It’s Saturday afternoon here as I am writing this. LL is snuggled up in their room having her usual nap, Mr E is downstairs painting, while Mads and I are cosy and warm in our bed having what we call our ‘quiet time.’ This is just when we both cuddle together while LL sleeps, I sometimes have a snooze myself or else I do work/blog/read my book/generally waste time on my phone. She has a bit of iPad time and we snuggle together as close as can be. Quiet time generally only happens at the weekend now, or of course during the holidays, but most of the time she is at school. At the moment, being pregnant and tired, I literally live for the couple of hours in which we cosy up together and relax.
I was racking my brains trying to think of my ‘ordinary moment’ for the week. Normally I have something in mind, something that has happened during the week to trigger an emotion, or a mini milestone, or just something I have thought of, but this week I just couldn’t think of anything. Yesterday afternoon we had a special and sentimental moment as it was Mads first school disco. She came home to get ready and then LL, her and I headed back off to school. I felt like it was quite a mini milestone- my biggest daughter having her first school disco, so I decided I would take a couple of photos of them dressed up, just to acknowledge and remember it by.
It turns out that it just didn’t go according to plan whatsoever. We had to wake LL up from her nap to get back to the disco in time and she was seriously grumpy. We had a couple of teary tantrums trying to get her dressed and put her shoes on, and then when it came to taking a photo before we went she just wasn’t having it whatsoever. We abandoned the idea, although I did get a nice photo of Mads, and headed off to the disco. We ended up having a lovely time, the girls got covered in UV glow in the dark paint and they danced the night away (or for two hours at least!) with their friends. I got home and told Mr E about what a wonderful time they had and how I was annoyed I hadn’t captured it before hand. And he looked at me funnily and said…
‘But you did capture it. You took a few photos. They didn’t really work- that’s real life.’
His words really have made me think. I started this blog to record our family diaries and while over time it has developed into more than that, it’s become a business of sorts, a place which has enabled me to work from home, a place where I have worked with brands, a place where I can release my creative side and a place where I practice my love of photography, at the end of the day the original reason I started it still remains- a place to record our lives.
I don’t know if other bloggers feel the same as me but sometimes I feel a lot of pressure. Pressure to make my photos even better than the post before, pressure to take photos when to be honest we just don’t really feel like it, pressure to make my instagram beautiful or to blog about something interesting. As my blog and subsequently my social media are our ‘real life’, I don’t take styled photos, my instagram and blog are mainly photos of us. Therefore when we aren’t really ‘feeling it’ I don’t have anything else to make up the space- pretty styled photos of flowers, gorgeous interiors, tasty recipes or the like.
I adore photography, I love improving my photos and learning more about my camera, but at the same time lets face it sometimes you just really don’t feel like doing it- when the days are grey and miserable, when you are tired or your children are playing up, the last thing you want to do is pick up a camera. I only really blog when I have something to say, I always have done, but because I also do the ‘Ordinary Moments’ once a week I often feel like I have to write something interesting each week and take nice photos. While I am always honest, I feel like I have to make sure my photos are pretty and are in context with my blog.
But this week we are just not feeling it. Our ‘ordinary moments’ are that this week has been tough. It’s not been tough in the grand scheme of life, but it’s certainly not been one to shout about. I have been absolutely shattered all week, with pregnancy tiredness really making me have zero energy to do anything other than the deadlines I need to do and to just about get us fed and dressed in the mornings. I feel like I am walking around with a thick fog in front of my face, that I am not completely present and that I just feel a bit distant.
Our house is a complete and utter tip and while of course our new extension is 100% worth it, it is also taking its toll on us all. It’s a complete mess, with its current status being that our living room is chaos, so much so that the girls can’t even play with their toys. The carpet has been ripped up, there are boxes everywhere and the whole of the house is coated in a thick layer of dust and grime. There are builders, ladders, dust sheets and paint wherever you look and while the end is most definitely in sight, this week has just been a little bit of a write off. We have just done what we need to do and collapsed into bed at the end of the day. We don’t have family that we can stay with unfortunately, so we are very much living amongst the mess.
So rather than insert some super cute posed photos of my girls, or a happy colourful family photo, or a golden sunshiny shot at the park, I am going to show our ‘ordinary moments’ of the week. A week of chaos. A week of not doing much other than getting through the day as quickly and contently as we possibly can. A week full of a few special moments- a first school disco, snuggly cuddles in bed, a trip to IKEA with no children and a date lunch after, and some silly times, but also a week where we generally have felt low on energy and generally a bit fed up.
Life isn’t always picture perfect, at least my life certainly isn’t.
But these times are the most ordinary of moments.
(A week of mess, painting, house chaos and possibly the BEST photo ever of LL when I wanted to take a photo of them both before Mads first school disco- that is her tantrum/’I am going to kill you in your sleep’ face. Although I did take a photo of my big girl that I love which is the image at the top of the blog post.)