Family Adventures

Christmas Traditions

I have not shared much about daily life, family adventures, or anything to do with my family (and especially kids) here in a very long time. About a year ago, a situation happened during which a person left some demeaning and intentionally derisive comments about myself and my mothering abilities, and I later found that this person or others who know them had taken a photo of my husband and made a sort of demeaning meme out of it. Everything that they said in these comments was based on their very limited internet knowledge of me and my life, mostly gathered from joking things I had said in passing on a Facebook group thread. It’s not a story I feel the need to get into any more, but since that time, I have felt pretty reticent to share my kids here on the blog.

I do run a photography Instagram account on which my kids dominate, but I rarely share motherhood incidents or personal stories any more. I never really addressed the real reason for this anywhere except my own personal Facebook account in a vague sort of way, which then sparked a few more nasty things and it took a long time for me to process everything that had happened. Postpartum depression and anxiety were strong at the time, so the whole situation left its mark for a long time. And then a few weeks ago, I realized something.

For an entire year I have been letting fear limit what I share online. I’ve let fear limit what I can do, despite wanting to open this blog up more to family life, daily life, little adventures, and maybe even photos of my kids again. The last time I shared actual blog posts dedicated to my kids was… I don’t even know how long ago.

But a few months ago, I think I shared this, I lost about 90% of every photo I have taken in the last five years. And, because I had begun to limit what I shared where, I don’t have a lot I can dig up  here from my blog, or on Facebook, or anywhere else. I lost a lot of memories in part because I didn’t back up my photos, and also in part because I had quit sharing life on my blog.

So, while life/family posts may be few and far between, I think it’s fitting to begin posting family again a year after a time that made me withdraw a bit from sharing my life with the internet.

This year is the first time we’ve gone to cut down our own tree with the kids, and it was so much fun!

Growing up, we went to cut our own tree nearly every year, and we always went to this place where you could cross a bridge and watch the salmon making their journey upstream. After cutting down the perfect tree, there was hot chocolate and candy canes waiting for us, and a friendly face or two always willing to chat and laugh. To my delight, the Christmas tree farm we visited this year, very near to where we live, was just as wonderful as the one I remember years ago. 

Called Christmas Traditions Tree farm, it’s about 15 minutes from our home, and full of beautiful trees, happy families, and hot chocolate and candy canes at the end! Asa and Evie both had lots of fun running through the forest of Christmas Trees, flitting from the baby trees that were shorter than themselves to the giant eight to nine foot trees that dwarfed us all. Asa insisted we get a “blue” tree when he noticed that the blue spruce were a different shade from all the others, but in the end we found the perfect little 5 foot tall noble that had a bit of a Charlie Brown quality to it in its slight crookedness and flat back.  

I am so glad I grabbed the camera to capture all these little moments! Ever since losing all of our photos, I have been feeling a bit discouraged about photographing with anything other than my cell phone. But there is so much joy in snapping these photos, even if the focus isn’t always perfect or the light is less than ideal. And a valuable lesson I’ve learned is that Amazon Prime has unlimited photo storage. Which is something I will definitely utilize from now on!

Because I would never want to lose this beautiful photo of my husband being as manly as he possibly can be in his puffer jacket:

I  hope that you all enjoy these little family-time blog posts as much as I love sharing them! As we come close to a new year (I will be thirty next year, and have a new baby, and hopefully — if my goals can be realized — publish a book at some point) I have to remind myself that, as always this blog is first and foremost my own little photographic life diary, a place where I should always feel free to record our memories, and that I should never be afraid to write about what I love. I think in all of the changes of the last five years (marriage, two kids, moving, postpartum depression, and so many other things!) I’d forgotten that a little!

May your days leading up to Christmas be full of joy!