21 March 2014, by Tan Yi Lin

Same Same But Different

In 3 weeks time, Claire will be a year old.

Claire’s 1st birthday also marks a milestone in Coco’s life in her first year as Big Sister.

Over the past 12 months, the siblings have grown to look more alike… and yet, different.

Coco and Claire, both at 10 months

Coco and Claire, both at 10 months

Their personalities have also started to come through more strongly as they develop into two unique little individuals.

Family, friends and readers often ask what each little person is like and how the sisters get along with each other.

Here’s a glimpse into the personalities and the growing relationship between the Cho sisters.

1.       Puppy Love

Claire adores her sister. ADORES.

At the very sight of Coco, this otherwise calm and collected baby suddenly shoots into hyper mode, gurgling and squealing in excitement. Like those little wind-up toy babies, she rapidly crosses the floor in a purposeful right-left-right-left rhythm – her chunky little torso heaving in excitement, towards her sister.

I will follow youuuuuu. Follow you wherever you may goooo...

I will follow youuuuuu. Follow you wherever you may goooo…

Like a large affectionate puppy, Claire throws herself at Coco – almost bowling over the lightweight latter. With her chubby hands, she pummels pats jiejie (a little too hard) and pretty much lies right on top of Coco. At this point, one can hardly see Coco under all that… Claire.

Not surprisingly, Coco would yowl blue murder at being so roughly manhandled by Claire and hit out at the human bulldozer. But Claire’s affection is infectious and after explaining to Coco that attacking was Claire’s babyish way of showing that she loved and wanted her big sister, Coco now beams and triumphantly chimes, “Claire wants me!” and reaches out to ruffle Claire’s hair and tickle her neck – a sight most endearing indeed.

"I LOVE YOU, CHEH CHEH!"

“I LOVE YOU, CHEH CHEH!”

2.       Calm, Cool and Colette-d.

Coco is our resident drama queen. When the actress is in, all the house is a stage as she expertly voices a varied character cast and enthusiastically performs hilariously over-the-top actions.

"Don't worry, daddy. I'm doctor. I fix you."

“Don’t worry, daddy. I’m doctor. I fix you.”

Need a lift?

Need a lift?

Aspiring (Victoria Secrets) angel

Aspiring (Victoria Secrets) angel

Belting 'Animal' by Neon Trees into the 'mic' while Claire...listens.

Belting ‘Animal’ by Neon Trees into the ‘mic’ while Claire…listens.

But when the Terrible Twos alter ego is in play, the drama unfolds differently in the form of tears and tantrums. Ah well, I guess we can’t have Dr Jekyll without Mr Hyde.

Claire has transformed from a serious little snake baby into a chubby, jovial bundle. While she’s still her calm, cool and confident self, when her face lights in a toothless grin – especially around her sister, her glee is simply contagious.

If only she would smile more often for photos– like her crazy sister who loves hamming it up before the camera.

Guess which kid shares our penchant for stupid family photos

Guess which kid shares our penchant for stupid family photos

Amused by the after-effects of a squid ink lunch

Amused by the after-effects of a squid ink lunch

Not amused. Period.

Not amused. Period.

Claire - lost by the whirldwind of activity that is Coco.

Claire – lost by the whirldwind of activity that is Coco.

3.       Diva vs The Hulk

Coco likes to emulate adult behaviour and is very pleased when she successfully copies us. So things like visiting the dentist are a breeze – simply because, to her, it’s a grown-up activity. She even talks like us, casually tossing phrases like, “Hey guys”, “Alright, guys” and “Thanks, mum!” with finesse. Also, despite her love for random flitting or haphazard bunny-bouncing, Coco’s actually quite a stickler for order and neatness – as demonstrated by how she carefully lines up her toys, and how she dislikes getting down and dirty in the sand.

Feeling grown-up

Feeling grown-up

Running her neat little cafe for freaky customers

Running her neat little cafe for freaky customers

Enjoying the beach - far, far away from the sand

Enjoying the beach – far, far away from the sand

Keeping up with fearless Claire is a huge – and really tiring – task. While she hasn’t yet mastered the skill of walking unsupported, this little soldier is determined to literally scale new heights – up the stairs, on window grills and on the furniture. The world (and skinny Coco) had better beware when Claire’s in “HULK SMASH!” mode and bulldozes through everything before her, leaving behind a trail of destruction.

Our Star Destroyer

Our Star Destroyer

Getting down and dirty in the sand... and eating it too

Getting down and dirty in the sand… and eating it too

"Halt, Tiny Human. Bring us to your leader or we will.... ARRRGGHHH!"

“Halt, Tiny Human. Bring us to your leader or we will…. ARRRGGHHH!”

4.       On Your Marks, Get Set… FIGHT!

Oh, what’s a sibling relationship without the rivalry? I must admit, though, that I didn’t expect to have to be breaking up fights so soon. The domestic wars started when Claire mastered crawling at about 9 months. Since then, WWE-like events are a near-daily occurrence in the house.

A typical battle starts when Claire enters and her eyes sweep the room for any sign of her sister. Her gaze inevitably zooms in on the toy that Coco has in her hands. It doesn’t matter if that very same toy had been lying forlornly on the floor and ignored by both girls up till now. Propelling herself forward towards her unsuspecting victim, she lunges for the item and snatches it from Coco’s grip. The latter protests audibly and snatches it back. Without hesitation, the attacker proceeds to grab it again – and tauntingly holds it out of Coco’s reach (while waving it around, no less).

Christmas Day morning

Christmas Day morning

The start of a brawl

The start of a brawl

The fight usually ends with Coco crying and rolling on the floor in a dramatic show of protest, while we pry the saliva-soaked prize from Claire’s stubborn jaws.

Where the baby isn't the cry-baby

Where the baby isn’t the cry-baby

5.       Eat Up!

Both love to eat.

Coco and Claire, both about 1 year old

Coco and Claire, both about 1 year old

The difference is in Coco’s clear preference for snacks over cooked food. Mealtimes are either an opportunity to entertain herself (by playing with her food) or a stage for more drama (read: cry-fest).

Claire, on the other hand, takes eating very seriously. Mealtimes. Are. For. Eating. If you dare pause between spoonfuls of porridge or cereal, an angry little voice immediately demands, “MUM-MUM!!!”, which roughly translates to mean “Stop talking and FEED ME NOW, WOMAN!” She is a dream to feed, always ready for the next mouthful until she polishes off the entire bowl in 10 minutes. Easy peasy. Family meals are a happy affair with Claire seated at the table and happily chowing down alongside everyone.

Playtime vs Mealtime

Playtime vs Mealtime

One of the uses of a little sister: to eat your unwanted food

One of the uses of a little sister: to eat your unwanted food

It’s no surprise then that Claire has quickly caught up with Coco in terms of size and weight. When I picked out matching outfits while shopping recently (without the girls in tow), the counter staff enquired if I had twins.

Matchy matchy - style-wise and size-wise

Matchy matchy – style-wise and size-wise

Sisters, sisters, sisters. It’s absolutely intriguing to observe how they interact with each other. It’s all new to me. My sister and I were born 4 years apart, so the dynamics of our childhood relationship are vastly different from Coco and Claire’s.

Well, maybe just a little different. We could be more similar than we think. It’s interesting, nonetheless, to watch and see how they – and we – are ‘same same, but different’.

Sisters circa 1980s

Sisters circa 1980s

Tags : ,

Posted on : March 21, 2014

Filed under : New Mums & Dads

2 Comments

Tan Li Lin

Lin Tan

March 29th, 2014 at 10:23 pm    


Heh heh… cracked me up!

Celine

March 21st, 2014 at 9:57 pm    


Love your entry. So same yet so different! They are growing up to be so loveable and huggable 🙂 Must be your pride and joy.

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