I have never talked to my children with "children's words." As a result of my inability to verbally meet my children at their level, they possess many words. Possessing words does not necessarily mean you are the master of the words. Frequently, I will hear one or the other child using a word in a bizarre manner and I will ask her/him what the word means. Sometimes she will answer appropriately, but many times she will say she doesn't know. I have warned them not to publicly use words for which they are not sure of the meaning. Speak freely at home, but leave your budding vocabulary at home lest you offend someone.
Today, Princess came running into my office for the exact definition of pathetic. Pink Panther had questioned her use of the phrase, "Pathetic excuse of a life," as it related to a pile of sand. At first, I didn't understand her usage but while I was trying not to laugh at her creative use of words I realized she was right on target. The sand pile is in the yard because we are having some brick/tile work done and the bricklayers are using the sand to make mortar. The children played in the sand so much that once the bricklayers arrived we had to buy more sand. The children have been playing in the sand this afternoon and the life of that sand pile is doomed to pathetic shortness. We will have to buy more sand Monday, but I am laughing!
Pathetic -- arousing pity; informal miserably inadequate