When Context Means Everything…..

The other night as I was leaving my 7-year-old’s bedroom at bed time, he was throwing out some conversation to prolong my stay.

He told me that the book that he brought home from school to read to us had a really hard word in it.

I gave some kind of response like “oh, yeah?”, my mind on the things I needed to tend to still.

His response “Yeah.  It’s inbred.”  {at least that’s what I heard}.

I thought about that as I was heading toward the stairs, trying to figure out how and WHY they would use a word like “inbred” in a first-grade read-aloud book.

Mental gears churning, nothing coming up…..hopefully something to do with ANIMALS? 

He saved me from further brain strain by calling out:

“Yeah, it means to sew something in little designs.”

To which I responded, “OH! You mean EMBROIDERED?”

Thankfully, his answer to that was “Yes”.


I was reminded of that conversation again this morning when he was reading said book to me.

It’s a variation of “Caps for Sale”, and he does get stuck on “embroidered”.  It comes out more like “embred”, but GOLLY, it sounds like he’s saying “inbred”.

I have to keep my chuckles on the inside as I encourage him in his great job reading.  🙂