Of beautiful moments perfectly captured

We love beautiful photographs, husband and I.

When we decided to get married, one of our priorities was photography. We knew that we didn’t want just anyone to shoot one of the best days of our lives. Oh forget about the expensive gowns and jewellery, we were willing to pay for photography. And we found it in Eadwine.

And then we got married and we decided that the fun was not over yet. Since my wedding dress was hanging in the wardrobe doing nothing much, we decided to do a trash the dress shoot with my friend Alywin.

Two years later, two (finally) became three and I thought, hey, we should update those photo albums. So Alywin came in to take photos of us and our newest addition – Aidan.

So with the birth of Zac, I could not NOT have a shoot done, couldn’t I? But then my friend Alywin had to move to Shanghai and leave me stranded without a photographer friend. I was searching for a photographer when a friend shared with me Joshua‘s crowd-funding endeavour. To help someone achieve his goal and to get a shoot out of it, why not?

Mr Thick and I are not fans of studio shoots and we never have – we find those too repetitive, too unnatural, too predictable. And, most importantly, there is no natural light. Without batting an eyelid, we decided on an outdoor shoot for this particular one as well. As the day drew closer, however, I started to panic slightly. Handling two kids on a humid summer day? What was I, insanely optimistic?

Thankfully, the weather held up and both boys were on their best behaviour. I mean, nobody cried and NOBODY POOPED. That’s like striking lottery! Plus, Josh was a very nice chap who made us feel all comfortable and the shoot went better than expected.

Even if the matching tees that I got for the boys were actually purchased from the girls department. (BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW THAT!)

We kind of weren’t really expecting much, just a couple of pictures of the family. But what we got from Josh in return was so, so, so much more. We are so chuffed by the album. He definitely made us look more beautiful that we really are, thanks, in part, to the gorgeous light (see, natural light). You can’t even tell that I am absolutely gutted by the lack of uninterrupted sleep.

Also, Photoshop is our best friend. Here’s to being Fabulously Gorgeous forever!

Version 2012 vs Version 2014

2_months

I just had to do a comparison photo of my two babies side by side. And man, they look so different at the same age!

It may appear as if Aidan is more smiley than Zac but the truth is, I was alone when I was shooting Zac so that kind of explains his bewildered expression. With Aidan, Mr Thick was next to me performing all sorts of tricks to coax a smile out of him. No wonder my boo boo was grinning like a cheeky monkey.

Re-reading the post that I had written when Aidan was two months old, it just reminds me of how tough those early days were. Compare this with how I am right now with Zac, you can see how much I have grown.

Ah, my second-born. You may lack the undivided attention of your parents, which your brother received for two full years, but you get the benefit of our experience AND the affection of your sibling.

2348

The time is now 1148pm.

Every night, I tell myself to sleep early. Get some rest. Sleep when the boys are sleeping.
And every night, I find myself turning out the lights at midnight.
Silly, really.
But I am a natural night owl, have always been.
I used to read till 5, 6am and my mum would wake up to see me still awake, nose buried in a book.

Things have changed since then, of course. My life has changed. Motherhood has changed my life.
Has it changed me? Perhaps. In many ways. In good ways.
I’m calmer. More centred. More aware. More empathetic. Kinder.
But it has also changed my life in so many ways.
I can no longer sleep in. Read at leisure. Jump up and do stuff on a whim. Buy clothes without thinking if it’s going to be conducive for nursing. Eat whatever I feel like. Go to the gym.

It’s not bad, it’s just that sometimes I do miss the peace and quiet of my house. I miss the unhurried-ness of it all.
I guess that’s why I stay up late.
Well, late considering my circumstances now.
To enjoy the solitude. The quiet of the night.
To be a me that’s just for me. Not a mum. Not a wife.

It’s now 1155pm.
Time to hit the sack.

Some little person will need me in no time. There will be snotty noses to be wiped. Tiny warm bodies to cuddle. Sweaty foreheads to kiss goodnight. Backs to be patted during coughing fits.

Goodnight, world.

Two months of Zac

Dear Zac,

Woah, how is it that two months have passed by so quickly? What exactly have we been doing?

Oh wait, I know what we have been doing. Nothing and everything.

Every morning, we spend time doing nothing. While your papa takes Aidan to school and heads to work after that, we lounge around in bed. Sometimes, I sing to you, we have a bit of a natter and I try to take loads of photos of you. And then it’s off to the bath for you and once you are clean and sweet smelling, I try to get you to take a nap.

Most of the time, you do fall asleep (yay!) and then I’ll cook/eat lunch, shower and do some work. Sometimes, you oblige me by sleeping for two hours (hurrah for tummy sleeping). Otherwise, you are up after an hour and I’d try to put you down for a second round of napping.

Before you know it, the morning is gone and it’s time to pick up your brother from school.

I love mornings like these when we are lazing around and have no agenda. Mornings are when you are at your happiest. I get to indulge in your babyness and enjoy your coos and smiles. I get to spend undivided time with you, giving you all of my attention. I get to enjoy being a mother of an infant, something I really didn’t do much of previously.

You see, with your brother at this stage, I was constantly on tenterhooks, wondering if I was doing everything correctly. He hardly napped and did not go to sleep easily, and I was always trying to troubleshoot it. It was like walking on eggshells and there was equal amounts of joy and anxiety in parenting him then.

But with you – all of that anxiety, fear and worry go out of the window. I trust in my own parenting abilities this time, I let you and your progress take the lead.

So while your brother gave me the gift of motherhood, you, my darling, offered me the chance of a redemption. To redo everything all over again, and to enjoy myself thoroughly this time.

Of course, the past month has not been easy on you and me at times. Unfortunately, you picked up a nasty virus from your brother and it developed into bronchiolitis. You have no idea how it breaks our hearts seeing you cough like that, your little body hacking away. It’s been two weeks and you are improving, albeit too slowly for my liking. But there is nothing much we can do but to nebulise you regularly, and hope for the best.

You have been a brave little man throughout though. You hardly cry and you are still full of smiles and coos. I’m so very proud of you, my happy little chappy.

We love you to the moon and back, thank you for completing our family.

Don’t worry bubba, it’s just the photo. You are usually more smiley than this. ;)

Always,
Mama

One month of Zac

Dear Zac,

It’s been almost six weeks of you here with us and I am only starting to write this letter to you. It’s partly because mama is a bit of a procrastinator and also because things have been chaotic around here. As expected, with a baby and a toddler in one household.

Life with you feels complete and I am so glad that you are here with us now. I was telling your papa that it feels so right to say “my boys” and “my kids”. And even though we opted not to know your sex before your birth, I sort of had a hunch that you were going to be a boy. It’s pretty odd, actually. I was having a nap with your brother one weekend afternoon and I woke up dead certain that I was carrying a “Zac”. I just knew.

And now the pieces of the puzzle fit perfectly.

Maybe I am biased or perhaps it’s the experience talking, but you have been an easy baby so far. When you wail, we pretty much know why or have been able to pacify you somehow. And when you are not wailing, you are either sleeping or sitting quietly in your rocker (a gift from mama’s cousin, how blessed we are!). You are able to focus your eyes on us when we have a chat with you and you coo back at us too, sometimes.

Your coos are just about the cutest things in the world, I tell you. Actually, all your newborn sounds are really pretty damn cute. Your angry yell when I try to burp you against your wishes? Cute. Your little “eh eh eh” when nursing? Cute. Your sailor burps? Cute. Your little sighs after a good feed? Cute.

The only time your sounds are not too cute are when you are making a hell lot of them at night in your sleep. Good god. You have no idea how many times I jumped out of bed, thinking that you were awake and grizzling, when you were really just growling in your sleep.

When you came home with us, you weighed a grand total of 2.7kg. Granted, that was probably a whole 300g heavier than you brother, but you still felt so tiny and fragile in our arms. And now, you have crossed 4.1kg. Still small but so much plumper than before. Those chins! And wobbly cheeks! But I already miss your lightweight baby days.

I could stare at you the whole day, I could. And sniff at your little noggin. And cuddle you in my arms. And kiss your bouncy cheeks. I am so in love with you and so is your por por. She is besotted with you and it’s too adorable to see her shower her love and attention on you.

And so is your brother. He asks to carry you all the time, and is always clambering towards you to “sayang baby” or “kiss baby”. I’m so proud of him, and I hope that the two of you will always have each other’s backs.

It’s now 11.20pm as I write this and I am exhausted. I should be heading to bed soon. You are currently snoozing in your little crib at the foot of mama and papa’s bed, and you’ll probably be looking up at me, wide-eyed, in a few hours’ time.

I’ll scoop you up from your little bed, nurse you and then see you fall dead asleep soon after. I’ll cuddle you upright for a bit (reflux, you see) before placing you gently back into your own bed. And then rinse, repeat, in about two hours’ time.

Ah, all in the day (night) of a mother’s life.

My dearest second-born, welcome home.

Love you to the moon and back,
Mama