Doings in Elma

We got to my mom’s house late Monday night and are happily spending a month at the farm. There’s nothing like cow pies to really versify a child’s view of the world in general. It’s amazing how many farm things convert to good, down home advice. Like my grandpa’s old saying, in regards to rehashing upsetting events: “Every time you kick a turd over, it stinks.” Rural folk are brilliant.

My daughter is talking. She’s about 20 months and as of this week, is stringing all sorts of words into all sorts of sentences. Her first and favorite sentence? “Rexy did it!” followed closely by her second favorite sentence, “Harrison did it!” This phrase is usually accompanied by tears and frantic pointing.

Now that she’s old enough to tattle, she’s old enough to sit in time-out. Unfortunately she does not agree, so I have resorted to locking her in the laundry room for a minute at a time. She usually comes out quite penitent and cute, but the other day I forgot to close the adjoining bathroom door. The buzz of the timer did not produce a humble daughter, but a sopping wet toddler enjoying her punishment in the toilet.

And don’t ask me how or why, but our four-year-old, Rex, is now talking with a Chicago accent. I am dead serious. All his short A’s now sound like Ai’s. He no longer has animals, they’re “aynimals”. It’s like living with a misplaced Midwestern zoo keeper.


  1. I had a 4-year-old whose “a” sounds suddenly turned to “ya” sounds. Scyabs on her knees, an itchy byack, and a phone call from gryamma. Weird. (she outgrew it)

  2. Oh the tattling stage. I will admit that I was a horrible tattler. No wonder my brothers and I didn’t get along when we were younger! Good luck to your kids…

  3. Maybe he’ll have a Boston accent next! Have a great time in farmland!

  4. I wish I had a farm to teach my children hard work. Do your parents need extra hands up there? I have a 7 year old who has been sustaining the life of a dying rose bush and I have a 4 year old who plays the WII like nobodies business…I’m sure that would give him the advantage in pulling weeds out of a vegetable garden.

  5. p.s. say hello to Jen from me

  6. What is it about toilets that children and dogs find so irresistable?!

  7. So how does your Chicago-an child say cow terd if it doesn’t have any ‘A’s in it? Just curious.

  8. What in the world is a Chicago accent? Have lived there…I know there isn’t one….or at the very least I don’t have one.
    The one off of SNL skits is purely made up…okaiy?

  9. Love this. And our 2 year old just told me a week ago “I saw red lights and that man talked to Daddy.” I said, you saw lights? OR someone talked to Daddy”

    He then said, “That man is the police and he talked to Daddy. I told him I was watching the Eagles.”


    I asked my husband, did you get pulled over today.

    Answer: Yes.

    The best tattle of ALL time. And seriously, our son ratted him out with those EXACT sentences. BOOOO YA. Watch your driving daddy.

  10. There’s a reason this old saying become old sayings. Simple, pithy, right on the mark.

  11. Brilliant advice about the turds. 😉 What is it with kids and water? Mine soaked my entire bathroom and drowned two of my books. *Sigh* Sorry, Jim Butcher, but it’s not the first time Harry Dresden’s been wet.

  12. I love when they start talking, honestly, it’s one of my favorite stages! But that’s hilarious that her first words were tattling! 🙂

  13. Sounds like someone has hit their terrible 2’s early! LUCKY!!!

  14. My son Kai did that same thing, I forgot all about it. He’s 5 now and doesn’t do it anymore, but it was cute when he did. 🙂 Love the quote about the turd by your grandfather, that’s great. And a huge congratulations to your promotion with the paper!! I’m so happy for you. You deserve it. Also loved your story about the raccoon. I was laughing out loud.