Friday, August 13, 2010

Happy Birthday Cupcake!

It has been an amazing year watching Clara grow and develop into this little person on the verge of walking! She is pretty much in full control of her walker as she zooms around the house, making course corrections as needed to turn corners and avoid furniture. Her favorite activity is taking laps pushing her walker or holding tightly to one finger as someone strolls with her. When confined to her play yard, she holds on with her left hand as she walks the perimeter, climbing over the toys she has strewn on the floor like a little obstacle course.

Her personality is so sweet and adorable too! She's gone from those accidental smiles that amuse us to belly laughs of delight when we amuse her. She is gaining in confidence as she tries out new things with this body of hers: attempting to stand up without pulling up on anything, shaking her head to make her self dizzy, or trying to look through her legs without tumbling over! She is curious about herself and the world around her: discovering her belly button and then watching her belly move in and out, picking up my shirt to see what's underneath (as well as any unsuspecting person with a loose T-shirt that sits her on their lap!), or pulling at her ears and wondering why there isn't anything in them when she looks at her hands!

Naturally, Clara seemed to thoroughly enjoy her birthday. She just loved the attention throughout the day. She even got to go swimming in her birthday appropriate! It was her first time in our pool and, though she seemed a bit hesitant at first, after donning her cute swimsuit and sitting in her ladybug raft with a sun canopy, she seemed to enjoy the water.

Tradition in our family is to go out to dinner on one's birthday, so we took Clara to Applebee's on our way down to the shore. Clara is a real meat and potatoes kinda girl, so she really enjoyed some of my grilled chicken and veggies. At present time, she delighted in peeking in the gift bags, tearing up the tissue paper and pulling out her toys! She was not sure why all the strangers gathered around her to sing, but she gave them a little smile when they were done. We let her try a few tastes of dessert for her birthday. After she got a fist full of whip cream, she examined it before giving her fingers a lick and delicately putting her pointer finger back in the sundae for more. She was a bit shocked at first when she got a taste of the cold ice cream, but she must have enjoyed all the new tastes and sensations since she cried when it was all done!

Our little cupcake is no longer a baby, but a toddler full of personality, adventure, independence and curiosity. We look forward to another year of growth and development as she learns and discovers new things each day!


On Saturday, the day after her birthday, while playing with all the cousins, she decided it was time to officially start walking. Within minutes, she went from taking a couple of steps to toddling clear across the room! Her siblings and cousins enjoyed tiring her out by seeing who she would walk to, how many steps she would take and having her toddle to each of them to give a cuddle! Later, she enjoyed her first taste of fish (yum!) and birthday cake (double yum!) This time 'round she throughly enjoyed our rendition of Happy Birthday!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Clara's One Year Portrait

Today we went to Target to have Clara's one year portrait done. For each child's 1st birthday we have gotten a special picture of them sitting in my Grandmother's antique rocker. My Great-Great-Grandfather made the rocker when he worked at Van Sciver's Furniture Co. in Camden, NJ in the late 1800's. In the mid 1900's Grandmom re-covered it with her needlepoint. Below are some of our favoites from todays sitting. Enjoy!