Monday, November 28, 2011

Birthday Pictures - Round 3!

And finally, round 3...Claire's actual birthday! We had a whole weekend of celebration with the family, and on Monday 11/7 the Coach and I got to give our little 2 year old our own gifts.

First, here are her first pictures as a 2 year old...

And here we are on the other end of the day, after the Coach got off work and we were able to sit down and give Claire some presents from us!

First, a Leapfrog Leap-pad and backpack that Spencer found at a yard sale! Claire absolutely loves it, even though it's really beyond her ability to do by herself right now, and asks constantly to play with her "puter".

And finally...

A guitar!

We love you Claire! We are thankful for every moment of the past 2 years and look forward to so many more!

Birthday Pictures - Round 2!

Round 2 = a visit from Dobby!!! Oh, how we love when Dobby comes to see us! Here are a few highlights from the weekend...

Barbie Jeep!

A hooded Princess towel from MeMaw!

Playing with her new Play-doh Fun Factory!

We also took a "girls' morning out" on Claire's birthday, before Dobby left to go back home. We hit such places as Hobby Lobby (!!!!!!!!!!), Kohl's, and Target, ate lunch out at Moe's, and finished with some serious playtime at the Chick-fil-A playground!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Birthday Pictures - Round 1!

Birthday: Round 1 -- Popple, Nan, Gigi, Aunt Bonnie, Justice, and "Justice's Daddy" (aka Uncle Bo -- it's true, Claire always refers to him as Justice's daddy, even though "Bo" is the easiest name in our whole family to say) came to our house to celebrate!

And what better way to kick off the birthday weekend than with Claire's favorite food - Corn on the Cob!!! (Yes, she ate 3 of them, and we had to stop her or she would have eaten more)

Claire was thrilled to see everyone, and we had a great time. Of course, one of the highlights of the evening for Claire was opening and playing with her presents!

Claire loves her new stroller! She has been wanting one ever since we moved to our new apartment, where our 3 year old neighbor friend pushes hers around in the yard. Claire is right beside her, pushing her own stroller now!

And this child loves nothing more than a new baby!

Check out the new hat from Aunt Bonnie and Justice's Daddy! She adores this hat, wanting to wear it even when it's not the slightest bit cold outside!

Learning how to share... :)

After lots of fun, the girls got into their pj's and settled down for a while. Claire enjoyed some book time on the couch...

And Justice took some music lessons from Uncle Coach!

I think we are definitely making progress, seeing as how Justice used to cry every time she saw the Coach! :)

What a sweet mommy with a sweet little girl...

Claire LOVES her Gigi!

Oh, that silly Popple...

What a fun night we had! And the next morning, Nan, Popple, and Gigi came by before leaving town to grab some pumpkin pancakes - another fun birthday weekend treat!

Round 2 - "Fun with Dobby" - is coming soon!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Cousin Love

I still have many birthday pictures to put up!!! But, until I get them all on the computer, I'll go ahead and share a few "cousin pictures" that I took of Claire and Justice. Oh how we love these sweet girls!!!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Our 2 Year Old

2 years ago today... well, I was in a lot of pain. But Spencer and I also experienced the most insane rush of pure joy we've ever had, when a perfectly created little girl was handed to us in the delivery room.

Today, we celebrate the wonderful gift that God has given to us in Claire Alyse!

At 2 years old, Claire is full of wonder and joy. Life is an adventure. She is bold in some ways, looking for adventure and fun, but she is also cautious and thoughtful.

She is growing in every way. She is finally starting to fit into *some* 24 month pants, even though she has already been wearing 2T tops for months! She is growing in knowledge, in her reasoning skills, in her verbal communication.

She is fiercely independent at times, and yet at other times she just wants to "hold you mommy."

She has taught me more about love and grace than I have ever comprehended before. I can understand why the father ran as fast as he could to meet his prodigal son. I can understand why Jesus wept over Jerusalem. I see Claire's heart, yes, with the joy and wonder of childhood, but also filled with sin and marred by the fall. I see that she is selfish in her nature, like us all, and she seeks her own way. I see that she would rather rebel than obey. I see that and I cry out to God on her behalf. I pray that she would understand her need for a savior. I pray that Spencer and I would provide her with an environment of unconditional love so that she will understand the love of the Father. I pray that we would provide her with loving discipline so that she will understand that obedience leads to blessing. I pray that we would show her the character of Christ so that she will love Him above all else in this life.

I pray that she will "grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."

Happy birthday, Little. You are God's gracious gift to us, and we love you.