Strange title, I know! I started writing this blog with no intentions other than sharing the amazing colors of this peacock that showed up in our yard.

 

A gorgeous new friend visited us last week. I was in a pseudo-nap on the couch, when my son shouted that there was a peacock in our front yard. He might as well have told me there was a dinosaur out there, in that sleepy state I was in. Sure enough there he was! We’ve had a few female ones show up off and through the years. They really seem to like our roof, and to make those crazy sounds all day up there. It’s a novelty, so it doesn’t annoy me. I’ve never seen a male peacock up close before, though. It was a real treasure.

It also was also happened to be the birthday of my great grandma. I had been spending the day going through memories of her before she passed, like the thank you note she sent in the mail to me for the time I made her hot cocoa at our last visit. (And why, why didn’t they make an electrical outlet in the bathroom?) She would have been 110, and I wish she could have met my husband and these three wiggly kiddos who climb the trees she and her husband planted, sleep in the room her own three children slept in, and pick the oranges they grafted and cared for. She would have loved to see the beautiful show this peacock gave us, and really what I keep coming back to is this-

What an incredible gift she gave us.

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Old family photos have an incredible way of connecting you with those before you. For me, it seems they have an uncanny power of centering me into the beautiful richness of what those before me have fought for, and how it has carried me to where I am now.

 

Simply said, I love my family heritage. This is my great grandma behind the house we now live in. She lived to be 99 here, raising three kids, and gardening on her own until she was 96. I want to be like her. Living simply, but rich in love, peace, and the satisfaction that comes with hard work. I’m so grateful for these photographs of her and to be able to share her with my kids.


Looking at these photos presents me with so many questions.

Really, though… I can stare at the beautiful, young face of my great grandmother. I can look in her eyes and feel like the more my family grows and changes, that I’m actually more like her.

It’s a gift.

 

This photo of my family is by a wonderful friend. Thank you, Amber for this gift to my family.

From a photographer’s point of view, I ask you if you have a gift like this for your children, and theirs? What steps have you taken to document you and what you’ve been pouring into your own family? And what are you waiting for? I don’t see my great grandmother’s imperfections in this photo. I see love, fierceness, strength, vitality… This is how your children see you.

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I’ll be honest. It was really strange to see myself in a photo. Let’s admit, we’re our own worst critics. I can usually hide behind my camera on messy hair days, I’m a horrible house keeper (but I’m getting there!), and there’s so much that needs to be done in this old house. I even considered a photoshop overhaul on that photo to fix the peeling paint. It’s so silly. After this goofy looking bird showed up and began a tangent of thoughts and discoveries, I opened these photos again, and I saw beauty. I saw the way my kids look in my eyes, the love of my husband, and maybe, just a tiny glimpse of who these crazy, tiny people I’m raising are growing to be.

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This is me, now. Real life. And it’s gorgeous. What kind of legacy do you want to leave behind?

 

 

 

 

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