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Written and illustrated by Robin Tatlow-Lord. Copyright Š Family by Family 2012. First published by Family by Family in 2012. Family by Family Level 1, 279 Flinders Street, Adelaide, South Australia 5000 phone: 08 7325 4949 email: web:



Communities for Children Plus is funded by the Australian Government Department of Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs.

There once were two families. Yes, quite a pair. The Huff family here, And the Budge family there.

The Huffs were a gaggle Of six busy geese. There was Mum, Dad, Aunt Sharlie, Nell, Lulu and Reese.

The Budges were Budgies, (As you may have guessed.) There was Mama, and Alfie, And Carlo, and Tess.

The Huffs liked to swim And to surf at the beach, But they did tend to shout, And they did tend to screech.

Yes, they loved one another And things were all right Still, they DID tend to honk And they DID tend to fight.

And yes, feathers were pulled And yes, bad words were said Like: And:


Now, Mum Huff and Dad Huff Put their heads together And they said “That’s enough!” And they took up a feather

And scribbled a note Saying: “Help wanted, please. Our relatives fight, And they shout, and they tease!”

“We are driving each-other All right ‘round the bends. Our family needs balance. Our family need friends.”

Mama Budge saw the note As she flew home from town She thought, “My family’s UP! This poor family seems DOWN!”

The Budges fought, too, Now and then, here and there Yes, they shouted, “Get lost!” And “You stink!” and “NOT FAIR!” -

But mostly, they laughed Before things got too hairy. Yes, mostly they hugged Before fights got too scary.

All the Budges agreed They had something to share. With more good times than bad, They had kindness to spare.

And so the two families Met up for lunch. They had peach pie, and popcorn, And passion-fruit punch.

The Mums, Dads and Aunties All chatted away. And they asked “Is that so?” And they said “You don’t say!”

The kids felt like strangers And all a bit shy, But then Alfie Budge smiled, And Reese Huff said “Hi!�

And they played hide-and-seek And they swung on the swings, And Carlo taught Lulu A song his Pop sings.

Now that they knew each-other, Now that they were friends, The two families decided To meet up again.

So they went to the movies A little while later. And then to the skate park, For Nell was a skater.

But this time it wasn’t All laughter and peace Alfie pulled Lulu’s tail, And Dad Huff yelled at Reese,

Then Aunt Sharlie tripped over, And Mum Huff blamed Nell… … And THAT’s when Tess realised What HER family did well.

Whenever THEY fought, They would fix it with jokes. So she took a deep breath, And said “Excuse me, folks!”

All eyes turned to Tess. Every beak wore a frown. But she bravely asked:

They looked at each other‌ The tension stacked up‌ Until finally, Reese replied:

Then his Aunt Sharlie hooted, And Lulu guffawed, And Alf and Nell giggled, And Dad Huff haw-hawed,

And Mama Budge groaned, And they all laughed a lot, And forgot they were fighting And forgot who’d done what.

And next time they met, They all went to the beach, For the Huffs had learned much - It was their turn to teach!

Yes, every family Has things they do well, And things they can share, And bad jokes to tell. And we all need a hand, Just now and again, (And, even more often, We all need a friend.)

when a family’s in trouble,

when they fuss and shout,

they might need some friends, to help sort it out!

The Huffs and the Budges