This Monday was the first day of daycare for T2 and pre-k for T1. I took the kids to the front yard for a photo and had one child enamored with a balloon and another shivering from the cold. I went back inside and grabbed some jackets so we could try that again.
Much better! And I will unabashedly brag here and say that I did not ask them to hug OR smile. They hugged and smiled for both my dSLR and my iPhone, which earned them a lot of mommy brownie points. I have trained them well.
T1 is going to the same school he has been at for the past year, a school that we chose our housing location based on, and a place that we are already to anxious to enroll T2 in. We love this school so much! When the kids attend as four-year-olds they make a really big deal out of it being the pre-k year, breaking the kids off into a special corner throughout the day to focus a little less on play and a little more on letters and numbers. In the last few months I’ve seen a big change in the detail in his drawings and his desire to engage in imaginative play, and I’m looking forward to watching him progress even more through 2015. We are currently thinking that he will attend the school’s private kindergarten next year as well.
From December of last year to June of this year T2 had been spending 3 days/week with a family down the street, playing with a mom and her six home-schooled children. It was so reassuring to know that she was in an environment where she was loved and adored by so many people, and she had no problem waving goodbye to me each morning when the teenage girls came to pick her up. Unfortunately the mom’s schedule is changing this school year and she is unable to continue the arrangement. Having regularly scheduled kid-free time is really essential for my happiness and emotional well-being, and after about 3 months of no regular help for T2 I told That Husband it was time to find some daycare for her. I waded into the Craigslist postings and spotted one close to our house that has a webcam in the playroom where I can check in on her throughout the day. It’s a home-based place with about a dozen kids and 3-4 caretakers at any given time. They provide the food and offered me the option of Monday-Friday care from 8:30am-1pm, which allows me to spend some time with her in the afternoons before she goes down for her nap. When I picked her up after her first day of care she babbled all the way home in excitement, so I think it’s a good fit for her as well.
Now to wade through my mass of photos from the past year and write a few catch-up posts. Because I know everyone is dying to know what we did for Christmas in 2014 :).
There’s been lots of talk about happiness, and what makes us happy, round these here parts (and by that I mean, large swaths of conversation with That Husband) and it’s helped me realize that one of the things that makes me happy is writing about my life on this blog. I used to document so many things, open up my mind through my interactions with all of you, and I’m trying to figure out what changes I can make to come back to that point again. I know that blogging (as we used to know it) is dying out, but I was a fairly early adopter and think I’ll plan to be someone who holds on past prime.
I’ll kick things off with a brain dump, broken up by some of my favorite film shots from the past 6 months.
I’ll set the stage for you.
Dad and son are at the park together. Mom and daughter stay home to work on dinner. Well, mom is working on dinner and daughter is watching Daniel Tiger in the bedroom. She’s giggling and talking to herself and it feels like the best kind of Friday evening at home.
Sadly, idyllic times like the one described above aren’t meant to last when there are young children at home. In between prepping the vegetables and dredging the meat I went back to check on what exactly what was so funny about Daniel Tiger and found my duvet cover, baby girl, and baby girl’s stuffed lion covered in globs of hair wax.
She was so proud of her work! Dinner was put on hold and That Husband got home just in time to strip her down and scrub her hair while I washed the bedding and kept the rice from burning.
The next day, a bout of overdue toddler proofing commenced. I’d say we were lucky to be able to put it off this long. I’m going to think about styling her hair sometime, but with a much more conservative dollop of hair wax (the lion has hopefully seen his last round of sticky hair styling).
My Jenna Cole Photography website makeover is nearing completion, and as I look through the images for the site I can see some gaps in my image selection. I did a call for portfolio subjects in May, and as I prepare for family portrait sessions this fall I’d like to have diversify my image base a little bit more.
I’m looking for either a family with older children (pre-teen and above) or a couple (you don’t have to be married, or even thinking about getting married, and if you’ve been together awhile why not do a session without the kids for once?) If you (or someone you know!) live in the San Francisco Bay Area and would be interested in working with me you can fill out my form and I’ll be in touch if it’s a good fit. Sessions need to happen before the 27th of August and I’m only planning to do 2-3 total. After that I think I won’t be offering any more free opportunities like this for awhile.
These sessions will be done entirely on film. Wondering what that will look like? Here’s a sampling of my favorite film shots from the last few months.