Elma Exploring Family Kitty Living Arrows Photography

Living Arrows 20/52

Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
Elma is very definitely in that developmental stage where there’s nothing she cannot do.  She seems to have no fear; nothing is too big or too difficult and I don’t think she ever stops trying to find something new to climb.  Where Kitty leads, she doesn’t see any reason why she shouldn’t follow.  And so it’s Kitty by comparison who seems to be a little more timid about trying out new things, a sense of self-preservation seems to be kicking in.
We spent Friday having a picnic with friends up at the fabulous Ryton Pools play park; it’s huge, mostly the right sort of size for tallish three year olds and was practically deserted.  Perfect.  The three year olds ran, climbed, scooted down the slide, played on the stick xylophone, and continued a long running and rather convoluted game of pirates that they resurrect every time they get together; and the two baby sisters, tottered around in circles, made a beeline for the “sh-wings”, and death stared any Mama who dared to suggest that they might like to chill out on the blankets for a little while.
Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
Kitty had had a go on this swirly whirligig and nothing was going to stop Elma following suit, even if it is bigger than she is!
Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
But it was Kitty who surprised me; she watched her friend whizz down the zip wire before deciding it was her go; albeit a go with Mama holding on all the time, and then she decided that actually, she could do it – and so I let go.  It’s not crazy fast or very high, but for Kit that took a little blind faith in herself, and a lot of courage.
Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
I think it must have given her a little boost because the next thing we knew she was completely up for trying to climb up to the crows’ nests; and with a  bit of a helping hand at key points she did it too.
Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
I don’t have any pictures that show the ground but let’s just say that I’m 6’0″ and I’m not crouching down or downhill.
 Space for the Butterflies - an eclectic handmade family life
It’s a funny one to navigate as a parent isn’t it; on the one hand I don’t want her to get hurt, and it’s a great thing that she’s starting to become aware of what might get her hurt, but on the other hand I want to encourage her, to give her confidence in herself to have faith and to go for it.  I seem to spend so much time biting back “be careful” and telling her “you can do it; I’m here if you need me”; all the time wondering whether it would be OK to just keep her at home tucked up in bubble wrap.  But then I see that smile; the smile that says that she did it, “all by my own Mummy!”, and I wouldn’t wish that away from her for the world.
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  • Faded Seaside Mama 19/05/2014 at 9:47 am

    I love these photos! Her smile really does say it all! I agree that it is so hard to stand back and just let them try but our role is to be there to pick them up when they fall and to do that we have to let them.

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 9:57 pm

      Thank you 🙂 It seems like such a fine line to walk doesn’t it, between standing back to let them try, and wanting to keep them safe.

  • My Two Mums 19/05/2014 at 10:06 am

    How grown up is Elma looking!!! Love these colourful shots, very summery.

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 9:59 pm

      I know, I’m not sure where my tiny baby went to but she’s definitely all toddler girl now!

  • older mum in a muddle 19/05/2014 at 10:34 am

    I think I say ‘be careful’ too much to Little A sometimes, but I try not to hold her back either; still, I need to turn ‘you can do it’ into more of a mantra. I remember how dare devil she became in the playground aged one and a half, and my heart was in my mouth! Just look at Elma go! X

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:03 pm

      There are definitely moments when I look at Kitty climbing something new and think “are you going to be able to reach that?” and I just have to stand and trust and smile and be there to catch the bumps but I know what you mean about having your heart in your mouth!!

  • Jenny 19/05/2014 at 1:53 pm

    wow that park looks amazing. Love the summer dress and hats gorgeous photos! So happy in the sun. Nothing better. Great memories made here. #livingarrows

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:06 pm

      It’s the first time we’d been over to that part of the park and it is just amazing – I can’t believe I didn’t take any shots of the whole thing! It goes all the way up the hill so the slide and the zip line are built into the natural curves with the crows nest climbing frame at the very top!

  • Michelle 19/05/2014 at 2:05 pm

    They are adorable, I love their summery outfits 🙂 Lovely post #livingarrows x

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:07 pm

      Thank you very much 🙂

  • Brandi 19/05/2014 at 2:14 pm

    That looks like a super cool park! I must say, letting kids go on their own is one of the hardest things about being a parent, and it doesn’t get any easier as they get older!

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:08 pm

      Don’t say that!! I’m hoping I’ll at least stop worrying about the climbing frame!

  • The Mummy Diary 19/05/2014 at 2:45 pm

    Beautiful and I just love all of the super bright colours, looks like lots of fun. We do love the park too 🙂 #livingarrows

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:09 pm

      It is a perk of all the rain we had isn’t it, that everything looks so lush and green in the sunshine!

  • Vikki Holness 19/05/2014 at 7:32 pm

    LOVE the colour and summery feel to these photos! That smile of pride when they accomplish something new is truly wonderful! xxx #livingarrows

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:10 pm

      Thankyou – and yes, her smile of achievement definitely made the moment!

  • Sarah 19/05/2014 at 8:42 pm

    It looks like they both had a lot of fun! Toby is only 10 months but already I’m finding it quite hard finding the balance between keeping him safe and letting him explore!

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:17 pm

      I’m guessing he’s still in the fully fledged ‘no fear’ stage then! I think I’ve been a little more relaxed with Elma as a second baby and as a result she’s even more adventurous than Kitty was!!

  • Jess @ Along Came Cherry 19/05/2014 at 9:03 pm

    Tiger just doesn’t understand that he can’t do the exact same thing as Cherry, he’s fearless, it’s hard work!

    • Carie 19/05/2014 at 10:18 pm

      It sounds like he and Elma would get on rather well!!

  • Merlinda (@pixiedusk) 20/05/2014 at 10:29 am

    Lovely photos! The color, the faces and the weather! Everything is so perfect! #LivingArrows

    • Carie 21/05/2014 at 8:56 pm

      Thank you very much 🙂

  • Emma T (@ETusty) 21/05/2014 at 12:09 pm

    Lovely photos. Parks create such beautiful backgrounds, and the girls looked like they had a wonderful time together.

    • Carie 22/05/2014 at 7:46 am

      Thank you – photos outdoors are always great if only because you don’t have to tidy up the house first!

  • Claire @ Great British Family 21/05/2014 at 9:20 pm

    My little one seems fearless at 12 months (and she doesn’t even have a big brother or sister to follow). That looks like a lovely park and a great day with friends.

    • Carie 22/05/2014 at 7:51 am

      I’m trying to remember whether Kitty was similarly fearless at that age – I think she was if she saw someone else trying something, but didn’t have that constant enticement to go bigger, faster, higher!