a dictionary: lyra-ese.

Here’s an excerpt of the current Lyra-ese-to-English dictionary.  This may come in handy if you’re ever a guest at Castle Frostbite, and you find yourself on the receiving end of a question, request, or comment from the youngest member of the family.


Lyra-ese to English: An Incomplete Glossary

Lyra-ese English
mutz-mows Lucky Charms (which contain marshmallow bits)
kee-koo cookie
peet fish
pee-s please (can be appended to any other word to indicate urgent desire: “ A kee-koo, pee-s!”)
goggie dog (all breeds)
kee-kat cat
teep both teeth and toothbrush
ow-sai outside (usually voiced as a request, often appended with pee-s)
Kee Quinn
stee poo poop (lit. “stinky poop”; can serve as a request for a diaper change : “Have stee-poo.”)
nana banana
shoo shoe(s) (both singular and plural)
puh-pow caterpillar
duh-bow dog bone (stuffed pet toy)
seet chair/seat (all kinds)
powh pillow


(The equivalent language of Quinn at that age was called Quinnish, or Quinnya. He has since switched to standard English.)


11 thoughts on “a dictionary: lyra-ese.

  1. Adam says:

    “goggie” brings to mind Christopher Moore’s “A Dirty Job”

    You should read that one.

  2. Turk Turon says:

    My son used to pronounce “caterpillar” as “callapitter”, and it was a sad day for me when he started pronouncing it “caterpillar”. He’s 17 now, but I still miss “callapitter”.

  3. oddly, many of these seem universal to the toddler set…man, i miss that stuff. enjoy it while it lasts, mw; in a few days she’ll be asking for the cah-kees, pee-s…


  4. perlhaqr says:


    Oh man, you are such a dork. 😀 I approve.

  5. Eric says:

    My daughter, at 15 months says –

    CAT – as loud as she can, at the cat
    puppy – is the weiner dog
    Shooos – are shoes
    Sahs – are socks
    Purpo – the color purple
    PODDY – as loud as she can when she wants to play in the bathroom
    Heddo – her phone(s), non working wireless handsets

  6. Louise Townsend says:

    keep it up and save it!
    you will never have it again and she will hopefully savor it and share it (and decipher) later in life when she has her own little offshoots.
    Lovely stuff…

  7. Eric (original) says:

    I guess I’ll have to change my name here as there now appears to be another “Eric”…

    As for toddler talk, at 45 I still call my dad “dadu.”

  8. HankH says:

    I really enjoy your blog! Your daughter is a cutie, she reminds me a little of mine (who is now 15). My wife and I still get a chuckle over something my daughter said when she was still two. The doorbell rings, and my daughter goes to look through the window, and comes back to announce to us very solemnly that there is a ‘brown man’ at the door. My wife goes to the door expecting to be greeted by a black man, but instead finds our already swarthy UPS man just back from his Hawaiian vacation; he was definitely a ‘brown man’.


  9. joated says:

    As long as people speak to her in what passes for standard English in New England, she’ll adapt. If, however, folks select one or more of her words to use regularly, that part of her vocabulary may never really be lost. Just ask my sister Poosie (aka Ruthann).
    (Okay. So I stumbled over “Ruthann” when I was two. I’m almost 60 now and, with threats upon my life, have learned to go with “Ruthann.” It only took 30 years or so to really break the habit.)

  10. ZerCool says:

    This is good info … is the offer of crash space for the blogshoot still good?

    Don’t have your email off-hand, but mine is my nick at mac dot com… let me know!

Comments are closed.