That said, given the fact that we were, at the time, colouring in a picture of an Archaeopteryx I was, admittedly, somewhat unprepared.
"Mama, how do the baby cats get into the mama's tummy?"
Inexplicably, my first thought was how I could incorporate the Archaeopteryx into my explanation but wasn't sure whether they actually had penises or not. As my head swam with (disturbing) thoughts of copulating dinosaurs, Finje looked up from hers and patiently repeated the question. Not having had enough coffee to conjure up a more, shall we say, creative, answer for a five-year-old, I trod the road of convention and opted for the "in for a penny in for a pound" philosophy.
Finje listened extremely attentively as I explained the concept of penis and vagina connectivity in the context of a loving, trusting and in this case, feline relationship. All interest in dinosaurs dissipated as she took in the details, brows furrowed nodding in understanding.
Clarification concluded, I awaited the response. My daughter then threw me a look which perfectly emulated my expression when listening to her fantasy stories of unicorns and dragons. She was humouring me.
"Ja ja, but how do the baby cats really get in there?"
It took some persuasion, but as the realisation of my honesty hit, her face crumpled and she looked as though I'd just asked her to consume a tub of spinach ice-cream.
"That is disgusting!" She said. And before I could try to justify the act of coitus, she hit me with the inevitable, in such an accusatory tone I was taken aback,
"Is that what you and papa had to do to get me in your tummy?"
Obviously not feeling girded enough to wait for my answer, she (thankfully) took herself off to her room, presumably to ponder this revelation.
Some time later, emerging from her bedroom, she looked placated and had a big, relieved type grin plastered on her face. The look suggested she had sifted through the grimness and discovered a glimmer of hope:
"That thing with the penis and the vagina, that's just in England isn't it, not here in Germany?"
Well, I couldn't spoil her mood could I?