Adventures at Poppas & Nannas Farm

By Giselle

Ellie and Natalie crouched low as they hid behind the old eucalyptus tree on Nanna and Poppas farm.

“I’m coming.”

They heard 4 year old Jonny call out from the veranda.

They tried not to giggle as they saw him walk down the back porch steps confidently to begin his search. They all loved playing hide and seek especially when Jonny was it.

Ellie loved having Natalie, Jonny and Uncle Matt visit during the school holidays, it was always fun. Plus both girls were 7 and liked a lot of the same things. Specially playing tricks on Jonny. 

Jonny on the other hand, was still a little wild and didn’t always listen to them. Plus they could be pretty bossy with him and he didn’t like it!

“Quick move around the tree so he doesn’t see us,” Ellie whispered “and when he goes around the chicken pen, lets run around behind him, and we can follow him.” 

“Ok,” Nodded Natalie covering her mouth so she wouldn’t laugh, her big green eyes shining excitedly.

As soon as Jonny came around the chicken pen, the girls made a run toward the back of the chicken pen just as Jonny disappeared around the front.

Ever so quietly, they crept behind him and moved towards the back of the shed. He wouldn’t look there.

From behind the shed they watched as he made his way to the eucalyptus tree where they had been.

“Where are you?” He shouted looking around. His brow creased and he looked behind, to the side and up the tree.

“Phew, lucky we moved.” Natalie whispered behind Ellie.

“I know.” Ellie whispered back.

“Jonny,” they heard a voice call; it was Nanna she had come out to the porch and was looking around the yard. “Where is your sister and cousin Ellie? Lunch is ready.”

“Ohhh lunch.” The girls smiled and their stomachs growled.

They sprang from behind the shed and made a run to the porch steps as they called out to Jonny, “Beat you to the porch.”

“Nah uh.” He called back running as fast as he could in his garden boots.

“We won” the girls said as they reached the veranda before him.

“Hey you two cheated,” Jonny said as he reached the back door “and you moved from where you were hiding, cause, I checked around the chicken coop and I’m sure you were there first!”

Both girls laughed.

“There aren’t any rules about that Jonny.” Natalie said flicking her long brown hair.

“Plus, games over since it’s lunch and we won.” Ellie concluded opening the back door of the house – her red hair spiking everywhere from the wind.

Jonny shrugged his shoulders and pushed past the girls to go wash his hands.

Soon they were eating hot gooey delicious cheese and tomato toasties.

“Um this is soooo good.” Natalie mumbled with a mouth full.

Everyone nodded happily.

“Hey, after lunch we can go explore the back,” Ellie announced as she bit into her sandwich. “I found these really cool trees and the bark is soft and white and just peels off, they look like old maps.”

“Cool.” Natalie and Jonny said in unison.

“Those are called paperbark trees,” Nanna said “they’re  one of your Poppas favourites, and please don’t talk with your mouth full Ellie.”

“Where is Poppa?” Natalie asked. “He and dad went out ages ago.”

“Well, a family from one of the farms are moving to the city, they’re giving your Poppa and the other neighbours some of their animals.”

“Ohhh I wonder what Poppa will pick.” Ellie said as she finished off the last of her sandwich.

“Maybe he can get a lion.” Jonny said excitedly.

“That’s not a farm animal Jonny.” Natalie said with a shake of her head while Ellie laughed.

Jonny poked out his tongue at the girls just as Nanna walked into the kitchen.


“Ohhh they’re back.” The kids squealed as they raced to the front porch.

“Don’t go down to the truck, wait on the veranda!” Nanna called as she came out after them, quickly grabbing Jonny’s hand, he was ready to bolt and meet the truck half way.

They all stood watching on the veranda with anticipation.

“Hey kids,”Matt called waving up at them. “Guess what new farm friends Poppa brought home?”

“It’s a lion that’s going to chase the girl and eat them up!” Jonny said as he pulled free from Nanna and ran down to his dad.

“Jonny! You need to say kind things!” Nanna called behind him.

Ellie and Natalie shook their heads and waited for what Poppa would say.

Poppa’s rubbed his hands excitedly, “I got 5 of the biggest turkeys you’ve ever seen, 3 more chickens and later this week Mr Pickery will drop off 3 goats and 2 male Hereford calves.”

“Ohh cool.” The girls shrieked.

“Let them out, let them out!” Jonny squealed as he moved excitedly about the truck, stretching his neck to look inside the truck.

“Be careful.” Nanna called.

Ellie and Natalie leaned closer to the veranda as Poppa opened the back of the truck and Matt jumped up to shoo the birds out.

“Bwak Bwak Bwaaak”

“gubles, gubles, gubles”

The mix of sounds was funny as the chickens and turkeys got out and began to roam their new yard.

“The turkeys are so weird looking.” Ellie giggled.

“And wrinkly.” Natalie added laughing.

“They’re dumb!” Jonny said as he began to chase them around the yard.

“None of that Jonny, they can peck you!” His father warned as he jumped off the truck.

Jonny simply shrugged and ran off into the house to finish his lunch.

The next morning during breakfast Ellie and Natalie enjoyed Nanna’s delicious blueberry pan cakes.”

“Nanna where’s Jonny?” Ellie asked looking around.

“He went out early this morning with Dad and Poppa.” Natalie answered.

“Hmmm,” Ellie took another bite of her pancakes and licked her sticky maple syrup fingers. “Well, do you want to go to the swing this morning after breakfast and then maybe we can go exploring too? Ellie asked.

“Oh yes.” Natalie agreed bouncing excitedly on her chair.

“Oh no, no swinging straight after breakfast,” Nanna said “but you can go for a walk and explore a bit”

“Thanks Nanna.” The girls chorused.

“Maybe I’ll show you the paperbark tree since we didn’t go yesterday.” Ellie decided.

The morning was clear and warm, Ellie and Natalie were ready for adventure. In the distance they saw Jonny, Poppa and Matt mending the chicken coop. Well, Jonny wasn’t helping he was too busy chasing after the Turkeys.

“Jonny, that’s enough.” His father called.

“They’re dumb!” Jonny muttered running faster after them.

Ellie and Natalie shook their heads, they knew he wasn’t going to listen.

“I don’t know why he chases them,” Ellie said “they’re almost as big as he is.” The girls chuckled and headed off to explore the farm.

“Hey, wait for meee,” they heard Jonny call as he ran to catch up. “Where are we going?”

“Well, we’re going exploring and if you want to come, you have to make sure you behave and listen or I won’t show you the map tree.” Ellie warned.

Jonny looked around deep in through, his hazel eyes darting back and forth.

“Ok I will.” Jonny shrugged as he followed the girls, he really did want to get a piece of the paperbark map.

Later that afternoon, after lunch while the girls were on the porch drawing maps on their paperbark, Jonny disappeared and was doing one of his new favourite things.

Chasing the Turkeys!

“Jonny,” Matts voice called from the porch “I have told you to stop chasing those birds, that is not kind and it’s not ok for you be scaring them.”

“But dad, they’re dumb!” Jonny shouted back.

“We need to be kind to living things Jonny. They are God’s creation.”

“But dad….!”Jonny started to say.

“We need to treat people and animals how we would like to be treated. Understand?”

Jonny nodded before answering, “Yes dad.”

For the rest of the day Jonny was true to his word, he ignored the turkeys. Instead he played ball, played with his toy trucks and even played nicely with the girls. Soon, he was getting bored. His eyes kept darting to the turkeys in the yard. But, he didn’t chase them, at least for one afternoon.

The next day, however, Jonny was bored what could he do? The girls had decided to play dress up inside and then watch a movie, how boring!

He wanted to play tag but who could he play with?

Then he had a brilliant idea. He would play chase with the turkeys. Boy it was fun. Hahaha look at those silly birds run and flap their wings.

The sun was bright and hot burning his skin. Sweat ran down his brow and face, and down his shirt – Jonny was on a mission. Chase and scare the silly birds – he was having so much fun!

“Jonny! That’s enough, come here” Matt called sternly.

“Ohhh he’s in trouble” Natalie whispered to Ellie as they peered out the veranda window wearing Nanna’s hats and clothes.

“Jonny!” His dad hollered in his no nonsense tone.

“What?” Jonny moaned walking towards his dad, “I wasn’t doing anything!” He mumbled looking down at his dusty shoes.

 “Jonny, you disobeyed me.” Dad said, “I told you not to chase those birds but you decided to ignore me.”

Jonny hung his head.

Dad continued talking, “This is your last warning Jonny, if you chase them one more time you will not be allowed outside the house for a whole day. Is that clear?”

Jonny sniffled and wiped the dripping sweat off his face, “Yes.” Jonny said a little grumpy.

Dad never let him have fun, and he never got the girls in trouble. Not fair!

Jonny kicked a pebble on the ground and ran up the veranda to get a drink in Nanna’s cool kitchen.

The next morning before Matt went to help Poppa do some chores he reminded Jonny about not chasing the turkeys.

Jonny nodded reluctantly and rolled his eyes. Boring. He though!

Just before lunch he joined the girls to their tea party. It was boring and it wasn’t even real food!


Feeling cranky Jonny went out to sit on the porch and watched the turkeys dig around the dirt, grass and rocky ground.

And that’s when he thought of it! ROCKS!!

Throwing rocks at them would be so fun, he could practice him aim, plus, that way he was listening to his dad and not chasing the turkeys.

That was a good idea he thought and went to find some small rocks.

Ellie and Natalie were just packing up when they heard a commotion outside.

“Uh oh the turkeys!” the girls said as they ran outside. They didn’t sound happy.

“What happened? Dad told you not to chase the turkeys” Natalie said looking from him to the upset turkeys.

Jonny only smiled and stared at them from the log he was standing on, away from the turkeys

 “I didn’t chase them.” Jonny replied feeling very smart.

“Leave the turkeys alone,” Ellie warned “or I’ll tell Uncle Matt and you’ll stay inside all day tomorrow.”

“You’re not the boss of me and I didn’t chase them.” He shouted. Then he closed one eye, aimed and threw another rock.

They turkeys scrambled around making noise while Jonny laughed.

“Stop bullying the animals.” Natalie yelled, “Dad told you last night that it’s not ok to be mean to God’s creatures.”

“They’re dumb, boring turkeys,” Jonny said. “And you don’t have to be such tattle tails anyway.” He poked out his tongue to the girls, then he threw another rock at the turkeys.

“Well I’m telling dad.” Natalie said running off with Ellie close behind her.

In the distance Ellie and Natalie saw Matt and Poppa and another man with a big truck, it must be Mr Pickering bringing the goats and bulls.

Forgetting all about Jonny the girls ran excitedly towards Poppa and Matt.

“G-day little ladies.” The tall stocky man greeted pulling his hat down to say hello.

 “Ah girls I’m glad you’re here,” Poppa said gesturing for them to come closer.

“This is Mr Pickering and he’s brought some new friends to our farm.”  “That I have little ladies, this is here is Patrick.” He said pointing at a dark brown goat with huge horns; Ellie was a little afraid and took a step back.

“This girl here is Margaret.” He pointed to a light brown and white patchy goat that was already eating the grass around her.

“And this other little girl here is Bianca.” He pointed to a white goat who was watching them curiously. She must have liked them because she walked over to stand close to them.

“She likes you and you’ve now made a friend for life.” Mr Pickery laughed.

Natalie and Ellie smiled shyly and carefully patted Bianca the goat, she was soft and friendly.

All of a sudden a loud painful cry rent the air.


It was Jonny!


Matt sprinted into action running as fast as he could to the back of the house where the screams and wailing were coming from.

Ellie grabbed Natalie’s arm and pulled her up the front porch to cut through the house and get there faster.

Matt had just gotten to Jonny when the girls reached the back porch – There they saw Jonny being chased round the yard and pecked by all 5 turkeys.

He was running wildly in circles as the animals chased and pecked him without mercy. The turkeys were furious!

 “I’m coming Jonny” Matt yelled.

“HELP ME!!” Jonny screeched.

Matt ran in zig zagged motion avoiding the turkeys, then he scooped Jonny in his arms.

Ellie and Natalie looked on not knowing what to do.

“clank clank clank”

They heard behind them as Nanna came out banging two pots together to scare off the angry birds.

Finally, with all the commotion and Jonny safely in Matts arms the birds dispersed and went their own way.

Jonny was shaking and crying in dads arms as he was brought up the porch.

“Jonny are you ok?” Matt asked as he checked his son’s body for any blood, scratches or sores.

“yyess” Jonny managed say.

“If those turkeys are going to be attacking children I will tell your Poppa to give them away.” Nanna said as she also looked for any signs of injury.

“But that’s not fair it’s not their fault!” Ellie said.

“What do you mean?” Matt asked looking at the girls.

Natalie gave her little brother a nod, “Tell him Jonny.”

Jonny looked at Nanna and his dad then looked down “I…..I was throwing rocks at the turkeys and then they started to chase me.” Jonny whispered.

“I see,” Matt said picking up his son and walking inside “Let’s go give you a shower first and then you and I we can talk about this later tonight, alright Jonny?”

“Yes daddy” Jonny said hugging his father as was carried inside.


Matt, Natalie and Jonny stayed for another week at the farm although Jonny did spend one whole day inside the house helping Nanna with all the chores and cleaning.

Jonny also kept away from the turkeys and watched them from afar.

Ellie was really sad to see them go, even Jonny, but she knew they would be back the next school holidays and she couldn’t wait.

I wonder if Jonny would learn another lesson next holiday, she said laughing to herself as she remembered Jonny being chased round and round by all the turkeys.

What would be their next adventure?


Poppy’s Turkey Facts

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