Shop update

I have finally found the time to photograph these Pyramid necklaces (they've been ready to sell since December!), thank you Elizabeth and your new found 1.5hr lunchtime naps! I'm finding product photography the hardest part of the process at the moment, as you can see from these photos I haven't quite got the hang of the white balance. Anyhow... The pyramids are made from 3mm acrylic, come in mirrored gold, mirrored silver and black and white. They are £8 and you can find them here. I do hope you like them.

7 months

Here we are again, little lady. Another month older...and what a month it's been. The hardest yet, for me anyway - I don't think Elizabeth has noticed! For her the month has been full. It started with tentative bum shuffling and ended with a cavalier attempt at crawling. Whatever the method one thing is for sure: she is on the move. Also new this month: pulling herself up to standing. Her preferred location for practicing this is in her cot, but, ever the opportunist, she will have ago wherever she can - I now understand why so many women cut their hair once they have kids! Ouch.

We have new sounds. There's still a lot of high pitched squealing and grunting (esp. when fed up with being in the high chair/car seat/push chair) but there is also now 'Ba ba' and...'Ma ma' YES! The first time she said it she was upset (more bloody teething) and cried into my chest 'ma ma'. Heart melting. Now she looks at me and says it, so I know it's not an accident. Wow.
Not a lot to say about eating. She's still doing it. Still not a fan of apple or anything too sharp. She's getting better with her sippy cup although always seems a bit offended by the water inside it. We've done a little bit of baby led weaning (mostly because I got fed up with pureeing stuff), just toast and some carrot batons, it's going ok.

Sleeping has been mixed. We've had our worst night and our best this month. Moving her to her own room and (sob) stopping breastfeeding have made a massive difference. Both have been incredibly emotional for me but luckily Lizzie seems none the wiser and is finally sleeping better.
I'm sure she is going to become quite the little madam. Everywhere we go she is the centre of attention. Cooed at and fussed over endlessly. And who can help it? I would literally do anything to make her smile.

This month you have been to 2 birthday parties, made 3 trips to London, started eating in your high chair, moved into your own room and learned to wave hello and goodbye. You clever little thing! 

8/52 (and a few more)

"A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."

Elizabeth and I enjoying some alfresco cuddles. This was taken on Friday when we all headed into London for a day out. London seems to be our default location for days out at the moment. I miss it... We did a lot of walking about, a bit of shopping, a bit of coffee drinking and lunch with Auntie Katie before heading back to Waterloo and our train home. Here are some more photos:


 The other day I spent a couple of hours looking through some photos from last summer. I came across these from a day we spent doing tourist things in London, knowing that we would be leaving soon. Matt was on holidays, the sun was shining, E was super portable and we were pretty sure we had a handle on this parenting malarkey.
What a day! Summer please will you hurry the fuck up?!

An update

Reading in bed. No babies allowed.
Last week I wrote a post about how tough things are at the moment. It was daunting to open up and talk about it on here but I'm glad I did. Thank you for all your advice and support. Sometimes being a mama can be lonely, confusing, hard work. It's good to be reminded that there are others out there going through the same shit, coping, not coping, picking up the pieces, getting on with it. I feel better for sharing. Here's some positive stuff that's happened since then:
  • We moved Elizabeth into her own room on Saturday and she is sleeping better already. We've had a couple of 5hr stretches, she's gone down for her daytime naps with no fuss and yesterday she slept for 1.5hrs at lunch time. FIRST TIME EVER!
  • Now we have our room back I have rekindled one of my favourite past times - reading in bed. I didn't realise how much I missed it. How good does it feel to snuggle in bed with a book before going to sleep? So much better than being glued to the TV. I am already sleeping better and feeling more myself.
  • We booked tickets to see Fleetwood Mac in Stockholm! London was sold out and pre-baby we'd always talked about doing a city break centred round a gig (Justice in Paris was the dream). E'll be over 1 by the time the concert rocks round and staying with her Grandparents so we'll get some much needed couple time. I've always wanted to go to Stockholm too. Bonus.
  • Matt has booked Friday off work to spend the day with us. He's been doing 17hr days recently (I'm not even exaggerating) and we've missed him. Happy. 
Oh go on then


      "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."

    This was taken yesterday, the day before she moved into her own room, sitting on our bed. She's all moved now. There were tears (from both of us - I am a total wuss). I'm going to miss her. And then I'm going to pull myself together and enjoy having my own space again. Yay!

    Bad day at the office

    It's been a long hard week. More teething, night wakings and endlessly domestic days. Motherhood is all consuming. Right now there's not a lot of room in my life for much else. Not a lot of time for me.

    It's ok - this is what she needs right now, I'm her mum, it's my job, I'll do whatever it takes - of course. And she always manages to cheer me up - that smile - it's impossible not to smile along with her. The nice bits are still nice. I just feel like we've lost our balance a little.

    We're moving her into her own room tomorrow. For me this a big step with mixed emotions. On one hand it is a sign my baby is growing up, growing further away from me, which I feel sad about. On the other hand it will, hopefully, help her sleep better, help her become more independent, give me a little space. Perhaps get that balance back.

    Am I selfish for wanting that? Is it possible to be a mum and your own person? How do you find balance? Would love to know your thoughts.

    What we're reading

    I've worked in children's publishing for nearly 7 years now (it'll be 7 years on the 8th of March to be exact, although I'm on maternity leave at the moment). That's a long time for me to be doing anything! It's not something I've ever really talked about on my blog. I suppose that's because my blog has always been a creative outlet for life outside of my 9-5, and children's books were never relevant to that. But now I have a child and my blog has become more and more about her and our new life together, which involves a fair amount of reading. So I thought I might share a little of what Elizabeth reads (or what I read to her).

    The first book that we've been reading a lot of recently is not from the publisher I work for (Walker books), but was a gift from my friend Jenny who, incidentally, will soon have a little baby of her own. Orange Pear Apple Bear by Emily Gravett. I love it. Now I'm a mum I look at picture books from a completely different perspective; not only do they need to look nice (this used to be my only concern), they also need to sound good. This book easily fills both those orders. It only has 5 words and 4 of those are in the title but that doesn't matter at all. It is poetic, playful and a joy to read out-loud.

    The illustrations are simple yet charming. E's still a bit young to understand but I hope once she does she will love this book as much as I do. For now a good old chew will have to do! I would recommend Orange Pear Apple Bear for babies of E's age up to young children who'll love the repetition and rhythm.


     "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."

    This weekend we went up to Nuneaton, Matt's home town, to celebrate Elizabeth's Grandad's 70th. And here she is with the man himself. We had a great weekend - good food, great company and a chance to catch up on sleep - what more could you ask for. Happy birthday Grandad John!

    The Bravest Man in the Universe

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    I always dread it when a conversation turns to music. Don't get me wrong, I love music - new bands, old favourites, a lot of electronic stuff - I'm just no good at talking about it and have a terrible memory for song titles, lyrics and bands. Never try to persuade me to join a pub quiz. We will loose. So writing about music is WAY out of my comfort zone. But I'm going to try because I want to share my most listened to album of the last few months. The Bravest Man in the Universe by Bobby Womack. Matt bought it on a whim and almost immediately regretted it, so the album sat in its cellophane on our dining room table waiting to be returned for a month before we decided to give it a listen on a long car journey. It's been on repeat ever since. It is a stunning album; soulful, melancholic, uplifting. Perfect to drive to. Produced by Damon Albarn and Richard Russell it reminds me of Gil Scott-Heron and Jamie XX's We're New Here (another favourite of mine). Womack's weathered voice sits beautifully upon Albarn and Russell's minimal electronic beats, a skillful mix of old and new. The album is full of remorse, an apology for a life lived to the fullest, a gravelly out-pouring set against a very modern sound scape. One track features the faux-60s ethereal voice of Lana Del Ray, another Fatoumata Diawara (whoever she is). I'm not sure what else to say, as I mentioned, I am way out my comfort zone, but it is everything I like. If you listened to Massive attack and Portishead as a teen, went to see Primal Scream's recent Screamadelica tour or own any XX then you should listen too.

    PS Sorry for the lack of posts this week. We're trying to wean Elizabeth off her night feeds. It's not going well. 


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     "A portrait of my child, once a week, every week, in 2013."

    This was taken on the train to Oxford on Friday, right before she cuddled up to me and fell asleep. My heart melted. She seems to be growing up so fast and moments like this remind me she's still my baby.

    Studio inspiration

    January is over. I gave myself the month off after working hard in the run up to Christmas. No excuses now. There's new jewellery to be photographed, packaging to be revamped and a shop to be restocked. But first a workspace rethink. I have a corner of Matt's office all to myself. No Babies Allowed. It needs some TLC so I made a little inspiration board to motivate me.


    Happy friday! 

    images - design sponge and pinterest 
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