Monday, March 2, 2015

Klair Marie | Two and One Fourth

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As of yesterday my little girl is 2 and 1/4 years old (well, whenever the equivalent of the non-existent February 29th is, because technically that would be her quarter-birthday). Baby girl isn't much of a baby anymore. But, no matter how old she gets, she will always be my baby... a fact that I've trained her to articulate. Whenever we call her some kind of pet name (i.e. "pumpkin," "cupcake," "monkey") she'll swiftly tell you (with plenty of attitude) "I'm not a 'monkey,' I'm Klair Marie Duke!" Yet, when I call her "baby" she doesn't protest. And when I ask her if she's my baby she immediately responds with "I'll always be your baby!" It warms my heart every. single. time.

To commemorate the fact that she is .25 years older, I've been compiling a list of cute/funny things that she has said and done lately. As soon as she does something, I quickly make a note in my phone because let's face it: pregnancy brain is a real thing people! If I don't write it down, it will be forever lost to the vast abyss that is my memory these days. I'm going to keep doing this for both my kids, because there are some moments that simply shouldn't be forgotten. Klair has more personality than I know what to do with, and my days are filled with smiles and laughter that she so naturally induces. Thus, here are some current Klairisms--or, essentially all the little things that I always want to remember.

I think that the anthem of her two's thus far can be summed up by this phrase: 

"I do it ALL. BY. MY. SELF!" (said with all the sass in the world)

She is fiercely independent. She wants to do everything from getting dressed, to getting in and out of the car by herself. It's admirable, but it's also a lot more time consuming. We usually let her do these things on her own, but occasionally as time demands we have to intervene--something that never goes over well. Some of her biggest tantrums have come because we had to help her with something.

Her favorite places in the world right now are church (she's obsessed with nursery), dance, and going to family members' houses. Oh, and she loves the Museum of Curiosity (a local kids museum) and obviously the park is always a win. 

At her weekly dance class she loves to dress up in the frilliest tutus and prance around with the other girls (in fact she does this all the time at home too). They're actually learning a lot of real dance moves in her class, and they will have 3 recitals this year. I can't wait to see her up on that stage all decked out and probably completely clueless like a deer in headlights with all of the other 2 year olds!

One dance move she loves to practice around the house (besides general spinning) is to "sashe." She'll prance around the house in circles whispering "sashe" "sashe!" 

Speaking of dressing up at home, I recently took all of her costumes and created a dress up drawer in her closet that she can reach. She is constantly going into her room now and emerging in very colorful and creative ensembles. She'll come out and parade around the house, demanding that we notice and compliment her on her choice of costume. 

She also loves chapstick. And my makeup. And my jewelry. And my shoes. And scarves. 

Although she's obviously a very girly girl in the traditional sense, she also likes to break stereotypes. She has quite the collection of cars, and loves to play with them constantly. The other day we were talking about driving. Recently I've been teaching her all about stop lights, signs, and the rules of the road. I asked her if she wants to learn to drive someday. She responded "Yeah and I want a red car mommy. Like daddy." 

She also has a basketball hoop and an assortment of balls--and with the way she can already throw, catch, and kick I think she's just as likely to become a sporty girl as she is a ballerina. Maybe both! Although, she's also really interested in music... We recently bought a keyboard and she loves to strum on random keys while singing all of the songs she knows by heart such as "The ABC's" "Row Row Row Your Boat" "Old McDonald" "Twinkle Twinkle" "Skidamarink" and even a few children's hymns. It will be interesting to see what hobbies and talents she develops and chooses to pursue as she gets older. I can't wait to support her in whatever she decides. 

In relation to music, I should also mention that she recently created her own song. We were out on a walk (she dislikes the stroller these days and opts to walk along side me) and she randomly started singing "Do, Do, Doooo" repeatedly. I asked her about it, and she told me "It's the 'Do Do Song' mama." I told her I loved it and how proud I was of her song writing. We both sang it for the rest of the walk, and now she'll occasionally bust out with her cute little ditty. She definitely takes after her dad in the music/song-writing department. 

She also loves the song "Skidamarink" and when she gets to the "I love you" part, she will sign it and always point to me... even when someone else is singing it with her. She always seeks me out. I'm thinking it's the reward I get for teaching the song to her. I'm okay with it.

One of her favorite phrases right now is "I love you sooooo much!" At nap time she'll take my face in hers, look into my eyes, and tell me this. It melts my heart every time. 

At night she gives us a "Klair Bear hug" (a tight hug) and a kiss before climbing into her bed. She always demands "one more kiss" from her dad. It's adorable. 

When he comes home from work and opens the garage it catches her attention. She'll stop what she's doing and say "do you hear that mama? I be very very quiet. I surprise dada." She'll then hide behind the couch and pop up as soon as he reaches the top of the stairs to say "Suh-PRISE! Suh-PRISE!" He always acts surprised, and she's always very happy with herself. 

Klair recently started making a horse noise--where you blow your lips to sound almost motor like--when she's mad, bored, or even tired. She can do it without even thinking about it, but when you ask her to make the noise consciously she can't. She'll just blow some air through her lips and say "I can't do it mama!" She tries so fervently to no avail. Yet, when she's not thinking about it, it rolls off her lips effortlessly. It's adorable.

Although she isn't potty trained yet, she is really eager to make the transition. She loves the idea of big girl underwear. I took one day and tried a crash course method that I had read about, but after about 6 accidents (and lots of disappointment/crying every time she had an accident) it was apparent that her desire to wear big girl underwear didn't translate into bladder control. We decided to take a break from that method of potty training and, at least for now, we're back to letting her tell us when she wants to try. Occasionally she'll tell us she wants to go in the little training potty we bought for her, and when she sits on it she sings "Sittin' on the potty, goin' potty!" over and over and at the top of her lungs. 

When it comes to conversation, her skills never cease to amaze me.

One of her favorite phrases is to respond with is "no problem" after we say thank you to her. We love it.

She's also been asking for clarification lately by saying (in the sweetest little voice) "Mama (or Dada) what did you say?"

In addition to constantly singing the songs she knows, she's been rapid-fire singing/yelling her favorite tunes lately too. It's funny (and pretty impressive) how quickly she can string all of the words together. 

If you ask her what city she lives in she'll confidently tell you both the city and state.

If you ask her when her birthday is she'll respond enthusiastically with "November TWENTY-NINTH!" 

If you ask her where Disneyland is she'll tell you it's in "California." 

She also knows that "K" is for Klair and is close to being able to spell her name. In fact, now that she knows the alphabet we're working on visual letter recognition and she's learning them really quickly. She loves to have little school sessions every morning by working on numbers and letters.

She's extremely aware of what belongs to who, and she'll call you out if you use something that isn't yours. In fact, she gets down right upset if, for instance, I sit in the chair that her dad usually sits in or vice versa. Just yesterday she rebuked her dad with "Daddy you're sitting in mom's chair. Get off!" After telling her that we share and it's okay, Sam ended up leaving the room to go and get ready for church. I sat down in the chair and she told me "mama you took it back!" "I took what back?" I asked. "You took back the chair from Dada! You stole it!" She was happy with this turn of events.

Apart from the occasional toddler meltdown, she's actually an extremely easy kid. If you ask her how old she is, she'll tell you "I'm six years old" and she really believes it. Most of the time she does act much older, so when she actually acts like a two year old it catches me off guard. I have to remind myself that she is in fact two and it's okay for her to act like it every once in awhile. 

One peculiar, yet extremely convenient thing that she does is taking herself on time out. Whenever she gets upset, she'll march to her room, shut the door, and lay on her bed. After about 30 seconds she'll emerge and tell me "mama, I'm all better!" Or, if she's really upset, I'll wait about a minute and go in to her room. I'll then ask her if we can talk about whatever took place. She always obliges, and we sit on her bed together and discuss what happened and ways we can improve similar situations in the future. She listens to reason really well, and always apologizes with a hug after her outbursts. I love that she's found a way to deal with her anger/outbursts, and I feel extremely fortunate that she is so easy to reason with!

Another way that she is not your typical toddler is that she's extremely OCD about staying clean. It's nice most of the time... except when she becomes overly obsessed with cleanliness to the point of a meltdown if she spills the smallest amount of food on herself. Just the other morning she got really upset when she spilled a dollop of yogurt on her shirt. I quickly wiped it off with a wet rag, but the wet spot it left behind made her just as mad. I tried to reassure her that it was okay. I explained that it would dry and disappear, but this wasn't good enough. I offered to let her change her shirt, but she didn't want a different shirt. She ended up storming off to her room, and emerging about 30 seconds later completely happy again.

Another morning while eating oatmeal she spilled a little on the table. I used her napkin to wipe it up, and she became really upset that her napkin was dirty. I tried to explain to her that this is what napkins are for, but she wasn't having it. She put herself on timeout, and recovered pretty quickly. She came out, said "I'm better!" and went back to her chair to finish eating. Unfortunately she found a tiny speck of dried fingernail polish on her booster chair (we always paint her nails while she's sitting there) and she completely lost her mind again. In desperation she told me "I can't sit on THAT!" and ran off to her room crying again. All I could do was laugh. Her obsession with cleanliness is hilarious... and exhausting. 

She likes to try and dress herself. I can still usually persuade her to wear what I want her to, but I'm afraid that will quickly slip away as she continues this trend of independence. She has certain pieces of clothing that she really loves--her soft leggings, her scarf, and her Minnie Mouse robe in particular. With regard to her soft tribal printed leggings, she tries to wear them everyday. The other day I put her in a cute outfit with jeans. She quickly took them off, replaced them with her leggings and explained to me "I want to wear them, Mama. They're comfy, and healthy, and strong!"  

She loves to stand on a chair in the kitchen and "help" me cook. She's also memorized the ingredients of some of her favorite things like the oatmeal we eat every morning and our green smoothies. She'll help me make things, often reminding me what ingredients to use. If I forget say... the flax seeds in her oatmeal... she is sure to remind me.

Speaking of breakfast, whenever she wakes up in the morning she'll stay in her room and yell for one of us to come and get her. For some reason she doesn't realize she can leave the room on her own. We retrieve her and often bring her into our room with us to snuggle for awhile. But, when she's particularly hungry, she'll start whining "I need yummy food!" Often times she'll pick one of us, and that's the only person who is allowed to get up and prepare breakfast for her. The other morning when she came into our room she started asking for breakfast. In desperation she told her dad "Look at me! I need oatmeal and blueberries!" 

She's extremely literal. Sam's great grandma shaped a napkin into a flower for her while we were at a restaurant the other day. She told Klair, "look at this flower I made for you." Klair looked at her skeptically and responded "It's not a flower, it's a napkin!"

She is very sweet and sensitive to the needs and emotions of others. Since being pregnant I've been sick a lot, and she takes sympathy on me. She'll often play with my hair, stroke my arm, or tickle my back to make me feel better. The other day her we told her that her dad had a headache when she wanted him to play with her. She was very understanding. Her cute little face visibly took on his sadness, and with a frown and a sad voice she told us "His head has a stomach ache."

She found her stash of candy from all of the recent holidays and was going through the bucket admiring each piece. I told her she could have one after nap. She picked one, then started saying about each piece "I eat this tomorrow." I looked at her with disapproval so she quickly added "I share it with my mommy and daddy!..." Apparently if she shares with us she thinks she can have more candy.

When she woke up from her nap that day she picked a green sucker to have. She asked me "what's it taste like mommy?" I told her I didn't know and asked her what she thought. With a look of deep thought on her face she smelled it, tasted it once more, and informed me that "it tastes like flowers."

The next day she chose some Twizzlers as her treat. When she tasted them she quickly exclaimed "that's so crazy nummy!"

She's extremely perceptive, and her memory is really impressive. Her mind is a little sponge, and she constantly surprises me with her knowledge. For example while going through her alphabet flash cards we came across a picture of an acorn and I told her what it was. She said "An acorn? For squirrels?" I honestly don't even know where she learned that! Then the other day when she was upside down she told me "Look! I'm upside down like a bat!" It took me awhile to realize that she must have learned this on an episode of TV that she had watched recently.

She is very aware of the baby in my belly. Just yesterday someone was asking about my pregnancy. She confidently told them "It's a baby brother. It's my baby brother" and then proceeded to tell them the name we've picked out for him. She loves to lay her hand and head on my belly to feel him kick, and she prays for him day and night. She also enjoys singing her songs to him, and often presses her lips against my belly and sings extra loudly so he'll be sure to hear her. She's been pretending that her babies are him, and I can't wait to see this sweeter side of her flourish when he's born. I know she'll struggle with the transition, but I'm also confident that she'll make a wonderful, caring big sister. 

So basically I could talk about my Klair forever. She has so many adorable Klairisms, that it's impossible to write them all out in one little blog post. I feel so fortunate to be her mama, to watch her grow and develop... and I'm hopeful that by writing these things down I'll be able to preserve some of the incredible sweetness that I experience on a daily basis. If nothing else they will be extremely fun for her to read later in life, right? 

Also I should probably mention that while taking these photos she was really cooperative. We haven't had much snow this winter (something that is simply not okay for a die hard Frozen fan--notice the "Anna braids") so the little that we got was magical for her. Even though most of it had melted away by the time we took photos, the small amount that was left was enough make her extremely happy...making for some easy pictures to take. She also insisted on bringing her bear to our little photo shoot, and I love the pure joy on her face. 

She is my angel. I'm going to wrap this up now, because all this reflection on her cute little personality makes me want to squeeze her tight and cover her in kisses. I think I'll go do that now!


  1. She is too cute, those pigtails!! And yes, she will always be your baby! :)

  2. I love watching pictures of your baby, she is beautiful and her little cowboy boots are to die for,

    1. Thank you Abril! They're just from Target, but she wears them constantly and they've held up sooo well :)

  3. K this is soooo cute. Also, whenever I call Ezra "honey" or "sweetie," he promptly tells me, "No, I am Ezra Mphilo HOOSER." Haha! Love these little personalities.

    1. Thanks Kaylie! And that is too funny, these kids of ours... so much attitude :) I'm grateful they have such a good sense of self though!

    2. Thanks Kaylie! And that is too funny, these kids of ours... so much attitude :) I'm grateful they have such a good sense of self though!

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