Welcome to our world. On this blog I am virtually letting you in to my everyday life and I am happy to have you here. It has been over a decade for me of sharing photos and stories of my family online and despite having a few brushes with trolls, I can say that choosing to live openly like this has brought nothing but wonderful opportunities and people into my life. Starting on Flickr when Flickr itself just started, I made friends with strangers. Those people were my buoys who pulled me through the depths of post natal depression and brought me back to the shore of life again. The online friendship circle grew to include those who cheered as we went round and round with IVF and finally celebrated the twins safe arrival. You guys have made me feel connected to the entire world as I ripped up our roots and moved from Los Angeles all the way to Melbourne, Australia. As things expanded to Facebook and Instagram, we stayed together and just found even better ways to keep connected. We made new friends and some parted ways with us. It is all the ebb and flow of life.
Reading this, you are not just a fan or a follower, you are part of my village and I am part of yours. Our lives might only ever intersect in cyberspace, but I firmly believe that does not diminish the importance or connection. That is why I love sharing here…my door is always open and there is a coffee, wine or water ready for you to enjoy. Let’s talk about photography, kids, life…
My name is Rachel, but online I am known as Sesame Ellis. Choosing my screen name for Flickr was the one time I ever thought about privacy and well, see how that turned out. Sesame Ellis was supposed to be anonymous. It is my first pet and mother’s maiden name which I thought was my “porn name” and therefore no one would ever be able to link it to me and my professional photography. I had a long career of film photography behind me and as I was learning digital with some of the early (CIRCA 2003/2004) DSLRs, I was not meeting my own standards. Oh well, it is all one and the same now, so call me Rachel or call me, Sesame…it doesn’t matter to me. Heck, my friend, Lea, calls me Tiger. My kids call me “mum” now, but I still don’t like it and I correct them. I am MOM to you.
My husband is an Aussie and that is why we moved our family down under. On here he provides the tech, travel, financial and foodie content under his Mr. Devine column. He keeps us in order as well as ensures we get into the airline lounges when we travel and he does not like his photo to be taken, so spotting him is like seeing Bigfoot. He is a coffee snob and drinks espresso really fast.
The biggest kid is Gemma, but she is known as Judy Devine online. Because Judy was her first pet and Devine is my maiden name. She is a tween which is a teen, but not as experienced. We are learning a lot together. She loves videos and will be sharing her opinions on beauty, fashion, tech, books, films and everything else because she has opinions on it all.
The twin set are our finale in the kid department. The girl came first even though she nearly did not make it at all and was referred to as Baby B the entire time. She came out red and screaming and has gotten a lot cuter since. Her name is Clover and she is allergic to honey (oh the irony!) and peanuts and has a mysterious metabolic disorder that adds to her charm. She collects treasures in her pockets and loses nearly everything she owns. Her little brother is my buddy. I never knew how much I wanted to have a boy until he came along and stole my heart. He came out super quiet and has gotten a lot louder since. He lives with Sensory Processing Disorder and every day he convinces me that most people are living with sensory processing disorder. He calls them his “sensories” and is rarely without shoes and always without tags in his shirts. Smart as they come, he is a Minecraft fiend. These two like to be interviewed and want their own YouTube Kids channel so they can make videos of themselves playing. I just might make their dreams come true.
We all love to read books. I still like my books to be made of paper, but Mr. Devine would prefer only a digital library. We stopped eating meat in 2013 and if sushi was not invented, I would be a full vegetarian. The tween occasionally eats Hawaiian pizza despite not liking pineapple nor eating meat.
Thanks for getting this far. I am sure there will be a lot more for your to learn about us, but I think you can pick it up through the photos and stories. Just remember that what you see is what we want you to see just like everything else on the internet and keep in mind that Sesame Ellis is based on actual events.