Saturday, January 3, 2009

south as in South

Like a couple of geese running from winter, Munchkinhead and I headed down south yesterday.  As we left our beloved cheeseland for the land of Uggs-ly, impractical boots and hidden foreheads, there was a certain sadness in our hearts.  More so in Munchkinhead's, who flat out said she didn't want to go back.  I was actually a bit happy to be headed south; most of my life is really in Tennessee now and I haven't really been there since early May.

Driving through Illinois (no traffic in Chicago at 8:30 on a Friday, nice!), Indiana and into Kentucky, we watched the outdoor temperature gauge slowly rise twenty degrees.  It rose another twenty for me between Lexington and Nashville.

We had a really nice trip, I think, even though we couldn't find a Fazoli's for lunch.  At least Burger King had a veggie burger for me and chicken sandwich for Munchkinhead.  Along the way we played two fun games.  First we played a new game that Katrina sort of made up on Christmas morning.  We call it "As In."  It's basically a homonym game.

The Beginnings of As In

In our family, we don't put names on Christmas presents; we put little riddles or clues.  The clues are supposed to tell you who the present is to and from and maybe something about what's inside.  Mommy's this year said more about what was inside than who the present was to, that made the little Elfkinhead's job a tad difficult.  (Although she also opened a present that actually said "Nathan" because she thought it had her name on it, so maybe the obscure clues didn't matter much.)

Several of the presents had cute puns on them.  One tag said something about one thing that "seams" like another, seamed stockings (for yours truly, of course!).  Another was about how the present would keep the receiver from being "board", a board game.  A third present said to "weighting for Christmas."

In each of these cases, while reading the tag, Munchkinhead clarified or tried to express the pun by repeating the word.  "Seems as in seams,"  she says.  Looks great.  Say it out loud and tell me if you hear any difference!

So that became our game on the road/rode.  Say a homonym, say 'as in', say its counterpart.  It's actually really fun, and you'll be surprised by how many homonyms we have in English!  Someone, eh hem, kept trying to use German words, too.  Cheater!

My Grandmother's Trunk

The other game we played was a classic with a slight twist.  I Unpacked My Grandmother's Trunk is a great memory game, and you can have as many people play as you want (well, I guess up to 26).  The first player says "I unpacked my grandmother's trunk and in it I found..." and then says something that begins with the letter A.  The second player repeats this and adds something that begins with B.  The next player repeats those and adds C, and so on through the alphabet.  When a player messes up, they're out.  Last one left wins!

But like I said, we made it a little different.  We did it in the style of Barbara Milne's Alphabet Song from the Sounds Like Fun tape (now on cd especially for Mommy's van.)  The Alphabet Song helps you learn your letter sounds.  It gives a word, repeats the word and then repeats the beginning letter sound.  It's a wonderful song. :)

The thing is, the words in the actual song are arranged so that the syllables fit with the beats.  We had a few problems with that.  Our game went something like this, "I unpacked my grandmother's trunk and in it I found an apple, apple, eh, eh, eh; banana, nana, na, na, na; cookie, cookie, kuh, kuh, kuh."  The worst was the letter L when Munchkinhead made us try to cram "Little Brown Tape, Little Brown Tape, el, el, el" into three syllables!  She won anyway, I put the igloo before the horse.  oops.


Jeannie said...

Shouldn't it be "banana, banana, beh beh beh"? Not "...nana, nana,..?
I made the mistake of clicking on the "Alphabet Song"...quickly stopped it, I think I've heard that one a little too many times. It's great for a 3 year old, but a little annoying when you're older - especially if you listen to all her songs - they end up all sounding the same. ;)

goldenrail said...

Blasphemy! That song is never annoying! Besides, that link is just a preview, it stops after "Baby, baby, beh, beh, beh" anyway. The problem with "banana, banana, beh, beh, beh" is that banana has three syllables and baby only has two so it doesn't quite fit. But yes, occasionally we tried to do it that way.