Run! It’s your grandchildren!!

(singing) “…promote the general welfare a-and, secure the blessings o-of liberty, to ourselves and our posterity…”
– Emily, singing the Preamble of the US Constitution to herself

“Emily? Do you know what ‘posterity’ means?”
– Daddy, sensing a teachable moment

“Uh… no.”
– Emily

“It’s those who come after us…”
– Daddy

– Emily makes a “yikes!” look…

“…like my children and my children’s children and so on.”
– Daddy, finishing his sentence and wondering what the “yikes!” look was for

“Oh… I thought someone was chasing us!”
– Emily, pointing out another meaning of “those who come after us”


Waaaaay back in the mid-1990’s

While getting ready to watch The Wizard of Oz, we took a few moments (it’s only 13 minutes long) to watch the black-and-white silent-film version, circa 1910.

“Girls? How many years ago do you think this movie was made?”
– Daddy, thinking that the girls will be impressed when he tells them the answer of “almost 100 years ago”

“It was probably back in 1996 when they only had black-and-white TV.”
– Emily, showing an 8-year-old’s complete lack of scale (She was born in 1997!)

Fancy that!

“Wow, even the trash is fancy here!”
– Emily, at Biltmore estate, admiring the cast iron scrollwork around a trash can in the parking lot

Moving to the mountains

“Hey, we could move here– they have a Walmart!”
– Shannon, joking with John while driving through Hendersonville on vacation, continuing our casual search for the perfect place to move to in the mountains when the kids are grown

“But we don’t have enough clothes– or the cats!”
– Amanda, from the backseat, thinking maybe that’s why we’ve been doing all this driving

Marvelous thoughts

“Man made things God does not marvel at; God made things man marvels at”
– Emily, unscripted, unprompted, from the backseat, as we were passing a man-made waterfall on our way to hike around some God-made ones!

Death or Dessert?

“Daddy, what’s “Death by Chocolate”?
– Emily, reading the list of desserts in a restaurant

“What do you think it is?”
– Daddy

“A cake that’s really really really chocolatey?”
– Emily, clearly still wondering about the “death” part

“Yep, and then they shoot you.”
– Daddy, completely straight-faced

(brief pause while Emily considers this information)

“I think maybe I’d like to try the cheesecake.”
– Emily, not taking any chances

No, but yes…

“… and the people who worked for Hitler were called the Nazis.”
– Shannon, explaining the setting for a story set in Nazi-occupied France during WWII

“Maybe that’s because they were naughty!”
– Amanda, in a sudden flash of inspiration

We can all sleep in peace…

“I’m here to … protect you.”
– Emily, in a groggy voice, about an hour after bedtime

(She wandered down the hall into the office where we were sitting to make this announcement. Not surprisingly, she has no memory of this.)


“I like it because it has four of my favorite things: a horse, a castle, a princess, and a butterfly.”
– Emily, explaining her foam art project during show and tell

“What about the prince? Don’t you like him?”
– Grampy

“Grampy, he’s a boy.”
– Emily, in a slightly disgusted tone that clearly indicates what she thinks of that.