Browsing Tag

baby

BABE, READ

5 OF OUR FAVOURITE BOOKS AT THE MOMENT

23rd January 2018
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We have shelves and shelves full of story books but somehow favourites are favourites and those are the ones we read over and over. Francie Sugar (who is 2 years and 9 months old) got a whole lot of new books this holiday, some of which have made it onto our favourites list. Here they are:

1. The Everywhere Bear, Julia Donaldson

We love reading all about Everywhere Bear’s adventure,  spotting the bear on each page, laughing at which book the teacher is reading to the children (one of our other favourites) and of course the rhyming is always great too.

2. Gotta Go, Buffalo: A Silly Book of Fun Goodbyes, Haily Meyers and Kevin Meyers

Francie finds little goodbye sayings like “See you in a while, crocodile” hysterical at the moment so this book is right up her ally. We know them all off my heart now so when we say goodbye to anyone it’s a long rhyming farewell. The book is lift the flap too which is always nice.

FYI: I found this one on Amazon but ordered it through Exclusive books, it took a couple weeks but it worked really well.

3. There’s a tiger in the Garden, Lizzy Stewart

There are so many things that we love about this book: Jeff the giraffe, the grumpy polar bear, spotting the tiger and of course the last page is the best!

4. Pretty much any book by Sandra Boynton especially Pajama Time, Barnyard Dance, Belly Button Book and Thirteen Animals

These books are such fun, catchy and pretty funny too. We know them off by heart and are known to bust out a few moves for the Barnyard Dance and Pajama Time.

5. Thank you Bear, Greg Foley and Good Luck Bear, Greg Foley

The sweetest stories about a bear and a mouse and what friendship is. These books are heartwarming!

BABE, PLAY

ROAD TRIP ACTIVITIES

27th November 2017
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We went on our first road trip with Francie last weekend. We headed to a farm in Limpopo, which was about 5 hours away. I was so nervous about the long drive with Francie. She isn’t the best in the car. Since we have a “no screen” policy I created loads of fun road trip activities for our journey. Here they, in case you are prepping for the holidays too. I also ordered this activity tray which was perfect for activities and snacks in the car, I’d really recommend it.

1. Velcro Coloured Sticks

Francie spied these on my desk this week and I know that she is already curious! I bought these coloured ice cream sticks at my local stationary store and then stuck velcro on them. The coloured sticks are great because not only can she stick them together, but also sort them into colours and patterns.

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2. Lacing!

A new, fun activity which Francie is loving at the moment. We have a hand me down version from our cousins but here are three options which look great:

Melissa & Doug Farm Lace & Trace

Alex Lacing One, Two, Tie My Shoe

Viga Wooden Transportation Lacing Blocks

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3. Activity Books (I picked this selection from Exclusive Books)

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4. Crazy Clay 

I recently discovered Crazy Clay at our weekly Mom and Me and we both loved it! It’s a fantastic mix between Play Doh and Presstick. This was a huge hit and she played with it for ages. The great thing about it is that is that you can keep reinventing activities. First, she played with the clay on it’s own, then using paper to create artwork with the clay and in the end I even gave her little things to stick in the clay.

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5. Magnetic Drawing Board

I got one from Baby City for only R60. Francie hadn’t had one of these before and she totally loved it, it was a hit.

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6. Button Trees

Trust me, this is worth making! Francie absolutely loved making these trees and it kept her busy for so long that I didn’t end up using all the activities that I packed. She loved threading the buttons and then on the way home, she enjoyed taking them off too.

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Looking for some other busy bags? See some other ideas here.

BABE, READ

TWO OF OUR FAVOURITE BOOKS

24th November 2017
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Do you know “Oi Frog!” and “Oi Dog” by Kes Gray and Jim Field? These are definitely two of our favourite books at the moment. Oi Frog is a “hilarious rhyming tale about a frog who discovers that all animals have their special place to sit.” Of course, the rhyming is super appealing and all the kids in our family love this book from 2 year old Jack to nearly 7 year old Honor. They’ve even learnt the rhymes themselves. I also like that it introduces us to some new words like “mules” “gophers” and “satsumas”.

Oi Dog is pretty similar only this time the frog takes charge and tells everyone their new place to sit. Again the rhyming, illustrations and repetition is such such fun.

These two are a fantastic addition to any Christmas list or Santa bag!

Another one of their books which we have tried is Quick Quack Quentin which is a bit advanced for little ones but our 6 year old loved it!

PS. I noticed when linking that they are on sale on Take a Lot at the moment.

BABE, MAMA

MEET THE MAMA: SARAH

7th November 2017
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Although we have been “online mama friends” with Sarah and her gorgeous little girl Aria for quite a while we loved meeting them in person the other day. Sarah is the mama behind Mascara and Mimosas and sweet babe Aria is just delicious.

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Favourite product for toddlers and why?

Aria doesn’t use ton of products, we are very lucky that she hasn’t suffered from anything like eczema or severe nappy rash. Two products that I make sure that I always have for her though are:

Kiehl’s nurturing oil for mom and baby – this nourishes Aria’s skin like a bomb and a little really goes a long way.

Shampooheads Awesome Annie Detangler – Aria has very knotty hair and this detangler gets those really nasty tangles and knots out pretty easily and with minimal discomfort.

As for toys, it’s a tricky question as Aria’s preferences change as often as we change her nappy! But the toys that she loves the most are her doll, her wagon, books and crayons and paper for drawing.

How has your style changed since becoming a mom?

To be honest, it hasn’t changed that much, I have always been a jeans and t-shirt kinda gal as it’s what I find most comfortable.

Best gift you have received for Aria?

Wow, we received so many amazing gifts for Aria. Practically, her princess tent has been fab to keep all of her toys hidden away in and her chair and table set is really great for her to sit at to do a whole bunch of different activities. For her dedication, Aria received some really gorgeous jewellery that I have put away to give her one day when she’s older and will really treasure them for the sentimental gifts that they are.

Favourite book to read toAria?

She has a ton of books, lately we have been reading Frog and the Whale in a Princess Tale by Tina Scotford. It is both written and illustrated by South Africans which is such a treat.

Where is your favourite place to go hang with Aria? 

Without a doubt, Kiddilicious. It’s a great restaurant in Bedfordview with the most wonderful kids playground as well as really good coffee. Can’t go wrong!

Favourite meal to give Aria?

Bangers and mash is definitely her favourite meal, but my favourite is anything that’s quick and easy, ha!

What is the biggest surprise to you about having a toddler?

How quickly they change – one day they don’t know much and the next day it seems like they’ve swallowed an encyclopaedia! It really is amazing to watch a little person grow and learn.

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You have a successful mom blogger – Any advice on balancing motherhood and work?

Don’t beat yourself up, you won’t always get it right. Balancing motherhood, work, my marriage, friendships as well as taking time out for myself is really difficult and most of the time I neglect one aspect but I have learnt not to be too hard on myself, I’m only human. At the end of the day, if I can go to sleep knowing that I did my best, that’s enough for me.

What one thing do you want to teach Aria?

Kindness, I think that it’s such an important virtue to have.

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Follow Sarah on Instagram and make sure you visit here blog too. 

Photography: Kiss Kiss Photography

BABE, MAMA

WORK/MAMAHOOD BALANCE: ELISE FROM DOPE DONUTS

10th October 2017
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Meet lovely Elise who is mama to 10 month old daughter, Stella and also makes the most decadent donuts in Jo’burg, so this mama knows all about juggling it all.

What inspired you to start Dope Donuts?
I was constantly made aware of these amazing looking donuts available in other countries besides our own. So, I decided to take matters into my own hands and create my own, homemade donuts which were available online.

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What’s your work schedule?

I always wake up really early in the morning. Besides for the fact that Stella is still waking up for feeds at night (thankfully only once), I do my best work first thing in the morning. So after I give Stella a bottle, I respond to my emails and orders that have been placed, check up on my social media accounts and then start making my donuts for the day.
I am also constant communication with the PR company, NougatPR, that I use throughout the day. They update on the progress on any campaigns we are working on, and we also fire ideas at each other.
How do you handle childcare?
Rose, comes in ever week day from 8 – 5pm. I hand over Stella as she arrives which gives me a chance to get ready and dressed for the day. She is like a best friend and I would be incredibly worn out without her. Nothing is too difficult for her – even though she has 3 kids of her own. She is dedicated to Stella’s wellbeing and adores like her own. I love Rose!
When do you typically hang out with your little one?
Thankfully I work from the comfort of my own home, which means that I am with Stella almost all day. Because I am so lucky, I don’t take this special time with my daughter for granted. I even take her to see clients.

Do you have any family rituals?

My husband and I bath Stella together and get her ready for bed. We also walk our dogs on the weekend.

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What do you enjoy most about your current set up?

I am so incredibly lucky to have my own business as this allows me to spend most of my day with Stella. Even when i’m working I can pop past Stella for a huge ‘smooch kiss’.

What’s the biggest challenge about your current set up?

Because I work from home and know that my daughter is only a step away, I find it hard to switch off from being a mom… It’s like having to be available for everybody, all the time.

What about time for yourself? Do you take timeouts? What do you get up to and how often?

Yes I do. I like to go for a manicure and pedicure once in a while to treat myself. Although, I occasionally bring Stella with and sit her on my lap. It only take a couple of minutes until she is whisked off though by one of the ladies that works there. 

Let’s talk about dinner – who handles dinner in your home?
I make dinner. I love cooking, and my husband doesn’t at all. I get satisfaction in feeding others, i’m a Jewish mama.
Top tip for the work/motherhood balance?

I would advice working moms to not put too much pressure on themselves. I want to be a great mom, first and foremost. That is what matters the most to me most. Yes, I run my own business and I love to see it succeed. but with the right help, I can get the balance right. The key is to not try and do everything yourself. Pride can be a terribly hard thing to pursue.

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Craving some delicious donuts? Visit Dope Donuts or follow them on Instagram. 

BABE, WEAR

WE LOVE: THE NEW COLLECTION FROM FLYNN JAXON

9th October 2017
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We have been huge fans of Flynn Jaxon since they started and their new summer collection has not disappointed. We love it. Their fabrics are amazingly soft and super comfy and the items always fit well. Here are some of our favourite pieces:

Sleeved baby vest – in black and grey. (It’s so hard to find babygros in black so these are a win!)

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Pink harems (I bought these for Francie Sugar).

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They also come in navy, grey and black.

Infinity scarf

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The onsie. This is just amazing!

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The Romper – these are probably our favourite product. Super soft and easy to pull on. The twins live in theirs in summer. (again so many other prints and colours are available).

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Make sure you have a look at their website for all they products. Their shorties and track tops are great too.

BABE, MAMA

MEET THE MAMA: STELLA

5th October 2017
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Lovely Stella lives in Noordhoek, Cape Town with her husband Robin and 2 kids, Noah (aged 2.5 years) and Kaia (aged 9 months). She is a stay at home mama with dreams of selling a few baby products, which she is currently designing – we can’t wait to see them.

 

Favourite product for babies/kids and why?

  • The Bugaboo Donkey stroller. I love Bugaboo period. An amazing brand where design and practicality go hand in hand. This product is so well thought out and is a life saver when it comes to carting around two kids. Although its on the bulkier side, we’ve even traveled across the world with it.
  • The 360 Ergobaby carrier. Definitely our most used baby item by far. It is so comfortable to use and doesn’t hurt my shoulders or lower back like other carriers sometimes do. My babes have spent hours upon hours in it. I use it for running errands, for naps, for settling when baby is irate, for traveling on planes, for traveling period, for beach walks, coffee runs, you name it. I even use it for hiking! I love this carrier so much. Like, so much.
  • A snot sucker. Ours is the NoseFrida from Fridababy but I’m sure a few brands make them. Little lifesavers for those unavoidable snotty noses.
  • The Lotus Everywhere Travel Crib by the Guava Family. After the Ergobaby, this is by far our most used baby item and also one of our most favourite. We travel a lot and no matter where we go, this travel crib comes with us everywhere (like the name!!). It is super light and the size of a carry on. It can be set up and folded down in a matter of seconds, and most importantly, our kids sleep amazingly in it. Cannot fault it.
  • The Baby Bjoern bouncer. The design of this bouncer just speaks to babies. I’ve heard from many mamas that this bouncer is always a hit with their kids and I couldn’t agree more.
  • Bonds Wondersuits. Probably one of my all-time favourite baby products. Such a simple design yet so few brands manage to combine comfortable, soft, zip up sleep suits with stylish and sweet designs. Bonds manage to do this. My 2.5 year old toddler still wears them at night and I don’t think either of my babes have ever owned a different brand of pyjamas!
  • The Pure Beginnings organic bamboo baby wipes. I have travelled all over the world with my kids and hence bought wipes and diapers and creams and baby snacks literally all over the world. These wipes are my all-time favourite. They are so soft, moist enough (but not too moist!), they aren’t too thin, nor too thick, and most importantly, they smell amazing. Oh and they are biodegradable. They are seriously perfect.
  • The Swaddle UP sleep suits from Love to Dream. Oh how I love these! My second babe slept in hers from birth up until nearly 6 months! They gives babies wriggle wrong, whilst still hugging and cocooning them tight for safety and comfort. Really love these.
  • There are many sound machine out there and I’m sure lots of them are really great. I’ve only tried the My Baby Sound Spa by Homedics and used it religiously every nap and night time sleep for both my babies. I definitely think it helped them sleep soundly. I used the ocean sound, but there is a white noise option, as well as heart beat or lullaby option too.

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How has your style changed since becoming a mom?

If showers are a luxury with a newborn, then you can bet that getting dressed are too! In the first few months I undoubtedly live in stretchy yoga pants and breastfeeding singlets. The same ones on repeat. Very uninspiring, but really all that matters at that point is that your clothes are washable and comfortable. Eventually, around the 4 month post partum mark, life and body shape seem to return to normal-ish again for me. That is when the jeans become a regular choice again and I start switching up breastfeeding singlets with tshirts – how adventurous of me!

Now that I am a Mama of two, my style prioritizes comfort above anything else. I love my comfortable jeans, black leggings (Lululemon wunderunder leggings for life!), casual t-shirts, sneakers, UGG boots and flip flops. My style has also become more simple and basic, with less sass and less fuss. I love that. I don’t worry whether my wardrobe has enough colour in it, I simply buy what makes me happy. The greys, the blacks, and the whites are my staples. I buy less but I ensure that what I buy is higher quality and more comfortable.

Best gift you have received for your baby and for you child?

A link to a sound track called ‘Sounds for Silence.’ Six tracks of different sound rhythms and noises that are soothing and relaxing for babies. One would never think them to be, just like one wouldn’t think white noise to be soothing for babies, but this soundtrack is absolute magic in what it does for calming newborns. I have the soundtrack on my phone and used it so much for both Noah and Kaia as little ones, pretty much from day one. The person that developed this soundtrack is called Harry Zehnwirth and I couldn’t recommend it highly enough.

Favourite book to read to your children?

Where is the Green Sheep? by Mem Fox and The Very Itchy Bear by Nick Bland

Do you have any family rituals?

We create Birthday Tables when it is someone’s birthday. It is a tradition I was lucky enough to grow up with and I want to be able to create the same special memories for my children (and my husband!) that I hold dear in my heart. The night before someone’s birthday, I will decorate our dining table with candles, balloons, confetti, a homemade cake, a card and lots of beautifully wrapped presents. We then start the birthday with singing, opening presents and lots of cuddles and kisses.

Another ritual I’ve started since having our kids, is that both my husband and myself will write a letter to our kids on their birthdays. These then get safeguarded in a special place for the years to come. It is something we want to continue doing until they are at least 18 years old, so that they get to one day hold these thoughtful and heartfelt letters as their very own keepsake.

Where is your favourite place to go hang with your children?

We live in Noordhoek and have the most picturesque little farm village down the road from our house. We often stroll there by foot (Kaia in the pram and Noah on his little bicycle) and can easily spend a couple of hours there. They have a sweet little playground (which is enclosed by a fence – so key!), an amazing bakery and deli, an ice creamery, a raw juice bar and the most important, a delicious take away coffee shop. The place ticks all the boxes and just makes us so happy.

And when Papa has time to hang with us as well, then nothing beats the beach. Especially our local beach here in Noordhoek. Big open space, salty air, tiny sandy toes, and endless opportunities for making the best sand castles.

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Favourite meal to give your children?

Pancakes. Because homemade pancakes for us means slow mornings on weekends, filled with family time. Nothing beats those.

Now if pancakes don’t pass as a meal (which I would totally understand), then I would answer with a big slice of lasagna, a lentil curry, a hearty quinoa dish or a plate of homemade spaghetti bolognaise. Basically, any shared meal that my husband and I have at night. Unfortunately, Noah is a toddler and as much as I would love him eating exactly what we eat, he chooses to eat plain pasta or rice, plain or crumbed chicken, and, our saving grace, a wide range of plain cooked veggies like corn, peas, beans, sweet potatoes, cucumber or avocado slices. Thank goodness for those!

What one thing we will never catch you doing as a mama?

I am strict when it comes to safety and politeness. I am a total pushover when it comes to everything else. So with that in mind, you’ll probably catch me doing most things as a mama.

What is the biggest surprise to you about having children?

That parenting was so much easier when I raised my non-existent children hypothetically! I do a lot of things that I always vowed I would never do as a mother. Like using screens to entertain my child, especially when out in public. Oh how wrong I was. Two and a half years and two babies later and convenience wins every time. Or letting my child consume sugar, co-sleep, and thinking that I can handle a public toddler tantrum, or better yet, that my child will never have a full blown public toddler tantrum. How I laugh looking back at those thoughts. But alas, what would life be if there were no surprises, no challenges and no learnings as a result!? So I guess my biggest surprise is that I’ve surprised myself many times over!

Also, the realization that parents definitely do not know all the answers and how all the clichés that you’ve ever heard about motherhood are so utterly true – the lack of sleep, the amount of poop, the juggling, the chaos, and the love – oh the love! There really is nothing quite like it.

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What do you love most about your husband being a dad?

How his playfulness has come out! He turns into a child himself when he spends time with Noah and Kaia and I love it.

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What one thing do you want to teach your children?

I try to keep our conversations focused on authenticity, humor, kindness, generosity, intelligence and curiosity. These are the traits I want her to cultivate, to look for in a friend.

To love, respect, appreciate, learn and embrace. That’s more than one thing isn’t it? Oh dear. I guess, if it were only one thing I could teach them, it would be to love. Because where there is love, there is life.

I am very generous with my affection because to me, love is one of the most important values of all. It sets the foundation for so many other values in our life – honesty, consideration/empathy, compassion, justice…to name a few. I try to always openly demonstrate my love and affection for the people in my life, whether it is their father, or their grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. And I don’t let a day pass (most probably, not even an hour!!), where I do not express my affection for my children by saying I love you, hugging, kissing, squeezing, and cuddling. I hope to always make time for doing special things for each of my children like placing a little note in their lunch boxes, taking them out for a milkshake date, taping a heart to the bathroom mirror or simply giving them a hug for no reason at all.

Best piece of advice you could give moms of two kids. 

The step up from one to two kids was monumental for me. Much more crazy than no kids to one kid, and no one warned me it was going to be so full on! The advice I would give to a soon-to-be-mama of two kids is that the crazy will feel normal soon. The jump from one kid to two is overwhelming and can feel like a lot so remember to take help when you can and remember that you’re not alone. And get baby number two used to doing everything in a baby carrier – my ring sling and Ergobaby were life savers for me!

And also, as clichéd as it sounds, this time, when our kids are so young, passes so quickly. Let yourself feel attached and don’t have any shame in saying that your kids are your life these days. There is a time and a place, especially when they are this young. Let yourself enjoy it.

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Stella has a beautiful Instagram feed so make sure you follow her and read her blog too.

 

BABE, READ, TRAVEL

HOLIDAY THEMED BOOKS: GOING ON SAFARI

21st September 2017
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We’re off to the bush tomorrow so I thought I would share some of the books that I have chosen to take along with us. Of course we have taken some of our favourite story books but I like to take some books which teach our babes about the environment that we are in. Here are six favourites, all about animals and birds.

  1. First 100 Animals Sticker Books – it’s great to have an activity book for the trip for plane rides, rest or quiet time. Francie loves sticker books like these.
  2. My First Book of Mammals – so that all antelopes are not just buck and to talk about the difference between animals before they disappear behind the trees or into a bush.
  3. Amazing Animal Babies – “Travel around the globe and meet some incredible baby animals as they begin their journey through life in this beautiful, fact-filled non-fiction picture book by wildlife expert, Chris Packham.”
  4. Amazing Animal Journeys – “Every year billions of animals migrate from one part of our planet to another. Travel around the world to meet some of the masters of migration as they take you with them on some incredible journeys.”
  5. My First Book of Southern African Birds – again so not everything that flies is a bird and that is it!
  6. African Wildlife Alphabet and Number Book – we love this one for it’s great pictures.
BABE, DIARY, MAMA

PHOTOBOOKS!

22nd August 2017
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I hope it is not just me who is 2.5 years behind on Francie’s photo books! Our photo books are one of those things that are constantly on my mind and my to do lists yet I just get further and further behind as the days go by. That is why I think that photographer Robyn Davie‘s photo book service is the most fantastic idea. All you do is send Robyn a selection of your photos and she will do the rest, no more excuses mama! We chatted to Robyn about this fantastic offering!

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Tell us about your photo books?

Oh, I’m so excited about these photo books! This has been a passion project of mine that has been a long time coming – mostly because I’m an utter perfectionist and it has taken a good eight months to find a couple of printing companies, and the beautiful matt papers and covers that I’m happy with.

The part that I love the most is the A Year In Your Life photo books which I’ve just started working on this year – they’re gorgeous memory keepers, showcasing 20-30 images from each month of a year out of your life! These come in soft or hard cover, in 20×20 or A4, and are a fantastic way of cataloguing your life.

Here is a video of her 20×20 book which gives you an idea of how beautiful the books are.

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What inspired you to create this new offering?

As a photographer it breaks my heart to think of my own personal photos trapped inside my computer, and it always is such a wonderful trip down memory lane when I stumble across pictures from a forgotten holiday, dinner with friends or memorable moment. My aim is to get those treasured photos off your phone or computer and into print, because there is something truly magical about being able to run your fingers across the surface of an image, or to stand back and admire a big blown up photograph on your living room wall!

How does it work?

In order to get started on your order, send me an email and we’ll get chatting about prices and packages. I’ll then need 20-30 images (depending on the size of the book that you choose) per month from a year in your life – this is the fun part, where you get to look back and choose the best moments from that year, and they can be anything from bath time to visits from the grandparents to birthday parties.

And then I’ll gather up those images and curate a beautiful photo book for you! All in all the design and printing takes about 2-3 weeks, depending on the time of year. We’re a little busier around Christmas time, so give us a few extra weeks to process your order then.

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Are there different options to choose from?

I also offer three other gorgeous options when it comes to photo books – mini softcover flip books (with a similar feel to a magazine), hardcover A3 and A4 books (great for showcases a photo shoot, a family holiday or a special event), and premium genuine leather and linen covered books (great for the big life events – weddings, engagements and 60th birthdays!).

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Do you have tips for choosing images for the album?

Don’t just focus on the big significant moments, this album is a wonderful opportunity to include the tiny little things that really make you love your family – making pancakes on a Sunday morning, a trip to feed the ducks at the park, your little one absolutely covered in their favourite food and loving it!

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For more info click here.

 

BABE, BUMP, MAMA

MEET THE BUMP: JUDITH BELLE

18th May 2017
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Lovely photographer Judith Belle is due any day now. Here she shares a bit more about her pregnancy with us.

 

Are you finding out the gender of your baby and why or why not?

I’m having a little girl! So excited to be a girl-mom! The pregnancy was enough of a surprise, having certainty about the gender helped me to prepare for this journey.

Tell us one thing you can’t live without while pregnant.

Comfortable shoes!! I’m a wedding & lifestyle photographer and need to move and walk a lot for my work! I bought the most gorgeous BluBetty All Season leather lace up ankle boots and wear them almost every day!

What is your favourite beauty product while pregnant?

My mom gave me Happy Event, it’s a wonderful lotion to moisturise and soften the skin, filled with olive oil and vitamen E. I’ve been using it every day since I got it at 15 weeks. It also smells amazing! I’m not saying it’s the lotion, but I have no stretch marks yet.

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What is your favorite food or are you having any cravings while pregnant?

I’ve had very healthy cravings, thank goodness. For the first 20 weeks everything made me nauseous, except fruit. I could eat any and all fruit without feeling sick. Pineapple is still my favourite.

What preggy books or apps are you using?

I’m reading Bringing Up Bébé by Pamela Druckerman, since I adore and admire everything French (fashion, style, interior, living, food, photography) it only makes sense to learn a bit of insight from the French and their parenting style. I was actually also an au pair in France 10 years ago, so a lot of what I’m reading only makes sense now that I am also preparing for a baby.

How would you describe your pregnancy style and where do you shop for preggy clothes?

My style have always been influenced by a bit of boho chic. I’ve been incredibly lucky with not gaining weight other than around my bump, so most of my things actually still fit me. I’ve only bought 3 pairs of comfortable leggings and one white preggy specific oversized shirt. All 4 items from the lovely preggy range by Mea Mama. I’m all about a capsule wardrobe and keeping things very simple and stylish.

What I’ve enjoyed most, is taking my weekly self portraits. The idea behind that was to find my favourite outfit of the week and document what I can still wear in that particular week of pregnancy. Looking back at my series of now 13 photos (I started it on 19 weeks) I am really glad I documented the growth, journey and my style like this. I’m sure my little girl will love it one day!

You can see them here and with this hashtag: #LumenBelleBump

What’s your exercise regime at the moment? And how has it changed  with your pregnancy?

I have a very physical job, squatting, moving, walking a lot when I photograph weddings and other lifestyle shoots. Additional to that I try to walk at least 4-5 times a week with a friend. (good to catch up on each others lives too) and I attend the Preggy Yoga Classes once a week at Conscious Birth in Illovo.

RobynDaviePhotography-JUDITH-4

Have you decided on a birth plan, are you going natural or having a caesar?

I’m hoping that all goes well that I can have a natural birth with no pain medication. I have a wonderful doula (Katrina Meek) that is helping me with breathing, exercises and positie birth affirmations. A doula is there to be the emotional and physical support from the very first contractions until you hold your baby. I believe the women’s body is strong, but the mind is stronger. So for me it’s also about getting myself in the right headspace to do this the way nature intended.

In preparation for your baby what are your most over whelming thoughts/ worries/concerns?

Time management. I love my lifestyle and my work. I’ve been taking things a lot slower this year and not traveling and shooting as much as I would have. My hope is that I find a balance to be the mom I envision for my girl and also still manage a level of career and job satisfaction.

What has surprised you the most about being pregnant?

How strong I am. Emotioinally & physically this has been my biggest challenge of my life, but I am determined and happy with my choice to go through with this journey. The most amazing thing is to see how your body change and adapt every week. I’ve been following my gut instincts with regards to food, exercise and big decisions and it is actually amazing how your body and your instincts guide you.

What is the best pregnancy advice you have received?

Be kind to yourself. Do things on your own time, in your own way, don’t be influenced by partners/friends/family/doctors. It’s of course to hear everyone’s insight and suggestions, but in the end you are in charge. It’s your body, it’s your choice, it’s your baby.

Follow Judith on her two Instagram accounts: Judith_belle and Themeasureoflight

{photos by Robyn Davie}

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