Friday, December 28, 2007

Happy Birthday my CLAIRE!

First, a note to let you know that we have new pictures on flicker- see link on side margin to "Our pictures"
Here is 2 quick pics of the birthday girl though (we celebrated early over xmas vacation).

A year of motherhood is coming to a close- a long,
stressful, but joyous year. Just 365 days ago, I was in a delivery room pushing out an LIFE! Hence, I have learned and changed a lot since that LIFE took over MY life.
My friend Jeanine recently said that women change the most of their entire lives in their 20-30 year period. It is true for me. From single, thriving college student in IL to wife, mother, and KY worker in just a 3 year span.

The other year we grow the most is that very first one of our lives. From birth to wobbly heads to crawling to pulling up to walking- all the while our minds and motor skills enhancing.
A few weeks ago Claire hid on me for the first time. For two whole minutes I called her name and searched the apartment for her. I finally heard her giggle when I walked past the couch she was tucked behind. She has a mind of her own now- and quite the strong will to go with it!
Claire has taken her first steps and eaten her first cake. She is still quite loud and quite verbal. Also in the upper % for size! Man, can this girl eat!

As for her birthday parties, the first was a Care Bear theme. Family and friends in WI all went out to a kids restaurant fulls of games and play rooms. Claire enjoyed the carousel. She paid most attention to the other children around her. Two young girls named Anna and Grace came to one of her parties. Their mother later reported that since the party they have been walking their baby dolls all around the house and all of them are now named Claire :) She shared her second party with her Daddy and her cousin Christine and enjoyed digging her hands into the cake rather than eating it.

Unfortunately, against my idealistic hopes, Claire is still in diapers ;) She has learned to sign milk and ask for more (by clapping). She says "Dada " when Keith (or any male his height) enters a room. She has yet to murmur "Mama", but it is coming. She knows what "no" and "dont touch" mean, but likes to test the line by continually sticking her index finger out toward the off-limits Christmas tree ornaments. She is turned around in her carseat and can also climb stairs.

What has most amazed me about having a child? The JOY that one small life can bring to so many people. All Claire does is smile and she melts hearts. I never expected her to mean SO much to SO many. I hope to teach her the responsibility that goes along with her great beauty as she grows into it.
So happy birthday to my little lady. May your hair and vocabulary grow endlessly this coming year!