Me and Mine - A Family Portrait Project January

It's a brand new year for the Me and Mine project and we are thrilled that so many of you have joined in over the past 2 years. 

We have a new team of hosts all who adore the idea of charting our growing families in photos. It's too easy to take snap shots on our phones and forget to be in them! I look back on a month and most often there are tens of the children, hundreds of flowers (oopsie) and almost none of us four. Me and Mine has changed that.

We shouldn't need an excuse to remember to take a family photo but I see this project as more of a prompt. A lovely reminder of the importance of capturing our family at that moment.

So this was our January. Birthdays, belated Christmas celebrations, ice skating, frosty mornings and back to school routines. 

I want this year of Me and Mine for us to be fun. Too often I have bribed the boys, bribed my husband and what is meant to be a nice family portrait, turns into a war of words and everyone fed up. 

So to start our year of family fun we made a home photo booth! We sat outside the boy's room, against the white wall, armed with some cheesy glasses and set up the tripod. I used the Party Party app from A Beautiful Mess to create a photo booth strip. 

This is us in January!

capture by lucy
capture by lucy

Come and join in with us and share your family photo from January. It's a special gang. Come and be part of it! We now have a Facebook Community page too so find us here

This year Photobox have kindly offered to be part of Me and Mine and every month, one family will win a lovely photo cushion! 

Now head over to Katie's sun kissed photos of her sweet family on the most dreamy holiday! 

#capturingcolour • Orange

Well there's nothing like a week spotting orange to bring some colour into your life! 

Every shade of orange flooding the #capturingcolour gallery!

Orange is a big hit in our house, here was my week. 

#capturingcolour

And here are some gorgeous images from the #capturingcolour community. I love how different these images are.

#capturingcolour

But my absolute favourite was this bright capture from Sarah Hemsley. Beautiful!

Sarah Hemsley Instagram

Now come and join in with our week of GREEN!

#capturingcolour is a weekly theme played on Instagram. You can see the gallery here.

Real Life vs Insta Life

I have a not so secret love affair with Instagram. I love it. Love it, love it, love it!

I see my Instagram gallery as a mini blog. A way that I can share my life quickly and easily and give my followers and readers a chance to get to know me better. Well at least that's how I feel about the people I follow.

I get excited when they post, I feel inspired. Not everyone I follow lives a perfect "Insta Life". Not everyone is on holiday once a month, eats at perfectly light restaurants everyday, has a house that could double as a film set and has picture perfect make up for the school run.

But lots do. Or at least they seem to. And that is the magic of Instagram. I don't see it as cheating, to share your best bits, your highlights. 

I love that the everyday can be incredibly aspirational, it's all about what you choose to share.

Sometimes a snippet is so much more powerful that the whole. I love sharing corners of our home, rushing out into the conservatory to snap my lunch on a piece of whiteboard (YES - that's true and I am not alone) and creating a pretty floral image.

It makes me happy. It's become firmly part of my daily ritual and it allows me to connect with my readers when life gets so busy, that blog posts become few and far between in a week.

But I thought it might be interesting to share a few real life images. To show how it doesn't matter if the house is covered in washing, if there's a stack of papers and post on the side in the kitchen, that's creeping over the entire work surface, if you actually eat on your laps in front of the tv instead of on a perfect white table (I mean piece of card) or god forbid baby wipe a school jumper out of the washing basket.

Because it's your gallery! And for me it's my completely creative indulgence. People who encourage your individual style, and support each other. You don't have to post, you can just follow. Or use your gallery as your creative sounding board.

Just play and enjoy. Share what you want to share. Don't feel guilty for choosing what you share. Oh and it's absolutely not wrong to edit your phone photos! Brighten them a little, sharpen them, use a lovely filter. 

But here's a peek into my real life vs insta life...

real life
real life
real life
real life
real life
real life
real life

I try and find that little bit of extraordinary in my ordinary, well at least what feels extraordinary to me! My husband is still not convinced on a pile of old snail shells from the garden. He didn't get why I was excited to see it shared on the #nothingisordinary gallery

Nothing is ordinary.

Linking up with Mummy Daddy Me and #theordinarymoments

Springtime Surprise Project

I started this year with a post all about my words of encouragement for my fellow bloggers, parents, readers and friends. I mentioned a little idea and I have been absolutely stunned by how many people want to take part. Almost 200 people have registered to join this cheerful project!

The Springtime Surprise Project is about doing something nice, just because.

Something kind, thoughtful and all for a stranger. It's about celebrating all that is good about the connections we make on the internet.

Springtime Surprise Project
Springtime Surprise Project

It's too easy to focus on the negative stories, to see the critical and sometimes all out scandalous unkind stories splashed across social media feeds. So I think we should do something just lovely.

Sign up to be part of this happy project. Everyone who agrees to take part will be matched with a postal partner to send a small gift to. Trinkets, homemade treasures, stationery, baking bits, preloved finds you'd like to pass on.

Anything goes! You need to fill in your details on the Springtime Surprise Website to help your partner learn a little more about you and the guide price for the parcel is £5.

Springtime Surprise Project

This project is not about money. It's about being generous with your time and effort. And bringing a little Spring cheer into someone's day.

Life is busy. And sometimes it's nice to feel special. 

Springtime Surprise Project
Springtime Surprise Project

The project will be open to everyone until the 1st February 2015 after which time you will receive the details of your lovely partner. All parcels need to be sent by the 16th March 2015 so that we can all open them by the Spring Equinox. The first day of Spring this year is the 20th March. 

I can't wait for you to be part of this #springtimesurpriseproject. 

If you have already registered hooray! 

Head over to the Springtime Surprise Website and fill in your details!

Springtime Surprise Project

#capturingcolour • Purple

Well what a tricky week!

I love colour, our house is full of colour, but for some reason I find purple one of the hardest. I realised that the purple accents in our home tend to be in the form of flowers and as it has been bitterly cold and I've been extraordinarily busy with work, I haven't ventured out much last week. With the exception of meetings and school runs my week of purple was dominated by my practise in the tool shed session!

I want to build my confidence working in a darker light and so I popped into the shed last Sunday and had a play date for one! Our neighbours kindly gave us their old wooden workbench when they replaced it at Christmas and I am itching to drag it (It weighs a tonne) into the garden when the weather improves as it's the most beautiful prop!

purple flowers
purple
purple flowers

But I was completely overwhelmed at all the BEAUTIFUL images joining in with #capturingcolour as the gallery turned every shade of mauve and violet for a week.

Here were my favourites.

#capturingcolour

But I just loved this photo from HonestMum. Vicki you are a goddess in gorgeous purple!

HonestMum

#capturingcolour is a weekly theme on Instagram. Join in with our brand new week of ORANGE!

You can follow my Instagram feed here.

Let's bring some colour into these Wintry days!