It was Phoebe's 2nd birthday on Tuesday. I literally have no idea where the time has gone but am fairly certain that I must have spent a good 6 out of the past 24 months in some kind of time vortex. Phoebe is my third and final baby, my last pregnancy... It means so much to me to have captured that moment in time in the form of my very own pregnancy keepsake belly bowl cast and never more so than now, as it dawns on me that my baby isn't a baby any more.
I created my own belly bowl when I was 37 weeks pregnant with Phoebe and went on to use it in a newborn photography session with my friend and very talented photographer, Maxine Davies, when Phoebe was 8 days old.
Some months later, I revisited my belly bowl cast and was blown away by the connection I felt as I smoothed my hands over my precious bump, my 'Baby's First Home'. In between the seemingly endless demands of my three happy little hooligans I somehow found the time to artistically finish my pregnancy keepsake belly bowl cast in a simple gradient turquoise with drilled spiral detail. My belly bowl cast now takes pride of place in my home and is displayed on my living room wall alongside other precious keepsakes (and bumps... working as a belly cast artist inevitably means that my home is always full of bumps!). Phoebe loves talking about 'mummy's bump' and I enjoy sharing it with her and remembering the time we spent together before she was born, the connection we had even before we met and how I could sense the beginnings of her personality just from her movements and how she would respond to my voice and touch.
I only wish I had such precious keepsakes of my pregnancies with Alabama and Buddy. Pregnancy is such an amazing adventure and documenting your personal journey can be fun, exciting and sentimental. Baby scan pictures, pregnancy photoshoot, bump photo diary, pregnant belly bump cast - over the years I've even had customers combine the whole lot, having had their Rock the Bump pregnant belly casting session with me professionally photographed or filmed, using their Rock the Bump belly bowl as a prop in their newborn photoshoot and commissioning me to artistically decorate their bump cast with their precious baby scan pictures!
As the late Bob Dylan once said, "the purpose of art is to stop time", and creating an artistic pregnancy keepsake does just that. As I'm writing this by the light of my laptop, I'm also watching my baby sleep, listening to her gentle snoring and still secretly trying to work out how that 8 day old baby has just celebrated her 2nd birthday. My belly bowl cast will forever give me something tangible to hold on to as time passes, life happens and my children grow. It's something I will never regret having done.
A Rock the Bump pregnancy keepsake cast isn't just a plaster cast, it's a piece of art that captures a moment in time.
Zoe Keeping - Artist/Owner of Rock the Bump pregnant belly casting, mum to three happy little hooligans, lucky to live with hubby and best friend Ryan in sunny, sunny Bournemouth. Love music, food, festivals, tattoos, real ale, camping, wildlife, flowers, birds, baking and art.