Saturday, May 29, 2010

French Library

One of our favorite family outings in our near-suburb of Paris is to the local library. We pretty much just stick to the kids section, with an occasional curious crawl through the music room and a glance at the one shelf of English books. In the kids section, not only are there miniature chairs and tables that Sawyer loves to climb on and through, but there are books with words like "cat," "dog," "baby," "green," and "ball." Sometimes we can even read some of them. Perhaps the best part of the visit is the treasures that we are always sure to find. Here's a sampling of some of the books from yesterday's trip...

Oh! la vache

Oh! la vache
, or Oh! the cow, is a little book that has curiously colored cows and cute little rhyming phrases to go along. The pictures are curious to the point of psychadellic, I can't decide if they'd be better suited for a 1-year old's play room or as light reading before a Phish concert. The sayings are equally amusing.

Pedal cow, it's not normal

Music cow, it's magic

And the last page winner, the ever-popular cow xray with a giant baby bottle inside:
Milk cow, you make me happy!

One of my favorite titles was from a book written to parents with advice on a popular issue. I didn't open it, because I knew I wouldn't have a prayer of reading what was inside, but the title read:
Doudou or Not Doudou
In France, a "doudou" is an infant/toddler's favorite object, in this sense a transitional object. Like a blankey, stuffed animal, favorite toy, etc. So the book was about whether or not such a thing is a good idea. Excellent play on words through the medium of English, Mr/Mrs French Author whose name I didn't read.

I also like flipping through the JoJo line of comic books, with great titles like (translated to English):
JoJo in Prison
JoJo the Veterinarian
JoJo learns Self-Defense

The winner of best book from our visit came from this little gem, entitled Nono fait comme Papa. I picked it up, because I thought it to be a legitimately good idea for a book. Nono does like Daddy... So does Sawyer. A great match!

So I opened it up and read through great, perfectly sensical (just looked this up and my dictionary tells me that 'sensical' is not a word, but 'nonsensical' is... I hereby start the petition to make 'sensical,' the root of 'nonsensical,' a word in the English language) pages. Lines like Nono reads a book like Papa, Nono puts on his hat and jacket like Papa, and Nono works in the garden like Papa made me smile. All are great pictures of father and son life, and in some form I've experienced them all. Then I came to the masterpiece:You read that right. No translation needed. Nono makes pee-pee like Papa! Outstanding. After I stopped laughing at the absurdity of what I was looking at in a children's book, I started laughing again at the realization of art mimicking reality.

When Sawyer was about 7 months old, I was giving him a bath one night before bed. During bath time, the sudden strong urge to relieve myself hit me. So I stood up to the toilet next the the tub and left Sawyer to play with his bath toys. He then started to stand up in the bath tub, which he knows he's not supposed to do. I had just opened my mouth to tell him no when he began a simultaneous pee standing up with me. At that point I could only smile.

When I started this post, I hadn't intended to make it an object lesson with a look at our heavenly Father, but now I can't help it. I think this french children's book picture will remain in my mind for a long time as an amusing but vivid reminder that my son will watch and imitate everything I do. Will he act like a godly man from an early age, with integrity, gentleness, self-control? In many ways, that will be up to me. Similarly, God calls us to come to Him with a child-like faith. Do I watch and imitate Him daily? If I did, would I have any reason to worry about my own son imitating me?


Mommy Sizemo said...

hey, glad to see
" YOU,GOT IT ! ! !" thats the way it works! Wouldn't it be a wonderful world if every Parent would "GET IT"??? I'm still trying to figure out where "Little" Jim got the stripping and rolling in the mud. I promise none of us "ever" did that!!!!
Love ya, Mommy Sizemo

Keith & D├ęborah said...

I cast my vote herewith for adding "sensical" to the Oxford Dictionary of English. And I loved the pipi analogy, Michael. Same lesson from a different reality can be viewed at!/video/video.php?v=1129482648974&ref=mf, if you want to see it.