3/52 – Home Sweet Home
The ongoing “polar vortex” (seriously, whoever came up with this new name for a cold snap is simultaneously irritating and a marketing genius) is keeping us indoors for days on end this winter. I’m not afraid of snow or cold, but even the dog doesn’t enjoy getting bundled up to take a walk in -40 degree weather. I can work with the -1 to -20 range. It’s relatively easy. Even a shorter activity outdoors in -25 I can swing. But go below that frigid threshold for successive days, it’s really hard to contain a toddler when the same three rooms in your house have to double as your playground.
I’d be happy turning on the radio, listening to the CBC while curling up with a cup of piping hot tea in front of our fireplace. The toddler on the other hand can manage something that’s entirely self-directed for maybe an hour each day, broken up into two or three chunks of time. That means that Mommy and Mama need to come up with 11 or 12 hours of stuff to do with the Doodle on weekends. It doesn’t mean we entertain her non-stop, but it does mean a somewhat careful calculation of how we tackle chores and errands, add a dash of some preschool focused activities, balance the wishes and needs of the teens, and try to squeeze in some adult time for ourselves.
Home bound for yet another day, we pull out the board games. Now, the Doodle can’t really play them as intended, so we make up our own games from their bits and parts. The frogs from Cranium are worth a guaranteed solid 10 minutes, and today, I even eked out 30 minutes. She was happy to explore and play and let me take on the role of an observing photographer.
Which was good for me as I’m taking (and loving) the SnapShop photography course and trying to squeeze as much practice time in as possible. Since upgrading my camera body in August, I’ve not taken the time to learn what this camera can do. Frankly I’ve been intimidated by it. I don’t know what all of the settings mean, I don’t understand how to use it well, and I touch one thing and mess up way to many other things.
A new camera also let me become a lazy photographer. I could get really nice pictures through automatic settings and composition. I didn’t really try to stretch or challenge myself. I simply was taking nice family photos. So, a refresher on the basics, creating intentional time and space to practice, and exercising creativity in how I capture the same activities, in the same space, with the same people day after day, I’m back at photographing a bit more regularly again.
Thanks to home for being a source of inspiration. It’s a little bit sweeter to be inside here again.
Never before have I ever seen her line any of her toys up like this. She’s more the throwing type of kid.