Thanks for the not-so-great things


Thanksgiving Day is almost over. The dishes are either done or waiting for you. The guys are napping and watching the Cowboys play the Redskins, the kids are talking (more) about Santa.

You spent the morning cooking and prepping or maybe driving a few hours in the car with your family. You deserve that extra glass of whatever - whether it be coffee or tea, wine or whiskey. Chances are you have spent a few days with relatives or you just had a few hours, and whether you love your relatives or not, you are questioning your sanity.


While today, Facebook and Instagram are flooded with messages of thanks for wonderful brilliant things, don't forget to be grateful for the messes and the crazy.

This morning, this wonderful Thanksgiving morning, I am thankful for the peanut butter that saved my 11-year-old's hair after she fell asleep with gum in her mouth (after I told her to be sure to throw it away before bed). I'm thankful we did not have to chop some bangs real quick before our holiday meal.

It's easy to be thankful for perfection but it's so important to be thankful for life's hiccups and headaches because they really make those perfect moments far more valuable.

It is easy to say I am thankful for the sweet and beautiful things in life: flower gardens, ice cream cones, diamond rings, dances under moonlight, children’s laughter, birdsongs, and the like. The challenge is recognizing things of value in the dark, sour, uglier parts of life. But if you look hard enough, you will find that even tough times offer pearls worthy of gratitude.
— Richelle E. Goodrich, Slaying Dragons

This is partly my reason for Life As We Know It sessions - to show the value of those imperfect moments so the perfect moments shine brighter in our hearts. I photograph everything in your life - the real stuff.

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For instance, last week my good friend had the worst day with her three-year-old. It was a full day of melt-downs minus the 30 mins spent at dance class. It was one of those days where you say "Peace" to your spouse as they walk in the door and you walk out to yoga. And that's just what she did. The next day, however, her sweet girl was back to her usual loving self, full of cuddles and giggles and the things that make you love being a mom.


I photograph everything in your life - the real stuff. The tantrums, the tears, the silly, the giggles, the funny faces, the cross faces, the mischief, and most importantly, the love. Because one day, 30 years from now, when your babies have babies, you'll miss these days. With these sessions, you'll have a beautiful photo album of these moments and a story book to share with your grand-kids.


So today, remember to be thankful for the tantrum and tears. And peanut butter.

Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.


The Shelleys