Summer in Oregon. Click on any picture to bring up the full gallery.
Me: Frances, let’s count! One, two, buckle my….
Oliver (emerging from his room naked): “Oh, hi Mom. I’m just going to your bathroom to use the scale. I’d like to see if I have an atomic weight that is more than copper.”
Stella (on being asked how the beginning of her softball game went, as I missed the start): “How would I know?”
Frances (on being asked to count for me): “Wun, Tooooo, Thwee, Fiyev, Red, Bwooo, Cake.”
So the other night at dinner, we decided to play the “question game.” I went around the table and asked Oliver the capital of some obscure African country (he got it), Stella to count by 100s to 1000 (she did so) and Frances what the letter “p” says, (“mmmm” responded the third, neglected child).
Then I asked both Oliver and Stella harder questions, and they both got them wrong, and were annoyed. Stella, indignant, declared that she was going to ask ME questions, and I told her to give it her best shot:
Stella: Okay, Mom, first question. What is the capital of South America?
Me: There isn’t a capital of South America.
Me: Seriously, Stella, there is no…
Stella: yes there is! Right, Oliver??
Oliver (dazed from stuffing as much dinner in his mouth as possible): Huh??
Stella (taking this as affirmation): See! You are wrong. In fact you are two-times wrong because you didn’t even know the question was right AND you didn’t get the answer. Okay, next question: Name a really tall tree.
Me: A redwood!
Stella: Wrong! The answer is an OAK. Remember that, mom. OAK. Besides, wood is not red. Trees are brown. Okay. Third question: Name an animal that starts with a “p”.
Me: A penguin!
Stella: Nope! The answer is a platypus.
Me: But penguin starts with a “p” too.
Stella: No it doesn’t, MOM. The “p” says …
Oliver: Duh, Frances
Stella: Duh, Frances
Frances: DUH, MOMMY!!!
Me: Stella, the “p” says . . .
Oliver: Duh, Frances
Frances: DUH, OHBER!!!
Stella: Can we quit playing this game?
[Don't look at the file names! It was part of some batch process I can't undo. Suffice it to say, these weren't taken at Christmas, but this past week, in Hilton Head, SC]