Monday, May 18, 2009

The innocence of children...

I told you earlier how much of a flirt my son is. But I didn't realize we would need to start some lessons in chivalry and modesty so soon. I guess it is my fault. Or my mother's. I can blame this on my mother, right? After all, she was the one that taught him the word. And mothers can be blamed for everything, right?

"the" word is 'opendoen'. The Dutch word for 'opening up'. Joseph used it mainly in the context of his buckle. He wanted the buckle of his high chair opened, not just to spring out, but mostly because he wanted to fasten it again. Opening and closing things are Joseph's greatest delight! He has actually caught the meaning pretty accurately, using it when he wants a door opened, or a box, or even his shoes.
Joseph's version 'ohthetoe' of course puzzles the English speakers around him, and usually we gladly translate as proud parents of our bilingual baby.

Last weekend though, silence was probably the better part of valour my husband thought. Our parish had an after church breakfast of shrimp and grits with other Southern treats and we all joined in. Anyone who has a todler, knows that expecting him to sit still for an hour after he just HAD to sit still for an hour at mass would be cruel and unusual punishment. So while mommy waited in line with the plates, dada let him run around. Our Parish is blessed with many children, and for some reason Joseph always is an atraction. Like a little prince he atracts people to him. Especially if they are female. Even more so if they are female and under five.
So when he was running around in the hallway, probably looking for some stairs to climb on, a little girl tried to get his attention. She pointed at him, called baby, baby... but unlike his usual behaviour, Joseph did not seem to be too interested. That changed when she came closer. They stared at eachother, pointed the way todlers of like age do. Probably touched eachothers hair. But it were the buttons on her dress that really fascinated Joseph. He was very clear about what he wanted and stated it proudly. "ohthetoe".

Oh my... they start so young these days!