Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Cuddle Cuddle

I’m painfully aware that I need to take care when writing this post. The last thing I want is for my granddaughter’s language development to be swept up and dumped in the ‘kids say the funniest things’ category.

At two years old the words and phrases are coming thick and fast, although some conversations remind me of the Grieg's "Piano Concerto" sketch Morecambe & Wise did with André Previn. At the point, when Previn is approaching the peak of his confused state, Eric explains that he is playing all the right notes…..but not necessarily in the right order. We are not yet blessed with this level of elucidation but we do find ourselves on the receiving end of expressions and gestures that are clearly intended to point out our short-comings in the communication department.

One recent development has been her ability to pronounce ‘s’ and ‘h’ as ‘sh’. Before this she pronounced ‘sh’ as ‘t’. Coupled with the fact that she was pronouncing her ‘f’s as ‘sh’, it’s understandable why visits to the aquarium have been off limits.


One of the best things about children learning language is the way they inadvertently come up with nicer alternatives to those words in common usage. My current favourite is the term ‘Cuddle-cuddle’ for crocodile. I just hope that when she’s coming to me for a hug, shouting cuddle…cuddle, it’s because she wants an affectionate squeeze, not because she sees an uncanny resemblance between me and some thick-skinned monster that loafs around with his mouth open waiting for his next meal. Hmmm……

© 2009, copyright Martin T. Hodges

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