It has been almost a month since I've been at home on my own during the days with these gorgeous boys.* It is difficult because it is motherhood (duh), but is is also difficult because there is no cafe, no library, no playground, no pavement to pound, no neighbours' kids, no mid-week one-hour yoga escape, simply no one else around, except K when he gets home from work.
It has been a month of trying to find my groove. Of trying to rise above the 'haven'ts' (see above) and create a reality for us that is fun and memorable and celebrates our amazing location. Of realising that these are the days! And they are fleeting! It will take more than a month, all of this, of course. Some of it is a daily practice.
The best thing about this new world order has been reconnecting with the big boy. There has been much change for him in the past year, and it shows. There are shining moments where he is pure delight - kind, curious, helpful, funny, loving, playful. But much of the time, he has been moody and cantankerous, master of the epic meltdown. And he saves his very worst for me. So, after a tumultuous first week on our own together, I feel like we are re-establishing our little union. And it has been so lovely, and such a relief, to feel the love again with him. This portrait was his idea: he loves pressing the timer button on our cameras!
And the small boy, well, he just fits in. He needs to be fed often when he is awake, but is the most chilled out little being, who just laughs and gurgles and sleeps. And he sleeps! All the exclamation points in the world cannot emphasise this point enough. I would never have thought it possible after Ellery. I waited two plus years to get some me-time back in my evenings. And after just two months with the little feller, I have my evenings back again. Incredulous!! And well-earned, if I may say so.
Despite my hesitations about daytime flying solo, I'm actually enjoying it. Beyond the bonding stuff, I am quite liking the challenge of trying to get stuff done (and am now known around these parts as Wonder Woman), and reinvigorating our space and our routines.
I am writing this in the early heady days. It may be a different story by October when I'm due back at work. But it's surpassed my expectations. And fluffed out my heart a bit. I call that a win.
*We had an au pair until recently (necessary for my work from our island outpost), who stayed on for the first couple of months after our littlest feller was born.
22 June 2014
Ellery: playing with his 'animoos' (one of his made up / bent-out-of-shape words)
Aubrey: is there anything more lovely than a squeaky clean baby?
One of his favourite games is acting out scenes with his animals. I am a required participant.
The small boy: first rolls from tummy to back. And, those impossible lashes. And dimples upon dimples!
I've been musing upon the 52 project and wondering whether I want to continue with it, in this form.
It has helped me hone my eye, I think, for which I am grateful. And the routine has been important for follow-through. I am committed to some sort of regular portraiture of these amazing boys. But I lament the gems unposted, because there could only be one shot. Likewise I sometimes feel compelled to post images I'm not completely enamoured with.
Uncanny timing, these thoughts, as Jodi this week posed the question of whether participants intended to continue with the project for the second half of the year.
We shall see where these thoughts meander.
15 June 2014
Ellery: breakfast conversations with his Dad
Aubrey: such a chilled out, happy little fellow
The winter light is positively taking my breath away. Our island house gets it in the afternoon, and it lights up the dining table in our city house in the morning.
The big boy and I are getting used to a new groove on our own during the days, following the departure of our au pair.
The small boy is drooling, clutching toys and bringing them to his mouth. And watching his big brother like a hawk. Also, four months this week! Can you believe it?
10 June 2014
Ellery: the smoothie kid
Aubrey: so much cute
The big boy is morphing from a two-nager into a three-nager, and don't we know it.
The small boy is all finger sucking, dribbling and hand discovering. The gurgling, laughing and cooing make me ponder: could this be the perfect age? So much cute, and before teething, separation anxiety and mobility milestones kick in.
01 June 2014
Ellery: 2000 kilometres from home and still in his natural habitat
Aubrey: babe in arms (and wool)
My house is a fantastic mess.
We arrived home last night after a whole day's travel back from the Grands' place in the Gippsland hills.
A beautiful week of family and pottering in the country. And the chance at last to introduce the Grands to "the little fellow who doesn't drive and doesn't sit up yet", as described by his big brother.
It will take us another day to return to the island and unpack our monthly groceries.
This next week begins a new chapter, as we bid farewell to our au pair and welcome winter. I am more than a little daunted by the task of wrangling the big kid (who I am having the hardest time with lately, but that's another post) and the house on my own.
Mustering deep breaths and positivity ...
This week's portraits taken at Whisky Bay and Port Albert.