Translation, Please

This is really a post in the Little Pearls of Wisdom series where I chronicle little Sophia’s blurbs and what they mean or rather, what she is trying to say. However, this is more than just little kid speak; this is a matter of being multilingual. Here goes.

I admit. I am very guilty. I don’t speak to my child in Russian, save for a few words, even though I myself am fluent. There are several reasons for this. First and foremost — we don’t speak Russian at home. We didn’t BS (before Sophia) and we do not now. I also don’t speak it often even with my parents or sister. It has become easier and easier to communicate in English and is now my preferred way. The second reason is that our nanny is a native Spanish speaker and we have asked her to introduce Spanish to Sophia. We are happy that she is picking up Spanish and are careful to not confuse her too much with yet another language.

That being said, we’re now in the throws of decrypting what she is trying to say. Some words are in English, some are in Spanish and some are in … her own little language. Here’s a snippet of the daily goings.


Sophia: Ohhhhhhh... Pelota
Me: Huh? Say that again, dear.
Sophia: Pelota, Mama.
Nanny: Oh, Spanish for ball.
Me: Pelota... ball. Pelota ... ball. Must remember that Pelota is ball.
Sophia: Oh Elmo, elmo seeeeeepin.
Translation: Oh, Elmo, elmo is sleeping.


Sophia: Tilden
Translation: Children


Sophia: Pop, pop seeeeeepin, Gammie, Gammie ... seeeeepin.


Me: Sophia, do you want to watch Elmo? It's Elmo time!
Sophia: Elmo seeeeepin


While on a walk... we approach a neighbor walking a dog.
Sophia: Oh, hi Dog. Hi, doggie.
...continuing on our walk. We see a mailman
Sophia: Oh hi, Man. Hug man.


Walking out of a room with the nanny.
Sophia: Bamanos
Hubby: [thinking she said Bubbles] Where are the bubbles, Sophia?
Nanny: No, she said vamanos which means let's go!

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