Claire is many things. She is sweet and snuggly, fierce and feisty, brave and physical, shy and clingy. She yells (YELLS) hi (HI!) at everyone we see in stores, but if someone comes up to her she hides in my shoulder. She loves babies, but if one even glances my way, she's quick to jut out her chin and yell "MY mama!". She has an ear splitting grin and she's quick to use it, but she also has a scowl that is years ahead of her physical age. She adores her brother and will follow him anywhere, but she also enjoys needling while wearing an impish grin.
Some of the most overheard exchanges between the two of them:
Landon, any time he wants to change rooms: Come on Claire!
Claire, stopping whatever she's doing and galloping over: Otay!
Landon: Stop that Claire!
Claire: Sorry Yandon.
Landon: Wanna do [insert absolutely anything here]?
Claire, every night: Nigh nigh Yandon.
Claire, every morning: Yandon up?!
Landon: Claire, can I give you a hug?
(Landon picks her up and spins her, it kills the daycare ladies)
Landon: Stop it Claire!
Claire: Sorry Yandon.
(I'm not sure what they were doing here, but I'm confident it involved a full back story
and probably some superheroes. Or pirates.)
She's more independent and opinionated than Landon was- she both picks out and puts on her clothes BY HERSELF and don't you dare try to sneak a helping hand in when you think she isn't looking- but she also craves us more. She follows us from room to room and is never happier than when all 4 members of her family are in the same room, preferably all within touching distance.
Some of her most used expressions to/with us:
Wuv you, wuv you SO MUCH.
Mote peez! (Milk please)
Cheese peez! Cheez and fuit! Fuit mama. (The girl could live on cheese slices and fruit.)
Dirty! (when she spies anything that isn't supposed to be wherever it is)
Mama bye bye?! Bye bye Mama! (any time I leave the room)
She parrots everything we say, at least five times in a row after we say it. Sometimes it's 20 times. There's no predicting it and no stopping it until she decides she's done. Really, she just talks non-stop and she is not fazed by a lack of new material.
She has been introduced to time-outs (generally for an assault on Landon). She always looks deeply offended when we tell her to go to her corner, but she marches over directly, with her head thrown back and faux-sobs echoing through the room. She doesn't throw tantrums, at least not yet, and she has not picked up a screaming habit. She sits very nicely at dinner, has great utensil usage, and eats a greater variety of food than Landon. One of the hard things to explain about Claire is how she can be so feisty and yet also so generally happy and sweet. She's a trooper who gets dragged to everything. She wants to help. She loves to clean and scrub. She follows me around the house saying, "I be HELPful mama, I be HELPful." She worries desperately about other people's boo boos, offering kisses, and crouching down to the scene of the accident with a serious and concerned expression.
She's very opinionated about her clothes, so I took her with me to the mall to pick up a few new non-stained t-shirts on Sunday. She rejected all of my suggestions: "No dolphin!" "NO kitty!" "NO FOWERS!" But when she saw the boys half of the store, she burst into smiles, pointing and exclaiming, "Choo choos!" "Tucks!" "Elphant!!" So we're going to dig through some of Landon's old clothes- maybe she'll help me justify the fact I moved too many with us to this house.
For the last few weeks she's been doing this thing where every night, when it's post-bath and time for PJ's, she backs up and hops her way to JP for each piece. Last night I finally caught a short clip of the second hop segment to get her PJ top:
She's such a brave little thing. JP is doing swim lessons with her and though she sobs her way through them, when he says it's time to do one more run through, she'll sob "Otay" and make moves to get started. She can float on her back by herself and get herself out of the pool from the deep end, and after each little drill, she yells, "I DID it!" Sometimes she yells and sobs it at the same time, but she does always look incredibly proud of herself.
She's my baby, my sweet girl, my Clairebear crazy bear. She is so much and then more (and then 2!).