I realized I hadn't posted any pictures lately. So here they are, from newest to oldest, just because Blogger still posts them backwards to how I load them.
This is her happy face! It is a silent laughter almost. She does laugh, a lot, but this is her most common happy face.
In her Halloween costume. She was an octopus.
Grandma, Great Grandma, Mommy, Sick Claire, and Aunty Teene on Columbus Day.
This is her playing with Jocee and the ball popper. She loves to put her face in the wind.
On the airplane to Grandma's house.
Standing in her crib
Her first attempts at standing.
Claire just changes all the time. It seems like every day she is doing something new. Yesterday, she took her first VERY tentative steps without holding onto anything. She fell down almost immediately, but she is thinking about it. She crawls VERY fast now. It's incredible how fast she can crawl. She just books it when she sees something she wants. She stands on just about everything. She can stand for several seconds, almost a minute, without holding onto anything and she walks around all the furniture. She is starting to walk if we hold her hands. She still isn't too sure about that one. She has just started giving things to people. She will hold onto something, then give it to me, then take it back, then give it to me. It's a start at sharing I guess. She just loves to laugh and play. She is a very happy girl. She has started holding her arms up to be picked up. She started that a while ago actually, but she does it consistently now. And she snuggles a little bit when she is tired. We are working on getting her sleep schedule back to normal. Being sick for so long really threw her off. I get a full night every 5 nights or so. Otherwise she is up usually in the early morning hours. Sometimes she eats and sometimes she just snuggles. I think we have finally kicked the illnesses. Alann and I have been better for a while, but she had that ear infection that wouldn't quit. I am hoping it is gone now. She finished round two of a different antibiotic on Monday and the doctor will check her ears tomorrow at her 9 month checkup. I can't believe she is 9 months already. The time has just flown by. I wouldn't trade it for the world. It's hard to believe how much you can love one little person, especially when that person keeps you up at night and gives you stinky presents and whines and cries at you most days. But she is just so dang cute I can't help but laugh at her most of the time.
She has also decided that for the most part, she doesn't want to be spoon-fed. If she can't eat it herself, she doesn't want it (unless it's breakfast. She will still eat her cereal and fruit for breakfast). She's been on the sippy cup full time for a while now and she loves it. I love it because she can hold it herself and she is learning that if she looks somewhere, sippy can go with her. She loves playing with Daddy. She is definitely Daddy's girl. If she hears him talking, she wants to see him. They roughhouse together and she just laughs the whole time. He swings her around and "tosses" her on the bed and she just laughs. She crawls to him when she is sad or wants to be picked up more than to me.
All in all, October ended on a better note than it started. We have some exciting things going on in our lives. Alann's parents sold us a new fridge. It's way nice. (Okay, they haven't sold it to us yet. We are waiting to sell our fridge to give them the money for it.) So we are trying to sell both of our fridges. We are selling the smaller one because really we just don't need it anymore and we are giving that money to the in-laws. We are trying to sell the bigger one so that we can buy an upright freezer. I've realized that we really don't need or use the fridge part very often on our second fridge. I've shoved it full of flours and baking supplies just so that it runs more efficiently, but mostly it holds milk. Our new fridge holds 6 gallons of milk at once, which is usually more than we buy at a time. What we really use and need is more freezer space. I would love to get into once-a-month or freezer cooking, but we just don't have the space. (Not that I see myself cooking for a month at a time, but I can definitely see myself doubling some recipes and freezing the extra meals or parts of a meal.) So if we can sell the big fridge, we can afford (both space and money) to buy a new (probably just to us) freezer. I am way excited. I want this to happen, like yesterday. I've only had 1 bite on the fridge though. Maybe I am asking too much. Not sure.
The other exciting thing is we have decided to buy a minivan. When we bought my car, we thought we could easily transport a baby, maybe two, and the dogs in it. Well, yes and no. For a short drive across town, they will accept the cargo space as accommodations, though usually one or both of them hop the back seat and sit there. But for a long drive, like to go to Phoenix or Missouri, it just isn't really feasible, even with the hitch box we bought last year. When my car died in Page last year on the way to Phoenix, we ended up with a Toyota Sienna minivan and we REALLY enjoyed it. The dogs had all the room they wanted, we could have slept in it if we so needed, it was great. So that planted a seed. We knew that eventually we would buy a minivan but we kind of dreaded it. This showed us that it wouldn't be so bad. So this year, things have been crazy for holiday plans. We planned on flying out to MO for Christmas but the frequent flyer tickets didn't work out. So we decided we would drive. At the time, we didn't have a dog sitter, so we looked at renting a van. No vans to be found. Now we have a dog sitter, so driving my car is feasible again, but we thought about it and talked about it and agonized over it and decided you know what, we just need a van. It will make things so much easier. If we do for some reason end up taking the dogs with us for Christmas, we will have the space. Even if we don't, we can sleep in a van easier than in my car, especially with the little one. So now we are in the process of shopping for an 04-present Toyota Sienna, somewhere in the 50k-80k miles range, preferably the 8 seater. We are picky no? We want it to last. That is why we are saying the Sienna and just the Sienna. We can get a Dodge a lot cheaper, and they do have some perks (second row stow and go for instance) but they also have a poor reliability rating. We anticipate driving this car until the wheels fall off. So we have the financing lined up (thanks Grandma!) and are just waiting for the right one to come along. It's so hard to wait...
So that's it. Stay tuned for another exciting episode, probably this weekend some time. (Dun dun DUN!)