Monday, August 4, 2014

You like Khgunk?

Ok, this is another post about Liam.

I blog because I remember the parts of my kids tiny years that I blog about better than the parts I don't.  And my blog is always heavily weighted toward the kid who's about 2 or 3 years old.

So I realize the blog is Liam-heavy lately, but he's two.  And two-year-olds are hilarious.  They get a bad rep, but that's just because they are passionate.  About EVERYTHING.

See?  Passionate about his "Sauce Boss" crown.

And it's easy to remember how passionate they are about not getting that toy they want.  But they're also passionate about funniness, and wonder, and encouragement, and kindness.  

And questions.

Liam and I were in the kitchen the other day when he looked at me with the blazing hot intensity of a million suns and said, 

"Hey!" He was using that oddly macho-man voice that he uses.  It's somewhere between a mafia hit man and a disgruntled, middle-aged, German businessman.  "You like khgunk?" 

I stared at him blankly.

He continues to look desperately at me and now points at me too.   With a crooked finger.  (Because he never points with a straight finger.  It's always hooked so you really don't know what he's pointing at.)

"You like kkhgguunk?!?!"

He was SO intense and I had SO little idea what he was talking about that I was feeling a bit taken aback.

Me: "Gunk?"

Liam: "No, Kunk!"

Me: "Kunk?"

Liam, looking aggravated, "No!  KKKUNK!"

At this point I'm starting to laugh because it doesn't usually take me this long to figure out what he's talking about.  So I start 20 questions.

Me: "Is Kunk a food?"  We are standing in the kitchen, after all.

Liam, looking at me like I'm stupid: "No."

And he gives me nothing more.  

Me: "Uh... is Kunk a....toy?"

He sighed here, as though it was exasperating to have to deal with such an idiot.  "No, Mom.  Kunk.  Smells yucky.  A Kunk."

Lightbulb ON.

Me:  "OOOOH!  A skunk!  I forgot you have something against starting words with 's'!  Skunk!  No, I don't like skunks.  Because they smell yucky."

And he grinned at me.  "Me no like kunk either." 

And he left. 

"Glad we had that talk!" I called after him.  But he was passionately on to something else. 

And it's a thing now.  Everyone in the family now hollers at each other, "Hey!  You like kgunk?"'

It's fun.  You should try it. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

'Nana Bed

I let Liam help me make banana bread.

Well, I started to make banana bread and Liam came running across the kitchen hollering, "I help you?  I help you make 'nana bed in that - wha- wha- wha- what you call that red ting?"

"My mixer.  And yes, you can help."

From that we should take away 2 facts.  

1. Liam is in the phase of verbal development when he stutters.  And it's cute.

2. I deserve a pat on the back because I just quadrupled the time it's going to take to make banana bread.  Maybe pent-tupled.  
But look how happy...

So I got my softened butter into the mixer and realized I was out of sugar.   Since leaving a two-year-old unattended by a mixer and surrounded by baking ingredients is stupid poor parenting, I unplugged it and moved EVERYTHING else out of his reach.  

Because that boy loves to add things to the bowl.   

Like picking up the big salt canister and shaking it over the bowl where a batch of cookies are mixing.  

I will never again grumble when that little salt chute is hard to open.   It's obstinacy saved our cookies.

But I digress.  

I cleared the counter, gave some sort of motherly warning/threat/ultimatum about messing with the mixer and scooted down to the garage.  

Where I found no more sugar.  

Which turned out to be ok, because since Liam couldn't reach any of the baking ingredients, the resourceful boy found crumbs, fuzz and an old, crusty piece of shredded cheddar on the floor which he squished deep into the soft butter.


Obviously the whole making banana bread idea needed to be counted as a loss.  I threw away the defiled butter, wrote sugar on the shopping list and looked sadly at my over-ripe bananas.

Now, you could make a case that the moral of this story is that I need to keep a cleaner kitchen floor,  but I'm going to choose to take away from it the eternal truth that you can never trust that a two-year-old will not cause trouble.   

Sunday, July 27, 2014

I've got the GPS - never need a map again!*

Driving to the grocery store this morning Belle asked, "Can I tell you how to get there?"

Me: "Sure!"

Ok, the exclamation point indicates more enthusiasm that I was able to whip up because this exact scenario plays out every time I drive the kids somewhere.  But I tried to sound encouraging.

Belle: "Ok.  You go around...THAT TURN RIGHT THERE!"

Wait - you should know the setting so that this story can reach its full potential.
credit: Ed Suominen

To get from our house to the store (or anywhere else we go) we drive:
  • 2 miles along a winding forest road which has approximately zero side streets. 
  • Turn left onto the highway. This is the only turn.
  • Drive along the highway through pretty valleys and forests for 10 miles to town. Again, minimal side streets.
  • Every single thing we do in town is actually on that highway.

So when Belle was yelling "THAT TURN RIGHT THERE!" she was not in fact telling me where to turn, she was referring to the winding turns of the road itself.

This continues almost non-stop.


As you can see, it turns into more of a driving lesson than actual directions.  And maybe you can see why I hesitate just a moment before saying "yes" to someone wanting to holler "directions" at me.

We get to the highway and she says (calmly for once), "Turn here."

Me: "Right or left?"

Belle, looking and pointing left: "Um....RIGHT!"

Me: "Nope. That's left.  Remember, you write with your right hand.  Write-right.  Easy to remember.  Which hand do you write with?"

She tentatively raises her left.

Me, laughing: "Never mind.  I'm turning left."

Belle: "Now... GO STRAIGHT!  NO!  TURN HERE!!!"

All of this is once again referring to the turning of the road itself.

And as if that weren't enough, now that we're on the highway, every 45 seconds or so Liam shouts, "CAR COMING AT US!"

He's hollering about that car driving calmly and safely in its own lane of traffic headed the other way.



Belle:  "Straaaaaaaight...NOW TURN!!!"

If you had only an audio copy of our trip, you might think it was a bit more exciting than it really was.

Half way to town (which is a whole 5 minutes into her directions) Belle stops, clearly exhausted, and sighs.

"You know what mom?" she says, "If that car in front of us is going to the store, just follow them.  And if they aren' just find a different car and follow them."

*quoted from that funny little lost car in Disney's Cars.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Love Hurts

I'm just going to skim over the fact that I haven't blogged in six months.  Let's just pretend we just chatted last week, ok?  Ok.


Yesterday Belle convinced a butterfly to land on her finger.

Never-you-mind that I had told her a hundred times that butterflies are scared of people and will try to get away.  Especially from little girls who run shrieking after them.

She did it.  It sat on her finger while she walked all the way across the yard hollering for everyone to come see her and the butterfly "who is getting used to me!  I think he really likes me!"

Sure enough, there he was, perched prettily on her little index finger as though she were Princess Aurora.
"His front legs are not sticky," she explained patiently to me, "but his back legs are.  That is how he stays on my finger, even if his front legs slip off."


I'm no butterfly expert, but it seems like all their legs should have the same amount of stickiness.

Then she turned so I could see the back of it.


"Honey, is this the butterfly you caught before in the net?"

"Yup!" she answered positively beaming.

"The one whose leg got pulled off?"

"Yup!  But he's perfectly fine!  I knocked a chunk of his wing off too, but he can fly perfectly! And he loves me!"

And I couldn't.  I just couldn't sit by and let this continue to be so cute.

Because what she had called the "sticky back legs" was really butterfly guts that had oozed out of the missing leg socket, glueing the poor creatures rump to her outstretched finger.


To my credit, I didn't actually say "Ew."  Although I won't rule out the fact that she might have seen it written clearly on my face.

I tried to explain what was going on and suggested she might want to go put the poor amputee on a soft piece of grass and come wipe the bug guts off her finger.

Belle's deep love of the butterfly faltered slightly while she tried to get the ridiculously sticky innards off of her skin.  But then she tracked the little guy down again and tearfully chased it across the yard yelling her goodbyes and declaring her love until the insect hobbled - or whatever the airborne form of hobbling is- out into the forest.  Probably to die.

Wait, is a butterfly an insect? Hold please...googling... Well, yes. But funnily enough, things are insects partially because they have six legs.   So, I guess his insect status is now a little iffy.

Good thing he has Belle's undying love as wind beneath his now injured wings.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A worm by any other name would still be...a caterpillar.

Liam has a stuffed caterpillar.


He is fond of it.  Originally it was given to Dalton as a gift from his sweet friend, Gus, but somehow it's been handed down to Liam.

I've only had moderate success in convincing my kids that this is indeed a caterpillar.
It's always called a worm.  Whatever name it goes by, it's soft and squishy and fuzzy and Liam loves to sleep with it and carry it around.

One day, while trying to distract Liam from whining, or crying, or just being two, I asked him, "What's your worm's name?"

I didn't really have any curiosity about this - his name was going to be Wormy.  Because that is how my children name everything. Dogs are Doggy, fish are Fishy.  Even the moon is Moony.

Liam considered his squishy, little, stuffed worm and said seriously, "Name is Crunchy."

Me:  "Crunchy?  You named your soft...squishy....worm Crunchy?"

Liam, decidedly: "Yup.  Is Crunchy Worm."

And I laughed and laughed and told Liam he was weird, but in a good way.

And I vowed to make that name stick.  Because it adds joy to my day to call it Crunchy.

But then, a few days later he was in full nonsense-word mode (which I'm sad to say he reached earlier than the others.  I dearly wish he was fully coherent in regular English before he started loving nonsense words...) and was pretending his worm was a light saber, of course.

I said, "Is Crunchy Worm a light saber?" (Because I am that good of a conversationalist.)

Liam said, "No, not Crunchy.  Name is ... Booby!"

I snorted because isn't it unfortunate when nonsense words turn out to not really be nonsense?  I'm sure he's never heard the word booby, so I decided to try to shift things a bit in the hopes he didn't remember exactly what he had said.

Because having his favorite caterpillar be named Booby Worm was just too weird.

So I said, "His name is Poopy?"

Stop judging me.  I don't know how Poopy is much better than Booby.  There's no script for these things, people.

But he looked at me like I was an idiot and said very pointedly and with very deliberate pronunciation, "NO. Name is BOOOO-BEEEEEE."

And I was at a loss.  So I just let him walk out of the kitchen making Jedi noises and swinging Booby the Light Saber Worm around.

But you can bet your boobies that I was not letting that name stick.

In fact, like any good mother I decided to pretend that conversation had never happened and bent all my energy toward reinforcing the name Crunchy.

And I'm glad to say, I win!  Booby is a thing of the past and the soft caterpillar is officially Crunchy Worm.

Then yesterday, in an unexpected twist, Liam gave Crunchy his own Pringles container to live in.

"Mommy, this my friend.  Right here. Is Crunchy Worm."

Liam didn't bother to finish the Pringles before adding the worm, so I'm happy to report that today, Crunchy is probably a little bit crunchy.