Creating Helpful Dictionaries

Posted: January 4, 2010 in 1

Sows and Yeppers

When I was married, I was a stay-at-home mom, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year, except during leap year when I stayed home an extra day.

My children never stayed with anybody, other than my husband’s mom and dad, because my husband took me out only once a year (on our anniversary). And, though I whine about the fact that I NEVER left my home, what I just related has nothing at all to do with the reason I divorced him. Really.

But getting back to the point of this blog – helpful dictionaries. We hadn’t anticipated that something might occur one day that would put us all in the same place at the same time and that we would ever have to leave our babies with anybody else. So, naturally, something came up that put me, my husband, and his parents in the same place at the same time – without our children.

I called for reinforcements – my parents. Unfortunately, except for holidays and birthdays, my parents hardly ever saw my children, so my concern was that they would be unable to understand the baby whose language was, shall we say, unique.

How unique? Let’s see if you can figure this out. She asks for a sow? Do you get her a pig? I hope not. That’s not at all what she means. How about yoke? Do you bring her an egg? Again, yoke has nothing at all to do with what Brittney wants.

And so, I wrote my own dictionary, which helped my mom tremendously. Here is a sample of the dictionary I left my parents:

sow – pacifier
yepper – diaper
yoke – milk
yo yoke – more milk

You may be thinking that my precious baby knew when her diaper needed to be changed. You would be wrong. Unlike other babies who become attached to their blankets, my daughter carried around, along with her sow, a clean cloth yepper, which, if you think about it, is a whole lot easier to wash than a favorite blanket.

So if you find yourself in a similar circumstance, help your provider out with your child’s very own special dictionary.

It would have helped me tremendously if the people whose little Korean daughter I watched had informed me that “mahtimihaab?” meant, “Wanna see what I have?” Believe it or not, I actually figured that one out.

If nothing else, your dictionary will make for a great blog some day.

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  1. My favorite was the “dop.” Each time we walked into the bedroom where Keeley slept in her crib, we would find her pacifier on the floor and exclaim “You dropped it!” We would pick it up, wash it off and return it to her. Eventually, she connected “dropped” with her pacifier and called it her “dop.” Every time I see a pacifier, I see it as a “dop.”

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