Happy Fathers Day to all the Dads out there. Especially to Nick, you are an amazing husband and father to our two girls and we all love you so much. xx
It’s always so special to photograph a newborn and Miss Lilly was no exception. Those first few weeks with your first baby are so unique as you develop a bond and a love like nothing else. Lilly was wide awake when I arrived, so I took the opportunity to capture some images of her with her mummy as they chatted and gazed at each other. We also took a few more as Lilly became tired, there’s something so peaceful and beautiful seeing a just sleepy newborn cuddled into its mother’s arms.
In between these photos, Lilly was wide awake and paying close attention to everything going on in her world. She has such beautiful wide, blue eyes. And there’s just a little bit of cheekiness already showing!
Thank you Miss Lilly for being such a gorgeous little girl. I enjoyed every minute I spent with you xx
This year will be my third Mothers Day. For my first Mothers Day, when my husband asked me what I wanted, I thought I was keeping it pretty simple and said that all I wanted was a nice photo of my daughter and I together. It is now what I want every Mothers Day – I missed out last year unfortunately, I did get a lovely dressing gown, but no photo. This year I’m determined to get a photo of myself with BOTH my daughters!
Far too often as a mum, we are the ones always taking the photos and never being in them. Mostly we just want to make sure we capture all those gorgeous moments from our day to day life that happen with our little ones, using whatever is to hand – from a slr camera, point and shoot or, more often now, our phones. Sometimes it’s a great way to avoid being in front of the camera too, post pregnancy bodies and less time to take care of ourselves often have us feeling a lot more self conscious of our appearance than pre-kids.
This Mothers Day, I want to encourage you to get in front of the camera. So hand that camera (or phone) over to your partner, family member or friend and get them to take a few shots of you with your kids. Over the coming week I will share a few simple tips to help you get some great shots of you with your kids!
Dear Sophie, the last two months started off hard and finished amazingly. The first 5-6 weeks of daycare were a non-stop run of illnesses – colds, ear infection, rashes and more colds. You came out of that initial blast still smiling and bar the odd runny nose and occasional cough you have been kicking up your heels ever since.
You absolutely adore going to daycare. After the initial uncertainty, you now let yourself into the room, grab a chair and sit waiting for a bite to eat. You are always happy to give a kiss and cuddle goodbye and a great big wave and smile as we leave you there. You’re just as happy to see us when we pick you up too after a big day of playing with your friends.
And Sophie, you are most definitely a “daddy’s girl”. You adore your daddy and will bypass me without a thought if you need a cuddle or want someone to read a book to you. This phase has lasted quite a while and it’s only been in the last week of March that you started coming to me as well.
Your walking has been improving out of sight, you are loving longer walks now and will happily run around the oval with your big sister chasing after a ball until everyone is worn out. You are also doing your best to talk to us – loads and loads of babble with a few words starting to come through. Your first truly clear word was, surprisingly, “mummy”. Screamed out in the middle of the night in panic. Not sure what the disaster was, but how could I resist going and giving you cuddles.
You are our ever bubbly, smiley, happy girl who is revelling in her increasing independence and abilities.
Dear Emily, the last couple of months have been hard on you in ways that they aren’t for Sophie. You love being at daycare with all your friends and all the activities you get to do there. But most days you ask if you can stay home and when we pick you up and ask if you had fun, more often than not you say “I didn’t” – you then go on to tell us what you did and get terribly excited about it all, so we know you did actually have a good day!
While you physically are coping with the long days at daycare better than Sophie, you do find it terribly draining as well and real revel in the weekends spending time with all of us together. It was lovely to walk into daycare one day and hear the carers talking about you and describe you as caring, sensitive and articulate (like she ate a dictionary over summer). You are a non-stop chatterbox and are always telling us when you see a bus, or a car if it’s orange, yellow or green (all of them are your favourite). I think we have heard you sing the alphabet song over a thousand times in the last couple of months, you’re very pleased with yourself about being able to do it, as well as being able to count to 10.
You have loved seeing all of your grandparents more regularly than usual and it’s a frequently heard question when we get in the car “we go see grandma grandpa?”. I think your favourite person of all though is Sophie. You are a wonderful big sister and now that Sophie can play with you, the rough interaction has decreased dramatically and you will more often be trying to hold her hand, play ring-a-rosie or ask her for a cuddle.
While you definitely have more fluctuating moods than your sister, and can be such a dictator (as only a toddler can do!), you are also utterly delightful and it’s beautiful to watch you learn and grow.
You are our busy, clever, gorgeous girl.
Love you both lots and lots and lots xoxoxoxo
Dear Emily, what an amazing couple of months you have had. We had a fairly busy run up to Christmas between daycare concert, catching up with friends and family and then Christmas day itself of course. You had a ball opening presents (you totally understand it now!) and were so excited with your new play kitchen.
There followed 3 weeks with all of us at home together which saw so many changes in you. Your talk and chatter about absolutely everything now, presenting your ideas several times in a row, each time slightly differently or expanding on your idea as you work out how words go together and how they explain your world. Each morning while your sister had her nap, you had dedicated time with me, your dad or both of us and we played outside – blowing bubbles, riding your balance bike or doing craft. I think this was your favourite part of the day.
We had fabulous outings to the zoo, water play, various parks, hanging out with your grandparents as well as spending a LOT of time at our local playground and walking around our neighbourhood. While you love both mummy and daddy lots, you are definitely more of a mummy’s girl which means I get lots of cuddles and lots of demands that I do thigns for you rather than anyone else.
You also had your first haircut recently. This was a pretty big even for you and you really didn’t enjoy it at all. There were lots of tears and pleading, but you were very brave and sat on my lap and let the hairdresser do her job. You now love your shorter hair and it’s so much easier to take care of and doesn’t hurt when we brush it out for you.
You were very eager to return to childcare by the end of the break and so excited that Sophie would be coming with you too! You fell straight back into the routine and have had an absolute ball. Your confidence has been lovely to see and you are coming so much more out of your shell and interacting with the other kids there.
You are a sweet, clever, curious little girl with increasing confidence which is beautiful to see.
Dear Sophie, an amazing couple of months for you too. Your toddling has transformed into walking and now you are pretty much running! It’s gorgeous to see you walking along and reaching up to hold a hand if you get a bit wobbly or determinedly pulling your hand away and asserting your independence. Watchign you and your sister play together and twirling in our loungeroom (and falling over) has everyone in fits of giggles.
You have absolutely loved having everyone home with you for several weeks and have grown so much in that time. You are becoming more and more confident at the local playground (including a couple of incidents that really scared your parents while you worked out your limitations!) and can now walk around for about half the time we are at the zoo. You even now enjoy playing with water – a sprinkler in the backyard, the water fountain area at Olympic Park are a couple of our favourite places on a hot day.
At some point you stopped eating mushy food at all and are now eating almost the same as what your sister does. You are loving pretty much everything we offer you, just as your sister did, and enjoy trying all the new things on offer now. You also finally had 4 more teeth come through in mid-January bringing the total up to 10 teeth. Your hair is slowly getting longer and getting all these gorgeous curls at the back.
You had your first day at daycare this week. It was a big deal for us while you are quite the little extrovert it is a huge change for you after being at home all the time up to now. Much to our delight, you absolutely loved it! You have loved having a new environment to explore, toys and games to play, people to interact with and so many different activities to do. You are exhausted at the end of each day, but always in a good mood as you seem to thrive on all the interaction.
You are our happy, giggly, determined little girl, who is growing up so quickly!
Love you both lots and lots and lots xoxoxoxo
Dear Sophie – you turned ONE in October! We can’t believe our little baby girl is one year old. You continue to delight us with your cheeky grins and cuddles and generally happy nature. You had so much fun at your party at the park next door, loving being centre of attention and we saved opening presents for the next day. You received such beautiful gifts from family and friends, Emily enjoyed helping you open them too.
You also started walking shortly after your birthday and it hasn’t taken you long to get in the swing of it and you’re almost at the point of being able to run away from your sister.
Dear Emily, you are growing up SO much! Your talking has progressed amazingly and you have become a real little chatterbox. Every day you are talking more clearly and able to express yourself better, it’s amazing to watch.
You absolutely adore your little sister and were so excited when she started walking. You wanted to hold her hand as she walked, but Sophie was too independent and wanted to do her own thing. We had a few tears and you still push her over every now and then, but you’ve come to realise that it’s much more fun to have Sophie walking around with you.
You have been pretty healthy recently which has been lovely, we had a stint with hand, foot and mouth for both of you, but otherwise you have been able to get out and about every weekend and are absolutely loving daycare during the week. You have become a really cuddly little girl too, with great big hugs for all of us.
Love you both lots and lots and lots xoxoxox
For the next blog in our Letters to our Children circle, head on over to Rebecca’s blog and see what she has posted.
Where to start… Our illness of the month for September was conjunctivitis, No fun for anyone, with Sophie and I both still feeling the lingering effects of it. Emily, otherwise you have had a wonderful month. With the warmer weather we have been getting out and about a lot more and you can walk for so much longer now – it’s rare that you want to get in the pram at all when we go to the zoo now and we sometimes stay for close to 3 hours. Your talking is also coming along at a great rate – more words, concepts and longer sentences are coming out every single day. Even the carers at your childcare have commented on how quickly you are coming along.
Talking of childcare, you have started spending a bit more time with the “big kids” in their play area in preparation for moving into a new room next year. You are loving it and playing with new toys and people is so much fun. The best part though is that you can always take yourself back to the little kids room when you have had enough and need a bit of space and quiet from time to time.
You are getting braver and more capable when playing at the little playground next door to our place and have even started interacting with some of the other kids there at times. Your cousin Ben visited during the month and the two of you had so much fun playing together on the slide! You are so helpful as well, at childcare, you help with making the cots, passing out morning tea, bringing the other kids their drink bottles. At home you love bringing toys for Sophie to play with or giving her a cuddle when she cries, and if we ever leave our phone within reach you make a grab for it so you can pass it back to us!
Emily, you are our happy, chatty, helpful, bossy little girl who loves being outdoors, going for walks and is obsessed with going to the zoo.
Sophie, you are growing up so quickly now. Not quite walking, but you pull up on things every chance you get and can easily stand unsupported for quite a while now – even while bouncing up and down because you’re so excited at what you’re doing! You constant happiness and joy with everything continues to amaze us. You have your moments when you are tired, hungry or not feeling well and get a bit cranky, but they tend to pass very quickly.
Your appetite continues to grow and we are slowly but surely increasing how much solids you get and adjusting meal times to try and make sure you aren’t hungry. You and your sister are playing together more and more, looking at books together, chasing each other or just smiling and holding hands. You are becoming more aware of your surroundings and the people who visit in your life and it is wonderful to see you getting involved in things. Our favourite ‘stop crying’ distraction is still singing songs to you – especially action songs where you have something to watch as well as listen to.
We have moved bedtime around again and you and Emily both go down in your cots at the same time now. It’s a bit of a struggle as you are both excited to see the other, but it seems to be slowly settling into a routine – early days for this yet though.
Sophie, you are our happy, bubbly, sharing little baby who is growing up so quickly.
Love you both lots and lots and lots xoxoxoxo
For more Letters to Our Children posts, head on over to Rebecca’s blog!
I headed up to the central coast to meet up with this gorgeous family for their most recent family portrait session. It was one of those perfect winters day – clear skies, crisp air which gradually warmed up to t-shirt weather. We met up at Umina Beach and headed in to the park to start off, the kids went a little crazy running around the place, climbing everything and hiding through the maze. They managed to stay still for a few moments so we could get them all in one place and get some photos of everyone together.
It was such a great opportunity to get some photos of 3 generations together, so we made sure that each of the kids had a photo taken with their mum and also one with mum and their grandmother. This young lady is growing up so quickly, it’s hard to believe it’s the same girl I met when I first took their photos three years ago!
The twins are a study in contrasts. Sean is the calm, quietly confident one with bursts of cheekiness and an irresistible smile.
Hayley on the others hand, is an absolute firecracker. Her thoughts and words come out a mile a minute and her enthusiasm for everything just boils over.
Thank you for letting me photograph your family again, it’s so lovely to see a family grow and watch the personality’s of your kids develop over the years!
Dear Emily. You had your second birthday this month and are growing up so quickly! We had a very small birthday celebration for you while 3 of your grandparents were in town. There were lots of presents and you got to eat a whole cupcake, although you weren’t impressed with the overly sweet frosting and turned the thing upside down so you could just eat the cake part.
The end of the month was a bit hard for you as you were hit with croup which made you utterly miserable for a week or so. Luckily we got on to it quickly and you recovered ok. Around the same time you had a massive word explosion though and you are still coming out with several new words every day. You’ve even developed a bit of a lisp as you try and get the words out faster than your mouth can handle. It’s lovely being able to have simple conversations with you and hear you express yourself.
With the weather improving, we have been able to get out to the park again which you are loving. You are interacting with us and others so much more these days. We had a fun game of chasings around the park which had you peering out from behind equipment and giving us the most gorgeous cheeky grins. Your caring nature is shining out more and more, you are a beautiful, helpful, cuddly little girl.
Dear Sophie, you are so active now! You are crawling everywhere, pulling up on everything and trying to climb anything within reach. I think you enjoyed your sisters birthday as much as she did and got to play with the paper and some of the new toys.
Most of your photos don’t show it, but it seems like you just don’t stop smiling. You’ve been pretty sick this last week, but once you stop crying after a big cough you are straight back to grinning, blowing raspberries and making happy little noises. We are still going to the zoo most weekends and make a point now to stop and let you out for a bit of a wander at some point which you are definitely enjoying, still a bit longer before you start noticing the animals though.
You are also loving the visits to the park as you can now sit in the swing and get pushed in it a bit. Emily loves giving you a push or sitting on the swing next to yours and you both watch each other as you swing.
You are my gorgeous, happy, bubbly little girl, who can’t wait to start walking and follow her big sister around.
Love you both lots and lots and lots xoxoxoxo
Head on over and have a look at Joanne’s blog for the next post in our Letters to Our Children blog circle.