That’s what Ellie says when she doesn’t know what else to say to me.  When she thinks I’m being silly.  When she’s caught on to my joke, which she can do with an uncanny ability.  She said it tonight and Karen called attention to it as sounding so sweet.  I can’t reproduce her cadence in speech without playing audio in this blog, but it’s pretty sweet.  And I love hearing it.  I was a bit down at the end of the day and it made my night.  Ellie says it with a fair amount of frequency and nothing makes me feel better.  It’s the equivalent of her telling me she loves me – which she also does often – but it’s more sentimental.  It’s Ellie saying she feels good being with me.  There’s nothing sweeter.

Brittany did something similar.  She would call me Daddy.  Ellie calls me Dada and Karen Momma, while Brit always said Daddy and Mommy.  But Brit always spelled it Dady with one “d” instead of two in the middle.  I think she was in high school before I called her on the misspelling and she informed me that she was well aware of the grammatical error but she’s been misspelling it for years to purposely continue the cuteness of it.  When did it switch from being cute to me to being cute to her?

This picture to the right is from Ellie’s first day of 1st grade – 3 years ago.  She’s matured so much since I can’t describe.  Her vocabulary is nearly on par with mine.  I can sense the sophistication forming in her.  Has she already reached the point like Brit to where she purposely says things knowing it will make me feel better without me catching on?  Do I think of her as a 1st grader when she is oh so much more schooled?  When do kids start playing their parents?  Doesn’t matter I guess when it’s all with best intentions.