The other day I went on a tiny shopping spree…for kids’ books. Yup, I bought a few books to have around in case we end up babysitting wee ones.
I have learned recently that I can memorize kids’ stories if I hear them read often enough, and sometimes it only takes a few repetitions to get it. I didn’t get to put this to the test in the era of “Grandma and Me”, but boy did I have to do it this last Christmas.
Incidentally, oops. The past two Christmases have come and gone and I never wrote about them. I understand Christmas 2019, but Christmas 2018? I have no excuse. I guess I’ll have to sprinkle them in when it makes sense…I at least have ideas from Christmas 2018 stashed away.
Anyway, at least I can tell this story of Christmas 2019. It was a Steve year so we went to his mom’s place. I learned that the Seppa-Tebby-Tebby nephew had a new favourite book called the Gruffalo.
Hey, Youtube video! Where the hell were you back at Christmas?!?!
I had heard about this book a few years ago and a coworker had read it once, and I watched Steve’s sister read it a few times. Every time, I would commit the main rhymes and sequences to memory. Tusks, claws, teeth, jaws, knees, toes, wart, nose, orange, black, prickles, back, fox, owl, snake, and so on.
On the last day, Steve and I were alone babysitting little Mr. Seppa-Tebby-Tebby and he pulled out his new favourite book. “Gruffalo!”he said and flopped the book open. Of course the little guy hasn’t figured out that Steve and I can’t see, so can’t read those beautiful letters on the page. What were we to do but fake it? “Well,” I thought, “here comes the final exam.” Steve distracted him a little bit longer while I tried to cheat by finding a copy I could use as cue cards. I had to settle for a song someone put on Spotify as a cramming tool.
Now it was time. I was told that if I got it wrong, he would tell me so in no uncertain terms. So…*gulp*, here goes nothin’.
It started off and I was feeling pretty proud of myself. But I got a little nervous, and at one point I said teeth instead of tusks. Just as I had been warned, I was told loudly that I got it wrong. “TUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUSKS!” he screamed. You’re right, tusks!” I said, and tried to pick up where I, er, left off…sort of. Thankfully he was happy again. Miraculously, I could make it through the rest of the story without getting another scolding. Phew! That was lucky.
But that taught me that it would probably be good to have a few books on hand so that I don’t get caught unprepared. Plus, I would love to read to the Sukie Jukie nephew some time. Apparently, he has already started learning about Braille.
So, in a few days, a few little print-Braille kids’ books will arrive in the mail. Hopefully I’ll get to put them to use some day.