Elma Family Kitty Photography Pip {the ordinary moments}

Kitty and Mummy and a camera or two


I may not have got around to writing down my intentions and to do lists for the year, but  I’ve been starting to make progress on them none the less.  And right up at the top of the “family” list was “more time”. Obviously that starts with warping the space time continuum or cloning myself or inventing a time turner so that I can have all the hours I want with the family and still do everything else, but just a smidgen below that is to spend more time with my girls without their brother.

Pip does not share Mummy.  He’s always been a very attached little boy but now, at sixteen months and smack bang in the middle of the separation anxiety peak time he is not very happy about letting me out of his sight.  Which makes life a little interesting when I’m out of the house for 11 hours a day, four days a week.  It means at weekends he needs me to be there and to be his.  It’s a genuine need for his happiness so we do our best, but that best does mean that it’s H who plays a board game with the girls, or gets to take them off for a bit of Daddy time, and I spend more time with all three together.

But I remember the days when it was just Kitty and me and the days when Kitty was at nursery and it was just Elma and me, and I was determined that this year, now that Pip is big enough to be left (and doesn’t cry once he’s realised that I’m not in the house), it was time to make sure that I don’t loose the closeness of my relationship with his sisters by spending a little bit of one on one time with them.

And Kitty got to go first, both because there have to be some perks of being the eldest and because I can tell how much she is missing her teacher (now on maternity leave plus small baby girl) and struggling with feeling back to the beginning again with her new teacher (great though I’m sure she is).

So with H finishing hockey relatively early and the little two happily ensconced at the club with plenty of people to tell them they’re cute, I took Kitty off for an adventure.

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

I said after the Instameet in Oxford that I wanted to keep up the practice as it were with Kitty for company but we’d never actually got around to doing it. So a quick nip home for her camera and we were off to potter around Warwick in the last of the afternoon sunshine.Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

And it was so much fun. Kitty has a thing for photographing blue doors (which I’m certain comes from someone on the Instameet, or perhaps all of us put together) so we hunted for blue, took silly videos of ourselves, stood in the doorway of St Mary’s church to listen to the orchestra rehearsing Bruckner for a concert that evening, wandered down through the oldest bits of town to the castle, and even popped into the old law courts now tourist information because Kitty was fascinated by the photos of the mayors past and present in full regalia.  We discovered that our Warwick inspired a Warwick in New England, and that in honour of the connection, on 10 May 1985, the New England version held a “City of Warwick, England” day and encouraged the UK to join in (I’d love to know if they did) and that our Warwick has been around since about 914 when Ethelfleda Lady of the Mercians (great name) built a burh (fortified settlement) at Warwick to defend it against the Danes. It’s amazing what you can learn from plaques.

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty


But more than ensuring that we’re going to be brilliantly successful at local pub quizzes, more even than the photography, this was just a time to be with my biggest girl. To actual listen with all of my attention and not have to stop half way through a thought because I have to go and get her brother down off the table, to linger as long as we like in front of a vintage jewellers to play hypothetical dress up (she likes rubies, sapphires, an incredible diamond and pearl necklace and tiny china boxes), and to feel her hand slipping into mine, just for the pleasure of holding hands and galloping along the street, not because she has to because we’re somewhere busy or we’re crossing the road.

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

We finished up at a cafe in the centre of town in search of cake and hot chocolate and a warm snug place to hide from the cold.  The warm apple pie and smooth cool cheesecake gave us a bit of a boost but when the hot chocolate arrived, the only word was WOW! Cream, marshmallows, grated chocolate and glitter on top of a steaming mug; Kitty’s smile could have reached the moon and back.

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

And so we sat, eating and drinking and looking at the photos that she’d shot and chatting about school and the new boy in her class and that she really wants to go to visit the castle and blue doors.  And when I’d finished and pulled out a little knitting, she climbed into my lap and I knit around her while she talked me through all the photos on her camera from the very beginning.

Space for the Butterflies - a photowalk with Kitty

And when it was time to go she asked if we could stay for supper, and then turned and whispered in my ear “I don’t ever want to leave this cafe”.

It could be the cake, it really was very good, but my gut tells me that perhaps this is a resolution that I needed to have got to a little while ago, and that it’s one we will definitely be repeating.

Joining Katie for The Ordinary Moments


You Might Also Like

  • Hannah 17/01/2016 at 9:10 am

    That sounds like a perfect day out. I did the same with my eldest yesterday and he loved it, and like you say the best thing was undivided attention, and not being pulled away to younger siblings. I love how you and kitty have so many shared interests, she sounds like a beautiful bright young lady xx

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:23 pm

      Oh isn’t it lovely to have that special time – and also really relaxing just having one child with me!

  • Emma 17/01/2016 at 10:28 am

    This is lovely! I love having little adventures with my oldest. They really do make you stop and look at the world differently sometimes, don’t they? xx

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:24 pm

      They really do – she has such a fun perspective on the world – and a blue door obsession!

  • Preeta Samarasan 17/01/2016 at 12:33 pm

    Oh, how lovely, you’ve reminded me I really need to do this with my oldest too! And that hot chocolate, it’s every little girl’s dream!!!! Wonder if I can recreate it at home….

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:12 pm

      It was incredible hot chocolate – definitely worth the attempt!

  • Katie @mummydaddyme 17/01/2016 at 12:51 pm

    Ah this is so lovely Carie, you have such a way with words. I need to do more of this with Mads too, I get a lot of one on one time with LL at the moment, but I know that it will all change once the baby comes. There is nothing like special one on one time with them is there? I love how Kitty has such a keen interest in photography- I bet that is lovely to witness. x

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:12 pm

      Thank you lovely and yes, once the baby comes and you have to be everything for them it does make it so much harder to have time with the bigger ones – but every little helps!

  • Marti 17/01/2016 at 5:17 pm

    I think you are a wonderful mom and these days one on one with your children will change both of your lives. Sounds like a very nice day for both of you, and who knows, you may be creating a professional photographer there.

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:11 pm

      Aww thank you very much, and maybe, there’s certainly a family history of it!

  • mandycharlie 17/01/2016 at 7:48 pm

    Aaaahhh, so cute. You never forget the one on one times, they are just so precious. Loved the photography, very inspiring.

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:10 pm

      Thank you – and lots of familiar places too!

      • mandycharlie 17/01/2016 at 10:39 pm

        Yes, I do wonder if there was a little quilt shopping involved????

  • Julia @ Rainbeaubelle 17/01/2016 at 8:20 pm

    What a gorgeous dat out! It is just so hard isn’t it to get time alone with the older ones, I find it almost impossible and in fact this week with my son being ill that was a way of us spending time alone at home!! Bit drastic! Your instawalk and cafe trip sound much nicer! xx

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:10 pm

      Definitely much nicer than being ill – poor boy I hope he feels better soon 🙂

  • Rachel @ The Ordinary Lovely 17/01/2016 at 8:26 pm

    That sounds like a pretty, perfect day. You have such a way with words and suck me in to your family stories as though I’m a visitor sitting in your living room. My littlest has just turned three and still suffers massively from separation anxiety. The words which I hear the most are, ‘I want you and I need you, mama’. It’s tough and lovely, at the same time. But I do need to make more time for my eldest. I miss our alone time. Must put a date in Chester in my calendar!

    • Carie 17/01/2016 at 9:09 pm

      Aww thank you – you know if you’re ever in the midlands you should actually come and sit in my living room – I promise we’ll tidy up!

  • Laura 17/01/2016 at 10:28 pm

    Ah what a lovely post. One on one time is so special and really does make you appreciate how present you can be with just one child! And it sounds like she appreciated it greatly. A perfect day x

  • Amy @ Very Much So... 17/01/2016 at 10:44 pm

    This is such a lovely post! It sounds like you both had an amazing day and one that neither of you will forget in a hurry. x

  • Helen | Wonderfully Average 18/01/2016 at 9:53 pm

    Such a lovely post Carie! What a perfect way to spend an afternoon, sounds like you both had an amazing time. I need to find somewhere that makes a hot chocolate like that! I love the new look to your blog, by the way 🙂

  • Jemma 19/01/2016 at 3:15 pm

    So perfect! I hope you don’t mind but I’m so tempted to steal this idea to do with my eldest too, she’d love it. Such a lovely day out xxx

  • Donna 19/01/2016 at 7:15 pm

    This sounds like such a lovely day with your gorgeous girl and I really love how much she appreciates photography already – she takes after you! x

  • Sally 20/01/2016 at 9:05 pm

    Ahh, what a perfect afternoon, I’m sure it made Kitty feel very special. This is the kind of thing I really need to try and fit in too, I’m not bad at having girl time or boy time but individual time is not something that happens often.