‘Mum, when did you first meet Granny?’

Apropos of nothing, that was what my 6 year old blurted out in the car on holiday. I kept the answer pretty clean. I think.

Kids really do just live in the moment and say whatever comes into their head. And if you’re as forgetful as me, these wonderfully innocent and naive sentences will be forgotten.  And that’s such a shame.

“Mum, does Dad tell you when to go to bed too?” was another just yesterday. Perhaps my youngest was just looking for a bit of solidarity on this one?

I started keeping personal journals about my two boys since when they were born. However, it’s when they started communicating that I really felt the need to write down the bonkers stuff they came out with.

The babbling stage is adorable. From there they progress to trying out words, getting them wrong, substituting words for other words. It’s all too cute. And too short.

For some reason, as a baby, my youngest son referred to his dummy as his ‘nummenah’. He has never corrected my spelling so I assume it’s right.

And then come the spoonerisms – ‘melon’ for ‘lemon’ and vice versa. ‘Par kark’ instead of car park, ‘speed blimit’ and my all-time favourite: ‘applecado’ in place of avocado. And then arguing that they’re right if you correct them!

My 6 year old still says ‘valinna’ instead of vanilla. Although, if he hasn’t got the hang of that by now, that may be permanent.

I just want to box up these lovely mispronounciations and special words ready to dust off that box again when I’m 65 (and brooding because the boys haven’t called in over a week) and I need reminding of a time when I was their world and they needed me.

Or the milestones! I daydreamed about how I’d enlighten my eldest son on the birds and the bees and he’d be so grateful that I made is sound less ‘icky’ than it is.

Picture it:  we’d be curled up on the sofa (it’s probably raining outside) and I’m stroking his hair, saying, ‘well, darling, it’s like this….’.

But in reality, circumstances conspired so that I blurted out the whole reproduction shenanigans whilst on my knees sweeping up cereal that just starbursted all over my floor, 5 minutes before we had people arriving.

Believe me, soon the crazy talk ceases and they start making sense. Sort of.

So keep a record. Don’t let the wonderful wisdoms that tumble from their lips slip away to be forgotten.

And it’s fantastic fodder/blackmail material for their 16th birthday party.

I’d love to hear the crazy words, phrases and questions that have been uttered in your household. Leave a comment below.


Such gems, Steff! I’m glad you know how to spell ‘nummenah’ – no doubt that is a very useful word.

But why wait until the 16th birthday to retell those stories when they’ll be just as embarrassing at 10 or 11? Or maybe I’m just remembering my own childhood….

Stephanie White

Thanks Val. And yes, I think some of these will be unearthed far sooner than 16! Thanks for reading & commenting.

This is precisely why I need Tiny Times! I only have a few of these sorts of memories scribbled down on bits of paper, and you soon forget what seems so memorable at the time. After a rummage in a cupboard, I found a few things I’d written down.
Mispronunciations included swapping b and v, so Alex would go to sports cluv, but wear a pair of glubs. Kate said radiolator and mermermaid for years without us wanting to correct her.
Kate once passed some terraced houses and asked “why are some houses glued together?”
Alex commented that the queen didn’t have to open her own doors as she had ‘henchmen’ to do it for her.
Lovely to remember these!

Stephanie White

Thanks for the comment Claire – love the mispronunciations from your two; so cute. Sometimes I wish children never learn to speak properly; language was a lot more colourful! Tiny Times is going to be great for you especially if you can find the right aged picture to go alongside.

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