This past summer, my children ate their weight in popsicles. Normally, I'm "one of those moms" who, like my mother before me, is wary of giving my kids a lot of sugar. In summers past, access to the delicious frozen treats, while not forbidden, was less frequent. This past summer, however, my youngest child was just two and therefore just learning how to ask for the food by name. Her noble attempt? "Popsypop." When your adorable two-year-old asks for, "a popsypop, please," you don't say no. The hilarious ways kids mispronounce words is one of the adorable reminders we get where we say, "Oh yeah! You're funny and cool. I like you."
Yeah, we always love our kids (well, mostly), but sometimes we're reminded that they're super-entertaining as well. Entertaining is a good thing, since we can't get out of the house much anymore. So yeah, my kids ate #allthepopsicles between the end of May and Labor Day. They were delighted, and I got to hear my daughter say "popsypops" over and over. It was a win-win, in my humble opinion, and I make no apologies for taking my wins when and where I can get them.
You really do have to hand it to children, if you think about it. Language is hard! Even when the typical child's brain is hardwired to learn it, it's still really, really tough. And yet, despite the intricacies of pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary, they make themselves understood somehow. Along the way, of course, every kid is going to have a "popsypop" moment, so I asked other moms what words gave their kids trouble, and gave them a much-deserved, probably needed chuckle. Here are just a few of their responses, for our collective amusement:
"My favorite is 'cuddle down' instead of settle down!'"
"We called Capri Sun's 'Juice bags.'As a toddler, the oldest had issues with the 'J' sound and it came out sounding like she was asking for 'douchebags.' Another classic is the way they (up until about 3 months ago) said Tim Hortons, [the Canadian coffee chain]: 'Timportant.'"
When [my daughter] was little she used to tell me she was 'drinky.' It meant she was thirsty and I didn't correct her because I loved it so much.
[Writer's note: Sometimes I say I'm "drinky." But it's not when I'm thirsty. It's when I've had too much to drink. It sounds so much cuter than drunk.]
"[My oldest says] 'peatot' for teapot. [My youngest says]'"poppypop' for lollipop and 'telanopter' for helicopter."
"I don't even know how to spell this one, but my two-year-old has this glorious way of saying 'banana' that is really just him pushing air out of his mouth and wiggling his tongue around. It's like a super slow-motion sweet version of blowing a raspberry."
Right now [my son] is saying 'pumthing' instead of 'pumpkin' and I love it.
"Last night [my daughter] asked if we could go to 'Dairy McQueen' for her birthday. Thank you Cars."
"Hot Wheels are currently 'hop pop wheels' in our house. Also, 'psghetti' and 'pj-jammmas.' Oh and my favorite 'pumpkinween.'"
My absolute favorite was when [my daughter] used to call pancakes 'pigcakes.'
"When [my daughter] wants goldfish crackers, she yells, 'Fish! Fish!' But she pronounces 'fish as 'bitch,' which is awkward when she yells for it in public."
"[My son] called the remote a 'chumote' until, like, a week ago ... and 'macaroni' is 'bacabrony.'"
[My daughter] once said angrily 'That person is a real acorn mom!' She was little, but it was at that moment we realized we had to change things quickly!
"Right now [my son] is singing 'Uptown Funk' he sounds like he's say 'Up down f*** you up, said up down f*** you up.' I'm pretty sure it's just poor parenting music choices by me though. Either way it's pretty funny."
"My oldest used to call pepperoni 'petter pony,' and my heart broke when our babysitter taught him the right way to say it. My youngest calls balloons 'uh-bloons,' and I adore it."
[My son] used to call blueberries 'boobies.; It was great when we would go to the grocery store and he'd see blueberries and yell, 'Look! Boobies!'"
"[My son] calls New York, 'The York.' 'Are we in The York City yet?'"
"[My daughter] used to omit the 'L' in 'clock.' Hilarity ensued. When she was in daycare, she told me she wanted to be an 'apple scooter.' It took me forever to figure out she meant 'after-schooler,' meaning the older kids who got picked up from elementary school in the daycare van."
[My son] calls Pasta 'papilla,' which sounds like he is an Italian grandmother reincarnate.
"My daughter called 'Sleeping Beauty' either 'Sucky Booty' or 'Slutty Booty' for months."
"[My daughter] called a praying mantis a 'Ferdinand' the other day. No idea how she got 'Ferdinand' from 'praying mantis!' Our favorite is that she says 'hoodin' instead of pudding."
The way [my daughter] used to say 'sparkle' sounded like 'f*cker.' So of course my aunt, who thought it was hysterical, would make her say it loudly in public.
"All of [my daughter's] S + consonants came out as Fs for a while ... One time she came up to me and said she didn't like 'f*cks.' It took some prying but eventually we found out she, 'didn't like f*cks because they smell bad.' She meant 'skunks.'"
"'Baby soup' for bathing suit; 'tillow' for pillow; and 'big girl kannies' for big girl panties."
Mosquito is mixquito; Winston is Wind Symphony (#curiousgeorgefanboi) ... "maximum fire power" = "Mexican fire paw." Also, did you know that school picture day is the day when you draw pictures all day long?
"My daughter is seven and still calls Storm Troopers "Storm Troopiters" —rhymes with Jupiter."
"All of my kids have had speech delays so there have been really good ones over the years. One couldn't say his brother's name for the longest time. Instead of 'Kellan' he would call him 'Gamet' which drove his brother nuts. Others include tu-tu (thank you); spanks (thanks); and my youngest says 'Daddy"' which really means 'Mommy,' because he's an asshole."
[My son] calls hushpuppies 'puphushies' and hungry 'horny.'
"My daughter tells me I look 'fablious!'"
"Backpack is 'packpack;' beginning is 'the ginning;' and our favorite, marshmallow is 'marshyellow.'"
Grandma was 'bama' (like Obama), and Aunt Shell (short for Michelle) sounded like 'asshole.'
[My daughter's] best is 'blaster-naught' for astronaut. Other favorites include 'dup dup' for ketchup ... and 'wigie' for refrigerator."
[My daughter] says 'why-le-le' instead of water. I don't correct her and secretly hope she says it like that forever!"
[My son] used to call his freckles 'fuckles.' 'See my fuckles? They are from the sun!' We went frog hunting one summer: he was looking for f*cks [frogs] in the bitches [bushes].
"Piano is 'pee-na-ne-oh.'"
"My son is almost 5 and speaks really well for his age, but there are a couple things that still linger that I can't bring myself to correct cause they're so cute. He says 'opie meal' for oatmeal and 'gankt you' for thank you. When he was about 20 months he would call bread 'rape'. Yes. You read that right: Rape."
"[Son] you want a piece of what?"
"Rape. More rape please."
Fire fighter is 'fighter fighter.'
"Barack Obama is 'rock-o-rama.'"
[Writer's note: hell yeah he is. I challenge anyone to name a more rock-o-rama president than Obama. I'll wait.]