Lately, I hear the following from everyone of all ages and gender: Now is the time for this. They mean now is the time to not eat out, to ignore tantrums, to welcome interruption, to get up in the middle of the night and also to cuddle after a nap, to speak in monosyllable, and to be made into a better person by a child. During this time, here are some things we do:
We listen to Clara’s favorite music (which happens to be most everything I listened to in high school). She loves the Stand By Me soundtrack, the Jackson Five, the Disney Princess Collection, the theme song for the movie Juno, Songs for Wiggleworms, Buddy Holly, and the Beatles’ early years.
We watch Clara give every single baby she ever sees a hug. I don’t know—one day I’m going to have to tell her about personal space and that not everyone likes to be hugged within the first thirty seconds of meeting her, but for now, it’s still really cute. Below, I could barely get out my monkey-accented, “Okay, Clara, you can take me with you,” before she grabbed the semi-live monkey puppet into her embrace:
We let Clara wash herself in yogurt, e.g. learn to use a spoon. She also loves to share her food if not with Dakota, then with Dad.
We go to the playground a lot. Her favorite part is the slide.
It’s so hard not to be absurdly proud of every small thing your child does. I love that Clara isn’t afraid to slide down by herself. I love that when she falls down, she doesn’t cry but gets right back up. I love that when I say, “Let’s go get Dad,” she says, “Duhd” and slips her little baby hand into mine.
She discovered the sandbox today on the playground, too.
She lets the big kids tell her what to do.
Pretty Girl: Exhibit A
Pretty Girl: Exhibit B