The speech of two-year olds is the stuff of adorably cute memories that, if your family is anything like mine, are repeated for decades. Take bizarre names for people and objects, add a dash of accidental comedy genius and combine with an infant’s uniquely surreal take on the universe and you’ve got the recipe for an abundance of special moments. Tilly is no exception and having just turned three years of age and now speaking with remarkable fluency, I took a look at the meteoric and often hilarious rise of language from my daughter.

hippos_speech

Show me hippos

Small children inevitably notice mobile phones and when Tilly took an interest in my iPhone I showed her a selection photos of her favourite animals from the web. At the time she lacked the vocabulary to ask to see the phone so instead I’d be minding my own business when she’d amble over and suddenly utter:

“Hippo?
Hippo.
HIPPO. HIPPO.”

And she would keep saying hippo at you until the necessary goods were provided. Goodness knows what anyone would have made of it who wasn’t versed with this tiny toddler code and kept demanding hippos of them. Happily I knew the drill.

Over time it became more elaborate to include more of Tilly’s favourites, at one point comprising an eclectic selection of animals and fruit: “Hippos, Lions, Apples, Oranges?” Now of course she can demand any number of digital devices by precision but at the time it was unfeasibly cute.

Misheard gems

Much of toddler language is learnt through hearing something and repeating it. Tilly has always been confident at this and will try out new vocabulary having heard it just the once, although this has tended to some comedy misheard words.

Having recently watched Toy Story for the first time, we put Toy Story 2 on our generic streaming service. Tilly’s immediate question was: “where’s Loggy?” After a moment of exchanging puzzled looks with my wife we realised that she meant Woody. Presumably Tilly had forgotten his name but had recalled it was somehow tree-related and made a best guess. We collapsed into uncontrollable fits of laughter although Tilly put a stop to this by coming over and roundly beating mummy and daddy up, having correctly deduced the comedy was at her expense. Fair.

Speaking of generic streaming services, we signed up to a couple of online TV services last year. Tilly had picked up us mentioned them as we were finding programmes for her to watch so next time she wanted the telly she demanded to watch “Netflakes”. Again much hilarity ensued, if more muted this time in fear of further violence. We did try for a time to perpetuate the use of Netflakes but alas she seems to have learnt the correct name now. Still, Netflakes would be a superb name for some breakfast-time internet offering.

Comedy genius

As two neared three years of age, Tilly became more aware of her comedic potential. Her best effort of late came from a combination of her current fascination with my wife’s boobs and pretending to play babies with her at bedtime.

“Mummy: be a baby.
A baby with boobs? I’ve not seen that before!”

We again were unable to help ourselves and dissolved in laughter but this time Tilly understood she’d intentionally said something funny and was as proud as punch at being in on a joke. What will come next? We can scarcely imagine.

What spoken gems has your toddler come out with? Share in the comments section.

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23 thoughts on “The talkative twos: a year of language

  • 12 February 2016 at 8:34 am
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    My eldest boy was fantastic at getting words mixed up. My favourite was thw words to the Queen song A Kind Of Magic, he would sing “its a garey fairy”. I have nonidea what a garey fairy is, but to this day those are the words i sing. #BinkyLinky

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    • 13 February 2016 at 10:13 am
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      That’s brilliant! Thanks for popping by

      Reply
  • 12 February 2016 at 11:43 pm
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    Haha I love this post!
    My toddler has figured out how to say “Share” and says it all the time.
    She hasnt quite figured out the meaning yet though, she thinks it either means “I am not doing what you say!” or “I want all the toys” or even “i’m not eating that!”

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    • 13 February 2016 at 10:15 am
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      Sounds like she’s worked out that share is an important word but not quite sure for what for. Lots of fun still to come!

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  • 13 February 2016 at 12:11 am
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    Amazing. I love Netflakes. There’s definitely some breakfast-related parody potential there. My son is 18 months and can only say one word (ball) which he’s been saying for around 4 or 5 months, with no additions to his vocabulary. I have noticed that recently, though, he has started to understand a lot more, and today was able to successfully pick a pushchair from a choice of two (I’m very proud of this). Can’t wait until he starts to speak properly!

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  • 13 February 2016 at 8:00 am
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    I love hearing the gems that kids say. My son used to call my boobs doberries for some reason and the name has stuck!

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  • 13 February 2016 at 8:05 am
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    Excellent. Our eldest was brilliant with his word development. When I say excellent I mean hillarious. Got it all to come with son#2.

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    • 15 February 2016 at 12:07 pm
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      It’s fascinating and a lot of fun to see new words come into use. Thanks for visiting!

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  • 13 February 2016 at 8:54 am
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    Our two year old is going through the same thing and constantly coming out with funny little sayings. I need to write them down! #Justanotherlinky

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  • 13 February 2016 at 10:11 am
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    Sounds like a lot of fun has been had at your place of late. I look forward to the day that our little guy makes the leap into coherent speech and can provide us with similar enjoyment.
    Great post!
    -Jason
    @tassiedad

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  • 13 February 2016 at 8:19 pm
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    Kids say the funniest things sometimes. I remember when the twins started talking, M would try to say fork, but would end up saying something rather rude – I’m sure you can probably guess what! Thanks for linking up to the #BinkyLinky

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  • 13 February 2016 at 9:35 pm
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    I love the things our 3 year old twins come out with you have some real gems there thanks Mate for linking to the Binkylinky

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  • 14 February 2016 at 7:03 am
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    Aye, some of the language kids use in the early years sticks around for ever. We still refer to the thermostat for the central heating system as the “geegock”, the name given to it by our eldest. Heading over from #BinkyLinky

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  • 15 February 2016 at 11:58 am
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    ‘Netflakes’ and ‘babies with boobs’ are such gems! I love recording the little things my kiddos say. I wouldn’t want to forget those gems! #ftmob

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  • 15 February 2016 at 10:56 pm
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    One of my favourite things about blogging is that I have a fantastic archive of all the hilarious things my two have said! Thanks to Louise from #ftmob for prompting me to start recording them.
    My son calls bran flakes ‘brownflakes’, which makes a lot of sense, when you think about it. Today he was singing ‘hit me with your ribbon stick.’ When I told him it was actually rhythm stick, he said “what’s a rhythm stick!?” as if that was the weird lyric 😀
    They do earn their keep, don’t they 😀
    x Alice
    #ftmob

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  • 16 February 2016 at 7:07 am
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    This is so cute, I love Woody’s new name. One I will remember. Our Little Lady is just getting speech so no amazing gems yet. Ethan does things a little differently so he waits until he knows how to use the words correctly. This is amazing for him as three years ago I didn’t even know if he would get any speech.

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  • 16 February 2016 at 8:14 pm
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    Still giggling at Loggy for Woody, that’s great. One of our cats has the nickname Loggy because she’s extremely still when she plonks somewhere! We’ve had various silly names for things since the children were younger, always fun to remember them. Thanks for linking up with #SSAmazingAchievements

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  • 16 February 2016 at 9:25 pm
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    I’m loving the loggy word – how smart! I love what little ones comes out with. Hubby and I have exchanged many a puzzled look until the penny drops on what they are saying. Thanks for linking up to #justanotherlinky xx

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  • 17 February 2016 at 3:01 pm
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    I love that real explosion of language between the ages of 2 and 3 and the way they can be so unintentionally funny with things. Love Tilly’s new name for Woody, “Netflakes” and her asking for “hippos, lions, apples, oranges?” and the baby with boobs moment made me chuckle too. Thank you for sharing these with #ftmob 🙂

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  • 18 February 2016 at 2:56 pm
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    What a lovely post. Netflakes made me chuckle. Is it bad that I find some of the (incorrect) things she says so cute that I encourage them? What if she’s 18 and still doing it?! #ftmob

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  • 4 March 2016 at 5:12 pm
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    Superb! I remember my son once, as we talked about my dad, who was dead, stating confidently that everyone went to Morrisons when they died. He was 2 and a half at the time.

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