My neighbour, drowning in the end-of-day-rubble of a major home renovation project, asked if I could watch my 2-year old Goddaughter for 15 minutes late this afternoon while she cleaned up some of the debris the contractors left behind.
The first word out of her little mouth after I reassured her that Mommy would indeed be right back was, "Cookie?"
Alas, because I have no personal self-control, the house is sadly bereft of cookies.
Luckily she was clutching a breadstick and I was able to distract her from the cookie quest long enough to remember that she adores tomatoes, which I happened to be cutting up for a salad.
Her eyes lit up and she literally quivered with excitement when I asked if she wanted some tomato.
I stood in the kitchen doling out impossibly small bits of tomato (because I'm beyond paranoid about children choking - even ones who have been eating solid food for more than a year and have what appears to be a complete set of teeth) reminding her to "CHEW! CHEW! CHEW!"
She must have thought I was some weird tomato-bearing fairy god train. Clearly the child knows how to eat. But God help me, I couldn't have her choking on my watch.
After the first piece or two I realized that I should be enforcing her Mommy's rule about please and thank you, so as she held out her tiny hand for another miniscule piece and I placed the bit of tomato in her palm, I prompted her with a "Please?"
Her reply both broke and filled my heart all at the same time.
"Thank you, Mommy" she said by accident.
Mommy. So that's what it sounds like.