Monday, October 18, 2010


One of Hannah’s first words that she said with regularity was elephant. Except she pronounced it “elegant.” For over a year, every time she would spot an elephant she’d point and excitedly say “elegant” and I’ll get this fabulous mental image of an elephant wearing a sparkly gown, a tiara perched atop its head.

I would seek out opportunities to let others hear this little bit of adorableness. You’d be surprised how many elephants there are out there - on tv, billboards, store windows. I was sure (like all parents must be) that any friend or acquaintance, or even stranger on the street wanted nothing more than to hear my daughter mispronounce “elephant.”

And then the other morning, while watching Sesame Street, she pointed to an elephant on screen (who I believe was riding a bicycle and may have been wearing a tutu) and said “elephant.”
“What?” I said, certain I had misheard her.
“Elephant.” Clear as can be.
“Yes,” I said, feeling a little sad. “That’s an elephant.”

And I kicked myself for yet again not capturing on film something that I had KNOWN wouldn’t last forever, and yet had seemed like such a part of her, of who she is, that it was hard to imagine a time when she wouldn’t say elegant instead of elephant.
It sounds like such a cliché (and kind of cheesy), but there really is such a “living in the now” element to having a child that it’s hard to appreciate how fleeting these moments are until they are gone. In fact some of the more difficult phases (teething, bedtime struggles, learning to walk while holding your fingers as, hunched forward, you lurch around behind your child…) seem to go on forever until suddenly they’re over and you look back and think, ‘huh. That was only a month.’

So I’ve started a list of things my daughter says or used to say that crack me up, so that I won’t forget them as I turn my focus to each new phase that seem to be coming like rapid fire now. Here are a few highlights:

Beow – Cat. Interestingly, beows say “meow”
House – Owl. Whenever I ask her if she wants to go back to the house she says “hoo hoo.”
Oggies – Frogs. They say “bibbit”
Fufferfies – Butterflies
Nana – used for: Nana (her grandmother), Anna (her cousin) and Hannah (herself). At the end of the alphabet song, instead of “now I know my ABCs” Hannah says “Nana know my ABCs…”
Apatow – Octopus. So we’ve named her stuffed octopus “Judd”

Any mamas out there have some chatty toddlers with some of these gems? Share them here!


  1. Until last week, "no my want it" was a phrase heard frequently from my toddler (often followed by the undesirable thing, such as "no my want it clean diaper"). When he felt especially strongly, it was NO. MY. WANT. IT. Last week, he said "I don't want a nap" followed later by "I don't like broccoli." (The latter most definitely a lie.) And he hasn't looked back. I'm feeling a bit nostalgic about it too.

    He does still say "Do it again __" approximately 1000 times per day, with __ representing anything he would like to happen again, like, say, squirrel (running across his path) or bus (that drove by). I keep telling him that, as awesome as he thinks I am, I do not have control over the animal kingdom or the machinery of the world. This idea seems lost on him. And I know I'll miss DO. DA. GEN. said for emphasis when the day comes that he does understand the smallness of my true role in the world.

  2. Ok, the whole octopus named Judd thing made me laugh :)

    The little girl I nanny for just turned 4, and thankfully still says "peppernip" instead of "peppermint". I'll be terribly sad the day she stops :(