Posts Tagged ‘siblings’

It was Amor’s birthday, Monday 24th December 2012, the day before Christmas.
We were walking in town, going to collect her birthday cake. (Yes, I should have arranged to do that the day before).
I asked Amor:
“Do you know what day it is tomorrow?”
“What day is it?”

English: A bundle of collard greens, from an o...

English: A bundle of collard greens, from an organic food co-op. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Anyone who has spent some time with children of a certain age (3,4,5,6…) will probably know that they can be painfully honest. They will tell you to your face that this food (that took great effort, time and thought to prepare) tastes yuck! or that they do not want this or that that you have offered them.
It is as we grow that we learn to be ‘considerate of the feelings of others’ and at best give vague, non-committal responses or at worst, lie outright. (I personally usually go for the former).
Children simply call it as they see it.

Now, I do not cook much. I do not really enjoy cooking, but I do not overly mind.
On one of the days I get to spend with Amor, I took her home and made lunch for her. My wife was not around so our nutrition for that time was up to me. I made vegetables (spinach, I think, and/or collard greens – I am not sure if this is the actual vegetable commonly eaten here in Kenya, but it’s close enough) and fried eggs and something else that I can’t remember. Nothing fancy or appealingly colourful or anything. Just nutritious food.

While I was serving, she, not surprisingly, asked to be served with more egg. Who doesn’t like fried egg? She ate a bit of the food, then she did something that made my day – she asked for more vegetables! Not more egg – more vegetables! How about that for an endorsement of my cooking! I was elated!

Just in case you are thinking that she just said that to make me happy, I had also baked a cake that week – the pre-mixed easy-to-bake ones. I gave her some, she ate a bit and said “This cake is not very tasty.” Thus, we can safely dispel any doubts that the ‘more veggies’ request was sincere.

Aah, the joys of fatherhood.
23rd Feb 2013

Not verbatim.
English translation follows

“Ujue Daddy anakupenda. Unajua nani mwingine anakupenda?”
“Na pia C” [her elder sister]
“Ah ah!”
“Kwa nini unafikiri hakupendi?”
“Yeye hunichapa”
“Kwa nini anakuchapa?”
“Nikimwagia chai kidogo”
“Kwa nini unamwagia chai kidogo”
“Saa zingine meza inatingika”
“Mummy pia hukuchapa?”
“Nikifanya kitu mbaya.”
“Mummy hukuchapa lakini anakupenda. Hata Ciku pia anakupenda. Mtu akitaka kukuchapa huku nje C atafanya nini?”
“Ataambia Mummy.”

In English
“Always remember, daddy loves you. Do you know who else loves you?”
“And also C” [her elder sister]
“Why do you think she does not love you?”
“She beats me”
“Why does she beat you?”
“If I pour a little tea”
“Why do you pour a little tea?”
“Sometimes the table shakes”
“Does Mummy also spank you?”
“If I do something bad”
“Mummy spanks you, but she loves you. C also loves you. If someone tries to beat you outside, what will C do?”
“She will tell mum.”
“You see!”
If you haven’t yet, you may want to take a peek at The Gio Chronicles

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