When Nino was just seven weeks old, two weeks before his open heart surgery, we hired a professional photographer to capture a morning in the life of our little family of three. Those newborn days disappear so quickly that it felt like a precious and important milestone to mark, and, with the operation (hopefully) far behind us, I can now admit I was also scared that those happy moments could be some of our last. This world we live in works in weird and wonderful ways, and two thirds of a year later here we are, happy as can be. A little sleepless, perhaps, but I’d rather be kept awake at night by a bouncing ten month old with a lust for life than intangible fears for its future.
When the same photographer got in touch to say she was keen to capture the preparations of a few families in the run up to Christmas, we jumped at the chance. She describes her photos as ‘imperfect, real, crazy, messy, funny, impossible, bonkers’ and ‘one of the best future gifts you could give to your children’ and I couldn’t agree more. A baby’s first Christmas is an incredibly magical time, and although it will stay etched in my memory forever, I’m so happy Nino will now have something special to look back on too.
We spent the morning decorating our tree, getting tangled up in the lights and attempting to prevent our little man from taste testing every single bauble. I baked these baby-friendly biscuits with Nino on my hip, allowing him to taste some dough and stick his hands in the flour. And we danced to the Michael Bublé Christmas album, obligatory seasonal listening if you’re anywhere near my kitchen. With Luke working so hard to grow his freelance business, it’s rare the three of us get to spend a weekday morning together and I loved every moment. Including the pine needles all over the floor, flour in my hair and the face of disgust captured on camera when I offered Nino the same biscuit he’d adored only the week before (and has eaten happily since). That’s real life people, imperfect, crazy, messy, funny, bonkers and exactly how I’d like our little boy to remember it.