Do you think there will ever be a point when I don’t find myself thinking “how is it The end of October/Christmas/summer already?” Does time ever slow down again?
Because surely only a moment or two ago it was August and I was waddling around like a heffalump and wondering whether I ought to take some back up Me and Mine pictures. And now there’s a chill in the mornings and a damp earthy sort of smell in the air as leaves flutter from the trees and swirl through the rain to land in a sludgy pile in a corner of the garden. The sort of smell that should come with woodsmoke and a bowl of soup. And the ticking over of the calendar reminds me that it’s time for a family photo.
And for this, our third with Pip in the picture, I decided to be a little adventurous and deviate from what had all the hallmarks of becoming a whole series of “photos of our garden fence with people in front of it”. It’s just not that exciting a garden fence.
So we loaded up. Three children, two adults, one camera, one remote trigger, one sling, one nappy bag and all the other paraphernalia that comes with small children to make a military operation look like tiddlywinks in comparison, and headed to Charlecote Park to play their pumpkin trail in the hope that somewhere along the line we’d find a pretty spot to rest the camera. It’s a National Trust house; there’s always going to be a pretty spot.
It turned out to be a wonderful afternoon. Kitty took charge of the pumpkin hunting, dashing off to find the next one, lifting the lid to find a letter and scribbling them down on her card, and we strolled along at Elma-speed behind her. We saw the deer and the sheep grazing in the park, found a pumpkin in the old laundry, watched the pigs snuffling under the trees and the girls jumped off the mounting block again and again while Pip snoozed away cuddled up in the sling.
And on the little bridge over the river we found first a nice wide bit of bridge to rest the camera on,
And then a very kind stranger who offered to take a picture for us and even managed not to be too baffled when I explained that you actually had to look through the viewfinder.
My little family – in October.
And I’m so pleased that we did go out and about for this month’s photos, even if Pip is no more than a tiny sleeping face peeking over the side of the sling, because I think they reflect where we’re getting to as parents, the point where it really isn’t a big deal to go out for the afternoon and not bother with the buggy, the point where we’re completely within our comfort zone but still doing the things that we love to do. We’re not always there yet, but we’re getting there.
Well, that and the out takes are priceless, as H decided to show Kitty how to pose for “your paparazzi mother” based I believe on his experience of appearing in a promotional picture holding a bike once when he was a teenager and, from the looks of things, too much exposure to adverts for mature cruises and/or harlequin golfing jumpers in the back of his art magazines.