loving instagram these days :) I'm @ajourneytoadream, or @ittybittybookco come say hi :) xx
Over the last few months we have become regular market traders at St.Georges Market in Belfast. We have loved it so much, there is such a fun and friendly atmosphere between all the traders there and wee Ché Phoenix is the star attraction - we joke that its our selling ploy, draw them in with the cute baby lol. But really we just naturally include him in whatever we are doing, he has made so many friends at the market and he meets so many new people each day, it's got to be good for him socially, plus he's such an active and alert baby, he needs so much stimulation that when we're out and about it's easier on us!
|A market day pic from our Instagram account :)|
I have really missed blogging the last month! I miss reading blogs, playing around with photos, writing posts... all of it! Ché Phoenix has been in a crazy sleep pattern the last few months of being up every hour and a half, and thats not an exaggeration. Our wee family business is just going from strength to strength, all our hard work is paying off, we couldn't be happier. So we've just not had time for anything except family time, work, sleep but last night we had a break through :) Ché Phoenix slept 3 hours straight, woke for a feed then another 3 hours!!! I feel like a new woman, full of energy and like we've got through the worst of it and it's just gonna get better and better :)
These photos are from the first ever time he ate solid food, spinach and peas from our garden, the photos are about a month late but totally still worth sharing :)
Ché Phoenix is 6 months old. Wow. He is one special boy and I feel blessed each day to be his mama. I'd always thought of myself as quite a confident yet relaxed parent, one that wouldn't have trouble with 'letting go' when the times come.
As the time approached for Ché Phoenix to start eating solid food it hit me that this was the first, of many, stages of detachment that we will go through as mother and son. Until now, he has received EVERYTHING he needed from me. 100% of the nourishment he has needed to grow into the healthy, strong boy that he is has come directly from me. Now as he starts to eat 'real food' I take a tiny baby step back... It was a funny thought and if I'm honest, the idea took a while to get used to (am I the only one???).
As he reached the 6 month milestone I saw so many big changes like, him walking when we hold his hands, his hand eye co-ordination, how much he laughs, how he rarely falls when he's sitting up, his 'talking' and squealing! But it was the little changes in him, the things that are hard to describe that have made me feel more confident and happy about this next stage. I'm actually enjoying it now. He's ready. It's messy and so much fun :)
So most people wouldn't go camping with such a young baby... We did and it was amazing! We drove down to County Galway, through Connemara and camped at an eco campsite right on the beach. That part of Ireland is just stunning and hours and hours of just what you expect the wild west coast of Ireland to be - mountainous, green, quaint and full of history and charm. The weather was amazing since we were still in the record breaking heatwave (about 25-30 degrees every day for a few weeks!). We lay about in the shade, swam in the ocean, walked along the beaches and just relaxed with friends, it was bliss. But being us we couldn't stop work altogether and approached a lovely local gift shop who's owner just loved our books and now you can find our positivity all the way in Clifden, County Galway :)
When I was pregnant I read about other cultures traditions around pregnancy, birth and children. We adopted a few of them for our own family, taking the parts we love out of religions and cultural traditions to make our own traditions. It's something we did for our wedding too :)
So the one thing idea we loved was to make a big deal of the first time you place your baby onto the earth. How we ended up seeing it was, until you place your child onto the ground he is still more connected with the sky, the universe, and the heavens than with earth. So the moment you place his feet on the earth the ties from the sky break and new ties are created, ones that keep him grounded and connected to nature and fully part of this world.
We have always found the top of mountains particularly spiritual places so we decided to challenge ourselves. To climb Slieve Donard and place Ché Phoenix on the ground at the very top. Slieve Donard is 850m and a tough climb (without a baby!), it took us 4.5 hours to reach the top and 2.5 hours to get back down. We are so proud, the sense of achievement is still buzzing inside us and the hike was nearly a month ago!
|In the car park ready to go!|
|About an hour in, sandwich and milk time :)|
|Around half way, you can see the sea in the background near where we started|
|Looking forward from half way, at the top is the wall which runs along the peaks of the Mourne Mountains, when you reach there you know its only about an hour to the top but it feels like 3!|
|Giggles with Daddy at the wall :)|
|A fellow hiker offered to take these next two pics :)|
|We made it! The very highest point for hundreds of miles!|
|The reason for it all...|
|love this shot! cape blowing in the breeze and everything! Epic!|
|We sent positive thoughts and love from the top to Nelson Mandela who was in hospital at the time. |
We wished him peace and happiness he will always be one of the people who inspire me most to
be the change I want to see in the world.
|We stayed at the top for about an hour, I could have stayed so much longer!|
But the mist was rolling back in so we headed back down. Slowly, on shaky legs...