View profile

The GraciePress Newsletter - “PeeP!” - Chapter 4 - “A World Full of Wonders”

The GraciePress Newsletter - “PeeP!” - Chapter 4 - “A World Full of Wonders”
A huge welcome to all of our new readers! We are so happy to have you joining our adventures! It is nice to know that we have friends and fans all over the world!
And a huge THANK YOU! to our readers (and listeners) who sent us fan mail this week! We love hearing from our fans!

Gracie was as happy as she thought she could ever be. “CheeP!” was her new favorite word. 
She had not been separated from her best friend Bessie when they left The Feed And Seed Store. She had as much water and food as she wanted in the gray brooder box even though she usually had to wait for the others to finish first.
Most of all, she had time in the sunroom with Bessie to do whatever her heart desired. And what her heart desired was to dance.
Her feathers were coming in nicely and more evenly. Her new fluff feathers helped hide the lump on her side. The only thing that felt odd was how everyone seemed to be growing, and not only that, they were growing faster than she was. She was the only one without the first pale pink bumps of a comb.
She wondered if it would be possible for everything and everyone to just stay the same. But few things ever stay the same, no matter how much we may wish.
Soon they were big enough and the spring air was warm enough for them to all play outside together. Their new play area was in the sunniest section of the backyard near the garden beds and beside the camellias.
If a little chick is ever to quiver with excitement, it will be the first time they stand on a fresh springtime lawn. Then they realize, “This is almost too good to be true. This is the life for me!”
Instantly, their entire world is alive with new colors, sounds, and sensations. Once outside, they all began calling out, “CheeP! CheeP-er-ee. CheeP!”
Gracie was overcome by the experience, and she began to run and leap into the air higher and higher. There was warm sunshine to enjoy. There was cool fresh grass to eat. And there were bugs and earthworms everywhere!
Soon everyone was hunting for a tasty snack except for Gracie who was still running and leaping. She loved how the spring breezes blew through her feathers and how the grass was so soft for landing after each leap. The rug in the sunroom had been nice, but lawn was far superior.
The others didn’t stop scratching and pecking until they found a bug or an earthworm or to say, “CheeP!” Maybe it was just the joy of watching them, but each time my ears heard “CheeP!” something in my heart heard, “This is the life for me!”
But then one of the other chicks looked up and saw Gracie dancing and called out, “Hã-BröcK!”
Everyone looked at Gracie. Some laughed. Some repeated, “Hã-BröcK!”
My ears did not recognize this new word, but my heart felt the pain of whatever it meant as Gracie tried to hide her face. I watched as she went and sat down in a corner out of the way.
“Let’s get back to hunting,” said Bessie, and that sounded like a good idea to all the others.
When they had returned to their scratching and pecking, Gracie moved out of the shadows to where I was watching over everyone. She hopped up onto my shoe as she had done before in the sunroom.
“Peep! CheeP!” she said.
She stood on her little toes and spread out her wings even more than she had done before in the sunroom.
“PeeP? CheeP?”
“Of course you can, just like you could in the sunroom with Bessie. It’s no different out here. Here you can do whatever your heart dreams too.”
She hopped down and walked away slowly with a dejected look on her face. She went over to where Bessie and some of the others were hunting and began to half-heartedly scratch the ground.
At that moment, I wished more than anything to know what she had tried to tell me. I needed to know why she did not run and leap for joy like when I had said those same words to her before. If I could understand, then maybe I could make it right for her.
If my heart had been able to fully listen, I would have known this was something only Gracie could make right for herself.
I would have also understood Bessie when she gently whispered, “What you believe about yourself is much more important than what anyone else believes about you.”
My heart was beginning to listen, but there was still more for me to learn about the Chicken language.
There was also more for Gracie to learn about facing The Bigger Scary Thing.
Note to parents and teachers
The three questions above correspond with three levels of comprehension. If a child is reading the chapter, then it’s reading comprehension. If a child is being read to, then it’s listening comprehension.
There are other ways of categorizing comprehension, but this is the simplest way to look at it.
The first is literal comprehension which is about what is right there.
The second is interpretive comprehension which is about what is between the lines.
The third is applied comprehension which is about what is beyond the lines.
This chapter doesn’t give us any clues about what “Hã-BröcK!” means. What are some clues that let us know it’s not a nice word? We do know that “Hã-” means “not.” What could some of the others be saying about Gracie? We know they were saying she was not something? But not what?
Would you say that Gracie was being bullied by some of the other chickens? How can you tell?
Advice for dealing with bullies
We are not sure how to handle bullying with people, only with chickens. So here is some advice we found that might be helpful to grownups and children. We like that this article is in the People language called English and the People language called Spanish.
Helping Kids Deal With Bullies (for Parents) - Nemours KidsHealth
This is just a starting point. If you need help, be sure to reach out for help. It is okay to ask for help and to keep asking until you find someone who knows how to listen with their heart.
Remember Bessie’s advice to Gracie:
“What you believe about yourself is much more important than what anyone else believes about you.”
Next Week: Chapter 5 - The Worm Olympics
We did not have a fun activity for this week’s newsletter the way we have for the three previous ones because this weekend is Mother’s Day, and you will likely want to come up with your own special and fun activity for Moms everywhere!
Here is one we like and want to try because it’s something chickens can do without needing hands! (They can do this with their beaks instead!)
DIY Watermelon Print Napkins - The Sweetest Occasion
Please feel free to share and forward this newsletter to others who might be interested. Chickens are really big fans of sharing!
Thank you for reading!
Gracie, Bessie, Blanche, Pearl, Emily, and Amelia
Did you enjoy this issue?
J.R. Spiers (with help from Gracie)

The GraciePress Newsletter brings you the latest news, stories, illustrations, special offers, and free gifts from Gracie, Bessie, Blanche, Pearl, Emily, and Amelia. They are the inspiration behind all of the books published under The GraciePress imprint.

In order to unsubscribe, click here.
If you were forwarded this newsletter and you like it, you can subscribe here.
Powered by Revue
From A Small Backyard Garden and A Most Wondrous Place in Portsmouth, Virginia