Nugget has always been called Nugget. All the nicknames I use on the blog are real. My poor children are actually called Doo Dah, Dew Drop, The Minx and Nugget in real life too.
When he was a little fella, Nugget was a very chubby bubby. He ate like a champion and did absolutely nothing to expend the energy. He had roll upon roll in that delightful way that babies do.
We called him the human speed hump as he parped around contemplating the world and his place in it. He was early to talk and late to walk and his Nuggety goodness clung to this thighs while he sat on his nappy-clad butt and whooped.
Nowadays Nugget is a far cry from being a chubby bub. He has just turned nine and is a string bean. Tall and thin in a boney way. He doesn't eat much, unless it is fried. If it is fried, he'll have a whole plateful. Needless to say, he doesn't eat a plateful all that often.
He asked me the other day, as he slid into his brother's size seven jeans, why he is called Nugget. "Is it because I love eating Nuggets?" he asked.
I told him he'd been Nugget well before he'd ever fallen in love with a nugget. I explained about his chunky baby goodness. After a bit he said, "You know Mum. I don't think I should be called Nugget anymore. I think I should be called Chip".
Meet Chip. Formerly Nugget. Aged 9. Loves reading, karate, Cubs and playing the trombone. Wants to be an author when he grows up (so he told his class in his recent Topic Talk). Pictured here with Uncle B while fishing at Husky. If you look carefully you might just spot the brim that he caught.
Sunday, 27 April 2014
"What was it?" I asked, standing completely still with my hand over my month. Immediately traumatised. Immediately wondering how we would break the news to Doo Dah. "Where are the others?"
"A massive feral cat. Third generation at least", the Geege responded without the slightest hint of a joke. "It got them all."
We went about cleaning up the backyard. There were feathers and parts of birds everywhere. It made me a little sick and very, very sad. Our poor chickens had met their death. It was brutal.
"Oh God! What are we going to tell the kids?" but before a plan could be generated, we heard a noise. The Geege turned on his heel, a look of pure determination in his eye. "It's still here!" he said. He turned a whiter shade of Bear Grylls before my eyes and set off in the direction of the noise.
But it wasn't the predator, it was its prey. Fluffy. The slightly nutty leghorn. She had somehow survived the jaws of her killer.
She was always skittish. She now has a full-blown mental health condition. She is tetchy. Anxious. We frightened her near to death trying to catch her to protect her from the return of the cat. She spent a few days in our laundry, laying beautiful eggs like clockwork. Each egg brought a tear to my eye.
Our dear neighbours have now kindly taken her into their flock. A crazy chicken can't live alone. So now she has a new gang to peck her and steal her food. She feels right at home.
RIP Shadow and Rainbow. And long live Fluffy.