Retirement

Ella – There’s a hair on my kiwi.
Me – Yuck, I’ll get it off for you.
Ella – It’s one of your hairs.
Me – No, it’s one of yours, it’s blond.
Ella – And you have brown hair.
Me – And some white hair because I’m getting old.
Ella – You’re not old because you still work.
Me – I suppose.
Ella – And when you are old then you don’t work anymore. And then I don’t have to go to daycare anymore!
Me – By the time I stop working, you’ll have to go to work!
Ella – And then you can go to daycare!

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Were do very, very naughty animals go?

I was reading my paper and was not consciously listening to Ella chatting away to her toy animals until I heard her say:

Ella – And now you have to go to gaol, puppy dog!
Me – Did you just say: “Go to gaol”?
Ella – Yeah, the puppy dog has to go to gaol.
Me – Why does he have to go to gaol?
Ella – Because he can’t talk.
Me – Err… do you know what gaol is?
Ella – No.
Me – Gaol is where you have to go if you’ve done something very, very naughty.
Ella – The puppy dog has done something very, very naughty.
Me – Oh yeah? What did he do?
Ella – He was hitting people.
Me – Oh ok. Fair enough. Because gaol is like the naughty corner for grown-ups.
Ella – The puppy dog is a grown-up.

"We did it! Hurray!"

I have a love/hate relationship with Dora the Explorer. I love it because it is educational*, most of the DVDs have a Dutch language option (with second language English), it’s interactive and it keeps Ella amused while I get dinner cooked. I hate it because all the characters always yell and can’t do anything for themselves and it’s extremely repetitive.

So usually, when I do pay any attention to it, I can be heard saying things like:
“No, I don’t want to help you. Do it yourself!” (Dora: “Do you want to help us find Boots’ squeaky toy?)
“Jeezes, is there something wrong with your eyes? It’s RIGHT behind you!” (Dora: “Can YOU see the magic castle?”)
“I think Dora needs to get her ears checked. We’re yelling our heads off here!” (Dora: “Say jump! Say it louder! LOUDER!”

And I make a habit of giving the wrong answer to all her questions. Ella is so used to this that she’ll just say: “No mum, it’s purple/a square/five” and doesn’t seem to think anything of her mother being so stupid.

In my defence, I do also try to encourage Ella to participate as that is what Dora is all about.

Yesterday Dora and Boots were trying to encourage the viewers to get up and jump over mud puddles to get away from some crocodiles. When Ella didn’t react to their requests to get up to jump, I said: “Go on Ella, you have to stand up to jump.”

Ella gave me one of those ‘poor you’ looks and said: “There are no crocodiles here, mum” and went back to her colouring in.

*[Certain proof that Ella learns from it, is that she now counts to ten with a Holland Dutch accent!]

Wisdom

Scene: We’re both in the lounge room and as I close the door, I see a spider hanging in the corner.

Me – Hi spider. Oh, it’s dead.
Ella – The spider can’t talk, mum.
Me – Well no, because it’s dead.
Ella – Yeah and when we’re dead we can’t talk, can we?
Me – That’s right.
Ella – I can do anything, because I’m not dead yet.

Keep that attitude!

When fish fly

We were having desert with Ella’s godmother in the city tonight and were discussing who was going to pay for it. Ella admitted that she would not pay because she did not have any money and so I would have to pay always. I broke the news to her that when she’s a bit bigger, she can earn money too and pay for things.

What followed was our first “What do you want to be when you grow up” conversation. With an Ella twist.

Godmother – So what do you want to be when you grow up, Ella? Do you want to be… a fireman?
Ella – Nooo! I wanna be… a gumnut!
We – A gumnut?!
Ella – Noooo! Not yet.
Me – But what do you want to do for work, to earn money?
Ella – What do you do?
Me – I am err… an internet… err… I work with computers, Ella. But what do you want to do when you’re grown-up, for work, to earn money? Do you want to be a doctor, or a cleaner, or a teacher, or a vet,…
Ella – I’m gonna be a fishie… that can fly!
[Demonstrates her idea by making swimming and flying motions with her arms]
Me – That’s a great way to earn money! Because not many people have ever seen a fishie that can fly. I’d pay good money to see that!

So that’s that then. I had dreams about her becoming an engineer, she wants to work in some animal freak-show. But you know, as long as she’s happy…

Knock, knock

First in a long line no doubt. So far she only knows one and never tires of repeating it.

Carnivorous fairies

While we were camping at the Corinbank festival for 4 days, Ella and I had plenty of opportunity to talk while we ate or rested in our tent.

This conversation was probably the most bizarre one, and a tad disturbing, especially at a festival where animal rights activists were promoting vegetarianism and probably a large proportion of the festival goers objected to the killing of animals, for ideological reasons.

Ella – We are fairies. And we eat animals. So we are going to hunt for animals.
Me – Err… I’m not sure fairies eat animals.
Ella – Ye-eah. They eat animals, so we have to hunt for them.
Me – You know some people don’t eat animals?
Ella – But we do.
Me – We do, but we don’t need to if we don’t want to.
Ella – But I want to.
Me – Ok then.
Ella – Now we have to go hunt animals so we can eat them.
Me – You know that hunting animals means that you have to kill them?
Ella – Yes, we’re going to kill the animals so we can eat them.
Me – How are you going to kill them?
Ella – We have fire!
Me – Oh no, isn’t that going to hurt the animal? I can’t stand seeing animals hurt.
Ella – No, the fire is cold.
Me – Ok. So you’re going to kill animals with cold fire. What kind of animal are you going to kill?
Ella – A snake!
Me – A snake? Do they taste nice? I’ve never had snake, so I really don’t know if that’s going to be yummy.
Ella – I don’t know either.
Me – You do realise that once you’ve killed the animal you’ll have to take it’s skin off and cut open it’s belly before you can eat it?
Ella – Ok.
Me – Actually, I don’t want to kill animals. I just can’t do it. That’s why I buy my meat at the butcher’s. I don’t think I could kill an animal. I’d feel too sorry for them.
Ella – But there’ll be more animals, mum.
Me – That’s right, but only if we don’t kill too many of them!
Ella – We’ll only kill one. One snake. And then we’ll cut it in pieces and put it on the table for morning tea.
Me – Oh no, you’ll have to cook it first. You can’t eat snake raw, I’m pretty sure.
Ella – Ok, we’ll cook it and then it will be like fish!
Me – When we cook snake it will taste like fish? That’s good then, because I like fish.
Ella – And we are big fairies, aren’t we?
Me – Actually, I think fairies are rather little. Maybe we should catch a grasshopper to eat instead? Because fairies are little and they don’t need much food.
Ella – Ok. We’ll kill a grasshopper and cook it and then it will taste like shark!