Yesterday I finally resurfaced after six days of unexpected and total computer blackout. One moment I was doing a routine upgrade of my software on my mac and the next it was dead. To cut a very long story short, my saga ended with my computer being totally wiped and the operating system being reinstalled, all my files were mercifully rescued first, but as you can imagine it gave me a lot of time to think about the processes I have in place to protect my family photos, not just from computer failure, but also from the scary prospect of ransom ware.

I already keep copies of my photos on Flickr, dropbox and an external hard drive, but as time had moved on, the drive had become too small to accommodate Time Machine backups so I switched the automatic process off. Needless to say, after the week I’ve had, I now have a brand new 3 TB hard-drive solely for that purpose and I’m also giving thought to using BackBlaze as an additional cloud backup.

All this computer talk probably seems a bit off track in my monthly Siblings Project post, but I think its part and parcel of the same thing. We share these images every month because they are precious to us and its easy to be blasé about our digital archive when we are so used to being able to access it on multiple devices almost instantly.

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This month we found ourselves spending our Home Life Project Sunday doing very similar things to last month. Once again we headed for a favourite spot for a winter walk, West Wittering beach, which means that yes, the first photo this month looks a whole lot like a photo from last month… BUT in the few weeks that have passed since I took the photos in January, there has been a change, this time Alice was exploring the beach on her own two feet and only retreated to the backpack when the wind and cold started to get to her.

At the beach I tried looking for reflections in the puddles on the sand, but ended up finding better ones later and I got the elusive double exposure look I was hoping for too. In fact once I trained my eye, I couldn’t stop seeing reflections, everywhere. Sadly sunshine was a little more elusive, but you can’t have everything.

While we are at the beach, we took part in the #Take3ForTheSea initiative,  collecting three pieces of rubbish from the beach to take home, which is why Theo’s clasping that broken spade in one of the photos. Rubbish is also sadly one of those things you can’t stop seeing once you start looking…

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You may be glad to know that this month’s creative challenge can be done almost anywhere inside or outside your house and certainly won’t result in the neighbours giving you strange looks! As we’ve got quite a bit of rain forecast over the next few days I thought it might be a good time to explore reflections. Reflections in puddles, on windows and virtually any mirrored surface.

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We have a lot of winter birthdays in my family, there are four of them between January 3rd and February 2nd. Coming from the side of the family that has nearly all summer birthdays (Jim, Theo and mine are all in August) I feel quite a lot of sympathy for those who celebrate at the darkest dampest time of the year when everyone is still struggling to work up enthusiasm after Christmas.

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This year my sister celebrates a big birthday, so we decided to mark it by decamping en masse to St Mawes in Cornwall for the weekend, where we expected nothing less than cold blustery weather, open fires and a cosy January weekend. (more…)

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It’s literally taken me years to finally get round to joining the Me & Mine project hampered by every excuse you can think of, but we’re off to a good start for 2017, it’s the beginning of a new year and we’ve got a photo of all of us!

Thinking about blogging this year it was very clear to me that I wanted to focus on creative projects and quality over quantity. I’m happier ignoring my stats, opting out of charts and working on a small number of collaborations, so the Me & Mine project fits nicely into that.

The idea is to capture one photo every month of all of us to have a record of our family throughout the year. Family photos with all of us together are rare so this will give us a great reason to make them happen.

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Hello. I'm Clare.
I'm a mum of two. I live in the Sussex countryside by the sea and this blog focuses on creative family living through photography, design, crafts and interiors. Read more

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