We had the most fun dinner at friends' we have had since moving to Denmark. In the past maybe Marc, or I have had a good night, or if we're lucky both of us. But tonight, all three of us had a great time from beginning to end. I think a big part of the evening's success can be attributed to E's age now. He is nearly 17 months, just a month shy from that 18 month milestone which is supposed to make huge cognitive differences. E can also ask for "help" and "more" with signs so that significantly reduces the amount of yelling as an attempt to communicate that he had a needs to be filled. And minimizing the yelling always maximizes the fun.

But, of course, it is also the family who invited us for dinner that can be significantly credited for the fun we all had. Abdi and Ona are the only other couple in our international group of friends that have a child, a 3 year old girl, D. In our first few months in Denmark, when we were craving social interaction, we would always run into them at parties- both of us with our young children in tow. Our international circle is small and interconnected so we technically now them a few other ways as well, but "the other couple at the party with a child" is how I'll always remember things started with them.

And whenever we are questioned about E's ability to cope learning two languages, we always talk about D. We say: we know a family, they have a little girl. Her father comes from France and speaks French with D. The mother comes from Lithuania and speaks Lithuanian with D. The father and mother speak English to each other because they don't know each other's languages, so D understands English and speaks it a little bit. And D goes to a Danish kindergarten so she speaks Danish.
It's amazing to watch D switch from one language to another. And it is fun to hear about different things her parents (read: mother) observe when she is in Lithuania or France, surrounded by people speaking one of her two native languages. We definitely don't worry about E learning two languages from birth, after meeting D.

So tonight was fun because there was a lot of dancing. Abdi has a great taste in music and E was really feeling it. When we weren't all dancing together as a family, bumping into each other making E scream with delight, E
was dancing on his own. I have never seen him dance as creatively as he did tonight. He was spinning and stomping and bouncing to the rhythm. It was such a joy to watch.
E and D also played so amazingly well together. Things did start out a bit rocky. D had to get used to the idea of sharing her toys, especially with a baby boy who had a very different idea of play. E really wanted to play with D and D really wanted him to leave her alone and play on his own. At one point D was yelling at E in French. I laughed and told her he could not understand French, but Danish or English should work. And E did listen when she spoke to him in Danish.
Eventually the two were playing drums together, dancing together and playing a hilarious chase game where. E would bow his head into D and she would run away laughing. E would pursue her but as D is three and can actually run, she easily evaded him yelling "arrêtter Charlotte!" which means "stop it Charlotte!" in french. We all were laughing pretty hard at D calling E Charlotte.

The evening was quite fantastic. Amazing food and so much fun. I really am excited for more children not just in our family but in others as well. When the kids can play together it makes a really nice and relaxed atmosphere.

1 comment:

  1. How did I not know you had a blog?
    More importantly - why am I surprised?

    Stoked new follower here!


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