Friday, May 25, 2012

Bedtime Theater

I take Clare into her room to begin her bedtime routine. She sees her pajamas and starts crying. I put her up on the changing table. She arches her back, trying to flip over onto her side. I turn her back over. She raises her hips and inches herself down the table until her head is hanging off the side. “This would go a lot faster if you would stop fighitng,” I say. She sits up, throwing her head back to get away from the offending pajama top. She is on her hands and knees, and I manage to pull the pajama shirt on over her head. It gets stuck. (Of course.) She is whipping her head from side to side while I try to pull it over her face.  The shirt is on, the diaper off. She leaps forward, onto my shoulder, trying to escape the evil, evil changing table. I try to lay her back down. She stands up and grabs my hair. I lay her back down to put on her diaper. She screams. Repeat scene from the top with the pajama bottoms.

She is finally in her pajamas. I take her into the bathroom to brush her teeth. She cries. And screams. And tosses her head from side to side to avoid that awful toothbrush, which must taste like peas or be a vampire, the way she is acting.

I didn’t think this behavior was supposed to start until she was two, but apparently my baby is now a tantrum throwing toddler. Yesterday she was playing with a lanyard that had been left on the floor. I took it away from her, because, you know, it is not really a toy. She just had an absolute FIT. I actually yelled, “Too bad, I am the Mom” at her. Like she knows what that means.

Sigh.  She is lucky she is so cute.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My First Mother's Day

Of course I have to document my first Mother’s Day, especially since my husband bought such thoughtful gifts:
The bracelet is Clare's birthstone: pearl.
I also got this present from daycare. Not the best picture of Clare, but still darling.

I didn’t get to sleep in or take a nap. We had to take Clare to urgent care. Yet we still had a lovely day. (Clare is fine – just another, yes ANOTHER, ear infection. Sigh.) Ben made omelets for brunch and grilled cheeseburgers for dinner. I ate about half of that box of chocolates. We enjoyed the beautiful weather working in the garden. I went for a run outside. We watched the Brewers play while Clare napped on Ben. I read a book. I didn’t clean or do laundry. Like I said - lovely. I hope all of the other mothers (and non-mothers) out there had a great Mother’s Day, too.

She did not want to pose for this picture.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Number 6

It is our sixth wedding anniversary today. Last year, we went out to dinner and to a movie. I don't remember what we talked about, but the main topic was probably the baby. I was very pregnant at the time. This year, we went out to dinner and to a concert. I know what we talked about: Clare, Clare, and Clare some more. And the food we ate, which was delicious. (We went to a wonderful restaurant that locally sources its food - I had TWO dishes with morel mushrooms in them. And a rhubarb upside down cake with creme fraiche ice cream. It was heaven.)

Clare had a babysitter that isn't a family member for the first time. Her daycare teacher Sandy, came over with her daughter. This was wonderful, because I didn't have to worry. (Psst...I still worried.) When she first got there, Sandy's daughter got out an electronic snail crawly toy thingy that Clare doesn't really like. It plays music and rolls across the floor, and I admit, is a bit creepy. When it started coming towards Clare, she jumped into Sandy's arms, even though I was sitting right there. So yeah, Clare was fine.

It was so nice to have a date night, just the two of us. We need to do that more often. We've been together for 11 years, and had Clare for nearly one, but I can't really remember what it was like when it was just the two of us. Luckily, I have pictures.

My college graduation in 2002. Is that really us?
In Puerto Rico in August 2003.
In the Boundary Waters in 2005. We are quite dirty.
The big day: May 13, 2006
At the North Sea in Newcastle, England in 2007.
At a Chicago Fire Major League Soccer Game - July 2009.
With our little one - January 2012.

Monday, May 7, 2012

11 Months

It is becoming more and more challenging to get these shots each month. It is definitely a two person job.

Clare has figured out what the remote control is for. She points it at the TV, waiting for something to happen. We are kind of embarrassed that she knows this, but on the other hand, at least she is observant, right?

She has two favorite Sesame Street videos that we watch on You Tube over and over. And over.  Feist singing "1,2,3,4" and singing "What I Am." (The Sesame Street versions, of course.) She loves Elmo and the other monsters. She also dances: turning her shoulders and bouncing up and down. She'll dance to pretty much any music, even my singing. If you have ever heard me sing, you know this is saying something.  Of course, I think the only person who has ever heard me sing is my friend Chelsea. We used to sing along to the "Lite" radio station in her car in college.

Anyway, Clare is getting pretty adventurous with food. She basically just wants whatever I am eating, whether it is refried beans or an avocado and cheese sandwich. She loves restaurants, thanks to the people watching she can do there, and even had her first French fries at the Night Owl here in town. Needless to say, those were a big hit. Oh, and mushrooms. She adores them. We also ordered her something off a children's menu for the first time: scrambled eggs and French toast. I made her eat the eggs first, because I knew once she got a bite of that French toast the eggs would be rejected. I was right.

Thanks to the early spring, we've been playing outside quite a bit. Clare rolled off her blanket onto the grass for the first time last week. She immediately lifted both feet and hands into the air. She was not at all sure she wanted to touch the grass. After sitting like that for a few minutes, she got bored and went on playing, perfectly comfortable on the lawn.

She is curious about everything, pointing and saying "this" or "that." She is babbling constantly, and I can't wait for more words to start coming out of her mouth.

She is very close to walking, and can take several steps with assistance from her walking toy. She can stand on her own for a few seconds, so I know this milestone is right around the corner.

She also loves technology:

Clare blogging.
Watching her favorite Sesame Street video.
Whew. I think that is it. 11 months! I said it last month, and I'll say it again: this is such a fun age.