girly art date

poster paints

It was half term here last week. And nostalgia and melancholy hit me hard at the beginning of the week as I watched my big girl being…well, big. Before we could even get dressed Monday morning I found myself packing away 6 pairs of trousers that were suddenly too small on her willowy frame.

And I lost it.

Like big, ugly crying kind of lost it.

In the glow of the pregnancy with Kirby, I pictured our new life as a family of four. How he (the baby) would slot into family life with ease. How we’d dote on him, yes, but not forget our big girl. How we’d make sure we’d still give her plenty of attention. How we’d divide our time between them as fairly as possibly. How Aoife and I would have mama and me dates most weekends, because I was not going to let this new child take away the precious relationship I’d carefully built with my four year old. My first born. The girl who taught me the strength of mama love, and the lengths I’d go to to make sure my child was okay.

But I forgot about school.

School changes things.

That first day, I dropped off a child, and got back a big girl. She grows up so much behind those school gates, and I’m not a part of it. Sure, she’ll tell me all about it in that endless chatter thing she does that leaves me breathless just listening to it, and the teacher tries to fill me in on the rest, but I miss stuff. Subtle things. And the girl I get to enjoy in the school holidays is different from the one I hugged good bye at the start of term. Not bad different. Just different. A little bit more grown up and independent. And it catches me off guard every time.

We needed some time alone.  Pronto. We needed girly time to do our nails and chat and laugh, time to play dress up and games and tickle each other so hard we could hardly breathe. And we most definitely needed time to get blissed out on Abba and art…

girly art date

mama and me art date

ballerina mixed media

mother daughter kiss


  1. They grow up so fast. Enjoy every moment you can. I love the last photo…it says it all!
    Janet recently posted…We Now Resume Normal Life…My Profile

  2. Awe, this really made me choke up. I totally get it – the first time I realized that she learned something that I didn’t have a part of – that really was hard. You’re a wonderful Momma, she’s lucky to have you all. And your art is just so sweet, I love the raised green texture, xoxo
    Kristin Van Valkenburgh recently posted…10 Little Girls All Lined Up in a Row . . .My Profile

  3. And now you’ve got me tearing up! It’s so true, everything that you say here about best intentions and the maturity that comes behind the walls of a school. I think I better find some Abba on my iPod and go dance with my kids! 😉
    Kristen @ Motherese recently posted…This Is SevenMy Profile

  4. I’ve been waking up in the middle of the night in a panic. And I know a lot of it has to do with Dillon turing 7 a couple of weeks ago. In a way, it’s great that he has school, because I’m not sure I could teach him all that he is learning, all that he needs to learn. But I miss him, and I don’t like missing it. But even as he finds his way in the world, I’ve noticed he still lights up in the glow of his mama’s love and attention.
    Angie Mizzell recently posted…I did it… because it matters to me.My Profile

  5. Michele says:

    Sounds like a very special day you had with her. Love that last image. You both look so happy!

  6. Thank you!! By the way, where do I find your video link? xoxo
    Kristin Van Valkenburgh recently posted…29 Faces: Done!My Profile

  7. Art, Abba and time with your precious girl… it doesn’t get much more special Carin… beautiful post… and I just LOVE that last happy photo… gorgeous…

    Jenny ♥
    Jenny recently posted…[Faces 22-25… and Melbourne Paper Show]…My Profile

  8. Ah such a lovely post! They do grow up so quickly don’t they!? Mine aren’t school age but I can’t imagine how quickly they seem to grow up once they start! My oldest starts pre-school this September (weeps)-I;m sure she was just born yesterday!
    Harrovian Mama recently posted…H-h-happy to introduce our letter of the weekMy Profile

  9. Thank you! I know, sigh. Gretchen Rubin has this great saying: “the days are long but the years are short”…and you sure notice it with the kids.
    Carin recently posted…Sketching childhood: Kirby’s push along catMy Profile

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