Thursday, October 23, 2008

Words

Sydney is really into words right now. Everyday we practice recognizing letters, and she's enjoying books more than ever before. She mostly, though, likes to try and write words.

Yesterday, she said she wanted me to teach her to write some words. I asked her which ones she wanted me to write down for her, and she said...

"Heart and
Love and
God and
Jesus and
Honeysuckle."

She was most fascinated by "honeysuckle" and was really surprised at how long it was. "Why don't I just write 'honey' and you can work on it?" I suggested. "Nope," she said, "I want honeysuckle." So, she spent the next thirty minutes or so writing it over and over. And despite a "K" that was sorta troubling to her, she did great on it.

I'm not sure why she decided that "honeysuckle" was a word worthy of being written down, but I sure liked her choice. I decided, right then and there, that the fact that she didn't choose "dog" or "cat" certainly reveals something about her level of intelligence.

I remember, as a child, having spelling bees while traveling on car trips. And I remember when Mom instituted writing time in our house; instead of reading (which certainly is a wonderful idea too!), we had to write for an hour. And we used to compete with the Reader's Digest "Increase Your Word Power" quiz.

Today, I still love words. I pretty much make my living by them. And, I have favorites. One of my favorites has always been epiphany. And I've always liked segue and periwinkle (Of course, right now, I really like the sound of enchilada...I'm starving and there is like no food in the house!).

There is also something about the roll of a perfect sentence off of your tongue. I will read a book (I love Fall, because I read a lot more during this time of year!) and sometimes just have to stop and savor the words that the author strung together. (Two recent favorites, Rick Bragg and Annie Lamott, can create the most amazing word pictures.) As a writer, I sometimes become incredibly envious of the way some people can make such beauty out of the right combinations of words (If only God had endowed me just a teensy bit more in that area), but I appreciate it so much nonetheless.

So, I hope that I'm instilling an appreciation for words in the lives of my daughters. There is, obviously, some evidence of that.

Sydney's interest in "honeysuckle."

McKenna spending the most of the last several days working on an original screenplay for a drama competition.

Delaney winning second place in our county school system for a short story she wrote about the value of good character. (That's her right there getting her award last night.)

Words are the main reason, in fact, that I write this blog. It "makes" me write just about everyday and I think that's great intellectual exercise...I love trying to find the right words and phrases to capture my experiences...and, through words, I can keep a permanent record of things that happened, and things I dream of, and things that are important.

Sometimes, of course, words just can't do justice.

Like when you see the perfect sunset. At that moment, you just get your daughter to grab the camera and take a picture. And try to find the right words.


I was stammering something like, "Look at that sky!" while McKenna and Delaney mumbled in agreement. And then Sydney put it best.

She sorta sighed and said, "Amazing. I've never seen anything like it."

23 comments:

Kingcover said...

It seems you have a regular little Miss Enstein on your hands there ... not that McK and D aren't intelligent either! (Yikes did I get away with that little faux pas, lol).
I've always had a fascination with certain words as well - depreciation, endowment and follicle are amongst my favourites. LMAO I've just realised I said those in alphabetical order ... I think I'm going to have one of those days :-P

Kingcover said...

It appears I spelt Einstein incorrectly! Yeppers it truly is going to be one of those days ;-)

Kingcover said...

Oh bytheway I meant to say that there's a TV program currently running over here where a British comedian is traveling around all 50 states and he was shown to be in Alabama a couple of days ago (obviously it was recorded so it could have been at any time). Anyways they showed a clip when he was in the Crimson Tide's stadium during a game with Auburn - presumably it was the last time you played each other and I was wondering if there was a chance you were in the crowd. It would have been useless to try to find you in amongst thousands of other heads but they did show another clip of the band and cheerleaders running in so perhaps McK was in that too. Just didn't see her as the clip only lasted a few seconds.
Ok I'm going to let someone else comment rather than hogging everything :-)

Lynilu said...

A favorite word of mine is "precocious." I like it because every time I use it, I'm talking about a child whose parents have encouraged them to open doors .... and step through.

:)

Cheryl Wray said...

King--One my favorite words is "favourite," when you guys from Across the Sea use it. I love it! :-)
And that's very cool about seeing Alabama on the tv show; if the game was at the Alabama stadium, I was there!!! Hope you don't have "one of those days"; hope it's a good one!

Lynilu--LOL

Kingcover said...

favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite favourite ...... you're probably going to have to lie down and start fanning yourself with a small tea towel after seeing all of those now :-P

Kingcover said...

Word ver for this one 'regocul' - that's a pretty neat name in itself!

Cheryl Wray said...

King--

LOL!!!!!

The word verifications always crack me up. You're right...you know, we could actually write a dictionary of word verification words with fake definitions and everything. :-)

hippo chick said...

I, too, love words. How about facilitate? Segue is great too. I've decided to start a list today and keep it for a month, coming up without my favorite word of the day. I'll post about it later. Thanks for the fun post. Honeysuckle is a fun word, isn't it?

~hippo hugs~

Anonymous said...

Those pictures are really beautiful. And this post is great to.

hippo chick said...

Cheryl,

Just one more for today. How about exacerbate? I just LOVE that word.

P.

Jenster said...

I love, love, love her word choices!! I like words like splunking and hoodia. They're just fun to say. lol

When my Katie was about 4 or 5 she was playing out front with her brother. She came running up to the kitchen window and said, "Look mama! God must be very happy right now!" And it was one of the most gorgeous sunsets I've ever seen.

Little kids sure are smart!

Cheryl Wray said...

Pam--I just LOVE the word a day idea. I can tell you were a librarian! :-)

Anon--The sunset was gorgeous!

Pam--That's a good one too!

Jenster--Splunking is a fun, fun word!! That comment by Katie is perfect!

crazy working mom said...

That is an amazing shot of the sky! Very nicely done. :)

Amazing is a great word too, by the way.

Adrienne said...

GORGEOUS PICS CHERYL!!!

Auburn Kat said...

I'm sure that one of my first words would have been cat seeing as I couldn't be separated from mine when I was little!!!

Michelle said...

Thanks for commenting on Tay's field trip.....I miss you all so much (my bloggy friends). Calmer times will come....I promise SWEAR!

Love,

M.

Debbie said...

The pictures of the sky are awesome.

Phats said...

I agree with Sydney AMAZING! :) I love that she liked the word Honeysuckle that's pretty cool.

ROLL TIDE ROLL!

Babydoll said...

I think it's great that she wants to learn words!! That sky is breathtaking! Awesome pics!

Cheryl Wray said...

Crazy--I use "amazing" a lot!

Adrienne--I know!!! Did you see it?

Kat--LOL (I guess your name fits!)

Michelle--I knew I hadn't "seen" you around much.

Phats--and Boiler Up! :-)

Babydoll--That is her thing right now!

Cheryl Wray said...

Debbie--I missed you! LOL Yes, the sky was awesome!

Monogram Queen said...

Gorgeous sky!

I have always had a love affair with words and I can remember it beginning as a child!