We’ve reached the “fantasizing about kidnapping this woodpecker and keeping it as our pet” phase of isolation.
Griffin: Do you think it’s safe to explore outside with Oliver?
Me: Yes. I trust your judgment.
Griffin: I’m just not sure.
Me: What’s the worst that could happen?
Griffin: Oliver could slip and fall off a cliff and drown in the freezing water.
While looking out the window at the fog and drizzle pooling on last week’s snow, Griffin confided:
Rainy days don’t make me feel gloomy;
they make me feel snug.
Unprompted, Griffin announced in the car tonight that he wants to grow up to be either a musician or an illustrator. (I’ll include a post soon with some of the pictures he’s drawn in his new notebook; he’s very excited about it.)
Maggie proceeded to announce that she wants to be one of three things: a dolphin trainer, a singer, or a dancer.
Dinner conversation tonight:
Griffin: “In a way, we do have superpowers.”
Sarah: “How so?”
Griffin: “We can communicate. And we can love. And we have emotions.”
Sarah: “That’s very wise.”
Griffin: <…thinking…> “But, if everyone has a superpower, then I guess it’s not really super after all.”
“I am definitely going to go to college. When you finish your classes, you can just walk around, ride your bike, hang out with your friends. . . it’s like recess all the time!” — Griffin
During dinner last night, we were discussing how messy babies are when they eat. In my customarily ridiculous fashion, I proposed that high chairs should be built inside large tubs. All the food detritus would fall into the tub. Then at the end of the meal, you pull a lever and a huge bucket of water dumps on baby, high chair, and tub, washing all the sticky, gooey, crumblies away. We laughed about this, agreeing that one of many problems with my proposal, was that the sudden deluge would be scary for the hapless filth monger in the midst of it.
I tried proposing heated dryers, but Griffin didn’t think that this would be enough. He suggested putting an umbrella over the baby. But this, I countered, would only clean the area around the high chair, without cleaning the baby himself (we were imagining Oliver as our first beneficiary). Griffin considered this, and responded, “What if we put some sort of water resistor over him?” I shook my head, misunderstanding, and pointed out that we need the baby to get wet. Griffin, in turn, shook his head, saying, “No, a water resistor.” I still didn’t get it, thinking he meant some sort of anti-water-force-field. He elaborated, “You know … an electrical resister doesn’t stop the electricity, it just kind of slows it down. So a water resistor would be like that, making it less strong.”
My jaw dropped. My nine-year-old just schooled me on electrical engineering, using the idea of a electrical resistance as a metaphor.
Tonight I asked Griffin if he’s been keeping track of his screen-time minutes (a thing we do).
He replied, “I thought you said that we’d do it by sound.”
“By … sound?”
“Yes, last night you said that we would do it by sound,” he repeated, looking entirely earnest.
<Puzzled thought.> “Ohhhh… I said we would play it by ear!”
Love the way brains grapple with new idioms.
While working on a project yesterday, Sarah became justifiably frustrated that the kids were goofing off and not following directions. At some point, she blurted out, “You’re being so inefficient!”
Griffin replied, “We’re kids. We’re not supposed to be efficient.”
I love the little tidbits that the kids come up with as they engage more with the world. At a recent meal, Griffin noted that the word because is spelled one way, but is often spoken a different way: ’cause. He knew that he should spell out the full word in writing, but he wondered what he should do if he were writing the words that someone else said (i.e., quoted dialogue). This led to a great conversation about written dialogue and how the conventions of writing don’t always match the conventions of speech.
This would have been a great discussion topic in English workshop with 8th graders, so it was a real treat to have it spontaneously emerge from our 3rd grader’s ever-curious mind.