What I’ve learnt from Peppa Pig

Let’s talk about Peppa Pig…

Yes. That’s right, this whole post is dedicated to the one and only… Peppa Pig. That infuriatingly frustrating children’s program that you just can’t seem to get away from once you have kids!

Well it would seem that, as we may have mentioned before, Jesse is a big fan of good old Peppa and George Pig. So much so that sometimes, it’s the only thing that will settle him down when he’s in a bad state with teething pain or if he’s sick or if he’s cranky. Now before the ‘Parenting Police’ come marching out of the woodwork and start chastising us for allowing our toddler to have screen time… I would like to say that we are aware of the negative impacts screen time can have on children under two, we do feel bad that he has screen time, we do however monitor his screen time, and that at the end of the day screen time is just part of modern day parenting.

peppa-pig

That all said, he loves Peppa Pig… Sassy attitude and all. And with the amount of Peppa Pig we have consumed as a result of being parents, there are a few things that I have learnt along the way. Now, don’t take this as a be all and end all list… these are just a few of the observations I’ve made and/or things I’ve learnt along the way…

  1. When you are a part of a group of people, whether it be large or small, when you start to laugh at something, everyone MUST fall onto their backs or else you’re not laughing properly! It’s true… In fact, according to Peppa Pig, it is physically impossible not to fall on your back when you start laughing with your friends or family!
  2. A yoyo is the best toy in the whole world and is something to get extremely excited about. Forget big expensive toys and video games fellow parents, just buy your kids a yoyo. Because if Peppa is to be judged, based off of her excitement level at receiving a yoyo for Christmas, there is simply nothing else in the world that can top it!
  3. Every damn time you see, hear or say dinosaur, you have to say it exactly the same as George Pig, complete with the “GRRRR” at the end!
  4. Peppa Pig is the sassiest pig I’ve ever seen and has no issues ordering around anyone and everyone. That said, Suzy Sheep also has a fair bit of sass. And when those two get together, oh boy, it’s like a sass fest!!!
  5. That spiders are friends and are nothing to be afraid of. Obviously, Peppa Pig and family haven’t been to Australia and encountered the big, deadly f*** off spiders that we have on offer. Even Hunstmans are terrifying!
  6. That everyone must have alliterated names! Suzy Sheep. Emily Elephant. Peppa Pig. Candy Cat. That is, unless your name is George. Just don’t worry about it if your name is George… it’s all good in the hood!
  7. That despite veterinarians best advice, it’s okay for any animal, including Danny Dog, to eat chocolate cake!
  8. Rabbits are job hogs and have probably caused unemployment rates to rise by 80%! Why doesn’t Miss Rabbit just give up a few of her jobs? Why does she work so many jobs? Does she have a drug habit she’s trying to support? Is she secretly an alcoholic because of the long hours she works? What happens when she has customers at different jobs at the same time?
  9. That I’ve probably seen every episode at least twice and that I could probably win a Peppa Pig trivia night.
  10. And that regardless of who or what you are, everybody enjoys jumping up and down in muddy puddles!

So, my fellow parents… what about you? What children’s shows are your kids addicted to? What shows have you seen so many times that the images have been permanently burned onto your retina?

What shows do you absolutely 100% despise, but will find yourself sitting there and watching with your kids and secretly enjoying it.

And with that, I will say goodbye… because I’m off to watch some more Peppa Pig!

12 Days of Vlogmas – A Glimpse Into The Life Of A Daily Vlogger

So we have been filming and uploading daily vlogs to our YouTube channel now for nearly a week. And wow… what a week it has been. I mean, who would have thought that daily vlogging could be so exciting but at the same time so tiring…

To give you some background, we decided to take part in what has become to be known as “Vlogmas” around the YouTube traps, after seeing some of our favourite YouTubers decide to take part in it. So what is it? Well essentially, it’s committing to upload a vlog (video blog for those who are uninitiated) style video to YouTube every day, for a nominated period over Christmas.

Awesome! That sounds like a great idea! That’s definitely something we should get on board with. Let’s call ours… ‘The 12 Days of Vlogmas’. Surely 12 days of videos won’t be too hard to accomplish.

THUMBNAIL - Day 2

Well apparently, as we ourselves have found out, it can be a lot harder than it seems!

I can safely say that I now have new found respect and admiration for the daily vloggers that we watch on YouTube. Especially those who haven’t missed a single day of uploading in years. I don’t know how they manage it.

Uploading daily videos to YouTube brings with it a lot of work… as we have since found out.

There’s remembering to charge the camera batteries each night and then making sure you take the cameras with you each day. There’s trying to keep your videos interesting for people to watch. There’s filming the footage you want to use (which can come with some public embarrassment) and then there’s the editing and upload process.

It can be exhausting. Especially due to the fact that we also have the responsibility of caring for a 6 month old that demands so much of our attention at the moment.

But in saying all that, we were well aware heading into ‘The 12 Days of Vlogmas’, of the work that goes into creating daily vlogs for YouTube. By that, I mean that we are no strangers to daily vlogging. We did daily vlogs whilst on our Euro Trip (watch our Euro Trip playlist here). The difference however, is that we were on holidays… we were relaxed… we were baby-less… and we had a lot of time to do whatever we wanted.

But that said, after the initial shock to the system of having to edit and upload a vlog everyday, I now find myself getting more and more excited during the editing process. I find that our editing skills are getting better and better as we do more and more videos. And I am getting more and more excited about what adventures we will get to film the next day.

THUMBNAIL - Day 4

I find that as we get deeper into our Vlogmas journey, I am finding pleasure in the fact that we are challenging ourselves to come up with new and more interesting things to do and film each day. And I love that it’s getting us out and about doing things we normally wouldn’t do.

I love the fact that we are filming, even if it’s just for archival purposes, our days in the lead up to Jesse’s first Christmas. How good is it going to be for Jesse to watch these videos back when he’s a first time dad going through the same thing with his first born!

I love that we are constantly improving our filming style and our vision for better shots. And that we are constantly improving our video editing skills. I love the fact that I am enjoying the editing process more and more as I continue to experiment and evolve and create better content that I am really proud of.

Despite the fact that ‘The 12 Days of Vlogmas’ has been overwhelming at times… I absolutely love doing it.

And I cannot wait to see what tomorrow video will be!!!

A New Passion (What’s in our Camera Bag?)

I thought that for today’s post that I would do something a little different. Today, I am going to talk about a new passion that we have developed recently.

First, let me set the scene with this… I used to be a massive sneaker head! I was literally obsessed. I would spend hours every day searching through eBay and online sneaker sale sites looking to see if I could snap up a bargain pair. I would be constantly scrolling through forums and websites dedicated to sneakers, checking up on the latest and upcoming releases. I would even buy monthly magazines dedicated exclusively to sneakers.

I had over 40 pairs that I would wear on rotation but I was never satisfied with the collection I had, constantly wanting to buy more and more and more… It is pretty obvious that I had a passion for sneakers.

Now while I still love sneakers and the joy that comes with purchasing a new pair, the simple fact is that this has taken a back seat to my newest passion.

My new passion for photography and camera gear!

As you would already know from previous blog posts, we recently bought a new camera. A new camera to take the photos we were wanting to take of Jesse and also for use with our Not So Secret Life Of Us project.

Due to the fact that we only had some simple point and click cameras, we were in desperate need of one that took high quality shots of Jesse that were worthy of framing and hanging on our walls. And we finally got it.

But like all new passions, it hasn’t stopped there… We now find ourselves constantly wanting to add to our ‘camera bag’. Whether it’s accessories for our new camera, or other equipment that we can utilise for our future photos and videos.

It’s so bad now, that I can’t walk past a camera shop without going in and checking out all their merchandise… cameras and all! But all that said, we absolutely love it. Our new passion is one that we both get to enjoy and be a part of.

So in honour of our new passion, I thought that it would be a good opportunity to share what is in our camera bag. While it isn’t much at the moment, this is only the beginning to a new passion that I’m sure will see our camera bag expand to something much… much more.

Camera Bag

Our current camera bag consists of:

  • Olympus OM-D E-M10 Mark II camera
  • Olympus lens kit (incl. 14-42mm lens, 45mm portrait lens and 40-150mm lens)
  • Sony Cybershot WX300 camera
  • Sony Cybershot TX10 waterproof camera
  • Lenspen lens cleaner
  • Swiss army knife (an actual one that I bought in Switzerland)
  • Weifeng WF-531BT tripod
  • Mini tripod
  • Selfie stick
  • Verbatim portable iphone charger
  • iPhone 6 Plus
  • Digital Photography Guidebook (our bible while were still learning the ropes)
  • A5 notebook and pens

So who else has a passion for photography and camera gear out there? For those who do… what’s in your camera bag?

I can’t wait to get back out and about to take more photographs. I absolutely love it!

The Technology Takeover: how do we fight back?

It started off slow.

Checking Facebook when we had a few minutes to spare. Posting a snap on Instagram to share a special memory with friends. Catching up on the news or checking the weather.

But somehow, without us even noticing, our devices are taking over. Taking over family dinners and coffee dates, playtime with our kids and talk time with our partners.

It’s not that technology is the enemy. I’m currently writing this post on my new iPhone 6 Plus (it’s so big!) and have an iPad set up in the back seat for my 4 month old to (sometimes) keep him from screaming blue murder on car trips.

But I’m constantly aware of finding a balance. Between being present in the moment and capturing it to share on Facebook. Between watching a cute dog video on YouTube and going outside and throwing a stick with our dog. Between reading parenting articles about how to be a better parent and actually being one.

We have had many discussions in our household about just that. About how important it is to us to spend quality time together looking at each other and not a screen. About how ridiculous it is that 4 year olds have their own iPads and that we don’t want to use a screen as a babysitter for our children.

I must preface this with a disclaimer for all those parents out there for whom technology is a godsend. A way to communicate with a child on the spectrum or educate a child with learning disabilities. I’m more so talking about how we could walk into any restaurant in the country and see people looking at their phones instead of each other. 

I distinctly recall talking about these things when I was pregnant. One of the things I said was I didn’t want to be breastfeeding and on my phone the whole time. What I failed to realise at the time was that breastfeeding takes up like 14 hours a day in those early weeks. And when staring at your newborn and taking in their every tiny feature only takes up about 7 of them there is still a whole lot of time to kill. The mighty smartphone is a godsend to a new mum. It reminds her that there is a world outside the 4 walls of her house and helps her connect with it even just a little.

I know we’re not the only household dealing with this dilemma. Wives are battling phones for the attention of their husbands. Parents are battling with their kids for a family meal without phones on the table. And babies are smiling and giggling at us while we laugh at a funny video on Facebook.

  
This powerful image published by the Huffington Post is captioned with “the more you connect, the less you connect.” If we are being honest I think we have probably all been guilty of neglecting a loved one because we are too busy with a smart phone in our face. 

So, how do you deal with the technology takeover in your family? A screen free hour each night? No phones at the dinner table? Chores for the WiFi password?

How can we benefit from all the great things about technology without just amusing ourselves to death? How can we ensure we enjoy some downtime thumbing through our Facebook and Instagram feeds without neglecting our loved ones?

How do we strike that perfect balance between living in the moment, and living in the digital world of Facebook updates and YouTube videos?

Because at the moment, it feels like technology is slowly starting to win the battle for our attention and that is something that I think… rather, that is something that I know, we need to change!