By: Masie Abbiati
Chitter was a ordinary flying squirrel. Just like all the other
squirrels she enjoyed acorns with sap, and loved playing outside.
But their was one thing that Chitter didn’t have in common with the
other squirrels. Chitter had a birth defect. She only had half a wing
on her right wing. While all the other squirrels flew around chasing
each other, she stayed in the tree with her mother (Chestnut), and
her father (Chunk). Chitter’s sister (Chatter) was the most popular
flying squirrel around. Her fur was the most beautiful shade of
brown, and was always combed back without a hair out of placed.
She and her friends, Cacao, Coconut, Candess, and Cardinal could
run the fastest, fly the farthest and climb the highest.
One late autumn day Chitters only friend Chap came over.
Chap loved playing outside but he came and played inside with
Chitter every now and then to give her company. Today Chitter and
Chap were sitting on the sill of the tree hole eating hot acorns in the
refreshing breeze and watching the other flying squirrels fly around.
Chitter never really let this bother him. He knew he would never be
able to fly like the other flying squirrels, but today was different.
When a flying squirrel turns one year there is a big party, and that
flying squirrel shows off his best flying tricks. Chap wouldn't stop
talking about his one year party that would be in three days.
Chitters one year party was supposed to be in two days but since
she couldn't fly she wouldn’t have a one year party.
“I’m gonna have all my whole family enter by surfing leaves in
the air and then they’ll all signal a firefly to light up so there will be a
whole circle of fireflies around me, and then and then...!”
“Okay Chap I get the point, you’re going to have this whole big
one year party and everyone will be so proud of you while I sit in my
tree and help mom with the dishes or something”.
“Oh! I didn't mean for it to sound that way” said Chap.
“It’s okay” said Chitter, “Things could be a lot worse”.
“Its getting late, I should go” said Chap.
“See you tomorrow?”
“See you tomorrow” Chap said as he glided away.
Chitter threw the remains of his acorn out the tree and went
inside to his mom.
“Hey Chitter, what's with the sad face?” said Chitter mom.
“Oh its nothing,” said Chitter.
“Come on, tell me,” She said.
“Fine,” Chitter sighed, “I'm supposed to have my one year party
in two days but I can’t have one because of my wing,”.
“Well you get to be part of your sisters party next month,”
Citters mom said, “That's kind of like having your own,”.
“Yeah but its not having my own,” said Chitter.
“Oh stop pouting and feel proud of your sister,” Chitters mom
Chatter, Chitter thought, the conversation always ends up about
At that second Chatter walked through the tree hole.
“Well that’s a coincidence” Chitters mom said, “we were just
talking about you!”.
“Cool!” Chatter said, “Hey mom can I have Coconut, Cacao,
Candess, and Cardinal over for the night?”
“Sure honey, anything for our little perfect,” Chitters mom
“Can I have Chap over?” Chitter asked.
“No silly, we don’t have room for five more kit’s” laughed
“But Chatter gets to have all her friends over,” Chitter whined.
“Thats different, Chatter is having her one year party in a few
weeks, she’s old enough to have friends over”
This really set Chitter off. She was older than Chatter, even if
she didn't have a one year party she would always be older than
Chatter. She knew that fighting wouldn’t help, so she stomped off
into her room.
The next day Chitter woke up early and couldn't get back to
sleep. She had too many things on her mind.
“Oh stop pouting and feel proud for your sister.”
“Anything for our little perfect.”
“Chatters having her one year party in a few weeks, shes old
enough to have friends over.”
Chitters mom’s words rocketed through her head. To Chitter
there seemed no other possible way. She had to have a one year
party. The question was how?
Chitter thought. A one year party was celebrating a flying
squirrel turning one year. Its not celebrating a flying squirrel being
able to fly. Then it hit Chitter. If Chitter found another talent she had
that was not flying then she could perform that at her one year
She was running out of time. Her one year party was tomorrow
and she hadn't even started thinking about her talent.
She thought a good place to start would be thinking about
other animals talents.
Birds would not work because their talent was flying.
Turtles would not work because they can hide in their shell. But
wait! Turtles can swim!
That’s it! Swimming could be her talent! She could have her
one year party at the lake and do backflips into the water.
There was no time to lose. Chitter had to start practicing now!
She raced down to the lake.
Chitter slowly Put one paw in the water.”Burrrrrrrr!”. Chitter
quickly pulled it back out. The water was as cold as ice. She would
have to get used to it.
Chitter gave it another try. She pulled her paw out again and
She gave up and thought.
If putting one paw in at a time didn’t work then what if she put
her whole body in at one time. It might be cold at first but her body
would get used to it.
Chitter climbed to a low branch and climbed all the way out so
that she was hovering over the lake.
She took a deep breath, closed her eyes, and jumped!
Chitter could feel the air rushing past her. It felt like eternity
falling from the tree.
Suddenly she felt a big rush of coldness as she hit the water.
She was still falling. Slower now but still falling. She needed a breath
of air. She took a breath and got a mouthful of water. She opened
her eyes. Black. That was all she could see. Her eyes burned. She
must have air.
Chitter felt a hard object slam into her, pushing her up, up.
Suddenly she was flying through the air.
How could that be? She was falling and now she was flying.
But wait! Now she was falling again! Chitter forced her eyes open.
She was falling into the lake, No! She was falling into the mouth of a
giant fish. Chitter thought desperately. Every second she was
coming closer to the open mouth. Flying was the only thing that
came to mind.
Chitter forced her wings out and prayed it would work. Her
right wing caught air slowing down her fall. It also made her go to the
left and away from the fishes mouth. Thump, Chitter landed hard on
Shivering, Chitter climbed up the nearest tree.
No doubt about it, Swimming was not Chitters talent.
Chitter sat in her room eating hot acorns with sap when her
dad Chunk walked in. He had to turn sideways to fit through the
“Hey Chitter, what's up?” Chunk made the whole bed shake as
he sat on it.
“Oh, I'm just trying to find a talent that I have,” Chitter
“Well, you make a mighty good pinecone pie, thats a talent,”
“I’m trying to find a talent for my one year party.” said Chitter.
“Well, how about flying?” Chunk recommended.
“Dad you know I can’t fly.”
“Do you have any better ideas?”Chunk said as he walked out
The answer to her dad’s question was no. She didn’t have any
better ideas. But she couldn't fly. At the lake it just slowed down her
Her right wing worked just fine so all she had to do was find
something to use for a left wing.
The two things that came to her head were feathers, and
leaves. Leaves would be easy to find at this time of autom.
Chitter decided to start with that.
She ran outside and found a leaf that was not so dry and
holey. She found a nice yellow ont that fit right where her wing
Chitter climbed to a low branch that was only a few yards off
She grabbed one end of the leaf in her front paw and the
other end in her back paw.
She looked down remembering what had happened at the lake.
Before she jumped she looked below her carefully making sure their
was no animal prowling around waiting for her to jump.
Chitter took a deep breath, made sure she had a good grip on
the leaf and jumped!
Once again Chitter felt the wind flying past her. She was going
down but unlike the lake she was also going forward.
She was flying!
Relief flowed through Chitter. She would be able to fly at her
one year party!
Chitter would make it even as good as Chatters to show her
parents how good she really was. It all felt to good to be true, and
as she was about to find out, it was too good to be true.
At that second Chitter slammed hard into a tree. “Ouch!”
Chitter said. She had been so into her own thoughts that she
completely forgot about landing.
She retrieved her leaf and tried again.
This time as she climbed up she didn’t mind looking down, to
make sure there wasn't any hungry animal waiting for her on the
ground. She was so confident that she wouldn't fall that Chitter
thought it was a waste of time to look around.
As Chitter felt the air fly past her this time all she was focused
on was landing. As she neared the tree she was more ready for
landing than any flying squirrel ever had been.
Chitter landed on the tree gracefully, but immediately lost her
grip because she was still holding the leaf.
Chitter landed hard on the ground. She sighed and lied on the
ground in defeat. If holding on to something didn’t work then holding
on to a feather definitely would not work.
At that second she heard a low growling. Every muscle in
Chitter’s body stopped moving.
She turned her head slowly and saw two yellow eyes staring at
her from under a bush.
The fox slowly walked out from under the bush crouched in an
Chitter sat up and scurried up the tree just as the fox attacked.
She felt the wind of the foxes claw blow on her.
Her heart was pounding. She didn’t dare look back she just
kept running and running until she got to her tree hole, the whole
time thinking “It’s no use, I’ll never have a one year party”.
When Chitter got home she didn’t know what to do. Her mom
was out collecting acorns for dinner somewhere in the forest so
there were no chores to do, and she didn’t feel like thinking about a
one year party so she decided to invite Chap over.
Chitter went to her stack of pebbles and threw it as hard as
she could at the tree across from hers. Most days she would just
go over but on days that she felt lazy or tired she would just throw
rocks at Chaps tree until it caught someone's attention. It took
three throws until Chap stuck his head out the window.
He was over in a matter of seconds. Chitter quickly got him
some pine cone pie. As they sat down Chap asked
“What's up Chitter?”
“Oh nothing much,” said Chitter, “I’ve been trying to find a
talent I have other than flying but I haven't been very successful”.
“Well what have you tried?” Chap asked.
“I’ve tried swimming and flying,” answered Chitter.
Chap thought for a minute.
“I can’t think of anything else,”Chap finally said.
They sat in silence for a while watching the other flying
squirrels. Then something caught Chitter’s eye. Their in the distance
was a regular squirrel. Chitter froze at the sight.
There had only been a squirrel this close to the flying squirrels
territory twice. Once to take over the territory (Luckily the flying
squirrels stopped him) and another to steel acorns. Both are not
“Chap,” Chitter whispered, “look at that.”
It only took a few seconds before Chap too was frozen to his
“What should we do?” Whispered Chap.
The squirrel was scurrying up and down trees all over like it was
“We have to get into the house” Chitter replied.
Chap gave a slight nod never taking his eyes off the squirrel.
They slowly backed into the house and as soon as they were
out of sight of the squirrel they sprinted to Chitter’s room.
“That was close,” said Chap.
Chitter wasn’t listening. She was thinking of the squirrel. Up and
down up and down. It was so graceful. Chitter wished she could do
it. Climb like that.
“You okay Chitter?” Chap asked.
“I’ve got it!” Chitter yelled.
“What I'm going to do for my one year party!” Chitter
answered excitedly, “Climbing!”.
“That’s great but how are we going to get outside to practice if
the squirrels still there?” Chap asked.
Chitter thought for a minute.
Than a big smile crossed her face.
“We climb!” she said.
Chitter went to the back of her house to the emergency tree
hole and sprinted down the tree, right at the squirrel.
As Chitter expected, instead of preparing to attack the squirrel
ran away. As much as squirrels like to sneak around they are
absolute scaredy squirrels.
“Come on out Chap, the coast is clear!” Chitter yelled.
Chap poked his head out of the tree hole and seeing that the
cost was clear scurried over to Chitter.
“That was epic!” Chap said.
“Yeah, now we can start practicing”.
“All right, lets start by going to the big evergreen that has lots
of sap.” said Chap.
When they got to the big evergreen they took a break and ate
“You ready to start?” Chap asked.
“Beat you to the top,” Chitter said.
Chitter and Chap started rocketing up the tree. Chitter
couldn't see Chap next to or in front of him. That means she must
be ahead! The branches seemed to be coming at her at lightning
speed. She quickly dodged all of them.
Chitter could see the top of the tree. She sped up afraid that
Chap might catch up to her. She got to the top and looked down.
Chap wasn't even halfway up the tree. That means she was a
fast climber, but what about tricks?
As soon as Chap caught up to Chitter they tried some tricks.
“Are you sure this will work?” asked Chitter.
“Sure I’m sure,” answered Chap.
Chitter looked down. It was an awfully long fall if it didn’t work.
She took a deep breath tucked into a ball and rolled off the
end of the branch. She was doing flips!
Chitter opened her eyes to see how close she was to the
branch below her. the branch was coming up fast.
Chitter came out of her tuck and landed gracefully on the branch
“You did it!” said an excited Chap.
“Yeah, but its getting late, we should go home,” said Chitter.
“Right.” said Chap.
They parted their separate ways.
Chitter couldn’t get to sleep that night. She was too excited
for the next day. She decided to start decorating.
She went outside and started.
Sure, it would not be the most fancy one year party. She didn’t
have enough time to plan.
But it would still be a one year party and that was enough for
The next day Chitter jumped out of bed. She ran to her mom
and dads room.
“Mom, dad its my one year party! Its my one year party!”
Chitter was literally bouncing on them to get them up.
Chitters parents lazily opened their eyes.
“Come on Chitter let us sleep, we’ve been spending so much
time planning your sisters party that we’re too tired to get out of
bed” Said a lazy Chestnut.
“Yeah but I’m having my one year party today” Chitter said.
“You found a talent?” Asked Chunk.
“Yes climbing and I won't have a party if you guys just lie in
bed” Chitter was now pulling Chestnut out of bed.
“Guess we have some extra streamers” Said Chestnut
“Oh don’t worry, I got it covered” Chitter said.
He pulled his parents to the door and their mouths hung open
Chitter was even impressed herself. It looked even better in the
day. Her name was engraved in big letters on every tree in the area
and there were big leaved making the whole place a big dome.
“This is amazing” Chatter said as she walked out, “But don’t
you think this is a little early to be preparing for my one year
Chitter rolled her eyes in frustration.
“This is for MY one year party,” Chitter explained.
“Well than what are we waiting for?” Asked Chatter, “Lets get
this party started!”.
Immediately the whole family started to bring the town over to
Chitters party. As soon as everyone was their Chitter went to the
base of the tallest tree, and once everyone was watching him he
sprinted up the tree.
The crowd oooooed. When he got to the top he did his back
flip landing on the branch below the crowd aaaaaaaed. Then Chitter
went to the small tree that he had pulled down the night before. She
had saved this for the grand finale.
She stepped on the tip of the branch and pulled the string that
was holding the tree down. Immediately Chitter was flung into the air.
She felt alive she felt free everything was going to get better.