30 December 2013


Magic - discovering his first 'big boy' bike beneath the tree

And that's a wrap! 

On (nearly) 52 portraits. Huzzah!

So very thankful to Jodi for hosting this project, and proud of myself to have stuck (mostly) with it. I haven't photographically loved all of the portraits, but am ever so grateful for the memories captured. I love that it's a living record of his year, from baby face to big boy pouts. I have relished the intention of portrait-taking, and the process of choosing single frames from the many shots taken.

It has been my reason to dust off my camera after many months of neglect. Thanks to K for spoiling me with a brand new camera for Christmas (!), I'll be much better equipped to join in next year. I can't wait.

Not sure how my staying power will fare with a new little one around in February, but inspired to give it a go.

26 December 2013


Heatwave and an(other) early fade

It has been so, so hot.

The heat has been wiping us out early.

He fell asleep on the couch in the late afternoon while we were reading a book. And was out for the night.

Joining in with Jodi - one more week to go!

19 December 2013

52 I the ones that got away

And there you have it. A year's worth of out-takes.

Some weeks I've posted photos I haven't really been pleased with. Other weeks I've let some rippers get away, because there were just too many to choose from, or because others seemed more meaningful.

These moments are too beautiful to lose amongst my files.

I've been dreaming of an out-takes post since day one of this series. So glad I finally did it.

Joining in with Jodi for another two weeks. 

16 December 2013


Two and a half versus world

Meet Kid Defiance. 

The worst weekend yet. Why do things seem to escalate when his Daddy is home?

Every little situation is a full-scale drama. He is asserting his will for the sake of opposition, and we are copping the full brunt.

Maybe it is because we are both there.

Even in his happy zone, watering the garden, he looks glum.

I must remind myself that this too, shall pass. Though I must say, it is all making me very anxious about the transitions still to come.

Joining in with Jodi.

08 December 2013


Still an island boy at heart

Stopping to smell the frangipani. 

Before pulling it apart.

At least he cooperated with my request - the first of these portraits I've ever set up.

Joining in with Jodi.

05 December 2013

big day out

His first ride on a steam train.

His current obsession.

The wonder in his face, in every shot, just floors me.

I get a real sense of the small boy mesmerised by the sensory deluge of the city bustle.

A win for the city.

03 December 2013


Wonder and awe

The tantruming has hit an all time low.

We barely made it out the door intact to get to our early Sunday morning appointment with a steam train.

But it was worth every second of unpleasantness for this face.

I am in love with this face.

Joining in with Jodi - for another four weeks!

24 November 2013


Cool pottering indoors play for hot days

I'm loving the black and white.

And we're loving our air con! It's a novelty. I've never had it before. But boy am I glad we have it now. 

Whose idea was it to be 39 and six months pregnant with a busy toddler in the Queensland summer?

Joining in with Jodi.

17 November 2013


'Crunchy toast' - who knew over-toasted sourdough was the key to his breakfast heart?

I am resolved this week to get my camera out more.

And I am tempted to find myself another camera (again. still), after reading this.

I feel like for the first time since we've moved to the city, we're starting to get into a groove. 

The next fortnight is mapped out with the things we're doing.

And we've got a nearly fully furnished house - hurrah!

It will, however, be the longest stretch yet with K away. Nine days. Gulp...

I'm taking his advice and teeing up all the shortcuts I can think of. I have been too exhausted of late not to.

Joining in with Jodi.

10 November 2013

44 + 45/52

Growth spurts // exhaustion

He has grown more in the past couple of weeks since our move to the city than possibly ever in his two (point two five) years.

Taller, more boyish and sprouting grown-up sentences by the minute.

Our shy boy wants to play with the kids in the street, and is approaching the neighbours with happy hellos.

As difficult as this time has been (part-time solo parenting through a forced but thankfully temporary separation), my heart is exploding with love for him.

Could be those baby hormones, too.

Joining in with Jodi.

08 November 2013

24 weeks

Thanks to Mum for pleading for bump shots, and the biggest thanks to K for taking them.

I had a holy crap moment this morning upon realising that this baby could be here in a month. If it stays inside another two months, he or she will have lasted longer than E did.

And. Oh. My. God. We don't even have a couch! Thankfully, we're just waiting on its delivery.

But our city car? The one we have to shoehorn ourselves into?

We are making steady but slow progress in the setting-up-a-second-house department. And the replacing-the-tiny-car department.

But the idea of four weeks - or even eight weeks - has kind of winded me.

Not that I've dismissed full-term aspirations. But I just want, for one of our babies, to be prepared.

I'm about to go and make a list to rule all the lists.

02 November 2013


A boy in his room

A very difficult week. 

Our second week in the new house, and our first living apart from K, who had to return to the Island for work.

This boy has taken it hard, very hard. Despite our efforts to prepare him.

And it is heartbreaking.

We have both been full of cold, too. Must be those city germs.

One upside to the week has been his room. He gets his own room in the new house!

And boy is he proud.

Nevermind that it's barely furnished. It's a space to call his own. 

And we are slowly unpacking and putting together our little nest.

But the best upside to the week was seeing him reunite with his 'Daddy-addy'.

Happiest kid in town.

Joining in with Jodi.

20 October 2013


Lost in observation - and good times - at the playground

Well with settling on our new house and mortgage (yelp!), moving house across the sea, antenatal appointments, work, and now, the start of solo toddlering, it looks like 41 will be the third week in 52 without a portrait.

Luckily 42 makes up for it. In my books, anyway. Grainy and scratchy as it is. Another (indulgent) diptych.

This is one beautiful kid, growing up in leaps and bounds, every single day.

He looks so much older since our move to the city.

And transitions aside, he has been so very moody lately - mostly reserved for his parents - that it has felt like living with a teenager. 

Is that just a two-year-old thing?

Joining in with Jodi.

09 October 2013

Another Queenslander!

So, our news, instalment two. Not in order of importance. Though there's probably not much bigger news than buying a house. Unless it's a baby.

It's a baby!

We are thrilled to announce that in late February (oh baby, please PLEASE P-L-E-A-S-E don't come in any other month, unless it's March, which would be pretty damn excellent in my books), Master E will have a brother or sister!

So, rapidly calculating brains of the blogosphere, that makes me 20 weeks pregnant!

I am a bit late in posting this because, well, I have been rather exhausted and opting to spend my newfound free time at night in bed, albeit with knitting needles and phone.

We also had an early scare - thankfully baby is fine. And an admission to hospital following our 20 week scan (where I am writing this from) for preterm risk factors, whereupon our day trip to the mainland turned into me staying there under observation for two nights - my longest time away from E.

Baby is fine, and I am escaping tomorrow, but I have a slightly higher than the general population risk of another spontaneous early labour. Hence the heat was on to find lodgings in Brisbane, and we'd been looking to buy for a while.

Having said that, naturally we are doing everything we can to encourage a fully cooked baby!

Our meticulously planned logistics for the next month have been pushed forward by events of recent days. I may or may not return to the island for a few days before decamping to our new house (after it settles next week) with E until baby arrives. Sadly we must leave K island bound for work, but he'll get to come stay with us for five days every fortnight, and is able to tweak his work days to commandeer the rapid move-and-furnish process.

My head boggles and boggles and fails to compute the logistics (and the finances) of this month. Buy a house, get a mortgage, move house across the sea, move bus from storage to house, antenatal care, toddlering, work, buy a new city car (chronically overdue). And we must fully furnish and kit out the house in a handful of days, bringing limited stuff with us from the island as we'll be returning there in March next year. With a new baby!

It's a little bit deja vu, harking back to when we packed up our city apartment in two weeks and moved most of our worldy possessions to the island. With a new (just out of neonatal care) baby!

Naturally my nesting has gone into turbo overdrive, about five months early!

I've been ebaying and sorting and space bagging and plotting and purging like a rabid spring cleaning hen.

My belly is expanding like a wilted rubber band. I've felt this kid move since about 15 weeks, a week earlier than with E. This one's a little dancer, and has been doing the fandango and waving at us in the many scans we've already had. I had hoped to include a picture from the scan, but that will have to wait.

I have had no inkling of the sex, although my first trimester with E was awash with dreams of small blond boys. Plural. Despite the lure, we have declined to find out.

E is just the cutest thing ever when he talks to my belly, telling the baby 'aww, cuddle cuddle pat pat' and 'it's a great day!' Melt.

I think he will make a wonderful big brother.

My hopes and dreams for the birth centre (the only place to have a water birth in a hospital with neonatal care facilities in Queensland - necessary for us) kind of fell to the side with all the early hoo-ha and worry about this pregnancy. And in light of recent days, seem quite obliterated. So it's full scale tertiary care, for now anyway.

My big hope is that we get to welcome this kid in a beautiful way. No neonatal care, no separation, just a big fat healthy term baby!

But over the past couple of days I've come to realise that the story of this pregnancy, as it was with E's birth, is one of letting go, of acceptance, and surrendering to whatever will be.

Because that is the gentlest, and the only, way forward.

06 October 2013


Playing in his 'castle' amongst the sandstone cliffs

Here it comes, the full brunt of summer.

You can feel it already, the thick sweltery heat is on its way. Out come the cotton longs, with our daytime routine revolving around early morning and late afternoon outside play.

We've just spent a wonderful beachy weekend at home. Time for gardening, swimming, cooking, knitting, planning. We tidied up the gravestone that commemorates a former lighthouse keeper's wife. And saw baby whales cavorting just outside the Bay.

And to top it all off, E's first little cousin came into the world today! Hooray! We can't wait to meet him. I am so looking forward to little cousin get-togethers!

What a beautiful day to be born.

29 September 2013


Sitting side saddle on his 'horse', a large driftwood log at the side of our house.

The week he should have been born, two years ago.

Almost slipped by without me noticing.

The poor little guy is cutting his last molars. If they're anything like his other teeth, they'll take their sweet time. Hurrah for when that's all done.

Cute thing of the week: pretending to be a cat.

Two-year-old thing of the week: squealing when I try to talk to anyone.

Please ignore the funny things Blogger is doing with the colour balance in my photos.

Joining in with Jodi.

23 September 2013


The first time I have had to sit down at night, before I am completely zonked, to write a little update.

Let's get straight to our news. Consider this instalment one...

We bought a house! 

That's it up there! Not the most flattering photo, but you get the drift.

After months and months of getting disheartened, thinking we would never find or be able to afford something that was even remotely 'us', we have signed a contract on a cute little Queenslander in a beautiful neighbourhood by the sea.

Think high ceilings, VJs, breezeway thingies over the doors, floorboards (to be discovered). Think unrenovated, 80-year-old, fixer-uperer that is very liveable now. With plenty of storage space. At the end of a cul-de-sac, a walk to the train (for city commutes - hello mortgage), shops, parks and the beach.

We managed to find ourselves in a very salubrious neighbourhood thanks to our capacity for putting up with (for some of us it will be less of a trial) trains. Yes, we are right next to the train line, but it's a small concession for what we are gaining.

After two-plus years of transporting our travelling circus to (and imposing on the unswerving hospitality of) Keiran's mum's place every fortnight, we now have a place of our own for our city visits! And it's still close enough for Nana to swing by - to visit us!

We are absolutely thrilled. Although it means inhabiting two houses, and all the costs that go along with that luxury, it will give us a home for our frequent city visits. And more flexibility to do stuff in the city.

And somewhere to park the bus! And fix up the bus! And dust off our dreams of one day doing some slow road tripping in the bus!

Ye grand plans are coming together.

All things going swimmingly, we pick up the keys in four weeks!


All beached out

This is the only way a portrait was going to be posted this (last!) week.

A grainy, stolen photograph from when his head first hit the pillow tonight.

Windswept, rosy-cheeked and still clothed from a trip to the beach with his Dad.

And sleeping, finally sleeping after a travel-to-the-city induced spell of being awake til crazy hours.

I know I keep saying it, but life has just been hectic. 

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

15 September 2013


Little boy looking out to sea // enchanted by a driftwood stick

Breaking the rules again.

I am indecisive, wavering at the edge of my exhaustion.

I love the sense of 'boy in the wild' in the first shot. The setting sun on his face as he tramps amongst the dune grass.

And a small boy playing with a big stick? The beauty of free-range, natural play. He's showing us his muscles!

I have much more to post about. Big, good stuff.

But now, a roast chicken and leek risotto awaits. Followed closely by bed!

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

08 September 2013


Weekend giggles under the sheoaks.

It has been a week of stupendously good news.

Busy, too, as usual.

After an overnight trip to the mainland, we stole a weekend to ourselves at home. I should not quibble that it happens only once a month.

I should instead relish the time we do get to spend here.

Laughing under sheoaks on this incredibly gorgeous island we get to call home.

Lunching by a tidal lagoon in the springtime sun.

Flying kites and digging in the sand.

Yes, please.

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

01 September 2013


Busy little sweep.

Thanks to Jodi for inspiration to shoot in black and white this week.

I rarely ever do. I'm glad I did.

I have held back from posting any bare bum shots. But this is the week. 

It's part of who he is right now. He would go pants-free anywhere, anytime. He's learning to transition from nappies too. And it's warm.

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

27 August 2013


Trying to put fallen sheoak seedpods back on the tree 

Can you hear my breathlessness?

I'm catching up.

Last week was work and mainland travel and regular busy-ness with a side of house-hunting and a large serve of unexpected left-fieldness thrown in.

Another week where I didn't get my camera out. Not once.

Luckily I had some shots from last Sunday.

From a much simpler day when we took a morning walk. 

We smelled wildflowers. He asked me to chase him around the helipad. Then we sat on an escarpment in the shade of a casuarina. I watched whales and he played with sticks. And tried to put fallen seedpods back on the tree.

I am happy to be home again, back to our island pace.

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

18 August 2013


Taking pictures with Daddy's (super indestructible) underwater camera

I have so many unpublished shots of this guy playing with cameras.

Every time we get our cameras out, he hops in our laps for a few clicks of the shutter release.

It won't be long before he's got the gist of using his own camera, already purchased for him by Daddy.

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.

11 August 2013


Sunset in his hair and eyes,
Licking sand from his hands

You look worldly beyond your two years.

Your laugh has changed in the past couple of weeks. You sound more like an older boy.

The weekend you turned two, you asked me to take off your amber necklace, and you haven't worn it since. I'm keeping it for the last set of molars to come.

And this is how it goes, time.

Joining in with Jodi.

You can see the whole series of portraits here.