07 March 2016

looking back on 2015

2015 was a weird year, our first complete as parents. Lots of adjustments, lots of joy, love and lots of frustration as well. Below some moments to remember (organised chronologically).

We kicked of the year with a long stay in Portugal since I was on maternity leave and R owned is own company then. It was good to spend some time with family and friends without that constant rush feeling we always have in our visits.
Back in London it was back to the mummy social scene. There is a long stream of activities you can do with the babies here in my neighbourhood and I must have been to all (I even had a calendar to keep me organised!). Meeting groups, singing in libraries, soft play, yoga with babies, fitness in the park with buggies and the list goes on but the best of all was the baby cinema, where you can take your baby to a cinema session and even serve you coffee and cake (well, you pay for it). I owe my sanity to those events and to all the other mothers I've met. It was so important to talk through our struggles with sleep deprivation and adjustment to this new life, looking for a new identity, missing pre-baby life as well while marvelling at the tiny creatures we made. So grateful.

Our old flat, I've spent too many hours in this living room... Miss the south facing large windows that made the flat sun flooded.

By far the best decision of 2015: travelling to the USA with the little one. He was such a trouper! He was about 5-6 months and I think it's an amazing age to travel. I was still breastfeeding and he would endure long hours in the car. Also the joy of seeing old friends again. So so so worth it!

All that sunshine was amazing. We are quite simple travellers and can't really afford luxuries but we always splurge in one hotel per trip: in this one it was the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs. So worth it!

A wonderful highlight, the Eames House - they are so inspiring!

This little chap was of course the center of 2015. Introduction to solid food was a tough one for me - all the food thinking, planning, cooking and restrictions was a bit too much for a non-cooker like me. But like everything else in parenthood, you muddle through it and you conquer a new stage.

Filipe was (and is) my teacher in so many ways. One thing he taught me was the value of perseverance. I remember watching him in awe as he practiced over and over how to roll, how to slide, how to stand up. In this photo you can see how concentrate he is practicing standing in all fours before he started to crawl. It's amazing how babies seem to come with a program and you just see it unfold before your eyes. I remember telling my partner: "we feed him, we love him and watch him grow". So amazing. It's getting a bit more complex these days.

This photo to remember the chaos we have embraced by entering this adventure. And also how incredibly cute he is.

For my birthday I received that lovely Playmobil family and a trip to Margate. 

Some beach time in Portugal over the summer was just perfect. Sun, water and grandparents! We even had a romantic getaway without the kiddo that was amazing. About raising a kid in a foreign country I have come to a conclusion: it's doable but hard. It's hard everywhere I'm sure but I feel a bit jealous of all the grandparents help my friends back in Portugal seem to have. But no complaining, still happy with our choice and our life here.

After summer was a rollercoaster of changes. We moved flats! The little one started in nursery and we both got new jobs! After 10 months of maternity leave I was way more than ready to go back to work. No stay-at-mom material here and that's alright! R's left self employment for new challenges and oh, it was challenging indeed as the new job costed him four hours of daily commute. We patiently fought the new adjustments and create a sort of new routine.

And then he was ONE and growing up so quickly. So much love.

Almost like full circle the end of year found us back in Portugal for Christmas, more at ease with the parenting gig but exhausted and excited for a new start in a new year.

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