A celebration of parenting with Katrina Roe

Category Archives: Reviews

In every family, there will be pain.  In every family, there will be times of struggle and stagnation.  Times when the daily grind of cleaning and nappy changes and cooking spaghetti bolognese for the 500th time gets you down.  (I actually love cooking spaghetti bolognese, but you get the point.)

And in every family, there will be moments of joy.  Simple moments.  Ordinary moments.  Forgotten so easily if not captured in an instant.

We had a moment like that, just the other day.  Walking home from the shops, we came across a carpet of purple flowers.  A Jacaranda was dropping its blooms.  Birdy, Dad and I raced to catch the twirling, swirling petals as they fell from the sky like elusive feathers.  There was much raucous laughter, squealing and delight and before we abandoned our game we’d caught five Jacaranda flowers in mid-flight.  A precious prize indeed and Birdy carried them home in her hat like we’d found gold.

It’s those kind of moments that Lisa Jay captures in her children’s and baby photography.  The moments that stand out from the daily grind because they are perfect.  Perfect in their simplicity, their purity, their innocent joy.

Not because life is always like that.  But because those are the moments we live for.

If you have enjoyed Lisa Jay’s photos on my blog, you might be interested to know that her new blog, Days Like This is now live.

Visit www.bylisajay.com

And share the joy.



We recently had the pleasure of attending one of Justine Clarke’s Sydney shows on her Great Big World Tour.  I must admit I’ve been a fan of her work for some time, both on Playschool and her music DVDs.  What I love about Justine’s work is that it doesn’t talk down to kids at all.  It’s playful and fun, but it’s also clear that the producers and musicians are dedicated to creating a quality product.  So much of what’s produced for kids is second rate in terms of production quality (ie tacky graphics, poorly produced music and video clips that lack any kind of creative vision).  This was what I found most refreshing about Justine Clarke’s I Like to Sing DVD when it was first released.  The quality of the animation and music is enjoyable for adults and children alike, which seems so much more respectful to kids.

Well, the newest production, Great Big World, continues Justine’s tradition of quality lyrics and music, delightful clips and a joyful spirit.  Whether its My Granny Loves to Laugh, Scoot on My Scooter or My Shadow and Me, the songs refer to the ordinary features of a child’s world, with with a spirit of wonder and excitement.  The DVD also exhibits the emotional depth of Justine’s previous releases with tracks like The Softest Song of All, Beautiful Beautiful and Happy Dog offering children a diversity of emotional experiences.

But it is the appeal to the imagination that is the strongest feature of Justine’s work.  While this is evident in her DVDs, it bursts forth in the energy of the live show.  Justine is a seasoned performer and she engages the children beautifully.  Justine Clarke is a wonderful introduction to the world of music and storytelling for pre-schoolers.  Going to the concert was a wonderful experience, not only for my daughter and niece, but also for my husband and I.  Great Big World was an enjoyable reminder that the world is a wonderful place to explore and the animals and people in it are to be cherished.

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