Saturday, May 03, 2014

little language

Amelia's first real words were banana and butterfly. When she was less than a year old, she would say "na-NA-na-na" and "BUTT-eee" with great enthusiasm. And we as parents delighted in the fact that we could understand what she was saying. That we could now start communicating together.

Now just a little more than a year later, it's incredible to me how much of a communicator our little one is.

The other day, when we were looking at the magnets on the refrigerator, she asked, "where did the hippopotamus go?" First of all, hippopotamus?? Yes, she knows what one is and she can say it, all five syllables and all. But secondly, out of 20 animal magnets, she knew that one was missing. And that it was the hippo. These days, I can't claim to have such great observational skills.

Amelia has also come to understand adverbs and uses them freely and correctly. "I want to hold Angus," she says and then adds after a little pause as though to illustrate her new skill, "AFTER he's done eating."

So yes, we are communicating very well with this little toddler, who not too long ago was a little meatloaf in my arms. But there are still quirky little things she says that just make me chuckle and I know I will regret it if I don't write some of them down. Here:

- She has a funny accent (we don't know where it came from). For some words, such as tent, it's decidedly southern "TAY-ent" and other times it sounds like she's straight from the Northeast Kingdom (she's not, though she has ties there). Her mother does not say, for example, "I CAY-n't!!" or "Right THEY-ehr!" But she does.

- She says "tock" for "top" whenever she sings "rock-a-bye baby on the tree-tock"

- The other day when she was going to the loo, she told me, "I need to hold my penis down. Like Bart." Bart is a friend at school. Imagine my reaction and the conversation that ensued. With lots of "whys" from the little one. 

- She says "why." A lot. And she likes to draw it out when she says it. "Whaa-AH-yee?" Classic.

- My favorite: she always adds "right there" when we asks what something is. And she says it with her NEK accent: "What's that right THEY-ehr?"

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