We are working on manners at our house, and by "we" I mean Cora. She's got the big ones - please and thank you - down pat and I was pleased that even in the thrilling throes of trick-or-treating she remembered on her own to say "Thank you!" most of the time.
Her other favorite is "Sorry!" which gets a pretty wide and sometimes random distribution. She will say sorry for anything from kicking you in delicate places to being told she has to wait a minute for her drink. (I confess that when I have to wait for my drink, I tend to think the other person should apologize.)
But the social nicety we are currently working on is "Excuse me." She will usually say it as she runs over your foot with her little shopping cart, or while pushing past you on the couch, or if you are blocking her access to the hot stove, but then there's the burping. So, today we are in the car driving to the grocery store and she is telling me a long story about Ariel* (who else?!) and she burps and keeps right on going.
"Cora," I say, "Was that a burp?"
"Oh no," she replies - and if you know Cora you know that she is twisting her hand back and forth at the wrist and cocking her head to the side. "No," she says, "That was just my pink gas."
Which, as we all know, needs no excuse.
*When does the Ariel phase end? Sometimes she is Ariel, sometimes she talks to her Ariel doll (conversations that go something like this: "Hi Ariel. I know, Ariel, I know! Are you a dolly Ariel? Look at me, Ariel, now listen. You have a fishy tail, Ariel!"). When she is Ariel, Chris is Ariel-Daddy, who is usually angry and has no official song. Once in a while I am Ariel-Mommy, but of course there is no Ariel-Mommy in the movie. Do you see where this is going? Yes, that's right, I am Ursula. The sea witch. The octopus-bottomed cabaret singer with evil eels for friends - evil eels that Cora-Ariel tells me are named Poopie and PeePee. I kind of miss the days when she was just Olivia the pig. Now who's the poor unfortunate soul?