Claire's first pigtails! Isn't she adorable?
I've actually been meaning to write a post with an update on Claire, and today was the perfect opportunity. She was just so adorable with her little pigtails before we got ready for school this morning. She kept asking, or rather demanding, "more mirror, Mommy!" so she could look at her hair over and over. Then she insisted that I take more pictures.
Claire absolutely loves preschool. When we pull onto the road that her school is on she almost always says, "yay, school!" She seems to have made a pretty close friend of a new student in her class. The teachers tell me that they spend a lot of time together, and one morning last week her friend ran up and gave her a kiss on the cheek when she came into the classroom. It was very sweet.
One thing that Montessori schools try to do is to help the kids become independent. Which is all well and good, but it is leading to me hearing a lot of, "No mommy do it, Claire do it!" She has successfully learned to put on her own pants (sometimes backwards), shoes (frequently on the wrong feet), and socks. She insists on holding the book and turning the pages when we read stories. She gets very upset if she is not allowed to press the start button when we are microwaving something, or if I try to close the freezer door by myself. When leaving school she will refuse to go through the door if someone is holding it open for her. She must push the door open by herself. She even tries to fasten her carseat on her own.
Claire is a good big sister. Whenever she hears Ben crying she will tell me, "Ben sad, Mommy." Though that does not translate to wanting to leave whatever she is doing so we can comfort him. She will sometimes decide to bring him every toy from his basket one at a time. Each time she sets a toy in his lap she will say in a cute little voice, "here you go, Ben" and give him a big smile. Her antics can always illicit a laugh from him. In fact he laughs more while watching Claire run around and be silly than at any other time.
At the pumpkin patch with playgroup
Although Claire's playgroup generally meets in the mornings about once a month we try to gather people in the afternoon so that Claire can see her old friends. She gets excited whenever we talk about who will be there, and always has a good time playing with her friends. They are all pretty used to each other now, and we see a lot less fighting over the same toys. They chase each other around, and delight in being silly with one another.
Claire and her cousin, (well, really my cousin, so her first cousin once removed, but that's a little much for a two year old to understand) Lily get along really well. Lily is four, and loves that Claire is now old enough to play with. When she found out that she would see Claire again (for the third time since July!) in October she told her parents that Claire was her "bestest buddy". From what I understand that title is typically reserved for the family dog, so Claire is very honored. At Aunt Renita's party they were inseperable. They ran around together, collected acorns, ate and drank, and then when it was bedtime, both crawled into Claire's inflatable Dora bed to read and do puzzles together. It was not easy to get them separated long enough for them to fall asleep.
Claire is a delight. She certainly tries our patience as she is learning to assert herself. And it can be wearying to have to repeat the same response over and over, "yes, Claire, the door is open" "door open, Mommy". But her high energy and bright smile, can make that all melt away. And when she gives a tackle hug? "I got you, Mommy!" It's all worth it. Watching her grow up has been so rewarding. It is hard to reconcile this active little girl with the baby that she was not so long ago. Our lives have changed so much in the last 29 months, and for that we are very, very thankful!