Oh, how things change


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It there is one thing that doesn’t change, its change itself!

Just when you begin to get used to something, life inevitably pulls the rug from under you. This isn’t always a bad thing, and often change is for the better. Sometimes change is neither good, nor bad, its just change.

Life has changed again in recent weeks, the separation of a good friend of mine from his wife, and the fact that he is now no longer living around the corner. Then there is the news of a friends pregnancy, which really excites me. There is no better news than a friend becoming pregnant and expecting a little one. Promotions are nice, a new house is lovely, weddings are great, but expecting a baby is even better! Its a new life, the start of endless potential. There really is no greater feeling than becoming a parent!

I am making plans for changes for my year ahead too. The photography business has been, well, not dormant, but slow. Getting married, fixing up a house, having a baby and generally being a parent can be a huge demand on your time, strangely enough! I was busy building up the photography business, but then put the brakes on to focus on arranging my own. Life has kinda taken over since then, but now it is time to push back up into second gear and get things moving again. On that note, it is also time for a shift in direction. Wedding photography is a fantastic opportunity to capture a truly magical day in a couples life and produce some of your best photography, but the down side is that it is also hugely saturated market. Wedding photographers are 10 a penny on google. Everyone who has ever gone and bought a budget SLR from Argos will call themselves a photographer these days, and not be afraid to “have a go” and unwittingly potentially ruin someones big day with disappointing photos where the auto mode on a camera just couldn’t cut it, and only knowledge and experience and the right kit could have possibly paid off. To stand out as a wedding photographer takes something really special, and having a full time job just doesn’t allow the time to work on everything you need to. There is so much more to running a photography business than just taking photos. So I am looking into making a move into something a bit different, newborn photography. A growing market where there are not currently a large amount of photographers, unlike weddings, on top of which it requires some training before you even consider starting as you are dealing with someone’s tiny little brand new baby, much unlike weddings. I have some steps to take before I can get there, which includes some props and some training, but I will get there, and I will make this a success. I have that feeling, that feeling where I know I can do this and make a good job of it. That feeling where I know I can learn, and then put my own stamp on this and make it mine. I have the support of a fantastic wife and the inspiration of my beautiful daughter to push me forward and make this work. I also have plans for the future once I have made this work, and I want to look into training again, but hopefully this time delivering it rather than taking it. I truly believe that it is important in life to have dreams. It is equally important to know that they are achievable, and even more important to have a plan on how to get there and actually achieve them! There is a quote by Henry Ford “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.” and he is totally right. Believing you can do something is half the battle, but along the way he also coined another genius phrase “One of the greatest discoveries a person makes, one of their great surprises, is to find they can do what they were afraid they couldn’t do.” How true is that? So now I begin to make plans. Not all of them will work, and some will take some adjustment, but a plane does not reach its path by flying in a straight line, it is constantly readjusting its path along the way. I will get there, and I will make this successful! Others may laugh, they may think its funny, or tell me I can’t do it, but I have the will and the potential to succeed here, and I need to remain focused on that!

The obvious other constant source of change in our household is that of our little person, who wakes up each day just ever so slightly different to the previous day! She seems to be growing so quickly! More recently her latest trick involves swinging her arms about and hitting people and thinking its funny. Its not a nasty thing, she just thinks its hilarious when people react, she has probably seen too much of me making pretend ‘Ow!’ noises when she does it to think that its an okay thing to do. Hopefully if we stop drawing attention to it so much, she’ll just give up and eventually stop! the transition from crawling to walking is pretty much done, and she is walking all the time these days, and we are seeing much less of the just-learnt-to-walk toddler wobble, and more normal walking now. We are even getting sounds that are starting to resemble words now as well, she has pretty much grasped “peppa” each time peppa pig comes on, and we think we have an “oggy” each time we see a dog in the street. She is just so cute, I think that if she wasn’t ours we’d probably have kidnapped her by now anyway!

The seasons are also starting to change, spring is around the corner and the temperature is starting to change a little. The nights continue to stay cool, occasionally hovering or maybe just dipping below freezing on the odd occasion, but the days are starting to get ever so slightly warmer. I don’t think that the threat of frost is over yet, I’ll still need to be careful with planting out any vegetable seedlings we’ve grown. Just one night of harsh frost could kill them! Of course now that the allotment is no longer an option, I’ll be resigned growing everything in the back garden, which leaves me with very little space considering that the wife will undoubtedly be expecting to see pretty, colourful flowers and not just vegetables growing everywhere! The seedlings are coming along well in the spare room at the moment, I’ll need to repot them soon, and hopefully move them out to the greenhouse at the very least until the threat of frost has gone. I’m certainly going to miss that allotment this year, thats for sure! I know one of my sisters is taking on an allotment this year, maybe I could stick a few bits in there, I am sure she wouldn’t mind?! I am keen to get more out of the ground to eat this year, we had an absolute bumper crop the first year and its fair to say we knew bugger all about allotmenting, so even though I am working with significantly less space, I need to make it count! Of course, finding the time is going to be tricky, with looking after “J”, my friends autistic son, and hopefully building up the photography business again this year, my free time could be stretched a little. At least where the difficulty of previously trying to get over the allotment was that I could only go over at the weekend, now with growing things in the garden its much easier to spend a bit of time each night in the evenings once Olivia is in bed, little and often is the way forward! Generally I have to wait until Olivia is in bed to get most things done, my to-do list is a total waste of time if I am planning to do anything while she is still up. Considering she is such a well behaved, good child, I still find that most of the things I had planned to do just don’t even get looked at least until she goes down for a nap or more often when its her bedtime, by which point it has gone dark outside and anything that was supposed to be done outside can just be scrapped for yet another day! Things are a little easier at the moment now Clare is getting home from work slightly earlier, and the sunset is getting later and later, on top of which the clocks will go forward in a few weeks. I’ll be out in that garden in no time, and I’d love Olivia to be out with me too, but there is one garden chore I must do before all others if that is going to happen, and that is to put a picket fence at least 3ft high around the edge of the garden. Where the lawn and flower bed end it is a 4 ft drop down to the concrete below. Not much for me to jump down, I agree, but if you’re a toddler and you’re going down head first, its going result in many hours spent in A&E! I need to be able to leave her free to run around on the lawn without the fear of her not stopping in time and going straight over the edge! Oh the joys of having children!

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About andrewvokes

Husband to my beautiful wife Clare, and father to two gorgeous girls. Cyclist, runner and photographer, living in Birmingham, UK.

Posted on February 26, 2015, in Personal, Photography and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. Hi Andrew I seem to have a bit of a ritual in a morning. I get up make a brew and I always read your blog you have posted the night before. I have watched Olivia grow through your eyes and she is changing so quickly. She is a total credit to you and Clare. I am certain your new venture will be a huge success. One of my closest friend set up the same business just over 12 months ago and her business is thriving. I can give you her details if you want any information etc. I’m so excited for you. 😊

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    • Oh bless you, thats such a nice post! I’m so sorry I didn’t reply sooner, I get distracted very easily with so much going on! Sorry that the posts aren’t always on time, but I’d rather do them properly than rush them. Sometimes when I save a draft copy and end up reading it back, I will change quite a lot of it to make it more readable. Nice to know someone is appreciating it anyway! Thanks for the comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. In an instant, things can change and in that same instant, a little girl grows up. It is a joy being a parent, but your plans do begin to evolve around the kids. Thinking ahead becomes a necessity. The 3 feet of safety is a parent, thinking ahead. Here’s to happy gardening with the little one.

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