Over the weekend I experienced the delightful company of my four-year-old grandson, Ethan. We had one of our fun-filled date/sleepovers. As a word-lover to the core, I am fascinated how children hear words and how they translate them into their language.
Since it was such a lovely spring day, Ethan and I had a picnic out on the patio. Because of pesky flies, I made sure I had my flyswatter close by. At one point Ethan started to grab the swatter end, and I admonished him not to touch it while eating.
“Oh yeah, ” he said, “because it’s all fly-gut-ty.”
Hm. Took the words right out of my mouth, Ethan. That’s exactly how I would have said it. Not!
Makes perfect sense, right? The flyswatter is all fly-gut-ty!
At breakfast I let him break eggs into a bowl and then use the egg beater to whip up our scrambled eggs. Later, after we’d enjoyed our scrambled egg breakfast, Ethan said, “That was fun using the egg-crusher.”
Of course. How descriptive. The egg-crusher! It did indeed crush the eggs.
Don’t you love it?
At one point during the visit, Ethan asked me, “What is a mechanic?”
Great question. I carefully explained that a mechanic is a person who knows all about motors and engines and can fix them. Of course as verbose as I am, I added lots of details. After patiently waiting for me to finish, he asked, “Then why do we put them in the pool?”
The pool? I was lost.
“Yes,” he said, “we put them in the pool to keep it clean.”
“Ah,” I said. “Do you mean chemicals?”
He giggled. “Sometimes, I get my words all mixed up.”
As do we all, Ethan. As do we all!
Chemicals. Mechanics. Do they sound similar to you? I’m looking at how they are spelled. Many of the same letters in each.
I find this fascinating. Absolutely fascinating.
More fodder for my journal! Memories for me and for Ethan. And who knows – one of these may end up in a future novel.
I trust the teaching and instruction given in this blog post was helpful in your goal to be a novelist. For more in-depth writer’s workshops, check out the wide variety offered at the Be A Novelist Website.
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