Semantics – Introducing Anna Leigh

I realized the other day that I included Anna in her very first Semantics post without absolutely any pomp and circumstance or even a mention.

Anna is talking a lot these days, and even though a lot of what she says only a mother (or 5-year-old brother) can understand, she’s grown a lot since we took her to speech therapy. She’s still working on a lot of the things that were identified in her speech evaluation — namely pronunciation and sound deletions — but I can see that her vocabulary and the complexity of sounds she uses has exploded. She’s particularly honed the fourth-child starter pack, which includes phrases like “LEAVE ME A-WONE!” and “GET AWAY!” or “THAT’S MINE!” and who could forget, “HE HIT ME!”

Anna is particularly charmed by the back-and-forth, tête-à-tête of language. She loves how, when she says something, I respond. Like how when she says “Thank you” I say “You’re welcome.” So often when she gives me something, she says “Thank you” and will impatiently wait for me to say “You’re welcome.”

Or when I say, “I love you, Anna.” She knows to say, “I love you too, Mommy.”

But usually she gets it wrong. Usually when I say, “I love you, Anna.” She responds, “I KNOW! I LOVE ME TOO, MOMMY!”

There are lots of words she says right now that I hope she never grows out of (although she absolutely will). They are words that I hope forge themselves into our family lore and become part of our very own vernacular. But in case they don’t, in case as she grows up and replaces her toddler pronunciations with the correct ones, I’m listing them here so we never forget. (And I’m going to come back here and update this list because, of course, I’m already forgetting.)

Nee-Hoo = Thank you

Be-TOH! = Because

Toby = Cozy

GET ME OUT OF HERE! = What she yells in the morning when she wants us to get her out of her crib. Also what she yells the second we pull into the garage and she wants us to get her out of her carseat. 

Do-tending = pretending

Do-member = remember

DayDay = David

MayMay = Mary

MaNa = Thomas

AnNA! = Anna

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