Friday, September 28, 2007


So, in the last week or so, we've officially gotten first words around here. Prior to now, we've gotten the odd "mama" and "dada" for months now, but it's been inconsistent, and I haven't always been sure it applied specifically to us. I had actually been beginning to worry that this was a sign my babies were not in fact budding super-geniuses, but thankfully, they've decided to appease me.

I don't know that I've talked much about their personalities, but as anyone who knows us in real life can tell you, they're so strikingly different that you wouldn't guess them to be twins.

Claire, the older twin and the smaller one, is so incredibly busy and inquisitive. She wants to get into everything and to do everything, and is extremely strong-willed and focused on whatever it is she's doing. She is assertive and self-assured, not to mention impish, the type of child that strangers smile at in the grocery store and say, oh, I bet she's a handful. And she is -- not in a bad way, but she definitely requires a lot active and involved parenting. She is sometimes exhausting, but she is also a very engaging child, and it's fascinating to watch her learn about the world.

As for Katherine, a friend of mine told us when she was ten days old that "there's just such an incredible sweetness to her", and nothing in the subsequent year has made me question that. She is more quiet than Claire, and by nature is easy-going and laid back. She is a sharer, and will happily give you any illicit treasure rather than try to run away and then cry when it's taken, as her sister does. She loves to pet the puppies (our three standard poodles), and will often just lie down and snuggle with them, whereas Claire wants to throw the ball for them to chase. If she's content with what she's doing, she doesn't feel the need to get into everything like Claire, who will immediately make a beeline for the open baby gate or the dropped remote control or the carelessly-set-down glass. Being Katherine's mother is an easy job, and a rewarding one filled with the baby hugs and kisses Claire doesn't always have time to hand out.

In view of all that, you won't be surprised to hear that Katherine's first deliberate word is "dog" -- well, really "dah!" but there's no mistaking what she means when she points and says "dah! dah! dah!" at any dog who approaches.

As for Claire, I think it tells you all you need to know about her when I tell you that her first word was, clear as a bell and impeccably-timed as she knocked over my crutches...

.... "uh-oh!"


Eva said...

So sweet! I love the descriptions of them.

Uh oh was one of J's first two, though he started earlier with baby. He sounds a lot like Claire, as well, always into everything, running where he shouldn't, and completely fearless. But full of so much joy as well.

Stacie said...

Words! How sweet. Fiona's first word was "guh" (good). James clocked in with "cuh" (cat). I think the constant, "The cat doesn't lieke that." and "Leave the cat alone" and "When the cat makes that sound it means she doesn't want to play" has some impact on his first word.

(Reponse about the teenage free speech issue when I have time to be cogent - your resaerch reassures about the implications of the ruling, but it still makes me unhappy how student rights to free expression have been so curtailed in the last 40 years.)

Nico said...

I always think it's so interesting to read about how twins are so different from each other. I think it really shows which of nature v nurture is key!

Emma B. said...

Stacie, I was actually surprised that the word she said is "dog" rather than "puppy" -- at our house, it's "be sweet to the puppy", "throw the ball for the puppy", etc. We use "dog" quite a bit, but we usually refer to the youngest dog anyway as "puppy", and that's the dog they play with the most.

Eva, I have been secretly jealous of your chatterboxes for weeks now :). I'm glad we're catching up!

Nico, yes, kids are so different sometimes. I often have people tell me, "they can't be twins! They look and act so different!" They're twins, lady, I promise you...

Maggie said...

too cute! It's so fun that they are talking now. Oliver has been saying "kitty" although we don't have a cat so I've no idea where he picked it up.
All the twins I've ever known were completely different personalities, even if they looked the same. It must be fun to have one of each - one outgoing and one a little more calm.