I love this project more each month. March was full of birthdays, baseball and crazy weather extremes. We made lots of great memories - see what we have been up to.
What's the big deal about a second? Not much happens in such a short amount of time.
There are so many little moments I do not want to forget but my mind and heart simply aren't enough to hold these treasures forever. I will surely forget that sweet toddler voice as it fades into distant memories. I will struggle to recall that precious chubby face as it grows into a man. I will be unable to open my heart in a way that allows my precious boys to see and hear the memories for themselves as they prepare to welcome their own little ones.
For this and many other reasons as 2017 approached I decided it was a priority to start a video project. I am extremely dedicated to documenting our days with pictures that show our "real" and our everyday. Yet, I wanted more - I wanted to hear and relive those memories. I didn't want to just tell stories to my grandchildren, I wanted to preserve these moments in a way that allowed me to really share them.
I am only in my second month of this project but it is already so near and dear to my heart and I cherish the sights and sounds I have already preserved. My typical Saturday starts at 6:30 am when my 5 year old comes bounding into our room a total ball of energy and they end around 11:00 with some quiet moments on the couch with the love of my life. That means I am surrounded by my "now" for 17 hours. That means I have 61,200 seconds of memories to try and hold onto. Now let me say not all of those memories are sweet and happy, some are maddening and loud. There is fighting, tears, timeouts and exhaustion but there is also joy, love, tenderness and giggles. I want to cherish them all.
This project has taught me that every second can be beautiful and special. That's amazing to imagine isn't it? I mean most of us don't give a second thought to just a second - how much can happen in a second? Well this project has made me slow down - see the seconds - appreciate the mundane - and I am glad I have found a way to preserve them. It reminds me to stay present and soak it in.
So here it is..... The Beauty of a Second | February Edition. Enjoy and thanks for watching.
I had the pleasure of spending a morning with the Lively family as October drew to a close. This is the most adorable little family. Their home is filled with laughter. Mom has the best out loud laugh ever. You can just feel the joy in their home.
They have two precious little girls, Clara and Charlie. Charlie just turned one and Clara is a little ball of personality. She it outgoing and very articulate - when I arrived she and dad, Matt, were watching The Little Mermaid and were having a very in depth conversation about things. It was adorable. You can hear some of it in the Moments in Motion video below.
Besides being a beautiful family, Megan's home is just as gorgeous and so the session was a dream to shoot. I love the Livelys - I have photographed their family on several occasions. I love that they let me just come on in and do my thing.
Thank you Livelys for being so awesome.
"Mommy mommy can I hold your camera?" "Can I take a picture?"
I'm not gonna lie, I cringe every time I hear that phrase. I mean the camera and the lens are not cheap ........ and I would be devastated if they were destroyed.
Yet I always give in. I carefully wrap the strap around their neck, hoping that it will act as a failsafe in the event of disaster. I stand back while they "take my picture" - arms length away with my hands at the ready in case the worst happens.
I have to let them spread their wings and explore their interests. It is only natural that they would want to copy mommy and daddy. It seems only fitting that I help them do that. I did spend a summer working with my dad as an electrician -- I am sure that was a nightmare for him.
This is the time when they are figuring out the people they will be.....the men they will be. I want to help them find a passion and happiness not just a career. Anyone can go to work everyday and earn a paycheck but not everyone is lucky enough to enjoy what they spend 40+ hours a week doing.
I am their mommy - and soon enough that will be replaced by "mom" - I need to show them I trust them, that I support them and that I will be here beside them as they "test the waters" with different things.
I want them to spend this time really figuring out what they like, what drives them, what makes them light up when they talk about it?
Recently I was at a wedding and a friend asked me about my photography - so I told her.... all the new and exciting things I'm doing, how much I love it, how I'm taking a film class..... she just smiled. Then she said, "wow, its amazing how your whole face just lights up when you talk about it." It is true and I want my boys to find that in their life.
If I can teach them anything in life I want to show them that they can do anything they want to do. My mom always told me (and I hear her say it to them even now) - "you can be anything you want to be, you just have to work hard."
What I hope they see in me and that camera is a mom that was brave enough to chase dreams after 40. Someone that realized you can find your passion later than you had hoped. I want to show them that it is never too late to have dreams and to make them come true. I hope they see how hard I work at this passion and the light that it creates in me. I want them to demand that for themselves when they are finding their path.
So boys, dream big and think out of the box when you think about what you want to be when you grow up. You don't have to decide today and enjoy the roads you take while trying to figure it out. Don't rush and don't choose "the obvious." Find something that makes you light up.
Until then we will explore together and I will help you find your wings....... we will find our joy together!
And Just Like That You Were Five
I blinked - I shouldn't have done it, but it happened. I have no idea how it has been five years since August 7, 2011 when you bounded into this world making me a mommy for the first time. You were my best gift.
Today you turned 5. The day before your birthday we had your big party - I made it as awesome as possible, this is, after all, one of the big ones. We had a camping themed party and you had 6 friends spend the night in the tent with you......oh and mommy stayed and slept on the ground with you.
As the sun came up in that tent, you crawled over to me and whispered, "mommy .....mommy.....am I 5?" To which I replied "yes baby." The biggest smile came across your face and you beamed...... birthdays really are magical.
You are no longer a toddler. You are one of the "big kids" now - but you will still snuggle with me and give me kisses without hesitation. You are able to now do so many things for which you used to depend on me. I am both happy and heartbroken by this independence.
You are an energetic, loving, empathetic, curious, loud little boy full of love and laughter.
You tell us thank you all the time. You bring me flowers and rocks you find almost daily as little treasures to show your love.
At 5 you are passionate and love music. Your favorite cartoon changes every day. You are very smart.....sometimes too smart. You bubble over with personality. You have almost mastered swimming - you are just on the edge of overcoming that challenge. Your favorite color is blue (at 4 is was green-nothing stays the same). Nerf guns and dodging nerf bullets have become the norm around our house. Nothing rivals chicken nuggets and "peanut peanut jelly time" sandwiches.
You are an awesome big brother - you love Jack (even though you still aggravate him on some days) - that's what big brother are for thought, right? He wants to be just like you and why not? You are pretty awesome.
I love who you are and I hope you never change. I can't wait to see what exciting things this next year holds for us. Five is gong to be great!
I love you baby -
I cannot tell you how unbelievably blessed I am that I have two of the most loving and caring parents in the world and that those parents are grandparents to my two littles. They, Mimi and Granddaddy as they are called, are involved in my kids life EVERY DAY!
Starting with my oldest son's 2nd haircut (Mimi gave him the first) - my dad has been taking them to "Mr. Freddie's" to get their hair cut. Mimi tags along for an extra set of hands since the youngest one started joining in on the trip. I don't even know the real name of the shop but Mr. Freddie has been cutting hair in my hometown, Fuquay Varina, NC, for as long as I can remember and probably before I was born. So when they went for their July haircuts, I tagged along to make sure I documented this precious tradition.
My boys love Mr. Freddie's - he is wonderful with little boys. He has grandchildren of his own and it shows in the love he gives to each child that sits in his chair. They can squirm, wiggle and ask questions and it doesn't bother Mr. Freddie one bit. He just takes his time, talks to them and chases their head as they move it.
And don't try to get on them in Mr. Freddie's shop because he is not having it. He will tell you real quick that they "are just fine." During this trip he said to me, "momma we are doing this, we got it."
He has a secret drawer of little hand size toys that make noise and have lights. All the kids love playing with them while they are in Mr. Freddie's chair. If they get bored with one he just whips out another one.
Then comes the best part: the end. Mr. Freddie keeps a stash of suckers in a drawer next to the chair and each little boy gets to get AS MANY SUCKERS AS HIS HAND CAN HOLD and don't try to stop them ..... Mr. Freddie will let them have all they can carry.
It is so fun to see young and old coming together at this old barber shop. From the smallest to the oldest people come from all around to see Mr. Freddie. Haircuts are $13 and you can still get an old fashioned cut and shave with a hot towel. There is not too many places like this left that time has not touched.
After haircuts, they stroll next door to the bakery on main street and get a cookie for a treat. All in all its a wonderful way to spend a morning.
I am so grateful that my boys get to spend this special time with my parents. These moments are priceless and I wouldn't trade them for the world.
These pictures will tell the story of haircuts at Mr. Freddie's forever and one day their children can see it and not just hear about it.
LEAVE ME A MESSAGE BELOW AND TELL ME ABOUT ONE OF YOUR FAMILY'S FAVORITE TRADITIONS IS.
Check out the full slideshow here: