A SWEET SUCKER PARTY FOR OUR BIRTHDAY GIRL: CLAIRE IS TWO!!

Tuesday, November 22, 2016
I rang in November 22 with the sunrise this morning, and just like last year and the year before, my heart swelled up as I watched the sky turn from night to day and dark to light. Both of my two, fall baby girls were born with the sunrise, and watching that color change each year floods my feelings with what is was like to look out the window as they were born and realize that that particular, new day had brought me my friend back - my precious, chubby, sleep baby daughter - and in an instant I felt complete. 

Claire brought a unique feeling of peace with her in the moment of her arrival. I've said that almost every time I open up about her, and all I hope that conveys is that it's very true. Don't get me wrong, the now-2-year-old has a huge dose of sneakiness and sass in her soul, but she brings the peace in our home like it's her job (and I think it's her divine job)! She doesn't push buttons too hard for too long, she gives more than she demands, she comforts with kisses and the sweetest little phrases - "Ohhhh, you so sad? Ohhhh, here, I wuv you..." she is just good. I am convinced that every family - every mother - needs a Claire. 

To celebrate the booming life in that beauty, I asked her what kind of birthday party she wanted and to my surprise, she had a specific, concise opinion: "A sucko party." And yes, just suckers, that was it! Oh - and a purple cake. She wanted a purple cake with candles (such a tough client, that one)! The friends Claire knows best were invited to the park, and per the birthday girl's request, we had SUCKERS...
 ...and a purple cake. :)
I found her up at the top of the slide just like that - just sitting and smiling at her currently sugary world.  Mmm I love that child!!
GRATEFUL for these priceless tiny friends that treat Miss Bear like a perfect equal. She's one of the three youngest of the group but that doesn't mean a lick to the rest of the big bunch. :)
 MELT ME. I love this picture with my whole soul!
Claire has been singing "Happy Birthday" around here since Olivia's birthday, changing the tribute to whichever friend has had the last birthday ("Owiiya!" "Brigum!" "Mason!"), so it was fun to change the tune her way...
 And then SMOTHER her. :)
 These sisters keep surprising me with how close they continue to get. Can't discount the cat fights (of course), but they're ever a close little pair and I'm so grateful. Couldn't get them to smile for me together (eating suckers = priority here, duh mom), but that doesn't change all my thanks for who they are on their own and together.
 My typical birthday policy at this age and while we're all still in school here is "no presents, just your presence," but a few of my friends always break my rules and bring gifts (you stinkers! ;)), and of course, there is never a complaint. Claire Bear was thrilled with her bear from her friends Stanley and Mason, and her new baby doll from her friend, Hope - in case you can't tell.
After cake and presents, the rest of the kids scattered to the playground, but since this was Claire's sucker party, she hit the sucker jars again and ripped off wrapper after wrapper, consuming sucker after sucker. I just sat and watched her - totally thrilled with how she was soaking up her party - and dying at how she'd take a few licks, drop the stick, pick another 'pop, and repeat. Proof seen below via Claire's plate. :)
For a long time, she just sat like so below and rearranged the suckers in the jars, and then yes, she'd eat, trash, and eat. She also shared with her Dad, constantly handing over suckers to Ry (who also just kept eating them, haha!). Seriously I could not have been happier as I watched her in her sucker-eating, birthday-party-enjoying element. My top client was satisfied and all was well in both of our worlds.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY to you, my sweet sweet Claire. You are as bright as your name conveys. You are the most perfect second child this world has ever seen, I know it. You lift us up and chill us out, you make us laugh and keep us calm. I love the way you talk, color, rearrange everything you can, gather all the toys (and tupperware and crayons and shoes - all the time), and the way you mother your baby dolls. I love how you suck your fingers, snuggle your blankies, and sleep on my shoulder like you're newly born. I love your one prayer (for everything) - "Heaby Fader, Jesus wuvs me, aaaaaamen!" - and that you tell me all the time that Jesus really does love you. So grateful for who you are, darling. So grateful for our eternity together that's to come.

All our love,

Mama, Dad, Owiiya (Olivia), and baby sisto sleeping in my tummy :)
Claire's first few months recap is here. Claire's first birthday is here!

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