Sunday came to me last night very seriously and said “Mama, can I ask you a question?”
I always love when she approaches me in this manner, because when she does, I get a glimpse at 15 year old Sunday. With hope, I say a quick prayer that she is still coming to me this very same way in another ten years. I always stop what I am doing immediately, as if to reward her, and I get down on her level, giving her my full attention.
“You can ALWAYS ask me a question, sweetie. What’s up?”
“Why did Pap stop eating?”
And with that great loss, I will look back on 2016 with a somber remembrance.
It’s been a year, to say the least. I’m not sure where to start, except, it looks like I’m not alone in my thoughts. I won’t even touch on The Year 2016 As Told By The Media - because seriously. Good riddance. But personally, 2016 showed me some of the darkest days I’ve ever walked through. Although, I am grateful to recognize that the dark days were appropriately offset by some of the most exciting days. (And also gaining newfound recognition of the amazing, loving people in my life.)
In 2016 we sold our home of ten years. The house we became a family in... the house Sunday was born in.
But we bought my husband’s childhood home… the place he was brought to from the hospital after his own birth.
And with that, came hours of renovating, which included numerous meetings with contractors and painters and driving back and forth between the two houses endless times a day.
Also, with that, came a huge uprooting of my business as I tried to balance life while moving… as if moving didn’t take any time, at all. (Anyone out there about to move? Here's some free advice - if it's possible for you, put up an Out Of Office Reply and get back to work after you’re settled.)
But, from all of that came the photography studio of my dreams. And, honestly, the clients of my dreams. (Thank you to my ah-mazing clients who trusted me to capture your life's sweetest moments this year - some of those moments are what pulled me through this year with my emotions still intact!)
Business-wise, my year was a year FULL of changes. Because, if you let them, difficulties can bring some of the best lessons and the most rewarding improvements. I am now armed and ready with tools to make 2017 The Best Year Ever. And I am freaking PUMPED about it! (P.S. Email is finally working consistently. My new email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Personal-wise, this year really shocked me with all of the insanity it brought while still maintaining a decent level of normalcy. This year was full of change with losing Pap and our big move. We also lost a(n unexpected) pregnancy. That was a crazy perspective shift that threw itself in right at the end of 2016… as if we needed a cherry to top it off.
As someone who typically loves change, this year of change just about put me over the edge! Perhaps it has something to do with living in a house with three other people who do. not. like. change. (Ha! :))
But at the end of a tough year comes hope… wisdom… gratefulness. Hope for a fresh start and a better year ahead. Wisdom gained from the lessons learned. And gratefulness for the growth that happened.
Can you relate... or was your 2016 amazing?! I know a lot of my clients had a wonderful year with the big changes and milestones I was able to capture! Again, I want to thank you for including me in these beautiful moments... because it was a lot of your experiences which kept my spirit alive during a challenging season.
How was your 2016? I'd love to know! Feel free to share in the comments!
More to come on my plans for 2017... I am SO excited!
Hey hey... 2017!
I am welcoming you with open arms. Let’s do this!
A highlight of 2016 was having our family pictures taken by my dear friend Lauren of Lily Sophia Photography.
Liz Cook of Liz Cook Photography specializes in simple, organic baby, family, and wedding photography in Lynchburg, Virginia and surrounding areas.
If you'd like to start planning a fine art portrait session for you and your family please feel free to get in touch and we'll arrange your pre-consultation to discuss your hopes and goals for your art work and get to know each other before your shoot.