Monday, January 27th, 2014
so here we are, end of january and i still haven’t done a wrap up of 2013. i was struggling with how to approach this in a fresh way and i thought since the majority of you who follow my blog have already seen my best pictures, i would add a personal spin and show you some of my favorite pictures taken on my phone. i think the images i captured on my phone this year more fully encapsulate who i am and what my day to day life is like, so it will help you to get to know me a bit better.
the thing about the year coming to an end is that so much evaluation happens. i have a love/hate relationship with evaluation. on one hand, it can serve as encouragement and affirmation while on the other hand, it can be darn near the most depressing activity possible.
this time last year i was preparing to attend the what if conference in dominican republic which turned out to be a life changing experience (tickets for 2014 available here). and as i sit here preparing to attend this year’s conference, i’m suddenly filled with fear: i’m going to see many of the same people, people who have started non-profit organizations and traveled the world and written books…and what have i done in a year?
fear. it can be so.freaking.crippling. the voice that says, “pack it up, girl. if you haven’t started yet, you never will. compared to everyone else, you really don’t have much to offer.” and while the temptation is there to agree, i can’t. don’t get me wrong, many days i have succumbed, listened and obeyed it. and those were some dark days.
so i’m here to tell you what i’ve done. not as a point of pride, but just to document it, to speak it out, for myself more than anything. to say “screw you, fear. i’m going to go about my business trying to make this world a better place.”
p.s. “doing” is not the be all end all. ultimately i just want to “be” better and not worry so much about what i do. but “being” is a little harder to measure, so here’s a glimpse at some of the things i “did” which are all hopefully feeding into who i want to “be”. enough “quotation marks” for y’all?
this year i hung out with my kids. sometimes i just watched; watched them play, laugh, poop (sorry but i did), be ridiculous, cry, love, fight, think…i watched. because i know this time won’t last forever, blah blah blah, and i want to remember it with even more than pictures, but with actually memories. in my brain.
i also got to take pictures of some other people who were watching their own families grow.
and i watched my husband daily, i mean daily people, becoming a better and better father to these little monkeys of ours.
i traveled! so many good memories of trips taken, on my own and with my family, of sights seen and friends made.
i picked up the ukelele again after about a million years, i planted (kind of) a garden, i baked lots of sugary treats (some of which i shared and some….), i learned how to crochet and i worked at making our house a safe place where we can learn together and make mistakes together and do things that we love and encourage anyone who comes through our door to do the same.
we hosted friends from australia and i almost peed my pants going across the longest unsupported something or other gondola in the history of the universe (pretty sure that’s what it says on their website)…but i did it!
i ate some spinach.
we welcomed some amazing people into our lives who love our kids and obviously love us as they were willing to invest time and energy into our offspring when work took us away from them.
i got to venture a little outside my own territory to document peoples’ love and commitment to each other and had a darn fun time doing it.
i shot a ton of instant film, all different kinds. a goal i didn’t even know i had, but once i was doing it, i was like “yes”.
we lived a dream of mine, traveling to the “birth place” of one of my favorite bands and watched them perform on their own farm. and we met a man that owned a motorcycle shop who knew everything about cameras, so that was awesome.
we spent so much time in our yard. so much. and it was wonderful.
there were also some pretty sad things that happened this year to people i love. loss is hard. and while the temptation is there to bottle it up or feel like it’s too much, i was forced to open my hands and release it to God and trust that he will sustain. and he did. and does. he really does.
i got to experience the joy of welcoming new life into the world (without the pain of having to “welcome” it myself, which was a bonus).
we took a couple of little trips as a family and it was so fun to see all of our kids at a stage where they could experience and enjoy these places in new ways.
i tried to get out from behind the camera a bit more, even if it meant the outcome was awkward pictures like this:
we celebrated 14 years. 14 YEARS!!!
i was terrified at the speed with which my children’s bodies/attitudes grew.
i stopped to smell the roses (or fresh laundry, whatever the case may be). for reals. sometimes you just gotta to stay sane.
i grew some really fat/slightly deformed carrots. any tips on growing normal looking carrots are welcome.
i had SO many cool couples choose me to document their weddings…absolutely blown away by people’s willingness to include me in their celebration. they fact that they entrust a day like that to me…i’m almost in tears just thinking about it.
we took our kids on a plane across the country. hold your applause please.
we celebrated. that youngest one of ours knows.how.to.celebrate.
i got to see my kids perform on stage, some more willingly than others, which is always a joy. i’m plan to live vicariously through them when they make it to broadway. you think i’m kidding.
i went to new york city for new years eve. dream come true.
and like i said before, i tried to get a few pictures of myself. when i die, i don’t really want my kids to wonder who that strange lady behind the big black box all the time was…i think it will be good for them to know i had a face and a name and something of a personality independent of who i was as their mom. because sometimes when i look at some of the things i pursue because i want to, it’s tempting to feel really selfish. but then i think, “how am i serving them if i don’t go after any of the things i feel called to/have always wanted to do?” not all of those things need to wait until they are teenagers or out of the house. it could be something as small as investing in a friend or spending time “creating” or sitting down at the piano or something as big as taking our family to india for a month…i want to be someone who had dreams and went out and lived them.
so. 2013. a good year. not without it’s failures and disappointments, but a good year. thanks for living it with me.
p.s. more of my day to day life can be viewed over here on instagram, if you’re interested (if you are interested, that’s kind of creepy). i just passed 1000 followers and am going to post a little contest this week to say thank you!!
Thursday, September 26th, 2013
sam & adriana.
adriana is warm. do you know what i mean? the impression she leaves on people is one of genuine care and interest. sam can be a bit hard for me to read at times as he knows how to work the cheeky grin…but at the same time, when he laughs, like really laughs, it’s hearty and you think to yourself “man. i must be really funny”. and then you walk away with a cheeky grin.
i’ve had the privilege of documenting some really special times in this sweet couples’ life, so i was excited when they called on me again to take some portraits for their first anniversary. i love the idea of celebrating these milestones with pictures and it was so fun to be invited on a trip to the garden centre as well as into their lovely home.
Monday, June 17th, 2013
this girl’s got it. she’s a creative…her mom said they started to see it in her at four years old. she’s confident and has raw talent to back it up, whether it’s in dance, photography, writing or theatre. and she’s got dreams. she just graduated from high school, so look out world – i have a feeling she’s not going to let much stop her.
elisa and her mom presented me with a list of things elisa loved and we tried to incorporate a few into the shoot without it seeming too forced. i LOVE getting to know my clients before and throughout our time together and this was no exception. if you are interested in a session with me, feel free to let me in on some of your hidden talents and we can try to highlight them! e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org to book yours.