One of my favorite things to do is look at old family photos. My grandparents were great documentarians. I have my Mom’s whole life in print. Birthdays, First Communions, weddings, my brothers and I being born. Glossy Kodak prints, some in albums, some just in stacks. Some of the photos show scenes I had only heard about in stories or people I never had the opportunity to meet. As I flip through the photos feeling the slippery coating I love how they smell old and I think about all the hands they have been passed through. Maybe even once my Mom’s.
Finding joy and happiness isn’t always easy. I have found since the passing of my mom three years ago that I sometimes have to create it. Some days it feels like one more thing on my to-do list, but other days it surprises me in the most extraordinary ways.
The holiday seasons can be a struggle. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas we also celebrate my mom’s and my birthday. I sort of wish sometimes we could just fast forward through it all and start the new year. I do cherish so many wonderful things that happen over those 4 or 5 weeks. My kids being the main focus. They really get into the spirit of giving and let’s be honest, also receiving.
This year I decided to offer mini session for my photography business. I haven’t done them in years. The client received a couple of digital files and an 11x14 print. The whole process was fun. I met a bunch of new families and also it brought in a few clients I hadn’t seen in years. It was a treat watching the kids and parents all interact in front of my camera. There was so much thought put into outfits and haircuts and bribery. After the shoots I edited the galleries and the parents chose their files they wanted to download and I shipped their order off to my lab to print.
My clients were quick to put my images on social media. Showing off their families to their friends. Reading all the comments on the photos are wonderful. As much as those comments can give me a pat on my back and make me feel pretty darn special nothing brings me the same joy as when I deliver them their print. This pebble finish-mounted print wrapped in a pretty box with a ribbon. This is the real gift. This is why I love photography it’s this beautifully wrapped moment of their lives. This gift is not only for them, of them but it’s also for future generations. When expressing my love for gifting them this I started to cry. At first I didn’t really understand the tears, but knowing how important to me it is to have a tangible piece of my Mom’s life it all made sense.