An Ask Away With Linkouture That Needs Its Own Disclaimer!

Disclaimer: This post contains a photo of a cow giving birth. Don’t look if you don’t like photos of cows giving birth!

Holy cow, I say “holy cow” a lot on this blog. In real life, I say, “holy ***” a lot. Saying “holy crap” is too…crappy. So it’s a “holy cow” day today, and mostly it’s – holy cow, I have so much work due today, Friday. Holy cow, wild horses couldn’t stop me from participating in today’s Ask Away Friday with Bev from Linkouture. Holy cow, her questions for me are fantastic and fun.

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She’s fantastic. We met through SITS, I believe, or mutual awesome friends. She’s a gifted artist and she lives in the same state as me, so chances are good that we will meet. Hopefully this spring or summer! I’d also love to meet her adorable daughter, Eve. You can see more from her and her answers to my questions HERE. And now onto this week’s #AAF. I’ve been excited for it.

To see who else is participating or to learn how to join the fun, head over to visit Penny from The Real Housewife of Caroline County and/or Amber from The Bold Fab Mom. #AskAwayFriday is their beautiful and ever-growing creation!

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1. What is the most interesting thing you have ever photographed?

I have to tell you that I have so many dreams that I’m seeing the most interesting, intriguing and beautiful things on earth (or beyond!) and my camera’s shutter button won’t click. Talk about anxiety dreams. In real life, that has never happened, I’m happy to say. As for the most interesting thing I’ve ever photographed, I think I need to separate that into three categories:

The most interesting thing I ever photographed that was PLANNED: I was once hired to do film photos of a woman and her horse, in sepia and b&w tones, in period (what period? I don’t know) costumes. The photos were a gift for her mother:

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The most interesting thing I ever photographed that was SEMI-PLANNED, meaning that I had planned on taking photos of the wilderness that day, but had no idea what I’d see, was a mother moose looking over her twin newborns on the side of the road:

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The most interesting thing I ever photographed that was UNPLANNED: It was a cow giving birth at UConn, but it was an emergency situation. I believe calves come out front feet first, and then nose. This was rear feet first, and then butt.

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It wasn’t pretty but both survived. And we checked on them weeks later, and both mother and calf were thriving.

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2. As a mother of two young children, a wife, an avid blogger, and a professional photographer, what helps you to balance it all? What advice would you offer to a new mom?

My best advice is to bond the heck out of those early days/weeks/months. Even now at 19-months and four-years-old, I will drop everything for hours with the kids. I can always make the rest up. And our bodies have good ways of telling us we’re doing too much, or not enough. Especially after having children! In the mornings, Scarlet is at school and Des naps. That’s when try to get the most done. Once a week or so, one or both kids will be with grandparents or friends, and I will be able to do a bulk of my photography editing/planning during the day. Otherwise, it’s mostly all on weeknights/weekends when Cassidy is home. That’s also when I will write my own blog posts. I do a lot of catch-up on the weekends. I also like to watch movies with Cassidy on weeknights or spend time together as all four of us on weekends. I can’t do/be it all, but I do get a lot done. With help!

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(We like to be weird together on weekends!)

3. You do such an incredible job of capturing your family in photographs. What tips do you have for photographing young children, both before and after they are mobile?

I actually wrote a crib sheet for BlogHer HERE once. Since then, I have definitely learned to embrace lighting, because although I think natural light will always be best, it can be limiting. Especially this time of year! I still say to know your camera, be patient, go manual, get down on their levels, be hilarious and loud and use toys to get their attention, follow them around if they’re mobile, experiment, shoot, shoot, and shoot some more! De-clutter your backgrounds. Face them towards the light..

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4. Is there anywhere that you have not yet lived that you think would be fun to try out, even if only temporarily?

I have always wanted to live in California, which I did. I have always wanted to live in New England, which I do. I am obsessed with seeing Colorado..so maybe that. And I’d love to live in one of those small towns that seem to only exist on TV (ex: Men in Trees, Gilmore Girls, Hart of Dixie, Everwood) in which everyone knows everyone’s name/business/whatever, and there are parades in the streets, hometown pride, constant flattering sunlight and really yummy coffee. I do think such places exist! I do.

5. You have such an incredible following on your blog–I’m always amazed at how many comments you have–but I also see you commenting on so many blogs as well. How are you able to both respond to all of the comments on your blog, as well as read and comment on so many others so thoughtfully?

I nearly answered that more on that above, but I’m glad I didn’t. It’s really not as much as it seems. Or rather, it’s so rewarding and fun that doing so is as natural to me as eating breakfast and spending hours with my kids. I need time with my “friends” too. You know, the ones who live in my computer. I knew it wasn’t overwhelming when I was able to keep up pretty well while on vacation last week. It’s how I mellow out during Des’ nap time or when alone at night. It’s about settling down with friends during my off-periods from parenting, wife-ing, working. I don’t get to all my blogs daily, but I always respond/visit back.

This is how I feel about y’all:

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6. Music seems to play a very important role in your life. If you had to choose the five songs that have had the biggest impact in your life or that most represent your life, what would they be?

Without a lot of fanfare/explanation, I may just leave them right here and you can take from them what you will:

Tori Amos: “Cloud on my Tongue
Capital Cities: “Safe and Sound”
Tom Petty: “Learning to Fly”
Madonna: “Live to Tell”
Eric Clapton: “Layla” tied with Dire Straits: “Romeo and Juliet”

Bonus:

Bruce Hornsby: Umm…everything

7. As you know, I write a lot about creativity on my blog. What advice would you offer to other moms for finding time for creativity?

It seeps out! No matter what you do! You can’t hide from it, just the way you can’t hide from your kids! So I balance even that in my life. I bring a notebook and pen everywhere. I use my iPhone and voice command function in parking lots. And that’s just the writing ideas part of it. The photography? It’s in everything I do with my kids. It’s more about how I can clear the intense urges from my head, thoroughly enough, and then put down the notebooks/cameras/phones to roll around in the snow/dirt/sandbox.

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8. Like you, I grew up in New Jersey and have since moved to Massachusetts. What do you miss most about living in New Jersey? (Personally, I miss the bagels the most!) What do you like most about living in Massachusetts?

Ah, not much! The bagels are up there, though! I miss my family and friends. I miss the roots that took 27 years to lay down. You can’t just rip them up and leave. Rather, you leave roots down there and every now and then, you need to visit and nurture your roots. I have no desire to ever move back, but I do miss the people. As for Massachusetts, I love that we’re 2-3 hours from NYC, 1-2 hours from Boston, three hours from Maine, and under an hour to Connecticut and the Berkshires. I love the wilderness in our city, the politics and people, the local, organic food, the dreamy springs and exquisite autumns..what we find in our gardens..

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9. You recently took a trip with your family to Disney World. If you had to choose one moment from the trip, which one would you say was your favorite?

Ah, so many. And each one – more heady and life-affirming than the next. Perhaps it was that first morning, when my kids learned that a 70 degree, sunny day could be plucked from seemingly nowhere in the middle of January. And that behind every corner, was a new adventure/theme park/experience, but we were still just delighting in green grass..

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10. I recently read the 20-part series of how you and Cassidy met (which is absolutely captivating and reads like a novel–I encourage all of your readers to read it if they haven’t already!). What made you decide to retell the entire story and share some pretty intimate details of your relationship?

Thank you, thank you, from the bottom of my heart for reading my story! I was pregnant with Des, and it was a bit of the calm before the storm. After the anatomy scan, I hoped to have a peaceful rest of pregnancy. I didn’t think it was my last chance to tell the story I had been sitting on for awhile, but I felt like Des’ birth might postpone it for a long time. I didn’t want to lose any of it first. I did, and still do, feel young and fresh and newlywed, and I wanted to re-live my story while still feeling all of those things. It totally took me back. And I haven’t read a word of it since! Maybe, hopefully, someday I will.

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Comments

An Ask Away With Linkouture That Needs Its Own Disclaimer! — 128 Comments

  1. She asked some good questions! Some that I’ve been wondering myself about you :) That photo of you in the orange/red dress is beautiful. I also love to go through all of my favorite blogs and catch up, it’s definitely relaxing and something I consider my “me” time.

    • Thanks! I had a new dress and whenever I had one, I’d make Cassidy take photos of me in them! Come to think of it, I need to start that fun again.
      Blogging is such a give and take, and it feels so good both ways!

  2. I am like you and try my bet to be present with my kids and use my time wisely during the day. Like right now, I am reading blogs while they still sleep, because I truly can’t do that once they wake up and the day begins. I can’t help, but love everything about this post though and the cow giving birth was truly the icing on the cake. Wishing you a wonderful weekend now!! ;) xoxo!!

    • Thanks for liking my cow giving birth! It was scary at the time, but they got it done. Wish I could remember if it was a boy or girl. A cutie. That’s what it was!
      Wishing you a stress-free weekend, with temperatures above 32!

  3. If I wasn’t such a city girl, I would want to live in Stars Hallow! Although despite the fact that Cambridge has over 100,000 people, it sometimes has a small-town feel (I’m constantly bumping into people I know in my neighborhood). It was so much fun coming up with questions for you, reading your responses, and responding to your questions–thanks for pairing up with me!

    • My friend lived in Cambridge for years, and still talks about that quality of it. We used to love to visit her. Then she moved to NYC, then Paris, then back to NYC, and now where? I hope Cambridge again!
      Your questions had me going – in the best way. Such a fun and thoughtful collection.
      Can’t wait to see your answers to mine!

  4. Pingback: Ask Me Another! My first #AskAwayFriday with Tamara Camera Blog - Linkouture

  5. Your photos are just so amazing! If we were closer, I would so hire you to take pics of my family! Wow, I didn’t realize that Cassidy wore sneakers at the wedding…how very Dr Who! I love it. It is such a testament to both of you to have that spontaneous fun, don’t ever lose that! The moose and her babies is too cool! I also have to say that, I personally, feel the love that you share with your online friends…as I’m sure most others do too. Hope you have a great weekend, Tamara!

    • I wish I could take photos of your family! I love it so.
      And yes, the sneakers were pretty cool, right? I didn’t really get it at the time that it was a Doctor Who thing, but it must have been. David Tennant was around by then.
      Thanks for everything! I do love the blogging love. Have a great weekend!

  6. Great questions and answers! I love the horse photo in front of the farmhouse. I always appreciate that you take time to comment on my little blog. I’m still on a blogging hiatus, but you have inspired me to get back to photographing more! Happy Friday!

  7. Oh, what a pair you two! Both awesomely creative women who I admire so! And both fellow Jersey girls! Tamara, I love what you say about the creativity seeping out. I think when we are lucky, we honor those creative gushes – instead of ignoring them, even when we’re overwhelmed with the responsibilities of parenthood. The best ting we can do for ourselves or our children is honor it. Love the photos in this post! Including the birth of the cow!

    • You’re part of quite the pair today too! I am LOVING today’s blogging love. I feel like we all need a group hug or something.
      Cow births, included.
      And I lingered..long after the crowd had walked away. I wanted to make sure the little calf survived! He/she did.

  8. Until we built our house a couple years ago I lived in the little town you describe. I could see town hall from my bedroom window. We had a traffic circle, no stop lights at all. I live only a few minutes away now, but I miss my little spot there. I have always said if I ever win the lotto (I’ve never played) I will buy that land, the land next door, and raze the houses to build us a big beautiful house in the spot I grew to love so much.

    • Is it like Gilmore Girls? If it really happens, can I move next door? I realize you’ll buy the land next door, but maybe next door to that? Whatever is next door. I want it.

  9. I have got to hunker down this weekend and read your story! I love to read love stories and have often dreamed of compiling a bunch into a book. I love your idea of where you want to live and I was sort of drooling at where you are living now. That picture of the cow was amazing as was the moose. Maybe it’s because I know how much you love moose. :) Your pictures make me wish I had your talent. They are just mesmerizing and I get lost in each of them. So good!

    • I’d love to hear what you thought about my story! Thank you. The cow experience was shaking me up, mainly because Scarlet was so young, but I don’t think she really grasped that the calf was in such danger. She got to see the happy ending!
      Wish she could have seen those moose.

  10. Love seeing you and Bev together! Can’t wait to see what you asked her. Every time I read these Ask Away posts, I think of a bunch of things I want to comment on and then when I get to the end, I have too many things! The random thing that stands out for me is that the song “Safe and Sound” is one of Biz’s favorites. He goes around the house singing it. And every time he does, it reminds me of you!

    • Aw, Biz! It does tend to get in the head, which is how I initially discovered it. And it was NOT love at first listen. It took awhile and even now, I won’t let myself listen to it much for fear I’ll get sick of it!

  11. The photo of the Moose and the bear cubs did it for me! Love animal photos :) I have never been that up north to the New England territory but plan to between October/November of this year for my boyfriends birthday :) Any recommendations as to what areas are just breathtaking? Always a pleasure getting to know you further Tamara and happy Friday! -Iva

    • If it’s more on the October side of things, you can’t miss peak fall foliage! And for that, anywhere is amazing. I personally l love the long Vermont drives for that!
      In November, it gets a little cold and bare, but that doesn’t mean it’s not great. It’s just that October is a real treat in New England. I am bowled over by it year after year. Western MA from the Berkshires to where I live in Northampton has tons of gorgeous drives. You can go to Great Barrington, VT and then drive up, up, up. The New Hampshire White Mountains have some gorgeous hotels and bed and breakfasts and they even boast the highest peak this side of the Mississippi – Mount Washington! You can hike it or drive it. And there are gondolas!

  12. I LOVE your advice to remember that time with the kids/family is what’s really important. The rest can wait. Our inboxes, blogs, and dust bunnies will be there when we get around to them. Our children are only little for a short time, so we need to soak up every sweet moment!

  13. Another great made up town is Northern Exposure’s little hamlet. Sometimes, I roam around Blairstown and know people everywhere..at the diner, at the feed store, at the gallery, at the health food shop, you name it. At those times, I do feel like I live in one of those special places where there is one large community. But as for pride parades, we are a long ways off although there is certainly a current of free thinking people in our area! (and two cool coffee shops)

    • Yes, Northern Exposure! What could be better than moose roaming around? There was a moose roaming around Easthampton.
      And Northampton is pretty perfect, but a bit too big to know everyone in town. I’m probably getting close, though.

  14. Those little bears in your garden were adorable. Not that I want them in mine since mama bear I am sure is close by and I have too many furry family members. And you know how much I want to see a moose. A moose and her babies…just priceless!!

    • There were FOUR little bears! And a big mama. I wish I had a wider camera that day but there wasn’t much time to think. She was a bit threatened by us and she pounded the ground. They all stood around a tree, holding paws!
      Awww!
      May you see your moose in 2014!

  15. Such great questions and the cow giving birth was so cool. Such a cute calf and those bears…you are great at capturing the innocence of the youth – people or animals. I love the wedding photo too. OOoh and I discovered the series of how you met. GOing to have to catch up on that!

    • Let me know if you do! It’s a story I haven’t read since I wrote it, but I feel like it’s Christmas when people do. I love what you said about animals. I used to only want to photograph animals, like National Geographic stuff, but then I had babies and it all changed!

  16. That photo of Scarlet and Roux gets me every time I see it!

    I would love to run away to Stars Hollow and live! I actually grew up in a small town and it is awesome for so many reasons. Although, Northampton is a bit like that. Plant your roots and soon everyone will know your name there too!

    • So true. I always tell Cassidy that if we go to River Valley and DON’T see someone we know, then that is weird. I feel the same way about the whole town. It’s a bit big to be totally Stars Hollow, but I often think I’d rather live here in the long term. And Stars Hollow for a year or so.

  17. Those are awesome questions!! I love that you still feel like a newlywed, and I may have to go and read that story of yours! I did not know it was out there. Also, every time I hear that Safe and Sound song, I think of YOU. Mostly because you have referenced it several times and wrote a great post a while back referencing it. AND…last night Addy told me (after we returned from our trip without kids) that SHE felt Safe and Sound. I have NO idea where she heard that, or if she even understood what she was saying…but that was priceless!

    • Aw! Precious Addy story for sure. I only listen to it once a week or less, because I just love it so much that I like each time to be so special. We’re still in the newlywed phase, Safe and Sound and me!

  18. I love the period costume pictures. I’d so do something like that.

    And the cow being born picture is pretty awesome.

    Ooo and I would love to live in Stars Hollow. All the amusing people in it. Lukes? Yes, please.

  19. What an awesome post!! I totally agree that you have to enjoy bonding with your baby in those early months. My first baby was super colicky and it was tough, but my second child was so chill it was so much easier to enjoy his babyness.

    • Yeah! The babyness. Scarlet and Des were both so chill as babies. Now..a lot less so. Des is the type to run away from me at an airport. So hard to bond during those times…but he’s irresistible.

  20. I love that moose picture!! Such a great shot! I think the cow giving birth is just fine too. A few minutes later I might have gotten skeeved out, but that one’s fine!

  21. I was expecting something terrible after your disclaimer, like a placenta or something.

    Elise’s sister had Tardis socks on the other day … and Elise took a picture of your Tardis shed from your blog to share with her. You Whovians …

    I think creativity works the same way with dads – it just finds a way out. And if we do it through carpentry or blogs or origami, we’re doing it for good and not evil. Mostly.

    • ha! No placenta. I have a friend who was very squeamish about me blogging the whole set way back when it actually took place. So I thought I’d slap a disclaimer up there! And that’s mild. Obviously I have a lot of photos from studying nudes in college!
      Whovians rock. Elise is amazing.
      I have to agree about the creativity and dads. I remember my father and my dad coming up with the most insane ways to delight and entertain us.

  22. Loved the questions and especially loved the pictures – well maybe not the ones in sepia…but cows giving birth? That’s just way too cool that you captured it on film. Moose twins? I think I need to have that picture!

    • The weird thing about the sepia was that this was before Photoshop so I had to buy film that color! Now I could do that with a click or two of a mouse! I tend not to, though.
      Moose twins, totally!! You can have the photo! I’ll autograph a print for you! (ah, I kid about the autograph)

  23. I live in one of those fairly small towns. At least 10 years ago — but we seem to have had a boom in the past couple of years – but we still have that close community feel. Santa clause parades complete with Boy Scouts and 4H and local marching band. Summer fair and horse/cattle show. I cannot wait to get my new camera to that summer event.
    Still, seen your cow being born photo —- but it’s not a real country experience until you actually have to reach in there and offer assistance. yeah. Not Enough Purell in the world.
    The bear cubs!! Oh my goodness – you had me at the moose shot, and then put me over the edge. You know, here I live in a small rural Canadian town — and I’ve never seen a moose! imagine.

    • haha! Ok, I did watch my mom’s horse get born! But I didn’t touch him. He was ok on his own. I used to be a 4H kid, but I came from a more suburban place so we’d travel to other counties for horse shoes and fairs.

    • Yup! I saw kittens and horses, and now cow, give birth. Lucky me?
      This one was only so scary because without human help, neither would have made it out alive.

  24. I loved her questions! I am struggling with the whole time management thing, juggling blogging, managing my other websites and my family. I like your idea of working while your kids are napping and on the weekends. Usually I get most of my blog writing and reading done when my fourth kid is at preschool on Tuesdays and Thursdays and my youngest is napping. I think I should do more writing and reading/commenting in the evening after the kids have settled down for the night and maybe spend more time with my blogs on the weekends too. You are an inspiration! Have a great weekend!

    • Thank you! Honestly, it just all happened. I’d find people. People would find me. And I never could turn anyone away from getting into my blogging circle? Everyone gets in my heart! If I eventually start getting 300 comments a post, I will have to hire a nanny, because I’d want to respond and visit everyone back!

  25. Your pictures never surprise me! I love that you were able to capture a moose and a cow giving birth! So precious! I’ve seen it before on TV and I thought it was amazing! Having the downtime to connect with your favorites is really special. I definitely agree. The more time goes on, the more I find that I like about people and I become a regular at their blog. It’s so nice once it happens. I never really know exactly how it does, but it’s special :)

    • Right? And sometimes things happen to make several come into our lives at once. Like a SITS Day or Ladies Only Blog Share Link Party weekend. And I can’t bear to exclude anyone. I visit back everyone!

  26. Every single time I see a picture of you in your wedding dress I’m in awe – you look gorgeous and I love the pop of red.
    I would love to live in the town of Hart of Dixie (with all of the current residents of course!!).

    • Thanks! Red and white were kind the colors of the whole event. And moose brown, I suppose! Really wanted a moose to walk into the ceremony.
      Who’s your favorite Hart of Dixie character??

  27. These were some great questions, I always struggle with managing reading every blog I want to read and comment on and get my own stuff out and on and on…so I was very glad to see that question and answer here. Off to get to know Bev…

    • Bev is a gem. And she’s a New England girl like us, so she’s invited to the next meetup!
      You work hard and have kids, so I imagine it’s very difficult to keep up! You still do a fantastic job. I’m awarded certain luxuries by working part-time at home. And other times, I want to pull my hair out.

  28. I think that comment question was the money question. I have been bewildered by the growth here and your responses in addition to visiting people. I couldn’t believe when i saw a comment from you last week! I was like, she’s in Disney! You are a little blogging ninja my friend. I appreciate you breaking it down for us though and the picture depicting your feelings was too cute. I must admit, I do love the relationships as well. I however, can’t maintain much more than I already have. I haven’t responded to a comment in ages. Terrible I know. I maintain my visits though. That is important to me.

    • Joi, you created a monster. I still remember reading your post and wondering why I didn’t get comments! Um…maybe it’s because I never commented on other blogs, replied to the ones on my blogs, shared my posts (really!?), shared other people’s posts, had an RSS feed..or did anything at all! I just thought people would flock to me anyway, through osmosis or telepathy.
      So one day a big dinner or drink is on me. I owe ya one.

  29. I have ALWAYS wanted to live in Stars Hollow. That was one of our favorite shows. But it would be hard to chose between Hogwarts and Stars Hollow. This was a good reminder of what is important in life. And I really do love all my blogging friends! Commenting and meeting new people is a lot of fun. Oh, and that series on how you met Cassidy was epic…but I have told you that already.

    • So true. And so different. I was so upset because I took another online quiz that said I was a Hufflepuff. However, the Gryffindor answers were too over the top! I guess I’d rather live in Stars Hollow maybe, because it would be a bit more mellow. No dementors, at least. No Voldemort. There would be that creepy guy, though.. what’s his name?
      KIRK!

      • Yes, Kirk…creepy but kind of loveable. I would totally be friends with Kirk. I took that test and I got Gryffindor. What does that say about me since you thought the answers were over the top. LOL.

  30. I also have the fifth question in mind. I’m amazed because everytime I visit a blog, I see your name in the comments section of almost all blogs and I think that it’s true that when you love what you’re doing, it just comes out naturally. You deserve all the followers. :)

  31. Lets go to Colorado together! Hubs has a fab aunt & one of her homes is in Colorado Springs, I bet I could hook us up, just sayin’…. Mike LOVES it out there. He talks about selling out portion of the farm & moving out there all the time. :-D XO Sweet T. ~A~

  32. These are some great answers to the questions. I never realized how long of a snout (is that correct?) moose have. Wow! Love the tips on photography. I keep seeing lighting as being a top priority for better pictures. I look back at some old ones I took and they are obviously light-starved. Ha!

    I think it’s great that you make time for other people’s blogs. I don’t have many followers and even fewer comments, but a fun part of my day is responding to others and spreading the love on their blogs.

    • You are cracking me up. Sometimes light-starved is better than light-drenched! Seeing light a certain way can come from instinct, sure, but it can be studied too.
      I think it’s great that you get pleasure from spreading the love. That’s the way to be! Happy to have found you from #AAF!

  33. wow, lots of interesting things to hear! I love the most was the moose with the babies..I had also wished a photo with a horse someday, the sepia idea really makes it look old, it matched the outfit of the lady. The cow, oh my gosh…..I cannot imagine seeing how they give birth :(

    • I cannot imagine how they give birth normally, because this was an emergency vet situation! That poor dear. It was all ok, though. Human intervention was a good thing. They worked tirelessly.
      And I took photos like a freak!

  34. Aww! I love the photo of your daughter and the other little sweet girl! I’m so happy to know that’s how you see your bloggy friends. You all are really friends to me and I’m so glad to know its reciprocal.

    That horse photo…well, I had to do a double take. Leave it to me to miss the whole birth part and only see people standing around a horse. Its so awesome that you just so happen to be there at that moment. How cool is that! :-)

  35. The newborn calf is ADORABLE! I always wanted to marry a farmer so I could live on the farm, but the farmer I dated wasn’t for me. I ended up with the right husband…but he’s an engineer and a city boy! Oh, well! I also have always wanted a horse and love your horse photos!!

    • My mom has two horses and has always had them so it was one little girl thing I didn’t have to wish for. I already had one!
      Scarlet would rather have a cat named Dinah, though.

  36. I love reading your answers on these question/answer posts. So fun. And such great photo moments! Those period photos with the horse are kind of weird (in a good way!) and wonderful. Well, all of the photos are wonderful.

  37. I love the questions and your answers. I especially loved that you enjoy your online friends so much because the feeling is completely mutual. And I thought to myself “in a few months, we’re going to be IRL friends, too! wheee!”
    I’m going to go follow Tucker around with my camera now and play with the settings. Oh! So seeing the cow birth photo…when I broke my hand on Thanksgiving, we were at my husband’s dad’s place in TN. He’s a farmer with cows. So when I got my temp cast and wanted to take a shower, he offered to get me a cow birthing glove because it comes up to your armpit. That seemed relevant for some reason.

    • I know! IRL friends is so much fun! I get nervous tingles! Ok, that came out weird. Call on me if you need photo advice with Tucker! Just don’t do too good of a job or you won’t have any reason to hire me.
      Birthing gloves. Always relevant.

  38. I love this comment: “I will drop everything for hours with the kids. I can always make the rest up.” I think I might have to print that in like 104 font print and hang it on my wall. I need the reminder. My priorities are often backwards when it comes to the kids. They won’t be little forever. And I love Romeo and Juliet by Dire Straights!

    • Do you like the studio version or one of the many wonderful 8-10 minute live versions?
      I’m a live version fan myself!
      It’s hard to remember. It’s hard not to take this all of granted. I know they will grow up fast, but still, there are many things I want to do with/by myself too. So complicated!

    • You’re always a good time, Andrea! And the question/answer was only for a temporary time! I want to live exactly where I am. Otherwise, I’d move! Adulthood and all of that. I know you get it, though.

  39. Wow! Bears, I was impressed with the moose sightings, but baby bears are awesome too. I would be really scared if I saw Bears in my backyard, I’m afraid of anything with more legs than me..lol. I think it’s amazing that you have so many blogging friends and have found a great balance between blogging and family time.

    • It was actually five bears, but I couldn’t get a clear photo of all. Wish I had!
      Next up, a moose in our yard would really be something. We see all sorts of crazy sights here in the woods.

  40. OK, you warned me about the cow giving birth picture, and I had full intentions of skipping right past it, but then there it was! Eek! I’m a bit of a… sissy. But I made it. I saw a picture of a cow giving birth and I survived.

    (P.S.- Those small towns where everyone knows your business, there are parades, hometown pride, and yummy coffee? They really do exist. I grew up in one. No joke. The only thing missing was the flattering light, because it was in the mountains and usually either snowing or raining.)

  41. I always love visiting your blog and seeing your amazing pictures! They are just beautiful!!
    I actually live in one of those towns you mentioned! It’s absolutely fun (almost all of the time). ;) My husband recently got the head football coach job here in town. Everywhere we go people are talking to us about football. It literally has felt like we are famous the last few weeks, because everyone in town knows and wants to talk football. I’m not sure if I should be excited, scared, or both for the start of the season! :)

    • Thanks, can’t wait to swap with you!
      That sound so.. Friday Night Lights to me! When they first moved and were so well known in town. I loved that show.

  42. Tamara, I so resonate with this: “I miss my family and friends. I miss the roots that took 27 years to lay down. You can’t just rip them up and leave. Rather, you leave roots down there and every now and then, you need to visit and nurture your roots. I have no desire to ever move back, but I do miss the people.” People think I’m a heretic when I say I don’t see myself moving back to the Caribbean, but I do miss my family. It’s that gentle tug of war between roots and branches. I think our branches are winning, at least for now!

    • I once wrote about how I didn’t like going back to Jersey – so many years away have softened me and it’s hard to go back. I remember my brother getting mad at me because I wrote about not liking Jersey. I was like, “Ok… so you are New Jersey now? ‘Cause otherwise, you have no right to get mad.”
      Although the Caribbean does sound a lot more dreamy..

  43. Now you’ve made me want to listen to Tori Amos. She’s wonderful and her music always moves me but sometimes I forget that …

    I carry a notebook in my purse … there’s one in my car … one in almost every room of my house – ALWAYS one beside my bed … I have to write my thoughts down before I can move on to the next thing. Out of my head and onto the paper …

    For some reason I wasn’t getting Twitter notifications for a few days so I just saw the one about AAF. I’m available any Fri. from Feb. 21st on. Just let me know a day that works for you :)

    • I forget that too. Even though she was my first concert and she can bring me to tears! I’m a few albums out of the loop, I believe.
      And oh darn! For the longest time I had February 21st open for AAF but I filled it yesterday. How about March 21st or 28th? It will rock!

  44. I have to admit… you scared me away from this post for a while with that first line! It really wasn’t even that bad of a picture. =) Yes, you have to get to Colorado sometime! It’s one of my favorite places to visit, especially in the summer when it’s nice and cool in the mountains. (And I hear they have moose if you go far enough west!)

    • Aw! I would never want to scare you away. Nah, it was mild enough but I had a friend who was really skeeved by it when I originally blogged about it a few years ago. So I just figured…it would help.
      Colorado sounds so amazing. And I do hear there are moose there! Lots of elk too.

    • I was totally shocked! I was more shocked that it was an emergency situation, and knowing me and my love of animals, I wouldn’t walk away until I knew all were ok. Sadly, I’m not a vegetarian, though.
      Please do come visit me anytime. We have a great guest room.

  45. I took a Girl Scout trip once where we drove from Pittsburgh to Colorado. We spent 25 hours over 2 days in vans, but it was totally worth it. Colorado is gorgeous- the mountains touch the sky!

    Those are some pretty awesome pictures and wildlife experiences! :-)

  46. Ok first off holy comments. LOL. Took a while to get to the bottom of the page. ;) Anyways I love your blog. Your pictures are fantastic!!! I wish we lived closer I bet we would have fun togethere. Have a good week!

  47. All of your photos are so amazing. I love the horse, moose, and baby bear photos. I love nature and capturing special moments would be so much fun.

    I can’t believe you witnessed the cows birth but hey they have to reproduce too so that we have food. It is interesting that they too sometimes need help with birth. Could you imagine a mom having to give birth without help? No thanks.

  48. Creativity “It just seeps out…you can’t hide from it.” LOVE this. Make it into a shirt. Now.
    I’m not sure what in the world that photo shoot was about but it scored in the “creepy as f*ck” category.
    I love that your family is nuts on weekends. Those are the best kind.
    I love moose. I should make that into a shirt.
    I also love that you love Tori Amos. Takes me back to my hay days of high school and drinking in corn fields. Don’t ask.

  49. tamara, i LOVE the pictures you took of the woman and her horse. they’re so creative and vintage-y. gorgeous! i would love to see the birth of a calf or some really interesting wildlife experience like that. i’ve milked a cow before and seen some pretty amazing wildlife on my adventures around the world. but a birth…that’s incredible!

    • Thanks!
      I totally think cow births are quite normal where we were. It was UConn’s working farm, and it’s totally open to the public, for better or for worse.

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