Archive for December, 2011

Merry Christmas Day Dance

December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas everyone. The Husband and I have been working hard for the past few months choreographing this very special Christmas Day surprise. Click on the image below and prepare to be amazed by our mad dancing skills.

Whipped Cream Angry

December 22, 2011

Christmas is fast approaching, I want to say I’m ready, but I’m not, there is still shopping to be done. Horror. I’ve been playing the game of avoidance, but alas, we are almost down to the wire and I can avoid it no longer. Truth be told I don’t really trust myself these days. Crowed malls, hostile parking lots and a road full of rage’ers is definitely not the place for a women who’s emotions have been completely hijacked by her future off-spring. The hijacking has made me unstable, in a crazed psychotic way. One minute I’m fine, perfectly civil, laughing and having a sane time and the next minute I’m a combination of Charlie Sheen (the “winning” phase) and Britney Spears (the shaved head, umbrella slinging phase). And it happens so quickly, for the randomest of reasons. Take the other night for example. I was at dinner with a good friend, having a lovely time. Too full for dessert, we both decided to order some cake to-go. I told the server the type of cake I wanted but asked that he not add any whipped cream. I was very specific. He nodded and smiled which I took as his understanding of my request. Ten minutes later he arrives back to the table with our dessert in hand, all boxed and nicely bagged. We pay the bill, leave an above average tip and go on our merry way. By the time we get home we’re ready to tackle the cake. I’m giddy with excitement as I grab a fork and prepare myself for the red velvety indulgence. However, everything changed the second I opened the box and saw that my cake had been decorated with persicisly the thing I had asked for it NOT to be decorated with, WHIPPED CREAM. I became instantly psychotic, flying into a rage I knew was completely irrational. I was aware of the screaming, the red face and pulsating angry veins. I saw my friend pause, mid mouthful of his own slice of cake, eyes wide with shock and fear. His expression told me I had lost it. I was over the edge and completely derailed and I knew it. And over something as stupid as whipped cream. But the knowing that I was crazy and actually doing anything to stop myself were two very different things. In my mind I was fully within my rights to not just be mad, but to be mad as hell. The server had completely sabotaged my dessert, and if there’s one thing you don’t mess with, its a pregnant women and food, especially her dessert. Lucky for him it was a good 40 minute drive back to the restaurant and my first trimester fatigue was just not up for it, otherwise I would have been back, getting all New Jersey Housewife on his ass. Instead I offloaded on my poor friend, who was now in survival mode, agreeing with everything I said, as he waited for the mist to settle and me to realize what an utter wack job I was being. Which I eventually did. Good news for all. The bad news is, this may be a pattern that repeats itself, when I least expect it, over the next 6 months. Something tells me I may not be coming out the other side of this with a whole lotta friends.

Let There Be Cards

December 13, 2011

The guilt was mammoth. Each year as Christmas cards arrived from family and friends wishing us all things merry and joyous for the holiday season and approaching New Year, I would feel nothing but remorse and shame. Yet another year had passed and once again The Husband and I had failed in our good intentions to send our nearest and dearest any kind of papery felicitations. In my head (and out loud cos I like to talk to myself sometimes) I would go crazy making up big hairy extravagant excuses and even give myself the permission to believe such creative lies, just cos it helped easify (totally made that one up) all of the guilt and shame.

This year however, there will be no more hairy extravagance, not more creative lies, cos this year people, we (and by we, I mean me) have gotten our proverbial “ish” together and for the first time in the history of our married lives, chez Shinkins-Doyle will be sending Christmas Cards. Hollllllaaaaa!. I’m not gonna lie, I feel very grown-up right now, responsible and totally legit. The real driving force behind our my card sending this year came when I discovered the adorable website of Rifle Paper Co. and was instantly obsessed. What they were selling, I absolutely had to have. Their stationary is not only adorable, but completely personalized and not in a way you’d expect. Its personalized using characters, drawn to look like you. How cool is this?? All you have to do is send Rifle Paper Co. a few photos to give them a better idea of what you all look like and their artists do the rest. Its brilliant.

This is the finished product and I love it. We’ve never looked cuter.

They even sketched our furry kids.

So finally, from chez Shinkins-Doyle, Merry Christmas everyone!

Smile Damn It

December 11, 2011

We hiked 7 miles. All of us, well, all of us but Fintan (our kitty cat) and I hadn’t taken a single shot. I packed the camera with the intention of grabbing some candid family memories, but once we got into our rhythm I didn’t want to break stride by stopping to dig out my camera or take off my gloves on this cold and frosty Sunday morning. So 2 hours later when we returned to the car, I made everyone gather round for a group shot. My demand was not met with any great enthusiasm, everyone was tired and wanted to go home and eat, but I had just dragged my camera for 7 miles on a combination of hilly, flat and stream like terrain and I was damned if I wasn’t coming out the other side with at least one shot. “So get yourselves on that picnic table and smile, but no blinking, its self-timer.”

Oops, self-timer got us before we were ready.

Ok, ready, “cheeeeese”. Now lets go eat.

Dirty Little Secret

December 6, 2011

I’ve been keeping a dirty little secret the past couple of months. And I think once I put it out there, its going to go a long way in explaining my constant absence and all round blogging randomness. Being that I’m a photographer and therefore visual by nature, I will go ahead and share my news as an image.


Yes, I am pregnant. The Husband and I are expecting a Mini-Us, 6 months from now. And if that was in fact a collective jaw I just heard hitting the floor, trust me, you are not alone. The news has shocked the hell out of everyone, but none more than The Husband and I. For want of a better phrase, we were completely blindsided by the news, not actually something we’d been planning. Even after 6 positive tests we were still a little doubtful, I mean anyone can have 6 false positives, right?!? It wasn’t until we went for our first ultra-sound and the computer screen lit up with a tiny leg kicking, v-sitting, 3 cm long baby did we really start to register our new reality. Yep, we are really having a baby. No idea if its a boy or a girl yet, it’ll be another few weeks before they can tell us that, but to be honest, we are perfectly happy with the idea of either.

What I’m not happy with is how this first trimester has been giving me a serious ass kicking. F’real. I’ve been text book nauseous, extremely fatigued, a little mood swingy and basic all around miserable, but hopefully not for much longer. We are right at the end of the initial 3 months and rumor has it things should start to stabilize from here. At least that is the hope. But there you have it. Dirty little secret revealed.