20 November 2011

The fascination of one's self

My sister always says that there is nothing more fascinating than one's self. Ever noticed that people (me included) cannot help but check themselves out when passing a shop window, standing in a lift with a mirror or in the rear vision mirror of their cars? There is something strange, disturbing yet comforting in seeing your own image. It is amazing to see how Layla reacts to herself in the mirror. She is and has always been fascinated with pictures of herself. I'm still not sure she realises that the little person staring back at her is herself. Beyond the fascination of the mirror, Layla is mesmerised and obsessed with photos and videos of herself taken on my phone. She asks to watch them everyday without fail and generally has a melt down when I bore of the activity and pack the phone away.

No matter if you love or hate having photos taken of yourself, when the expiry of your drivers licence or passport rolls around, most of us cringe at having to have our photo taken. Just recently I was faced with this dilemma. I pulled out my expiring licence and closely examined the picture. There I was, in my licence photo, wearing a suit, posing for the image that would grace my ID for the next five years. Who was the girl in the photo taken five years ago? She was a single career woman who was living with her boyfriend in Randwick. She worked very long hours and was dedicated to her career. She went to the gym 4-5 times a week and spent her weekends socialising with friends and family. She travelled extensively and had no idea what the next five years would hold. As I held my licence, I began to wonder where I would be in another five years time when I once again would be faced with a licence renewal. Did I want to look back at my photo and think "Wow....look how tired and dishevelled I looked! Being a new Mum really took it out of me"? I certainly did not. So, as a result, I did something very vain and contrived. I got dressed up, put on make up and jewellery and took myself off to the hairdressers for my normal cut/colour visit. After a number of hours in the salon chair and feeling a million bucks, I went to have my licence renewed. The photos was taken and my image captured for the next five years. I never thought I would ever say this about my licence, but I LOVE the photo. On days when I feel tired, worn out, filthy and exhausted, I look at the photo and smile. Under the caked on food, the old jeans and runners as well as the tightly tied back hair lies woman who is momentarily hiding. I'm sure she'll be back for good when the next photo is taken!

So enough about me! My stories were not the reason I started writing this blog. The reason was to share ideas and insights as well as lessons learnt about being a parent. I recently followed the idea of Layla's fascination with photos of herself by making her a book about herself. I was inspired by a cousin of mine in Melbourne who put together a photo book of her son for her husband on Fathers Day. I decided to create a book for Layla called "Mamma, Dadda and Me". The book tells the story of Layla - from my pregnancy, through to her birth and onto all the things we love to do together. I had it made in a small soft cover size that Layla can read herself. Needless to say that the book has become a bedtime favourite (actually any time of the day!). The project cost me under $10 delivered and is not only a fascination to Layla but a beautiful keep sake.

"I love my Dadda, I really really do. I love my Mamma, yes it's true.
I love the places we go and the things we see.
I love all the things we do together.
I love my Mamma and my Dadda and they love me!"
I took up a recent deal on one of the multitude of daily deal sites and made another book for Layla. This book is called "My Family" and features pictures of Layla, Daniel and I as well as Layla's grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins. I can't wait for it to arrive in order to show Layla. She is going to be thrilled!


  1. Wonderful- Layla's little book is so sweet. I cant wait to see the next one! Great photos too- so many handmade treasures in it :)

  2. The books are such a lovely idea Jas! Can't wait to read the next edition- "the adventures of Caca and Pipi" perhaps :)