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Is my toddler Hodor?

Is my toddler Hodor?

“Mama,” I said, pointing to myself. “Can you say ‘mama’?”

“Dada,” the Popple shouted.

“No, Dada isn’t here right now. Mama.” I pointed to myself again.

“Dada,” she whispered, smiling.

I sighed. “Dada?” I said, resigned.

“Dada,” she repeated.

Everything is dada these days. Her breakfast? Dada. Her shoes? Dada. The cat? Dada. Her toy laptop with the creepy old lady robot voice? Dada.

She’s tried out other sounds like nyeh, ba and ga, but none of them have had staying power. She even gave ma a go briefly, only to give it up in favour of da. The only other noise she makes these days is the raspberry, produced with maximum drool exclusively during meals or on crowded buses. She has no interest in saying anything else. I prefer her communicating via dadas than screams, but still – I can’t help wanting to hear an actual word amongst all those das.

I know each child develops at their own rate, and that children in multi-lingual households often take longer to speak. Still, there’s a part of me that worries that we have a Hodor situation on our hands.

(If you don’t know what I mean by ‘a Hodor situation’, stop reading and go watch all six seasons of Game of Thrones immediately.)

I would still love the Popple if she decided to do a Hodor, but there are so many great words out there, and I want her to be able to use them. Plus she’s got English, Spanish and Scots to choose from. Scots is especially full of amazing words. For example:


Meaning: Pale. Most often used, curiously, in reference to old carrots.


Meaning: Be quiet, as in “Haud yer wheest!” I always think this sounds best coming out of the mouth of a cranky grannie.


Meaning: Fine/great, as in, “See that braw craw (crow).” I say this pretty much every day, because it’s a line from one the Popple’s favourite books, Katie’s Moose, even though crows are evil murder birds and most definitely NOT braw.

I hope the Popple grows up to share my love of language. Until then, I am dada.

We are all dada.

And that’s okay.

20 thoughts on “Is my toddler Hodor?”

  • This is brilliant! Our little one says “momomomomom” all the time, usually as a form on protest and we’re not sure whether it’s mum or nom nom, but have decided the same that it’s an affectionate word for all of us! #stayclassymama

  • Oh I have a “dada” boy on my hands! He gives the odd “mama” but only few and far between. Agreed about Game of Thrones- if anyone doesn’t know that reference I’m sad for them! Haha such a fan 🙂 #stayclassymama

  • She will be saying mama soon enough, Dada is a good step, my little one is just at the noisy I’ll shout and make random noises at everything #stayclassymama

  • Yes, I love those Scottish words! My grandparents were Scottish and said all those! Daughter 2’s first word was ‘pub’ so don’t worry too much with ‘da’! I’m sure she is impressing the in-laws more than my daughter did! Alison x #stayclassymama

  • We have moved on from dada to dadeeeeeeee i get shoe and woof occasionally but it’s mainly just variations of dadeeeeeeee we have compared her to Hodor (and Timmy from southpark) but it’s good to know I’m not alone
    And thank you for explaining what wheesht means being a Londoner I didn’t have a clue and always thought they was saying you wee shit !!! xxx

  • I love Peely Wally. It’s a great word! My smallest small is fond of a bit of Dadda. My eldest could speak full sentences before she got Mummy down, but she was just trolling I’m sure. Thanks for linking to #chucklemums!

  • Ha ha, so true, so many great words to choose from and ‘dadda’ is the preference! My current favourite words are ‘dada’ (of course), ‘mumumumumummumumum’ and, for some random reason, ‘Barry.’ I don’t know anyone called Barry so haven’t a clue where that’s come from x #chucklemums

  • Yep this stage bloody sucks! My youngest is almost 2 and still doesn’t say mama properly but dada perfect, nothing like a kick in the the th huh?! With no1 I couldn’t wait for her to talk….that excitement went quick when she started to shout words that sounds like fu&k and what not in the middle of Asda! #chucklemums

  • Brilliant that scots have a word that is really only used to describe pale carrots! Still with all those great languages floating about I am sure the Popple will very soon broaden her horizons. But yes the dada phase can get a bit wearing! #PuddingLove

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