I titled the image and then realized it was redundant. So I upped the redundant. I’m not sure Lightroom or Photoshop has a slider for that yet. This image is a failed attempt at an HDR shot. I think I’m clearly doing it wrong. It was better to take the best exposure from the bracket and work on it. I like the results so much better than the HDR attempts. Granted, I’m using the Photoshop built-in HDR mechanism, so I’m sure that I could get better results with a different tool. At least that’s what I’m hearing on the street.
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One of the biggest, non-computer interface-related adjustments I’m making is the swing from solitude to single parenting. I’m loving the alone time (trying not to be too hermit-like) to work on this site, brush up my portfolio, learn some new tricks and shoot photos. I’m also loving having the girls at my place. When they walk in, it’s like the condo comes alive with their energy. I love it so much from that first turn of the door knob and then as they walk in, they drop everything right by the door and make themselves at home. Love it.
Ideally, I want a middle ground where I manage the alone time better and I manage the together time better. I know that routines are good for everybody, so I’ve worked hard to build a routine for the girls. We maintain their established bed times and bed time routines. The biggest change for me is to not make the mornings insane getting both girls out the door with all their stuff for the day. Leta is stellar at getting ready, even if I have to remind her a few times where we are in the routine.
Marlo is very into the “no” phase and my inner Secretary of State wants to start negotiations, but I know it’s best to give clear instructions and keep the expectations high. I forgot some of the parental pangs around this age. The time outs are helping; the choice of either the thing I’m asking her to do or the time out is one of the best things I learned from Leta. I think the threes will be just as rocky as they were with Leta, who has a front-row seat for the shenanigans and histrionics. If Leta is paying attention, I let her know that she was just like Marlo in regards to pushing the boundaries. I explained that it’s what toddlers do. She wants to see how far she can push me and that Marlo isn’t being mean, she’s just developing as a person.
I might need to tone down the didacticism. Leta is marinating on the toddler aspect of childhood development.
The routines are helping me as well. I’m feeling better about managing the personal difficulties of this time and being able to create a space the girls feel good about. Right now, I feel like my needs are secondary to the girls. I know that a happy dad is a good thing and that I should spend time on myself so that when I’m with them, they get the best of me.
Daily affirmation: Be okay with the “I don’t know” part about the future.