Tuesday, January 26, 2010


Dear Claire,

You are three today. Although time has probably not flown by for you, it seems like just last month that it was snowing in Tucson days before you were born. You are your own little snowflake; beautiful and unique, and everyone loves you. Your smile makes your little brother break out into a grin, and your big sister would rather play with you than with anyone else.

Sometimes you make us crazy. You are still sneaky, and we have learned to keep a close eye on you, as you are likely to get into lotion and rub it on the walls, or color on my nightstand with pens I have mistakenly left within your reach. Even when something is out of reach for you, you have no qualms about finding something to climb on to get to what you want. I have little doubt that you will use this skill in less devious ways in the future. At least I hope so.

You say the funniest things. Last week I told you we were going to fly in an airplane soon to go see Grandma, and your eyes got big. You said, "Really? Are we gonna fly upside down?" You are your father's daughter. And, like him, you are a night owl. You would be happy to stay up until 10pm, if you could sleep in until 10am.

You also remind me of myself when I was little. You are shy when you first meet someone, and you did not at all enjoy being the center of attention at your birthday party. You looked a little scared when everyone sang 'Happy Birthday' to you. And yet you have little fear when it comes to physical pursuits. You climb exceptionally well, and you love to run and jump. Your sister talks big, but you actually do big things, often without making a big production of it. You are also extraordinarily stubborn. You like what you like, and you are not inclined to change your mind, once it is set. I am still trying to figure you out.

You have an interesting taste for food. You like to dip your chicken nuggets in caramel sauce, your apples in ketchup, and you will eat almost anything if you can dip it in something. In fact, you have a bit of an obsession with dip. A few weeks ago, you decided you like lettuce, if dunked in ranch dressing. Your dad and I were very impressed, as we were sure none of our children were ever going to like salads. Your favorite food is probably cheese. A year ago, you ate aged bleu cheese and loved it. We often call you our little French girl, as you could live off grapes, cheese and bread. Once you decide you like something, you usually stick with it.

Often, it takes a lot of effort on our parts to 'help' you decide you like something, though. You are very particular about what you wear, for instance. You hate jeans, or anything that is "too tight", as you put it. You have a large closet full of clothes, but will only wear a handful of outfits. Your favorites include stretch pants, your gymnastics t-shirt, and a skirt with an elastic band that you got for your 2nd birthday.

You have recently decided you do not like green, and you have your own slang. You say, "suh like", and I think you mean "it's like" or "so, like...". It's very endearing. You also have some cute phrases we dub "McLarenisms". These include:

"Mommy, can I please have more fruit cottontail?"
"I want to watch Starburst for movie night."

We love you, Claire bear. Happy Birthday!


Anonymous said...

Great taste in cupcakes, too. Not only are they soooo cute, but they've got oreos and junior mints, too. YUM!

Carrie said...

Always love your birthday messages! Where and when are you flying - which Grandma? I'm out of the loop. Please call soon. Also, did Claire's birthday gift make it? Hope to talk soon. Love you!

Elizabeth said...

These are my very favorite posts. Claire is such a cool kid. And you are a very observant, insightful mom!

I continue to think Claire and my kids would get along so well. It might be violent, though!

Colleen said...

YAY! Happy Birthday, Claire!