Last night at dinner, Brooke declared that she loved noodles.
Reese propped her elbows onto the table, pushed back her plate, and said, "Well, I love chocolate cake. But when I say love, what I really mean is that I like it a lot. It's not the same love that I sometimes say when I really love something."
I'm blown away by her perception of language here. Such insight into subtle semantics -- how our English language uses the term love interchangeably for both our inconsequential likes (I love pizza) and our significant commitments of the heart and will (I love you; will you marry me?)
I prod Reese to elaborate.
"Well," she continued, eyeing Brooke across the table, "If I said that I loved something really great -- like a new hiding spot in our backyard or the monkey bars at school -- I actually mean that those things are really fun. But when I say that I love Mommy or Daddy or our fish, what I mean is that I really do love them."
"Reese, " I interjected. "We don't even own a fish."
"But I sure would love him if we did."