I'm half way through week 18 and what a busy week it's been so far. Monday I had my weekly bump session at the studio before racing to pick Joshua up from school for his last swim session of the term.
Tuesday Joshua, Grace and I, along with Joshua's classmate Lolita, trekked to the Pantiles to see the Olympic torch run past. A momentous event which we got a good spot for and armed with my 70-200mm lens managed to grab some great shots as they ran by. We sat patiently in our spot for almost an hour eating ice cream, listening to the jolly brass band that was playing and being thankful for a few rays of sunshine that felt like a luxury given the complete lack of summer we have experienced so far. Afterwards, we walked up to Calverley Park Gardens for a picnic lunch in the park and the children got to sit in a fire engine that was positioned just outside much to their excitement. We then rushed back to school for the afternoon session.
A quick cup of tea and check of emails later it was turn back round for pick up and a play date at my friend's house. I took my camera as we'd arranged a photoshoot for that afternoon. My friend makes amazing wedding cakes and is just in the process of launching her new website.
She wanted some images for her homepage and so had recruited a fellow school mum (and yummy mummy) to pose in the background whilst I photographed the cake we'd chosen as our show piece. We wanted something fun and natural and Michelle did a great job of laughing on cue to get the shot - I'm pretty sure it helped when my friend's five year old son ran in the room and did a moony at her (that and the champagne we kept plying her with!).
Wednesday is possibly one of my favourite days of the week as it's the day my Dad comes over to look after Grace so I can have some 'me' time. This normally involves work, editing or doing a photoshoot but I can safely say he is my godsend and Grace relishes all the attention she gets. This Wednesday she excitedly exclaimed 'Let's play, Grandad!!' whilst reaching for an enthusiastic game of Hungry Hippos which was much more enjoyable for her than the last game she played with her brother who rolled around on the floor angry and red faced snorting because he couldn't BELIEVE he'd been beaten by his little sister AGAIN!! Actually I think maybe she did rather enjoy that game as sniggered quietly every time her hippo ate a marble much to Joshua's disgust.
Wednesday afternoon I did a newborn shoot with a lovely client of mine who I photographed throughout her first pregnancy and first born up to toddler. It was now the turn of her beautiful new little bundle, her second child and just as cute as her sister. Despite only being a few days old she decided to stay awake for the whole of her two hour session which made it a little trickier to get those 'babes in dreamland' shots but we did what we could! Two hours with a newborn definitely fuelled my own excitement at what was to come (well apart from the nappy explosion mid session and bringing up her milk all over Mummy - that bit I could do without!).
Today has been a busy morning with Grace's last ever toddler group session before she starts the more grown up 'pre-school' in September. We took the three ladies who run it a bunch of flowers each and Grace shyly handed them over individually before running off to enjoy her final play.
I rushed home this lunchtime as was expecting a delivery. I thought it was my new replacement Orla Kiely iPad cover - the last cover got broken when the support bracket snapped as it fell off the bed during a sibling tug of war - much to my horror and distress. It actually turned out to be my new fashion accessory must have - a Zara plaited leather shopper bag - my gorgeous new baby bag! I found this little gem online when searching for 'the perfect alternative change bag'. It may sound sad to say but part of the excitement of having a new baby (for me) is the opportunity to buy a new bag! Having sampled a 'Skip-Hop' and a 'Tiny Tillia' for my last two change bags I always felt disappointed that despite their handy pockets and bright colours they soon looked worn and shabby - mainly due to being carted here, there and everywhere, sat on and generally thrown about.
This time and being my final pregnancy I wanted something a little more sophisticated and robust (that didn't scream boring baby bag). At £79.99 it's a great price for a large leather bag and will be perfect as a change bag as has the handy middle compartment to store your nappies and clothing changes and two wide compartments either side for your wipes, change mat and other possessions. It also smells divinely expensive and has a handy long strap for when you need to use it on your shoulder and also fits neatly onto my buggy clip. I won't be waiting for baby to arrive to use it that's for sure!
Plaited Leather Shopper by Zara - my great new baby bag!
I have finally managed to confirm my 20 week scan appointment - all booked for Wednesday 1st August at 8.40 a.m. We are going to take the children with us so they can see their baby brother/sister on the screen for the first time. Feeling very excited as we are going to try and find out the sex of the baby. I am happy either way but my son is desperate for another brother it would seem. I think he's worried he will be outnumbered with another sister. I reassured him by telling him when Daddy is at work he will be the 'man of the house' which seemed to please him greatly and I watched his little chest puff up at the prospect and then admitted that actually little girls were quite 'cute'.
We've decided to ask the sonographer to write down the result so we can tell the children when we get home and so we can quietly enjoy the moment ourselves first. Holding that piece of paper with the result on all the way home without peaking will be achingly difficult but a challenge I'm prepared to embrace for the sake of 'the moment'.
I can really feel baby now and am loving feeling it's little legs kick at me particularly when I press on my tummy to say hello. It's like morse code. I press twice, it kicks once back most likely in protest at the intrusion but each day I can't resist.
This weekend I have a big wedding to do and then it's the official start of the summer holidays and a weekend of camping to look forward to for Camp Bestival next weekend. Roll on the Summer - please hurry up and get here or we'll most likely need a canoe to make it there!