Saturday, September 26, 2009

Hairy fruit, hairy Daddy, hairy birds

Someone needs to follow this girl around with a tape recorder. Seriously. She's a hoot.

We had pancakes for dinner to celebrate National Pancake Day, complete with real maple syrup, whipped cream, and fruit. If Andrew was in your family, you'd celebrate the holiday, too. He even has Rachel trained--she was jumping up and down with joy when we told her it was Pancake Day.

Andrew made the pancakes and put me in charge of the fruit. While I was preparing the fruit Rachel was hovering, which is not at all unusual. She's usually hovering around me. Ideally (at least by her ideals) she'd be physically touching me every minute of every day.

I was peeling kiwi fruit, a rare treat for us since it is usually too expensive to buy but was super on sale at Seoudi Market today, and Rachel was especially curious about it.

Rachel: What is that?

Me: It's a kiwi fruit.

Rachel: What are you doing, Momma?

Me: I'm peeling it because I don't think you'll like the peel.

Rachel: Oh. What color is it?

Me: Brown.

Rachel: What color is it gonna be?

Me: Green.

Rachel: Oh. Can I touch it?

Me: Yup. See, the outside is hairy. Kind of weird, isn't it?

Rachel: Yeah. It's hairy--kinda weird. It's a hairy fruit. Like Daddy!

Me: Ummmmm...

Rachel [tugging on Daddy's shorts]: You a hairy fruit, Daddy?

Daddy's definitely the hairiest one in our family, but I don't think he falls in the category of "fruit."

Our dinner conversation was also a tad hilarious. We were talking about Andrew's grant proposal that he's been working on recently and is due tomorrow. He hopes to get to fly to Rome in order to do some research in the national archives there.We were also discussing his thesis proposal, which is due the first week in October.

Dr. Kholoussy is in charge of okaying the departmental grant proposals and is also on Andrew's thesis committee. He's been working with her on his grant proposal and the first time she handed it back to him, she said something along the lines of,

"Looks good, but it's much too long. It would make a better thesis proposal than a grant proposal at this point."

That was encouraging because it means that he's well on his way to finishing his thesis proposal now that he's polished up (and shortened) his grant proposal.

We were talking about the likelihood of him receiving the amount of money he requested.

"I think you have a pretty good chance since only one other person in your department has applied for a research grant," I said, "The department will want to use their allocated funds this year so that they get more research money for next year. They have to give the money to someone. Why not you?"

"I hope so," Andrew said.

"Hoopoe!" Rachel shouted, trying to join in the conversation that was way over her head, "Daddy said hoopoe!"

"I said hope so," Andrew corrected.

"Oh, hoopoe. I wipe my bum with it."

Andrew and I stared at each other for a minute. Really? Did she just say that?

Stifling laughter Andrew asked her what she thought a hoopoe was.

"This," she answered, picking up a slice of kiwi fruit from her plate.

"That's kiwi," he said.

"Oh," she said.

"And you don't wipe your bum with it. You eat it."

"Oh," she said.

I'm glad we got that all cleared up. Kiwi's a fruit, Daddy's not a fruit. Hoopoe's a bird* (so is a kiwi). We don't wipe our bums with any of them.

*Hoopoes are a common sight around here. We always get excited when we see them--they have mow-hawks and are just exotic-looking. Rachel acts as if they are as boring as a robin or chickadee. Her childhood is so much different than mine was!


  1. Hopo kind of sounds like toilet paper, if you use your imagination.

  2. Yeah, I know. I asked her to say toilet paper for us and it doesn't sound at all like hoopoe. We still have no idea what a hoopoe is and she hasn't been able to show us what it is, either.

  3. You'd think that two educated people like yourselves would be able to decipher that little girls words and what connections are going on it her head. I guess not. This happens in our family too, but unfortunately we are smart enough to decipher our children's words. And they always have to do with stuff that goes on in the bathroom. Always. And it always happens, it seems, at the dinner table. Funny, isn't it? I have a theory. Girls are more mysterious than boys, "Hoopoe" is definitely more mysterious than "Poo" said over and over again, and therefore Rachel is more mysterious than my boys.

  4. Hoopoe. I think that's a swell word. You'll need to figure out what it means and add it to the dictionary. It'd be fun to use. And Rachel will have coined a new word. :D

  5. And who is to thank for discovering the actual name if that bird? ;)

  6. Hans Wehr.

    I blame Israel. They named it as their national bird last year.