I wish I had more exciting stuff to talk about – it’s kind of like everything and nothing is happening, you know? This year we have upped our childcare to four mornings a week, so that I can get back to working from home, as well as to get a little breathing space. I relish the quiet and tidy house in these hours – though I’m wondering if it’s torture for my mind to have too much time to contemplate all the ideas in my racing head, yet to be left with just too little time to see anything through. Compassion, steadiness and small-step progression are my current mantras! I don’t want to miss the beautiful moments with the children, whilst dreaming about all the other things I could be doing. Creative mother issues are real! Here are a few photos taken lately.

 

 

where i spend my quiet mornings /  i love wooden toys and get so much out of watching the boys being so creative with such simple things / a favourite spot / mother’s day lychee, rose & raspberry cake / matchy matchy / omi bugging a sleeping orion / ribbed everything please / nude label post breast feeding treats / pink fingers during a valentine’s craft session / every sunday night i make myself healthy treats for the week and it’s so worth the effort / a pretty breakfast / growth spurting / best blues / i think the boy’s room is my favourite / omi’s first family portrait (i’m the one with the sad face at the top!) / knits in spring ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ / valentine treats for our loves / hey! / the curtain that is leading the interior decisions in the spare room.

I can’t believe I’m reflecting on Christmas already! I had such a great one this year. I wanted to enjoy the festive season fully, and we spent December mostly decorating the house, baking gingerbread biscuits (I don’t want to see another gingerbread biscuit this year!) and celebrating with friends and family. This was my first ever year hosting Christmas dinner. Luckily it all went smoothly and we tucked into a big traditional meal – as well as some vegan dishes for my niece. Everything seemed to go beautifully and I felt a nice sense of achievement for pulling off a happy Christmas – somehow symbolic of how things are starting to pan out just nicely for our family.

 

Happy New Year! x

Life really does feel like it’s moving 1000 mph at the moment. But for the first time in a while, I’m glad to say that, despite the fast pace, we seem to be heading in the right direction. Owen has just started a new job as a Youth Theatre Director, and I couldn’t be happier that he’s found work that he’s not only great at, but allows him the flexibility to continue creating his own work and also to be available for the children at home. Striking the work / family / relationship balance is, I’m sure, a common theme in most households – and we’re certainly not the perfect example, although we are trying our best. The boys are enjoying their three mornings a week at playgroup, as well as some time with their Grandparents each week. And I’m finally able to work a little bit more and to catch a bit of breathing space for reflection and forward planning. The house continues to be a big focus for me – we enjoy our time here and I also work at home, so a lot of my energy goes into making this house a comfortable place to be. Life feels very present and in the moment. Maybe it’s because there isn’t much time to consider more than a few days ahead of ourselves. I think I’m getting used to this – I actually like it. Here are a few photos collected from the last month or so.

 

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any combination of veg with eggs is my favourite lunch / this print! / nice things / chloe is the best / these kittens visit us most days and the boys are in love / life’s a beach / quite the kinfolk collection / omi / new kicks / my garden babies / the communal cloth for the winter snuffles that are doing the rounds / it took me weeks to catch up with post-holiday washing / the best breakfast of pear, ginger and cardamom porridge / this lady! / getting nostalgic whilst tidying away the boys baby shoes / colours / our bedroom is getting a renovation / lola / ori took a selfie / back when my trainers were white / the boys have the best room in the house.

Little Orion turned two last week. We decided on a very low key / low stress birthday – which turned out to be just perfect. A slow morning with visits from friends and family, followed by an afternoon at the swimming baths. I really hope that the boys will always appreciate a birthday spent with their nearest and dearest, and a few gifts to treasure. I certainly enjoyed the pace and vibe of the relaxed day.

 

 

Ori’s cake was a tonka bean & vanilla sponge [just add half a grated tonka bean & one vanilla pod to this cake recipe]. topped with a white chocolate ganache. His wooden camera is from Fanny & Alexander.

As ever, life is moving at a pace. The children are ever changing, our family dynamic constantly shifting and as a mother, I feel I am evolving (and learning and learning and learning). It’s really great and I love to see us all developing – I just wish I could slow it down sometimes. Completely still moments are far more rare than the busy ones, and I appreciate them so much. I could breathe in the silence, you know – I feel like I’m basking in it, when it happens. I think all busy parents will know exactly what I mean. Audrey Hepburn was once quoted as saying; “I have to be alone very often. I’d be quite happy if I spent from saturday night until monday morning alone in my apartment. That’s how I refuel.” I’m that kind of person – and since having the children, these quiet alone times to recharge do become less frequent and often feel fleeting. Though when they come, they are so valued – and so needed. I am working a little again – and I may see a client or two per week for a holistic treatment. Sometimes there are gaps, where my client leaves and the children arrive home. Even 10 or 15 minutes is so treasured. This week I used the spare time to take some photos of a still house. Another ever changing place – with a constant turn over of children’s paintings on the walls, new objects, seasonal flowers and plants and constantly rearranged furniture. I thought I’d better catch a few images, as it stood last week, on a quiet friday morning. 

 

 

i really really love the colour in this painting by omi / dino / my new fine little day print / can’t find a space for this chap / orion’s room / stacks of books to read & family photos / sunshine! / more dinos / love my max wanger.

We are really and truly ready for some Spring sunshine over here. It’s perhaps a little wait away yet, but the longer days and lighter mornings are certainly helping to shift our mood and look forward to the new season ahead. Personally I’m excited about long afternoons spent in the garden, potting plants and fresh herbs, preparing more raw foods and wearing fewer layers! For the time being, we have settled for turning the heating up – and wearing our summer clothes indoors.

 

Last year, I discovered Billie Blooms and made a little e-friendship with the founders of the company, Libi Molnar and Ashley Liemer. They started Billie Blooms in 2014, with the vision of creating high quality, environmentally and ethically conscious, unisex bloomers for babies and toddlers. Working in tandem between Brooklyn and Miami, Billie Blooms was born. The company has excelled in it’s first year; with features in vogue, babyccino kids, babekins magazine and martha stewart, but to name a few. My boys have a couple of pairs of bloomers each (worn with tights through the winter) – and they absolutely love the comfort and ease of wearing them. The fit of the bloomers accommodates cloth or disposable nappies perfectly, and although Omi is now three, he can still wear his 18-24 months (the top size) comfortably. In fact, the bloomers have really eased him into potty training as he loves to wear his ‘special pants’ when he has his nappy-free time. I can’t rave about these bloomers enough and I hope you have time to look at the beautiful selection of mindfully chosen fabrics that they are made in here, the full story behind the business here and the $1 per pair of bloomers sold giveback to every mother counts.org here.

 

 

Ori (18 months) is wearing the Jourdan bloomers in 12-18 months and Omi (3) is wearing the Alex bloomers in 18-24 months.

I really, really love celebrating birthdays with my family and friends. Omi and Owen’s birthdays fall just over a week apart, so we have always grouped them together to make a 10 day long birthday relay. Just as one cake is being finished off, it’s time to bake the next. We totally sugared out on Omi’s full fat – four tier – butter cream spiderman cake, so we toned it down and baked a sugar free rich dark chocolate and coffee mousse cake for Owen. I normally miss out on capturing significant family events, like birthdays and christmas, as I’m too busy being ‘in it’ to stand back and snap away. But I’ve been making a conscious effort to record these special moments. I’m so happy to have some photos to share of the oldest boys’ birthday celebrations this year.

 

 

*I wanted to write more about Omi, and just how much I love him, and how much he is changing and growing and becoming the loveliest little person I’ve ever known.  I find it so hard to express it all here and there are so many feelings that come with having my baby turn three years old. I’m overwhelmed by Omi every day. He is bashful and funny, loyal and (often) patient,  a challenging threenager at times don’t get me wrong – but most of all he is gentle and compassionate – by far my favourite qualities in our little three year old. We end every day the same way; holding each other’s faces in our hands, singing goodnight songs whilst we kiss cheeks….forgiving away any angry words or frustrations from the day gone. And at these moments, I wish I could stop time.*

I’ve been sorting through my many many folders of photos on my laptop – so I thought a little photo dump was in order. I want to try and go back to my monthly happenings blogs, as they are, without a doubt, my personal favourite posts to look over when I’m in the mood for reminiscing. Also, as I’m not going to commit to starting the 52 project this year, I really want to keep capturing the boys – as well as the every day stuff. I hardly have any photos of me and the children (as I’m always the one with the camera) – so I’m also aiming for at least one photo a month of all of us! There may be eye rolling from everyone in the family as we are all quite camera shy (except Omi who has developed the fabulous ability to pose un-promted by any expanse of plain wall) – but everybody loves looking back at photos, so I know the cringing and complaining will ultimately be worth it – even if we do produce the most awkward family photos along the way. Here are some moments from last December, until last week.

 

 

spiderman obsession / did someone mention awkward family photos? / apple & prune amaretto cake / allotment goodies / my best scary dolls / christmas tree hunting / i think we’ve started a new family tradition / me & ori doing a photo shoot for the ma books recipe share / apple & butternut squash tarte tatin / i love finding these little guys appearing all over the house / ori aka the bottomless pit / chicken ramen for the soul / tired dad arm.

 

And here it is – the final weeks of the 52 project. I’m so pleased that I managed to complete it. We’ve already been looking over the photos from the last year, and it’s so so great to have them all. How the boys have changed. And what a year it’s been for us as a family. For 2015, I’m not going to follow a set photography project again. However, I do plan to take lots of photos of the children again, as well as more of us as a family, daily happenings, adventures and general scenes around the house – because it’s all the little moments that count, and they are what I will want to remember.

 

“a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014″

 

Omi – 51/52 – i had to share these two christmas photos; the sad shepherd in his nativity and meeting santa.  

 

Orion –  51/52 – the confident kid at the local playgroups. a new experience for me as a mother!  

 

Omi – 52/52 – i promised him this was the last photo that i would ever ask him to pose for. probably a lie.   

 

Orion –  52/52 – blue eyes, blonde hair, pink lips. 

 

Jodi has started her 52 project again this year. You can follow along and take part, via her beautiful blog, Practicing Simplicity.

“a portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014″

 

Omi – every time i look at him this week, he seems so much more grown up. he’s asking so many questions and i love it. 

 

Orion –  my little monkey, baking monkey bread and eating all the chocolate chips.