Something I forgot to mention in my monthly post: my losing battle to keep Ingrid’s Estonian skills alive. The better she becomes at Swedish (and she is speaking very well now), the bigger the gap between the two languages, and the more likely she is to choose Swedish.

As the dialogue example shows, even when I speak Estonian to her, she often responds in Swedish. I used to prompt her for the Estonian equivalent, but I keep forgetting – after all I understand Swedish so well that it’s hard for me to ignore and pretend to not understand it. The best I manage is to respond with the Estonian version of what she just said.

She rarely uses an Estonian pattern in Swedish, but when she does speak Estonian she often slips into a Swedish pattern. “Emme mul on vaja ├╝ks lusikas” (Mummy I need a spoon) instead of “Emme mul on lusikat vaja”. And I think I can detect a hint of Swedish sound and melody when she speaks Estonian – she is developing a foreign accent.

I hope our upcoming 15-day visit to Estonia is enough to stem the tide for a short while.