We had a lovely sunset maternity photo session at our home yesterday evening, and the wonderful photographer (Kassidy Dawn Photography) got the photos back to us in under 24 hours! I wanted something to commemorate my 4th pregnancy and our family surviving (and relatively thriving) in another pandemic year. It hasn't been easy, but we walk through the dark and the light, celebrate the joys and try to keep it real.
When we were living in Simcoe County, we were so fortunate to have Kristen Courtney Pirie (an amazing natural light photographer who has also become one of my good friends) document our family's special moments (Aurora's birthday, Willow newborn, Willow birthday, etc.). One of her photos of us from last summer even made it on the cover of EcoParent Magazine. Having recently moved four hours away, I looked for a new family photographer to do such a session for us and found Kassidy on Instagram and was immediately drawn to her authentic, earthy and moody style. After a year of living life gritty and authentic, it felt just right.
I love looking back on photos, and there's something about these professional ones that make our lives look picture-perfect. Of course, my life and my home are not perfect, but... I can say - right now - it's peaceful. We've worked (and are working) very hard to get here - both as individuals, couple and as a family. We're working hard to maintain healthy rhythms for our children, we're working hard to be each other's best support, and we're working hard on ourselves as individuals. It's gruelling hard work to get to a place where the day-to-day generally flows with minimal struggle.
But it's also gruelling hard work just to survive certain phases, period, never mind look after the house, eat organically or live sustainably. I remember being a bleary-eyed exhausted mama looking at people's perfect blogs and Instagram feeds and wondering how the heck their lives look so perfect and wishing people, moms, in particular, could just "be real." The truth is, those moments ARE also real, those moments are hard-won, and you shouldn't feel bad for celebrating or highlighting them.
I think the tell-tale sign is when you find yourself more busy enjoying your life than curating your feed... you're in a lovely place. 💛
Ironically, I got a little teary beforehand because some of my beautiful handmade dresses from Aya Sacred Wear wouldn't fit me, and I wanted to look "special." Instead, I put on a green linen dress I've been living in this Spring, and you know what? it looked and felt just right.
This is real. This is US.
Here are some of our favourites!
Photographer: Kassidy Dawn Photography