Friday, March 02, 2007

Exactly How I Felt in That Honors Lit Seminar, Senior Year

Hoo boy, the toddler is cracking me up these days.

This morning when we were playing tea party, she said she was baking me some cookies. "Fantastic!" I said. "What kind are they?" Julia told me they were "medicine flavored." Um, OK.

Earlier, just after she woke up, Julia had received a book as a reward for going to sleep like a big girl last night, without whining or calling for us. The books are from a big stack of vintage paperback children's books that my mother-in-law brought to our house many months ago. The books had belonged to Christopher and his sister when they were children. Most of the books are by Richard Scarry, whose work Julia adores, so awhile back we began using them as a cheap (i.e., free) but meaningful reward for appropriate bedtime behavior. Sadly, the last of the Richard Scarry books was bestowed upon Julia yesterday [an aside: yes, I know this is dangerous territory. The books are almost gone, and there is no way we are going to buy a new book for the kid every day! Oops!], so this morning I grabbed the next book in the stack, "Busy Trains" by Peter Lippman, a book I'd never heard of. Unfortunately, while the super-detailed illustrations of all kinds of trains are interesting, the book is way beyond Julia's age level--as I realized as soon as I began reading it to her. It's full of in-depth descriptions of things like how steam locomotives work and how repairmen fix cables. Words like "chemicals" and "commuters." Pages about electrical switches and side-dumpers and mining cars taking ore out of the ground. (Yeah, um: boring.)

So anyway, I kept reading every word, mainly because it was all too complicated to even easily summarize on the fly (You know: "...and then, um....the train falls off the bridge. Oops! But everything was okay! Next page!"). Julia listened gamely for about half the book, but I could tell she was pretty confused by all the big words. Then suddenly, in a bewildered tone, she interrupted my reading and said, "Mama...who are you talking to?"

Oh, man. I held it together at the moment, but later on while recounting the tale to Christopher over the phone, I laughed so hard I got tears in my eyes.


Donna said...

Obviously one of Christopher's books (not Beth's). And yes, some little boys sure love trucks and trains. My son being one. He can give lectures on the process of digging up an then paving a new road. (Um. Yeah. Boring. But I've sat through many a 'seminar' given by him). He even gave such a lecture to our contractor on using girders "to make our house strong' during our home renovation.

Heidi said...

That is hilarious, Shannon! "Who are you talking to?"!!! What did you SAY??!! I could NEVER have kept from laughing, I don't think.

*Logan* probably would have *loved* such a book at 2-1/2!

Shan said...

Well, I chuckled a little, but I just said, "Honey, I'm reading you the book!" Then we determined the book was "too hard" and picked another one! Oh, so funny. I still laugh out loud when I think of it.