean will be very careful with it. And besides, I'm pretty sure Papai* was going to eat the eggs anyway."

Venus was horrified.

"But Mummy, you can't eat those. They're chicken eggs!"

"But you saw me eat two eggs for breakfast yesterday."

"But they're meant to grow into chickens!"

"Oh, no. These are just eggs for eating, it's okay. If you want to grow baby chickens you need a rooster."

"Oh. Why do you need a rooster?"

"The rooster does something special to make the egg grow into a baby chicken."

"What does the rooster do?"

Now this is the point in my conversations with my children where I usually say too much. So I tried to be sensible in my response, without wanting to crush Venus' thirst for knowledge by flatly refusing to answer the question.

"Honey, that's a bit of a grown up story. Can I tell you that story when you're a bit bigger?"

"Okay Mummy."

I don't think her brother would have let me get away with that.

*Papai is Portugese for Daddy, and it's how the girls refer to their father. Venus worked this out when she was very small, and she also started to call him Papai, and still does. He just loves it. 

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