Morning Routine


Hank: Mommy, I love your hair.

Me: (combing out the sleep knots) Thank you, buddy.

Hank: You look just like Rapunzel.

Me: I think that is about the best compliment a six year old can give. Thank you.

Hank: It means you are pretty and brave and you can draw like Rapunzel, too.

Me: Oh, so I am Disney Rapunzel and not Hans Christian Andersen Rapunzel.

Hank: Yes.

Me: Gotcha. I can be Hollywood.  I can be mainstream.

Hank: (mumbles) I don’t know what that means.  (spitting tooth paste in the sink)

Me: Don’t worry.  I am just watching my wonder years tarnish before my very eyes.

Pai: Oh, Please!  It is 8 am.  Do we really need to mourn your lost renegade youth? There hasn’t even been coffee yet.  Accept the compliment. (turns on the hairdryer)

Me: (yelling over the hairdryer) Shall we watch Tangled Disney Rapunzel for movie night tonight?

Hank: YAH!



Pão Pão, Queijo Queijo


Me: School Stories: GO!

Hank: OH!  Ok. (thinking) Um…  I taught Joana how to say oopsie daisy.

Pai: Oopsie Daisy?

Hank: Yes, I learned that word from my prima (cousin) Daniela in London.  She dropped something and said, “oopsie daisy” and I laughed and she said it is something you say when you make a mistake.

Pai: That is a silly thing to say.

Me: Pão Pão, Queijo Queijo* (bread bread, cheese cheese). Your point is moot.

Pai: Alright, but still.

Me: It is quite simple.  This expression was born out of the age of the waltz.  It was a wild new popular dance where the dancers would spin faster and faster to the music and quite often a gentleman would trip on the ample skirts of his partner and spill her to the floor crying, “OOPSIE DAISY.”

Hank: (laughing)

Pai: You made that up.

Me: Guilty, but you have to admit it is totally plausible.

Hank: (hysterical) Pão Pão, Queijo Queijo!!!

* Pão Pão, Queijo Queijo is an expression that means, it is what it is, like call a spade a spade in English.


At the Café


Hank: Olá, Professora de Música!!!!

Professora: Olá, Herique.  Tas Bom (are you well)?

Hank: Sim (yes). (turning to me) That is my music teacher.

Me: Is she?  How wonderful.  You really like music class.

Hank: I do.

(Hank’s music teacher comes over and we are introduced.  I thanked her for teaching Hank about music and explained how my grandmother was a music teacher and my uncle and soon to be a cousin, too. Then we three said our goodbyes.)

Me: What did you learn about today?

Hank: (thinking) My teacher taught us about Vivaldi today. Did your Grandma teach you about Vivaldi?

Me: She did indeed. Which Vivaldi did you learn about?

Hank: Outono (Autumn).

Me: Perfect music for this time of year.  Did you hear the leaves falling in the music?

Hank: No.

Me: When we get home I will play it again for you and you can tell me what you see in the music.  When I was a little girl my Gram use to stand at the piano and play and play and play for us while we danced and whirled around her, almost always until we fell over.  She use to always play Chopin’s Waltz number 1 and this tune called The Entertainer and a lot of rag-time and I remember feeling so happy and dizzy twirling to that!  And she had so many records.  I use to sit for hours playing her records.

Hank: What is a record.

Me: (feeling old) A record is like a cd, but made of vinyl and a machine cut the music into the vinyl and if you left a record in the sun or in your car it would melt!

Hank: Oh no!

Me: Growing up with music was one of the greatest gifts of my life.  And your cousin Becca now has my Gram’s piano.

Hank: In the fancy room.  I remember.

Me: I use to take piano lessons, but it was very hard for me to get my left hand to do something different than my right hand.

Hank: I can ask my Professora de Música if she teaches piano.  I think I would like to play piano or violino (violin).

Me: That would be wonderful.  You could play…

Hank: And you could twirl.

Me: (taken back, a bit weepy) I would love that.