It was a delightfully sunny morning to drive over the peaks to Chester and document a family day out. We were celebrating the first birthday of December couple Matt and Beth's wee bairn. She's a gorgeous little tinker. Beth blogs about her here.
"A slice of life" was my brief, so with grandparents, aunty and dog in tow, we soaked up the forgotten spring warmth in the garden before embarking on a trip to the park. We spotted a squirrel, hung out by a viaduct, went on some swings and indulged in some enthusiastic see-sawing. En route us younguns also formed the Converse Club with our multi coloured membership cards adorning our feet.
I loved the energy of such a big group - there was always someone to entertain the baby off camera - and plenty of interactions to document. It did me good to gatecrash a family outing, to spend time with familiar people in a relaxed way that is so different to the tone of a wedding-day. It's lovely to have built connections with people that last beyond the day itself.
Another treat was seeing some of the wedding photos as canvasses throughout the house ... it was like being invited to my own art gallery. I loved seeing which ones they'd picked, and seeing them in that scale, felt like a whole heap of unexpected emotional strokes (in the Eric Berne sense - explained here).
I do seem to have come home slightly smitten with Darcy the spaniel - and have acquired an imaginary one of my own that I am plotting to become a reality. We'll see if the same long-term stealth tactics deployed by brother and I when we were young will convince the Bearded One. Here's hoping.
All images ©KateCooperPhotography2012