Thursday, May 31, 2012

march, in photos

In march there was sunshine and curry and cuddling piglets. There were photoshoots and flowers.  And there was growing tall enough to see over the dinner table. 

Monday, May 28, 2012

coffee coffee blah blah

"Nye, I don't think I can go on much longer without an espresso machine."
"a nespresso machine?"
"no, an espresso machine." 
Espresso machines. Real ones, not ones that use those silly pods. Any recommendations?  

Thursday, May 24, 2012

lessons in humility, acceptance and not being a moron

Yesterday at dinner time we decided to go camping. Spontaneously! With twins!  Never mind our carefully constructed routine or the fact that the girls had already had a wildly exciting day and hadn't napped or that it was dinner time or that we have 18 month old toddlers who have never been camping or that the campsite was an hour's drive away and it was rush hour or that it was just a stupid idea, we were being spontaneous!

Summer arrived in the UK yesterday. More dramatically still, summer arrived in Glasgow. I can't tell you how long it's been since we had summer, roughly 3 years maybe? And I can't tell you how much we have missed camping, it's something that we love and that we couldn't wait to do with the girls. Never mind people's raised eyebrows, we were going to be Cool Family That Doesn't Bat An Eyelid at Camping With Toddlers. Spontaneously. 

Well we hadn't reckoned on Amelia. Which was silly, as we've had 18 months to come to terms with Amelia, 18 months which has mostly been spent figuring out what she needs to happen for her to go to sleep at night. What she needs does not include a spontaneous camping trip that starts at dinner time. Girl LOVED the campsite, LOVED the tent, LOVED the food and the wild and the trees and the horses and the wigwams at the campsite. Girl loved them so much that there was no way in hell she was ever ever going to go to sleep despite the fact that she was falling flat on her face with tiredness. We thought that eventually, when she was tired enough, she would join the rest of us in our cosy pile of limbs and sleeping bags (Ella, after ten minutes of trying out different corners of the tent, settled happily in her daddy's armpit and started nodding off to sleep.) But an hour later she was not only ricocheting off the sides of the tent, she was screaming too. Which kind of sucked for the other campers who had travelled from Belgium and America to walk the West Highland Way and were getting up in the morning to continue their 96 mile trek. 

So we packed up and came home. Which was embarrassing. I'd thought that we were so damn cool, camping with our kiddos, we were one of those families who other families admire and think 'wow, they're so carefree, they haven't let having kids stop them from having adventures'. In other words I was a smug, self-congratulating  moron. 

The thing is, I've never once felt like we have let having kids stop us from having adventures, I had just become fixated on the idea that camping had to be one of them. Camping was my status adventure, the one I would take beautiful pictures of and blog about and bask in the congratulations of my readers for being So Cool (I know, I know, I hate myself too).

Despite the embarrassment of packing up and coming home I'm actually really glad that we went, for a few reasons. One, until we tried to go to sleep we had so much fun, in fact I don't think that the girls have ever had more fun in their lives. Watching them rampaging and exploring was one of my happiest moments as a parent. Oh and Ella called out for Ammie when she couldn't see her around the side of the tent, 'Me Moo? Meeee Moo?' and my heart exploded with love. Two, we realllllllly needed to break out of our routine, do something that was neither work or agonising over selling our house, which is pretty much all we've done for a month. But thirdly, and most importantly, I learnt some lessons in humility (see above) and acceptance.  Accepting that one of our children just doesn't deal with huge amounts of change and excitement as well as I might like and that it's our responsibility to look out for her and not to throw her things she can't deal with just because we think that if they worked out they would be really fun. I've always thought that we had accepted that Amelia is just slightly harder work than Ella (most of the time, Ella has her moments, her 'exorcist moments' as I like to think of them) but I feel like yesterday was one of those eye-opening moments when you realise that you still had a little way to go before you were quite the person/parent/whatever that you wanted to be and that you might have just made it a step closer. Which is kind of cool. 

(our camping bible - maybe this face should have been a warning - rocking the neon trend - exploring - the builder - "hullo, buh bye" - 10pm, an escapee - Going Home.) 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

you know that thing I said about "maybe it's not so bad if I'm not certain about everything"? It was a pile of arse.
that's all. 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

in Wigan.

As 'moving to London' becomes less something that we talk about doing in the future and more something that looks like it might actually happen, the urgency with which I feel like I'm going to vomit right into my lap increases drastically.

Don't get me wrong, we still haven't sold our flat and we haven't started looking for houses in London, and since that one day when we announced that we were planning on moving we have done absolutely nothing to try and secure work. But it's looking more like it's something that is going to happen, and within the next year, and ohmygod I'm going to throw up. The thing is, I feel sort of paralysed. Somewhere between the life I've spent 5 years building and the life we talk and dream about for our future and somewhere there, half way between Glasgow and London (Wigan?) there's me, curled in to the foetal position pretending it's all not happening while spectres of mortgage lenders and the frankly terrifying business competition in London delightedly jab me with their fingers and whisper gleeful promises of failure in my ear.

Call it fear or pessimism or denial but I feel exactly like I did when I was 37 weeks pregnant, that nothing is ever ever going to change, I'm going have two people inside me and need to pee six times a minute FOREVER. I can picture the future with our dog and our garden and our beautiful London clients and I'm more or less present in the life we live just now (which make no mistake, is pretty amazing) but when I try to picture actually making the change? Wigan.

I'm working on leaving, no one wants to spend too long in Wigan (joking, I've never been, it might be lovely.) but I'm also trying to accept that this huge chasm of uncertainty between making a decision and actually being able to make it happen is just a fact of life and one that I need to embrace, not fight. Maybe it's not the end of the world if I'm not certain all of the time?


Thursday, May 10, 2012

my pretties.

I don't wear a lot of jewellery, more than I used to but not a lot. For a long time I just couldn't be bothered,  which evolved into 'babies, everywhere, pulling at my face' and now has finally settled into the wearing of a couple of small, really simple things which I love but which mostly (but not all) cost 20 pence and so are now disintegrating. The handful of things that I wear are as follows:
  • conical stud earrings in gold (the kind of gold that chips off) and in pewter - £6 for three, topshop
  • studs that look like pearls from afar but are actually brushed silver (a present, about £25. Pricy.)
  • a black friendship bracelet with silver beads which was a gift from a bestie. I'm terrified that the string is going to wear through like the one I gave her in return did so I only wear it when I need to channel her badassery to get through the day. It's my equivalent of strapping on a pair. It was about $30 from Catbird.  

There's a theme; simple and Not Expensive. While the thought of wearing jewellery that is Expensive thrills me (I've been known to drag Nye down Bond Street, looking at £500,000 rings with my nose pressed up against the windows while he glares around with contempt muttering 'this is revolting, I can't believe you made me come here. Hey, that's Chris Eubank.) actually wearing anything that cost more than 30 quid would probably make me nauseus. So I should probably stop looking at these beauties from Mociun, for although they are (perfectly) simple they are Not Cheap and therefore Not For Me. But how I would love to replace my crappy, flaking gold studs with Mociun's exact copy (times $100) in gold which I'm pretty sure wouldn't peel off. 

all images from Modicun

Wednesday, May 09, 2012


It's taken a while but I'm finally, well and truly, in love with Beyonce. Did you see the dress she wore to the Met Gala? God, that's one sexy woman. I love that she radiates an air of couldn't-give-a-fuck-what-you-think, while also appearing wholly dignified. I like that in a person. 

* photo from this wedding. Yes, I'm the wedding photographer who will stand in front on MTV for 5 minutes waiting for the right moment to photograph Beyonce shaking her ass behind you. I'm also the wedding photographer who will put down her cameras during the reception to dance to Single Ladies with your two-year-old niece. Just so you know.