Tuesday, May 26, 2009

One Zany Morning

We had Claire's 9 month checkup this morning. It was quite a fiasco just getting there. She slept later than I was anticipating, so we were running behind right from the start. Then, I couldn't find my keys, so I had to grab the valet key for the car. But I wasn't thinking and I locked the front door to the house on my way out, by habit. So, I had to go by Kevin's office after the appointment to get his house key. It proved to be a long outing between the dr. in Orange and the extra trip to Irvine to get the key, then back home to Costa Mesa/Santa Ana. Oh, and I also got all the way to the second floor of the parking garage from the Dr.'s office before I realized I forgot to validate the parking and had to turn around, trek back across the street and back up the the 5th floor to get my ticket stamped!

The actual appointment went well. The Dr. said Claire is doing great. She is still a shrimp: she weighs in at 16.4 lbs and is 26.5 inches long. In three months she only gained 1 pound and one inch. She is in the 10-13th ish percentile. (I had guessed that she was about 18 pounds... obviously she's not as heavy as she seems.) She got one shot and screamed like the world was ending until snot was EVERYWHERE! She is quite the drama queen these days. Then I had to take her to the lab to get her blood drawn. Poor baby! I was really nervous because I have horrible veins and it is always such a painful process when they try and draw my blood. I just held her tight and sang to her the whole time, trying not to cry (now who's the drama queen!) She did very well. They had no problem drawing the blood, and it went very quickly. She didn't try to pull away or anything, but did let out the most pitiful cry ever! Very traumatic for both of us! Now she's sleeping the experience away, thank goodness! 

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Update

Claire is learning things so fast these days! Every day I watcher he do something new. It's so much fun! Some of the highlights:
  • She has 2 signs! She says "all done" when she is finished eating and yesterday she heard a bird outside and signed "bird!" The "all done" I'm pretty sure is intentional. I have only seen her do "bird" a few times but I was so excited, I decided to count it anyhow!
  • She points now. It's not super consistent, but she does do it. She mostly points to photos, and to dogs she sees in the street. By the way, she LOVES dogs! She gets so excited any time she sees one, and will start shouting and pointing and scrambling to get to it. She's so intense, she actually scares off many of her doggie play partners.
  • She plays games. She will crawl over to the step and look back at Kevin, smile and wait. When he runs over the chase her, she starts to scramble up the step as fast as she can, then when he catches her, she squeals and laughs.
  • When she crawls over to a place she knows she's not supposed to play, like the fireplace, she looks back at us and says "ah ah ah" and waits for us to come get her.
  • She can make clicking noises with her tongue.
  • She will imitate your vocal noises. She matches pitch and intonation too. If I say dah DAH dah, she will say it back exactly the same. She will also mimic gestures.
These are pretty much all language gains, which is why I think she has not really progressed much further with her motor skills. It's like all she wanted to do was learn to crawl and stand up, and she was good to go. While she can now crawl very well, she has no interest in walking. If we try and walk with her by holding her hands, she will only take a step or two and then sit down. She also doesn't cruise yet. She loves to stand up, but if she wants to move to a different location, she will sit down, crawl over, and then stand back up. Although, one new move she has learned is a very amusing booty dance!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Escape Artist

Claire can now wriggle out of her swing even when she's strapped into it! I'm sad to say it may have to be retired now. The only thing we use it for these days is to wrangle her when we need to do something in the other room. We're quickly running out of ways to strap her down! Kevin suggested getting an exersaucer. While I know she would love it, I'm not sure how long we would be able to use it. She's already about 9 months old and going to be walking soon. I know some babies love those things forever after they start to walk, but somehow I see Claire as resenting anything that ties her down when she could be up, getting into things she shouldn't! 

Claire had her first swimming lesson yesterday. I t was fun, but I feel slightly ripped off. The "instructor" basically said, "get her comfortable with the water." and then I was on my own. I had to go to her to ask for advice on how to best dunk Claire without her swallowing tons of water. Her advice, "well, some kids just will always swallow water at first." So, I guess this instructor was just a sub, and there will be someone different for the rest of the class. And supposedly we learn a new skill each day. So, perhaps after this first introductory session, we will actually get to some real swimming-type stuff. With all that said, Claire did tons better than on her first pool experience. I dunked her 4-5 times and she didn't drown once! Haha! I will leave you with a few fun pictures taken over the last week. 9 months is approaching fast!


Whip it! Whip it good!



Her new favorite place to play:

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Walk

On Saturday we went to Angel's Stadium to do the annual AIDS walk with Rockharbor Church. It was a beautiful sunny day and Claire enjoyed the festivities. 


Here she and Wylan are discussing their game plan for the morning.

Sporting an Angels cap (borrowed from Wylan) to keep the sun at bay


Trying out the wagon. She loved it!


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Maybe

Do you ever feel like something big is just on the horizon? That is the feeling I have had for a little while now. I am excited, but a bit nervous. It seems like our family is going to have some decisions ahead of us that could shape the foreseeable future. Not sure exactly when it all started. Many of you may know that even though we live in Orange County, we have never wanted to stay. This lifestyle has always been a bit overwhelming, and tempting for us. We have always dreamed of a house somewhere where there are more trees than concrete. Someplace where you see stars at night. Our plan to get there has always been dependent of Kevin making lots of money (actually making the same amount he makes here, which would be lots somewhere else) so we could purchase this dream. But lately I think the Lord is revealing to us that maybe we were just redirecting that same Orange County attitude of acquisition and aiming it somewhere where we could get more for our money. We can't afford to get get get while we live here, so lets go somewhere else so we can have more stuff. And we'll cloak it in this great vision of happy family lives in a house where our kids can run and play; where we spend nights gazing up at the stars and weekends hiking through nature. But really, will anything change? We'll have a bigger house, yes. It will be ours and not rented, yes. But will we really grow at all? I don't know. Maybe our dream should involve less getting. Staying down here and living on a tight budget requires more reliance on God's provision. It cultivates more discipline. It encourages growth. Maybe. I don't know. It's the conversation we're having now. Actually it's one of the conversations we're having now. Big things on the horizon. Maybe.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Praise the Lord!

Claire LOVES to clap, dance, and sing along to music. Her favorite person to listen to: her Daddy (as in the video below). I taught her the arms raised trick in the form of cheering "hooray" when Kevin would get home from work. The first time she raised her hands to music was when we had her in church for the final worship time. The people in front of us were raising their hands while they sang. She loved watching them, and soon began to  imitate. That drew so much attention from the people around us, and soon everyone was doing it, just to get Claire to keep it up. So cute! Now, if you look at her and raise your hand and say "Praise the Lord!" (we like to use our best charismatic preacher voice) she smiles and does it too. Hours of entertainment! Enjoy!

video


Another favorite trick of hers has become waving to anyone. She waves to people in the store, she waves to people walking their dogs past our house, she waves to birds in the yard. However, if you ask her to wave, odds are about 50/50 that she'll pretend to be bashful and bury her face in my shoulder. 

Her new way to play with her toys is to bang them together to make noise. Most of her toys are soft, so she has adapted things like bottle lids and tupperware to suit her needs. Maybe it's time to get some more advanced toys. Thus far, we have only bought her two toys: a ball and a stuffed hippopontomus. Everything else has been a gift!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Claire and the Butterfly

My mom got Claire this motorized butterfly a while back. Until now it has remained motionless due to a lack of batteries. But that was resolved the other day. She's still in the "checking this thing out" phase. Pretty cute! Plus, at the end of the video, she says "hi" which is adorable, of course! 

video

From Pigs to Zombies

Thanks for everyone's concern. Claire's fever is gone and she's sleeping better. And Kristian, not to worry, her oinking was minimal, so I think we're in the clear for the swine flu. But I am concerned about this slight case of zombieism she has been exhibiting of late.

What do you think?



Friday, May 1, 2009

Ug!

Claire's on day three of 102 degree fevers. She's been a trooper, but today has been more grummpy and sleeping not-at-all. I am rarely showered and haven't had a night's sleep in who knows how long (she was in a funk all last week too and not sleeping.) And of course, because I'm so tired, I let my supervisor make me cry at school last night.  (oh, and I am forced to go in to school on Saturday, so that's just peachy--and part of the reason for the crying! She wanted to force me to come today, but I flat out refused to take Claire out.) Just a few more days and hopefully life will settle down!