Thursday, November 26, 2009

Language Laughs

I'm sure you've heard such quotes know, where kids use a word that is close to, but not quite, the right one--and it's rather funny. We've had a few such humorous moments with Ethan and Abby in the past. In fact, just today, as we were exploring long-forgotten treasures rescued from dusty, attic-bound, Christmas totes, Ethan provided a little language slip that made me smile. As he pulled a seemingly endless string of evergreen from its containment, he glanced up and asked, "Where are we going to hang all these garlics?"

Of course, when you add a couple young internationally-born speakers into the mix, there's going to be even more amusing communication foibles. Let me share a couple from our most recent transplant.

The other day, I was at the computer, working on something, when Andrew came in. I was pretty sure I had just recently given all three boys permission to go outside and play, but, here comes Andrew, obviously flustered. With eyebrows furrowed and hands jerkily motioning in an attempt to complement his limited language, he spoke. I clearly identified three words-- Jadon. Kitchen. Splash.

As I dashed from my desk, visions of our vivacious two-year-old sitting waist-deep in the sink, spattering water in every directions ran through my mind. Was I so preoccupied? Shortly, upon my arrival in the kitchen, I found no such thing. It turns out, as the three boys were undoubtedly jostlin about in their efforts to don shoes, coats, hats, and mittens in our small entryway just off the kitchen, the velcro clasp which holds up the mesh organizer (AKA mitten-and-hat storage container) must have let go. Jadon's mitten search had indeed "splashed" (or, rather, crashed) the whole deal. I was just relieved to be re-squeezing velcro rather than mopping up the entire kitchen!

Another entertaining word-switch occurred last weekend, during the family's six-hour drive to visit good friends in northern Ontario. It was our first real, extended family excursion with six, but the van ride went quite smoothly. The kids slept peacefully, munched snacks contentedly, sang enthusiastically, and, finally, toward the end of the drive, engaged zestfully in a collective guessing game. The way we play is fairly simple. First, someone sets the category (I'm thinking of a number between one and ten...or...I'm thinking of a farm animal...). Then, we take turns, allowing each member of the family to take a stab at guessing the secret, chosen item. At one point in the game, I was "the thinker" and my category was "something that lives in the ocean." There had been lots of great guesses, and I decided to help out with a few clues:
  • I doesn't have fins.....

(a few more guesses)....

  • It does have more than two legs.

I must admit, it took me just a moment to realize Andrew's correctness when he shouted from the back: "Autobus!"


Mom/Linda/Nanny said...

Thanks for the chuckles. Aren't kids just wonderful!!!
Love Nanny X0

Rose said...

God does provide smiles along the way!
Love you and miss you all!