I think Clara is turning a corner. She's almost two but I can feel a shift happening. I can't really put my finger on it but it's getting a little easier to take care of her all day. She listens and understands more and she can speak and communicate almost everything. She seems a little calmer. Our interests seem perfectly aligned. We start every morning out with a trip to a park/playground and we do at least one other activity each day. She needs that to satisfy her bottomless curiosity. I guess I do too! Honestly, I am finally starting to enjoy her company. Yesterday, after music class (where she refuses to leave my lap!), we went on a nature walk. Her new thing is she loves to collect acorns, pine cones, seed pods and such. She collects a whole bunch, we count them (she's now counting up to 9) and then says to me, "Mommy, throw?". And I let her throw them off the path into the woods. I can't tell you how much she loves this and she giggles and laughs the entire time. We then walk down to the teeny tiny creek and I let her throw leaves and other forest "debris" into the water. She'll say, "bye bye leaf" and smile from ear to ear. She chases the birds. She talks to the trees. It's cooler under the leafy canopy and we discuss how nice it feels to get a break from Charlotte's heat. Yesterday, we bumped into two young boys who were running and had stopped to do some push-ups, etc. They saw me taking photos and offered to take a photo of Clara and I. When I uploaded photos last night, I almost passed out. I LOVE THIS PHOTO. It's so rare and I'm so thankful to have this one picture of Clara and I on one of our nature walks.
Here are a few others of Clara and our finds.....
What a wickedly cool tree!
A squirrel nest?
One of Clara's thrown leaves make a nice shadow in the water.
I loved this little patch of light and the greens that were taking total advantage!
Clara chased this poor robin into the woods for about 15 minutes.
Throwing all of her found goodies off the path.