Mamatography Week 10 And Week 11 : Playing Catch Up

Week 10

Mamatography Week 10 for us was all about World Book Week. The kids loved it, and it was great fun for all of us.

62: Play – We were invited to a play and I was so nervous about going with the girls, but really wanted to give it a shot anyway. We sat near the exit so my husband could duck out with the girls when they got too fidgety, but they were amazing. Seriously, Ameli watched almost all of it, and Aviya played on the Kindle for the whole thing. Even the cast came afterwards to tell us how awesome the girls were. They were fantastic. I miss going to plays and theatre so very much, so this was a most encouraging outing for us. Oh, and if you have a chance to see In Praise of Elephants, go for it. It’s brilliant.

63:Paint By Numbers – I can’t believe my baby is old enough to do paint by numbers pictures. Madness. She was doing it so well too.

65:I Can Read With My Eyes Shut – Our book of the day, and the accompanying craft from Activities To Celebrate Dr Seuss

66: Activities Box – Most weeks I’ll put together a kit for the week. I’ll spend this week putting together things for next week, following our pre-determined PlayLearning Theme. It’s helpful in getting things done and looking calm and collected at the same time.

67:World Book Day Games – We had a World Book Day Party with friends, and here the kids are playing a game as Dr Seuss’ Sneetches, some with stars, some without.

68:Charlie and Lola Came For Tea – when Ameli got home from preschool, Charlie and Lola were at the table waiting for her. She was so excited, it was sweet.

Mamatography 10

Week 11

With Aviya having dental surgery last week, I totally ran out of time for all the blogging I ‘need’ to do. So here you  have two weeks of Mamatography in one. Aren’t you lucky!

69: Waiting To Grow: We made honey cookies from a Winnie the Pooh book, and planted flowers as instructed in the story too. Ameli was relatively disappointed that she managed to make it through the cookies and no plants had shown up yet. A week later and they still haven’t. Poor girl. A valuable lesson in patience, I’m sure.

70:In Yo Face! Or something less street. I took Aviya to the hospital in London for her pre-surgery assessment, and someone walking behind me commented on how uncomfortable Avi looked ‘tied up like that’. Well, I asked her loudly if she was comfortable, and snapped a photo of her response. I think we’re okay, random stranger. But thanks.

71: Friends: What’s better than having friends? Friends who bring you food and then cook it too. Yuri (you may know him as @Urbanvox) is a legend.

72: Spring Gardening: I’ve tried for a number of years now to get a decent garden space for the girls, but it seems year after year my budget just gets tighter. It’s amazing how creative you can be with next to nothing, and access to Pinterest.

73: Baking Carrot Cake: We reviewed the book The Carrot Cake Catastrophe, which involved Ameli and baking, something she’s been doing with me since she was two. I miss it, really, and it’s time for me to get Aviya cooking too.

75: Faux Birthday: The picture is tagged as 74, but it’s actually 75. It’s Aviya’s Faux-birthday, since her surgery was scheduled for her birthday, we had a pretend birthday the day before. We’ll have a party in a couple of weeks. I can’t believe mybaby girl is two.

Mamatography 11

See you again next week for Mamatography, Week 12!

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 This post is part of the Mamatography 2014 Project with Diary of a First Child and Momma Jorje.

We are taking (at least) a photo a day, a collage or a picture each week to keep a record of our year. Join us at any point during the year and start sharing your own daily photos!

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Friday Features: ‘Pineapples And Artichokes’ And ‘The Mahogany Way’

Pineapples and Artichokes is a warm and loving blog, written by Shannon, mother to Moira and Davis. Shannon writes in very much the way I tend to think: with a steady stream of consciousness and deep introspection. She turns it into a narrative of her children though, and is – to my mind at least – an incredibly conscious mother and very present in her own life.

I absolutely respect and admire how Shannon handles things with her daughter. For example, when Moira was struggling with dealing with her emotions, Shannon drew a happy and sad face and they made a list of things that made her (Moira) one or the other. I thought it was an ingenious way of exploring emotions.

Shannon posts a lot of photos and pictures of her family and their life. It’s a visual representation of a mother’s dedication to her home and her people, and it’s always beautiful. She’s also incredibly crafty and sews quilts and clothes. I envy people who have the patience to sew – I learned how, but can’t be bothered with it. I glued my advent calendar together in December because I got fed up with tiny stiches!

Shannon also blogs at Food & Laughter where she shares some of her fabulous recipes.

If you ever want wholesomeness on paper (or on screen, in this case), Pineapples and Artichokes will leave you feeling… just… good. And a little happier, in your soul.

Another blog bursting at the seams with beautiful, wholesome family life, is The Mahogany Way. Written by Darcel, her home life is depicted charmingly in her blog.

Aside from being an awesome Mama though, Darcel is a passionate breastfeeder – which is how I discovered her in the first place – and shares her own breastfeeding journey with her four children.

In the post ‘Freedom’, Darcel writes something that really resonated with me – not in a ‘yes, me too’ way, sadly, but rather in an ‘I yearn for that’ way – she writes about the changes in herself and her views on parenting over the last five years and how she used to believe that she could shape her children into who she felt they ought to be:

Now I clearly see that it’s a waste of time and energy to even think that way. I’m proud to say that my kids are free to be kids….free to be themselves. I’ve learned not to hush them when they cry, or tell them how to feel, or what to think.

In this house you’re free to simply be.

I think that’s beautiful, and I’m so conscious of the words I use with Ameli, and more importantly, the ones she repeats back to me. (She has a habit of telling me that she’s a good girl. “You’re a big girl now.” “No, I’m a good girl!” or “Mama’s a bit sad today”,  “Ameli make mama happy?” How do you explain, “No darling… happiness comes from inside, no one else can make you happy” to a two year old? And why does she feel the need to be ‘good’ or to make me happy??)

It’s not all sunshine though. Darcel has dealt with her share of depression – particularly the post-partum kind – and while I love her posts on pretty much everything, it’s the honesty in her writing about depression that deeply touches me. I never had so much as the 3rd day blues with Ameli, but due to sickness in both pregnancies I’ve had my own share of pre-partum depression – if that’s the right term?  Darcel’s openness is refreshing and valuable and I’m sure means a lot to mothers who also find themselves yelling at their 9 week olds will find solace and hope in her words.

Both bloggers make me want to pour a cuppa, put my feet up, read a while, and then go away and cuddle my baby.