I absolutely love the idea of recording my children as they change and grow. I'm going to take part in the Living Arrows project, in which you share a photograph of your child (or children, in my case!) every week.
The project, now in its third year, is inspired by the following quote by Khalil Gibran:
You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth
As I watch my two children grow and change I can't help but see myself, the bow, reflected back, in good ways and bad. I understand more and more that my role is to fire my children into the world armed with the weapons they need - courage, kindness and love, always, always love.
I take photographs of my children all the time. To the point whereby I have to tell myself 'no, STOP' sometimes when actually taking a picture would be a really, really bad idea. Like yesterday when Cherry and Violet were wandering along holding hands and giggling and I thought 'that would be such a cute picture' but in between attempting to grab my phone out of my bag and keep hold of the buggy my concentration wavered and when I looked up again Violet was marching determinedly towards the road!
Lapses in judgement aside, I have plenty to share.
First up is V.
The softness of your face! Sometimes I want to freeze time and keep you forever my little baby. It's been a long time since you were that tiny peaceful contented baby and now you never stop moving, chatting and making mayhem. But when you sleep, I see that gentle, contented peace you carry around inside your perfect little self.
Oh, this girl and sleep - will we ever get there? It's been nearly 17 months and she's as erratic as ever. Over Christmas she actually gave us two separate nights in which she only woke once - once, not until 4.30am. I felt like I'd been on a spa break! But with the new year came two new teeth and we're back to waking hourly. Last night she was inexplicably awake from 11.30pm until 4am. CRY.
But all it takes is one look through my burning, reddened eyes at her beautiful face, captured here in that rarest of states, asleep, and I would forgive her anything. She's at the most delightful age, her comprehension and speech impress me every day and her sense of humour is particularly advanced for one so young!
You announced this morning you were a princess and needed a crown. You went to soft play with Violet and Daddy and napped in the car on the way home. When you woke up you were all at sea. You climbed onto my lap and rested your face in my chest. 'Mummy! I don't want to be a princess any more.' I asked if you just wanted to be a Cherry and you nodded into my jumper.
Cherry has started properly at her Montessori pre-school this term. Last term she did two three-hour sessions a week, this week she is doing three three-hour sessions and going to lunch club for two of them. All in all she's out for 11 hours a week. After a year at home with the pair of them full-time, being able to hear myself THINK for 11 hours a week is absolutely heavenly! She's so funny about pre-school, she seems to enjoy it when she's there, talks about it a lot, she's MAD about lunch club and is making friends. But every single day when we get up (at 5am, this week!) she asks not to go to pre-school.
She's a sensitive soul and not the most adaptable child, she's very resistant to change and responds well to routine. So I am hopeful that going to pre-school more often will help her adjust. If I thought she genuinely didn't like it, I would stop her going immediately, but she is so bright and happy and full of chatter and confidence when I pick her up, and talks so often about her teachers and friends, that I am sure it's the right thing for her.
She's at such a wonderful age, such a funny, creative, loving, capable little thing. Bursting with energy and happiness and love and a total motormouth. She's a real handful!.
I am so, so, so grateful to be these incredible girls' bow.