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and then sprout was four…

Sprout turned 4 last Thursday.

Bean took the day off work & we spent it doing whatever Sprout’s heart desired.

We’ve spent all too many weekends being consumed by the shed conversion & not enough time just spending a weekend, or even a day, so we decided we’d spend Sprout’s birthday on pure fun. We decided not to spend a moment of it on the shed.

So what did Sprout’s heart desire?

We had pancakes with slabs of butter & puddles of maple syrup for breakfast then we went to the indoor play gym for a few hours. It was relatively sunny but it had been stormy the night before so the ground was a bit soggy. We decided to play clean, not play muddy.

At the play gym we shared some hot chips with sauce – so much for playing clean!

After the play gym we headed home to make birthday cake. Sprout decided she doesn’t like chocolate cake anymore so we made a coconut butter cake.

While I was making cake Sprout talked on skype to my Dad, then to my elder sister & her children. Soon enough though, skype couldn’t hold her interest any more, even if some of her favourite people were on the other end of it, so it was time to say our goodbyes & eat birthday cake.

Then, just as we were about to cut the cake up, there was a knock at the door…

Bean & Sprout opened the door to see my Mother & my Grandmother standing there! They had travelled about 5 hours to see Sprout and none of us had any idea they were coming.

Sprout was particularly excited to see them. There was hugging, laughing & present giving, then we shared the cake.

Just after cake Bean’s parents came home from their few days away.

We decided to go out for dinner so we got dressed & went to town. We stopped at several restaurants before we found one that wasn’t too busy to seat 6 adults & 2 children, and we had a delicious meal.

While at the restaurant my youngest sister called so Sprout & I found a quiet corner (in the toilets!) and spoke with her. After dinner we came home & crawled in to bed after a very long, very sugarful day.

Sprout has assured us she had a wonderful birthday & we thoroughly enjoyed spending it with her.

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (3)

What’s in a name?

Earlier this year, soon after Babyman’s birth & before handing in his birth registration forms, we changed our surnames so we all had the same surname. Wilde is a chosen name, not the surname either Liam or I were given by our parents at birth.

We talked about it a lot before we did it. Initially I suggested I take on his birth surname, without getting married. I decided against this because I felt less affinity with the name of his family of origin than I did with my own & I didn’t like the idea of “settling” for a name.

We had been talking about changing my name only vs choosing a family name for at least a year before we decided to choose something new (to us) & not connected in any way to either of our families of origin.

We discussed a lot of issues, including:

What will other people think?

Buuut, we can’t spend our lives worrying about what others think & ignoring the desire to do what makes us feel fulfilled. Right?

We can’t just choose to change the girlchild’s birth name, it’s not our right.

Yes, I actually thought this. Silly! Silly because we gave her birth name to her, we chose it in the first place. This was the biggest road block for me, Liam was into it, I was really getting stuck on changing a name she’d carried for 2.5yrs even though it wasn’t a name we’d chosen for her.

Patriarchy.

The idea that we deviate from what is the dominant culture surrounding family names in a patriarchy. By choosing a family name for ourselves we avoid the sense of man owning, & therefore naming, woman. (I understand this is not the way everyone sees it, yet it was something that came up for us)

Genealogy/family tree.

It’s not like our children won’t be able to track their ancestral heritage if they choose too. They’ll know their father’s “maiden name” (hehehe) & mine also, so they can just go looking it up using that information if they want to, same way I’d have to filter through many name changes if I were to trace my maternal lineage.

Funnily enough, the reason it took about a year from first floating the idea to actually following through with the act of renaming ourselves is because I was the one blocking it. It was my (half serious) suggestion originally, after discussing it for a whileLiam accepted it completely & wanted to do it immediately. I didn’t expect that, I expected resistance & I think I freaked out a bit when I didn’t meet it.

So we toyed with some names, we chose the one we liked the most went to the registry of births, deaths & marriages to hand in Babyman’s birth certificate registration complete with our new family name & a form for me, Liam & The Bubble.

As yet, we haven’t had a ritual to mark it for ourselves. It’s been a while now & we may not have a ritual at all. We don’t know how to go about it, what we want to include, whether we want to celebrate it ourselves or whether we want to make it a community celebration.

At the end of the day, ritual or not, we chose our family name & that in itself is a powerful enough ritual & acknowledgement of our committment to our family.

We chose the name Wilde because it felt like freedom. Names can carry a lot of power.

posted by wildecrafted in journal and have Comments (2)