Kids Eating Thoughtfully

As usual, there is no way I’ll keep this “Photo Share Friday” to just one photo!

For that matter, it won’t be one story either. I’m not sure I’m capable of that, since my career is pretty much that of a glorified storyteller. Oh, do I love stories. Even when I think they’re not that interesting, I prove myself wrong each time.

Pretty much every story has a hot core of infinite other stories.

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I don’t know what the real story here is. Is it about being two years behind in editing photos (still)? It’s to the point where I’m editing newborn photos of my near two-year-old nephews. That’s ok, though. I have been giving them free photo shoots for two years now. It’s only a bonus when I email or text them with, “Oh yeah! Just found 455 new photos of Parker eating avocado.” No one hates that. It’s like when you discover a Jodi Picoult book you never read, or a Bruce Hornsby song you’ve never heard. A $20 bill in last year’s winter coat. A pint of unopened peanut butter cup ice cream in the freezer.

Link up with Finish the Sentence Friday #FTSF for Photo Share Friday. They have a new format and each week is exciting and new!

Perhaps this story is about a tradition, several years old, and FUN. We used to go to Hancock Shaker Village on random weekdays in early April – mainly because I’m allergic to crowds – although how much of a crowd can you get at a Shaker Village in the middle of the Berkshires? (more than you’d know) These days we have to go on weekends if we want Cassidy to tag along, but apparently we only wanted that once! Instead, we go during spring break – during the tail end of “Baby Animals” season. We get there early because the parking lot fills up. Like I said, crowds are relative. I can go to Disney World without blinking, but you expect that to be crowded. If I go to a grocery store on a random Tuesday morning, or a Shaker Village on a sunny Wednesday, other people make me itchy. I don’t get itchy from pollen or baby animals, though.

photo share

photo share

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It’s just.. perfect. We get free passes from the library, although I shouldn’t admit that, because they save us up to $40 and I always worry they’ll be flying off the library shelves. Alas, they’re always there. We drive the hour or so to the village – through winding New England perfection – and we pass through Camp Greylock and make jokes about the conditions there. There’s always a stop for ice cream (see photos above) and a stop in the gift shop – where each kid picks out one small souvenir. In fact, I can trace my financial success, or at least progress, to these spring break road trips. I remember the first time I bought the kids souvenirs with my own money. It was at Sturbridge Village with Bev and I was sheepish about it.

Luckily, she totally understood.

Link up with Finish the Sentence Friday #FTSF for Photo Share Friday. They have a new format and each week is exciting and new!

A third option is that this story is really about children eating thoughtfully. Even though I’m two years behind on editing photos, sometimes that’s for the best because it might take me another two years to catch up. I used to take my camera everywhere and I used to thrust it in my kids’ faces constantly, and sometimes I’d miss out on what we were all doing. Then I started doing more photography full time and it became less fun to be doing it in my personal time. THEN, I realized that was BS because personal photography is important too. I’m still trying to figure all of that out but I will report back.

Not only did it become less fun, but my kids became less fun about it. That doesn’t mean it stopped/stops me, even if I’m two years behind. The thing is – there’s a reason that wedding photographers take their breaks during dinner. Photos of people eating are somewhat terrible! And that also doesn’t mean it stopped/stops me. I think my kids eat quite thoughtfully! It could be because we hand-packed the picnic ourselves, and that can be exciting to kids. You made your bed. You lie in it. Even if it contains carrots, yogurt pouches, and sandwiches with the crust cut off. It tastes like..perfection.

Just when you think Des is the “Deep Thinker” of eating, then Scarlet comes along.

This is basically a yogurt ad, right?

Link up with Finish the Sentence Friday #FTSF for Photo Share Friday. They have a new format and each week is exciting and new!

Disclosure: This is not a yogurt ad. I felt the need to say that because I HAVE posted yogurt ads here.

This is the most beautiful pretzel photo I’ve ever seen.

Link up with Finish the Sentence Friday #FTSF for Photo Share Friday. They have a new format and each week is exciting and new!

This is me linking up, as one of my favorite things to do, with Finish The Sentence Friday. This week’s topic is Photo Share Friday And there’s still time to write yours. Come link up with your spin: HERE. What’s your photo? What’s its story?

Which photo most invites you to find out the story?

Link up with Finish the Sentence Friday #FTSF for Photo Share Friday. They have a new format and each week is exciting and new!

My Happy Place.

I was joking with friends on the school playground that watching Des run is my happy place.

So much of my anxiety is in my mind, if not all of it, as my mom once told me. All of it – the grand scope of the thoughts and the symptoms and the worries – it is contained. It is contained in just one complicated place. And it can be stopped and healed within that same place. A lot of how I feel better has nothing to do with doing something physically. I don’t take any medications, although I will say that a good multivitamin can help. And plenty of sunshine, of course. Getting lots of sleep helps. However, when I’m not anxious I could eat ice cream for dinner on four hours of sleep and still feel high as a kite. So much of everything seems to depend on our minds. And making choices about what to do, what to say, and where to go.

happy place

I may spray herbal sprays in my mouth. I might snap a hair tie around my wrist just enough for it to hurt, and to direct any attention away from harsh emotions. I may blast music or pace the halls, or write a letter to my five-year-old self.

Sometimes it’s as simple as a happy thought. As in, Peter Pan. As in, “You can fly, you can fly, you can fly.”

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It’s standing straighter. It’s laughing harder. It’s loving more fiercely and hanging on more tightly.

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It’s soaring higher, little by little, out of the nest and through the skies. It’s doing things that scare me.

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My happy place is ABSOLUTELY, absolutely filled with baby lambs. I mean.. come on. Baby lambs.

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It’s new friends, old friends, and those that come and go, and come and go, and always hold a special place.

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Did I mention baby pigs? I definitely meant to mention baby pigs.

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My happy place is achingly young and beautiful life.

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It’s support. A whole lot of strong support.

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My happy place is both together and alone.

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It’s under here, in between, and outside over there.

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My happy place is confiding that I have a problem.. or several. It’s speaking harsh truths to soft ears.

It’s freedom and wide, open spaces.

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It’s building and sustaining strong foundations.

My happy place is this.

My happy place is you.

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It’s words when feelings fail me, and photos when the words can’t come.


It’s time with family.

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And time roaming both new and old places.

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My happy place is momentum…

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…and taking breaks when necessary.

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It’s motherhood.

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And a whole lot of adventures, dreams & cookies.

My happy place is working on myself and choosing to uncover the dark truths hidden inside in order to breathe and soar more freely. My happy place is exploring and learning to live the life I want to live – free of many borders and limits and fears. My happy place is under construction, with detours, nooks & crannies and obstacle courses. It’s ok, though. There are warp zones too. There are temporary shortcuts and permanent foundations in place. My happy place is this blog and what’s beside it.

Who, What, Where, Where, When & How is your happy place?