Feb. 26, 2013
Curious about Death
Tonight, at the dinner table:
Kaya: (directed at Geoff) Did you have a mama when you were younger?
Very eager to know if she knew who it was, I couldn't help but break in with my German question:
Tamara: Weisst du, wer seine Mama ist? [Do you know who his mama is?]
Kaya didn't say much in response. I was naturally very curious if she knew who my mom was, so I asked her:
Tamara: Weisst du, wer meine Mama war? [Do you know who my mom was?]
After pausing a moment, Kaya responnds, smiling.
Tamara: Ja, genau! [Yeah, exactly!]
After about a minute, Kaya asks quite matter of factly:
Kaya: Warum ist Nana gestorben? [Why did Nana die?]
I have to admit, I was quite surprised at this question. Though we've talked a bit about Kahlua's death, our dog whom we had to put down last year, death hasn't been much of a topic at all, despite the fact that Nana died nearly 3 years ago.
The exact response we gave her, something along the lines of Nana being very sick, the kind of sickness that you don't just wake up with and die from overnight, was less meaningful to me than what she said a few minutes into the conversation, once again, a bit out of the blue. I was so taken aback by the insightfulness of the comment, as well as the delight on her face as she said this, pointing at all of us and towards herself, that I laughed aloud, falling in love with her all over again.,
Kaya: Vielleicht wird es andere Leute mit unseren Namen sein, nachdem wir gestorben sind. [Maybe there will be other people with our same names after we're gone...!]
My mom was such a believer in reincarnation.
And I chose Kaya's initials, KL, in honor of my mom, Karen Lasnover.
While I've never been one with strong beliefs around reincarnation, this is one of many experiences that definitely leaves me thinking, once again, about my mom's passing so soon after Kaya was coming into her own in this world. Having Kaya as a part of my life, especially as she gets older,
Dec. 30, 2012
Last night, as I was lying in bed with Kaya, having just sang our 3 songs before bedtime, I looked at her, stroked the side of her face and said, "Ich hab dich so lieb, Boo Bear..." [I love you so much, Boo Bear]. She looked me straight in the eyes, clearly tired yet still very awake, smiled the sweetest smile I think I've EVER seen, and said, ever so gently, "Danke." [Thank you.]
As we were driving along Skyline, on the way home from Geoff's friend's house, Kaya and I were having one of those conversations that you never want to end. She was being so curious, so clear in her articulations, and so patient in listening to my responses. The topic had me quite excited, too:
Kaya: Mama, wie sagen wir meer in Spanish?
Me: Wie? Ist das ein Englishes Wort oder ein Deutsches?
Me: Wie sagen wir...oh, mirror. Ja, sicher. Du willst wissen, wie man Mirror auf Spanisch sagt?
I found it very interesting that she asked me for the translation from English to Spanish, as opposed to German to Spanish, so I decided to probe a bit to learn more:
Me: Wie sagt man Mirror auf Deutsch?
Kaya: Oh ja. Siegel.Wie sagen wir Siegel in Spanish (eng pronunciation).
Me: Espejo. Kannst du das sagen?
Me: Ja, genau. Espejo.
Kaya: Wie sagen wir box in Spanish?
Me: Wie sagt man box auf Spanisch?
Me: Wie sagt man box auf Deutsch?
Kaya: Ich weiss nicht (though she may ahve said Schachtel)
Me: Ja, genau. oder Karton. Man sagt Caja zu Karton oder Schachtel. Willst du noch 'was wissen?
Kaya: Ja. Wie sagt man Triangle auf Spanish.
Me: Wie sagt man Dreieck auf Spanisch?
Then, even more curious about the origins of her line of questioning, I pointed out to her how interesting I found it that she was asking me all of these words in English instead of in German, and thus, I was wondering where she got this curiosity about Spanish. She paused before telling me:
Kaya: Aaron und Zach.
Ah-hah. No wonder her curiosity was in English. There's a chance that she didn't know those words, but 2 of 3 are ones that she's known in the past, and used before. I, personally, think it's because of place memory...she was hearing those kids speak about Spanish from an English perspective, I bet that's how it registered in her brain, like the concept of translating from German to Spanisch doesn't even exist? Makes me wonder, for sure! Either way, very exciting stuff for me, as a trilingual in German, Spanish and English!
Aug. 15, 2012
Cute in English, too!
Shared by Grahms: We were trying on new clothes that I got at a g. sale last summer and found that they fit fine! Kaya asked if her mommy or daddy were going to get her and I said we were meeting Mommy after lunch. She said, "I want to take these clothes to Mommy - she will like them."
Then, following me back to get some shorts to wear, she asked, "Is my Daddy feeling better?" I said, yes he was and he went to work today, and she said, "Good!"
Boy or Girl? This evening, after Kaya had just undressed and was walking out to her 'new' wading pool, she said the following to Geoff: K: "I'm a boy." G: You're pretending to be a boy? K: Yeah, I'm a boy, and I have a tail. A tail in the front...I call it a tail. Geoff couldn't help but laugh as he saw the smile on her face and her hips stuck out front.
Maybe teaching her to "pee like a boy" this week while we were camping wasn't such a good idea? =)
June 2, 2012
Bilingual with her Babies
I just found this post-it on my desk, patiently waiting for me to blog about it. As eager as I am to write an entire post about it, for now, that will have to wait and I'll just add this awesome quote to the mix:
One morning, while playing with her babies on the couch, Kaya says to me, out of the blue,
"Mama, ich spreche Englisch und Deutsch zu meiner Babys. Und sie sagen Englisch und Deutsch zu mir auch." [Mama, I speak Englisch and German to my babies. And they say English and German to me.]
"Warum?" [Why?] I asked her.
"Damit sie mit mir (errr!) auch sprechen koennen." [So they can speak to me, too.]
Tuesday Afternoon, Jan. 17, 2012
Lately, Kaya's bedtime routine has looked a bit like this:
read two stories
listen to an oral story
sing two songs in the rocker and snuggle
get in bed
Geoff often has more patience for the longer story-times than I do--I'm impressed he'll read two books AND tell her a story...but all in all, our processes have been about this for the past few months. The only part I didn't add was the part about the crying at the end. Every since the Schnulli-fairy came in December, Kaya has mostly struggled to fall asleep on her own, without crying, telling us that she's hungry, complaining of a stomach-ache, or all of the above. Tonight, however, was one of the few exceptions we've experienced and Geoff was excited to tell me all about it when I got home from tutoring.
After he'd read one long story, and then told her about the turtle who didn't think he could play basketball because he didn't have hands, he sang her favorite, Twinkle Twinkle.
G: I'm going to sing another song, ok?
K: No. Just one song. I want to go to the bed.
Once in bed, she quickly noticed that her new baby (the one that we just picked up at Swapnplay yesterday) was sharing the space:
K: I don't want the baby in my bed. I want her in her own bed. Don't forget to put the blanket on her.
And with that, she turned on her side, snuggled into her blankets, and went to sleep...without a peep.
Friday Morning, Dec. 30, 2011
This morning, at the doctor's office, I noticed that Kaya corrected her own grammar structure in German--something I've heard her do recently on a few other occasions, but not as overtly as she did this morning as we were exiting the bathroom:
Kaya: Wenn ich Lulu muss gehen...(3 second pause)...wenn ich Lulu gehen muss, sage ich dir. [When I have to pee go...when I have to go pee...I'll tell you.]
Later that evening, I heard her in a conversation with Geoff, around a similar topic, exhibiting German grammar structures with English words (yes!!! Her German is triumphing over her English!):
Kaya: You say me when you need to go pee.
For those non-German speakers and/or grammar-freaks like myself: The verb 'sagen', in German, means to say or tell, but in German, there's never a preposition used, like we use in English with the verb 'say', which clearly Kaya hasn't picked up on yet.)
Wednesday Morning, Dec. 14, 2011
On the way to the play park, while we were driving in the car, Kaya engaged in this conversation with me which I found very interesting:
Kaya: Wie heisst der Platz, wo wir gehn? [What's the name of the place we're going?]
Mama: Indoor Play Park.
Kaya: ...(pause, seemingly processing)...Das ist auf Englisch! [That's in English!] (said quite excitedly)
Mama: Ja, das stimmt. [Yeah, that's right!]
Kaya: Warum hast du das auf Englisch gesagt? [Why did you say that in English?]
Mama: Ich weiss eigentlich nicht, wie so 'was auf Deutsch heisst, ich benutze deswegen den englischen Namen. [I don't actually know what something like that is called in German, so I just used the english name.]
A few minutes later, she continued in her observations of language:
Kaya: Ich spreche English mit Dada und...wenn ich aufgeregt bin...wie heisst das? [I speak English with Dada and...when I'm excited...what's that called?]
Mama: Was? [What?]
Then, it hit her, and she suddenly remembered what she was wanting to say in English...
Kaya: I'm excited!
I was QUITE excited, and have been lately, that she's been searching for terms in English instead of in German!
Tuesday Morning, Dec. 13, 2011
Eager to Share, Curious as to How
As we were sitting at the table this morning, eating breakfast and getting ready to make our weekly trip to OMSI (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry), Kaya struggled to find a word in English that she was easily able to express in German. Oh, how I DO rejoice in moments like these!!
Kaya: Ich will Grams and Grampa sagen, dass wir gestern bei dem Zoo waren und mit dem Zug gefahren sind. [I want to tell Grams and Grampa that we were at the zoo yesterday and rode with the train!]
Mama: OK. Du kannst das ihnen morgen erzaehlen, wenn du da bist. [OK. You can tell them that tomorrow when you are there.]
Kaya: Aber...wie sagt man das auf Englisch? [But...how do you say that in English?]
Mama: Was, Zoo? [What, zoo? (pronounced like Tsoh)]
Kaya: Ja. [Yeah]
Mama: Zoo. [Zoo]
On an exciting grammatical note, Kaya used perfect word order twice with her dependent conjuntion, 'dass', which kicks the conjugated verb to the end of the clause (waren and sind).
December 7, 2011
Kaya was asking me what her day would look like after we went to swimming lessons this morning (Was machen wir danach? [What are we doing after that?]) When I told her that she'd be going to Gram's and Grampa's, and that I'd be going to the gym, she hesitated, and then so sweetly said, "Ich werde dir vermissen..." [I'll miss you...].
For the record, Kaya used the dative pronoun, 'dir', instead of the more accurate accusative one, 'dich'.
December 5, 2011
Her first official Santa-request
(in the middle of Geoff telling her a story about a beaver using his tail to kick the ball...)
Kaya: (laughing) Dat's funny. I use my legs to kick da boh. ...Daddy, I want you to take me somewhere to kick a soccer ball.
Geoff: OK...Maybe you'll get a soccer ball for Christmas. Maybe Santa will bring you one?
(Geoff continues to tell the beaver story, at which point, she interrupts him, eagerly...)
Kaya: Daddy, Daddy, Daddy, Daddy...can you tell him for me that I want him to bring me a ball? Here's a page dedicated to those quotables for those hard-core Kaya fans: