365 project, Journal, Parenting, Photography

Project 365 over half way there: Day 187 – 196

Catch up time on the photos, one a day for a whole year, and here is another batch.

187: Time to cut out a few of the snacks and start eating sensibly, and I come home to find the wife being a bit creative and cooking something a bit different. Its easy to get into a bit of a routine and end up cooking the same things week in, week out, so its nice to try something new once in a while!

Day 187 - Jul 11th
Day 187 – Jul 11th

188: There is something that I find quite poetic about the sight of a wilting flower. This wasn;t my best shot, as the light was beginning to fade, but I still think its a nice shot. This week proves to be a bit of a busy one, and so its nice to slow down and take a moment to appreciate whats around you.

Day 188 - Jul 12th
Day 188 – Jul 12th

189: The first event that I had to photograph this week was the leavers prom at work. Some of the pupils have been at our school since a very young age, so its always sad to see them go. Whilst I was setting up my lights and backdrop I asked a colleague to step in for a test shot, but it was so good I decided to keep it!

Day 189 - Jul 13th
Day 189 – Jul 13th

190: The weather is starting to look up, and everything in the garden is growing at a real pace. last year I planted some onion seeds, and now we have some onions in their place, although I believe that they may not be any good once they’ve flowered. Oh well, we’ll find out soon enough!

Day 190 - Jul 14th
Day 190 – Jul 14th

191: Friday night is not exactly an early finish for me, as I have to race home from work, collect my photography gear and head off to cover another school leavers prom. I’m loving my new white vinyl backdrop, which I’ve had for months, now I’ve finally got some clamps big enough to hold it up. After the shoot its straight off to Solihull to catch up with some friends for yet another 40th birthday celebration.

Day 191 - Jul 15th
Day 191 – Jul 15th

192: And the birthdays continue, this time a 4th birthday for a friends boy at a local play activity centre that I had no idea even existed! It was a lovely place, and Olivia loved it, and even managed to get her face painted.

Day 192 - Jul 16th
Day 192 – Jul 16th

193: Yet more parties, this time a princess themed 5th birthday party for some friends that we don’t see very often. Olivia was in her element dressed up like a princess, and was over the moon to have her picture taken with some real princesses!

Day 193 - Jul 17th
Day 193 – Jul 17th

194: Bath time becomes family time now that we have a seat to help Chloe sit up, and the two sisters can bath together. Of course this means both me and the wife have to get involved to bath them both at the same time, as the little one can be a bit of a wriggler.

Day 194 - Jul 18th
Day 194 – Jul 18th

195: The summer sun has been blessing us for a few days now (unless you have hayfever, like me!) and I wanted to get a photo of Chloe, on her front, as she is spending so much of her time at the moment, and then figured I would try something different with the editing. Not sure I like it, it makes my baby look quite angry!

Day 195 - Jul 19th
Day 195 – Jul 19th

196: I’ve really not got on top of my growing this year, I do have some flowers in the garden and some tomatoes in the greenhouse, but its otherwise been a quiet year. The wife did buy a special flowerpot for olivia, shaped as some boots, and so we set about filling the pot up with compost and planting some seeds together. She may not even remember it when she’s older, but its time spent together like this that makes me happy!

Day 196 - Jul 20th
Day 196 – Jul 20th

365 project, Journal, Parenting, Personal, Photography

More 365 photos: days 180 – 186

Right, not letting the 365 slip away from me quite as much as it has recently! Must get stricter with myself and post this at least once a week, or I end up forgetting why I took some of the photos in the first place!

We now move into July, the longest day of the year has been and gone, and we have to start looking ahead. We have a 3rd birthday party to plan, a christening that clearly isn’t going to organise itself, and well… we’ve already got new years eve sorted!! Do I even mention Christmas yet??

At the moment life is fairly quiet, we have to start tightening the purse strings now we only have one regular income coming in, as the wife’s new official job title is “housewife”! A redundancy can seem terrifying at first, and it is very sad when people who have worked together for so long know that they will never get to again, so the wife has been attending various nights out and leaving parties. If a redundancy has to happen though, for us it has happened at possibly the best time it could. With the wife currently on maternity leave and due to be going back in a couple of months, at least now she can stay at home with the girls and a healthy payout will at least take care of the bills for a while, allowing us to spend more time together as a family, and give the wife a lot longer off than she could ever have hoped for! Obviously it won’t last forever, but we have a while before we have to start panicking about CVs and interviews!

In the meantime, the 365 isn’t going to reflect on a wild lifestyle and holidays in the sun, its going to be an honest look at life with one income!

180: Work doesn’t seem so bad when you realise how close you are to the summer holidays, even if your day does end up being a bit rough. Yes, working with children with special needs can be rewarding, but at the same time, coming home with scratches, bite marks and torn clothing, you don’t always appreciate it! Thankfully on Monday I was able to take to the streets with my friend and go for a bit of a run to forget all about it!

Day 180 - Jul 4th
Day 180 – Jul 4th

181: “Long day at work Daddy? Just cycled home Daddy? Most of it was uphill and cycling into the wind Daddy? Oh well, don’t sit down just yet, I want to play outside!”. No, my daughter isn’t quite that fluent in her language skills yet, but it feels like this is what must be going through her mind sometimes! I love that the girls love to be outdoors though, and want to do all I can to encourage it. Yes, they will become teenagers, and yes they will discover mobile phones and social media, but I don’t want that to be all that life is about. Learning to “unplug” and not rely on devices almost seems to be a skill in itself these days! “Yes, you’re right honey, Daddy is tired, but lets go outside and play anyway!”

Day 181 - Jul 5th
Day 181 – Jul 5th

182: Siblings don’t always get along, me and my sister were proof enough of that as we were growing up. I was already a teenager when my second sister arrived, so thankfully we had none of the fighting that I had with my other sister! One thing I do hope for though, is the fact that these two are going to get along and be fantastic friends to each other. Creating life is amazing, but creating two little beings that become friends seems like the ultimate blessing!

Day 182 - Jul 6th
Day 182 – Jul 6th

183: I guess everyone expects the photographer to have thousands of images of his children, its a bit of a cliche really. While I wouldn’t say I have thousands, I sure do have a few. Every now and again though, one jumps out at me, and I think to myself “you’ve just nailed it on that shot!”. There aren’t quite so many of those, and that’s what makes them that bit more special!

Day 183 - Jul 7th
Day 183 – Jul 7th

184: The wife does her best to entertain the girls on wet days, and on Friday afternoon I came home to find that there had been some baking going on, and Olivia was now in the process of decorating some home made biscuits. I have to say, they tasted GOOOOOD!

Day 184 - Jul 8th
Day 184 – Jul 8th

185: This was a day of several parts, it started with a 3 mile run in the rain. Usually I run much further than 3 miles, but I am helping a friend prepare for a 5km charity run, so there was no opportunity to duck out because of poor weather! After the run we were off to the shops to get feet measured and buy some new shoes for the little lady. The Mothercare shop we visit has its very own soft play area, where the kids can burn off a bit of steam. It came as no surprise that this little lady was asleep in the car before we even got home! The day ended with my sisters coming over for pizza and deadpool. Sadly it wasn’t the night I’d hoped for as a really bad stomach ache became a huge distraction, and Chloe’s teething kicked in and left us with a screaming baby that we couldn’t ignore!

Day 185 - Jul 9th
Day 185 – Jul 9th

186: Our only commitment for Sunday was to visit my mother, and for me to meet some friends in the evening to discuss their wedding plans. Sadly after a pretty rough nights sleep, my brain was unconcerned with decisions I needed to be making or conversations I needed to be having, and even simple questions resulted in my brain doing this… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsNaR6FRuO0

Day 186 - Jul 10th
Day 186 – Jul 10th

365 project, Personal, Photography

More project 365 photos: days 168 – 179

Welcome back to the project 365 update and another look at what has been going on or catching my eye, as we now get closer to halfway through the project.

168: We start off with a shot of some very colourful tulips sat on our window ledge that I had bought for the wife. Its lovely to see nice, bright colours about the house and I know the wife appreciates it. I used to buy flowers regularly for her, but I guess that as time goes by and children preoccupy your time, you forget to do things like this, but I think that a small gesture can go a long way!

Day 168 - Jun 22nd
Day 168 – Jun 22nd

169: This little lady is now trying her best to roll over by herself. Suddenly she has gone from not wanting to move to trying her hardest to get over, and now she is so close!

Day 169 - Jun 23rd
Day 169 – Jun 23rd

170: Friday night and you just want to sit down with a beer and watch a film on the tv, but when you suspect that teething may possibly have started and your little one won’t settle then there is one screen you really must keep your eye on!

Day 170 - Jun 24th
Day 170 – Jun 24th

171: Saturday, its the weekend and time to take the girls to see their grandparents. Now they don’t have a car its essential that we make the journey to them as often as we can so they can see the girls and spend time with them.

Day 171 - Jun 25th
Day 171 – Jun 25th

172: Sunday morning starts with swimming, and I was hoping to meet friends there, but sadly they couldn’t make it. Olivia still enjoyed herself though, and we still got to catch up with our friends after the swim anyway. The two girls are just weeks apart and love playing together.

Day 172 - Jun 26th
Day 172 – Jun 26th

173: Monday rolls back around and clearly its not just the adults feeling tired. It looks like we have really got this little lady’s sleep routine under way. By 8pm she needs to have had her final bottle as she is good for nothing, and ready for bed! It seems we need to make sure that bottle is on time, and not be hanging around, as this girl waits for no-one!

Day 173 - Jun 27th
Day 173 – Jun 27th

174: The say the eye is the window to the soul, and this little girl is full of soul, she is such a lively little thing that its actually hard to get many photos of her at the moment. She is normally rolling round or rolling over, and doesn’t stay still for long. This photo took a number of attempts to get right!

Day 174 - Jun 28th
Day 174 – Jun 28th

175: I seem to be getting a lot of late nights recently, so many things to do in the evening (including this!), and I have a limited amount of time once the girls are in bed and asleep. I am terrible when it comes to staying up late all the time and need to stop making excuses for when it comes to going to bed… soon, I’ll do it soon!

Day 175 - Jun 29th
Day 175 – Jun 29th

176: Earlier in the year I had planted some seeds in the greenhouse, and now they were ready for transferring from pot into the garden. It seems like far too exciting a task for someone to be left out of and the words “I help” generally aren’t a request, more a notification! But you know what, after a long day at work and battling the traffic home whilst on two wheels, this is what I want… time with the girls, and not sat in front of the tv!

Day 176 - Jun 30th
Day 176 – Jun 30th

177: Evenings out are few and far between lately, and even less common are nights out together! I had been invited to a surprise 40th birthday of one of my oldest friends, a girl I had known since I was 3 years old. As we were also going out for food the following night, and using a babysitting favour with the in-laws, we didn’t have much choice but to take the girls with us, which was fine as Chloe was asleep in no time after her bottle anyway and Olivia was having a whale of a time running around and on the dancefloor. The photo obviously wasn’t actually taken my me, but was taken on my phone so still counts as my photo of the day in my book!

Day 177 - Jul 1st
Day 177 – Jul 1st

178: She did it! She’s finally on her front, and now we can’t seem to stop her! Literally every time we lay her on her back, she is attempting to roll over, although thankfully not in her bed yet!

Day 178 - Jul 2nd
Day 178 – Jul 2nd

179: Who says Birmingham isn’t beautiful?! A lovely stroll over the Lickey Hills on a Sunday morning is made extra special with a bit of unexpected sunshine warming our backs! I was looking after my friends little boy and wanted to head home and bring the girls over here too, but with lunch and naps an absolute necessity, I had missed my opportunity. So we headed out to Warley Woods for a stroll after we’d had our evening meal. We even got there in time to get an ice cream and sit in the sun to eat it.

Day 179 - Jul 3rd
Day 179 – Jul 3rd