Claire moved in with her mommy, daddy, and two big brothers. One just finished law school and the other is a college junior. She adores them both.
She often runs up to Dan, throwing her arms around him in a tight squeeze. "What are you doing?" he always asks. "Sque-e-e-ze. I like you."
Or she goes into Ben's room to interrupt his studies for the bar exam and tell him goodnight on her way to bed. She comes prancing back, all smiles. "Ben calls Petunia. Goodnight, Petunia. I beautiful flower."
She loves to be the center of attention. Of course, her self-focus sometimes keeps her from being very empathetic. When an insect stung Dan, she held out her arm and reported, "Claire, no bite." When some of us had blood drawn, her response was to examine her own arms. "Claire, no pokes." Occasionally there have been some good-natured comments about how she is the center of all things in her own mind.
We expect she will outgrow this phase as she matures and sees others model compassion and concern.
The other night when the conversation had moved in a direction that she didn't like, she let out an enormous burp. Someone asked if she was a frog. Her response left me a little worried about whether she will get over being self-centered any time soon.
"I no frog," she said. "I Claire. I egocentric!"
Well—at least I'm not so worried about her language development anymore.