24 November 2009

Morsel Monday: Issue 13

Oddly, but Happily We Live

Sometimes I'm quiet.
I don't blog for days at a time.
You ask where I've been.

It's not that I'm taking time off.
But since both Keith and I were laid off from our salaried jobs in 2008,
we do all we can to keep our own small businesses running.
Which sometimes requires helping one another.

Sometimes I work alongside him.
This weekend was one of those times.

He had a photoshoot.

In an abandoned house.
Taking pictures of models for a local fashion designer's line of clothing.

The house stands in a field near our own.
It's been here longer than we have.
We have no idea who lived here, or why they left.

But it makes a fantastic shoot location.
And right by home, too.
Mason can play while we work.
We can break for lunch at our own kitchen table.

This house is monstrous next to a little boy.
It's all brambles and vines.
Patina and weathered wood.

But something tells me it must have been lovely once.
You can see glimpses of the old wallpaper through windows.
Bright and cheery.
Someone must have loved this place.

Keith does all the photography.
I hold reflectors.
Aim lights.
Smooth hair and adjust straps, laces, straighten hemlines.
Watch the Monkey to make sure he stays out of trouble.

It's a family affair.
This survival thing.
We work together to get food on our table.

It's the best fun.
Though it can be difficult, sure.
But in a hard kind of way,
our being laid off was the best thing that could have happened to us.
We both love what we do now.
And really . . .
how many people can say that?

Mason will grow up in what he will hopefully feel is an inspired and exciting environment.
Hopefully he'll learn to do what he loves, and make his work his play.

I want him to understand that he doesn't have to do everything like everyone else.
That there is joy in passion,
and that one's livelihood doesn't have to mean sacrificing living.

This isn't a corner office.
We don't own a water cooler, or a copying machine.
We don't have conference calls.

We have tents and trailers and hammers and cameras.
Dirty hands and dirty knees and bizarre schedules.
We have no morning commute.

We have family time while at work,
and there is no leaving work at the door when we get home at night.
While others go to sleep early in anticipation of a long day at the office,
we stay up, sipping beers and editing photos,
melting metal.
Talking finances and talking finances again.
Praying for clear weather or a shipment of silver.

Sure, it's a bit odd.
But we'll never be a nine-to-five family.
And I'll always be the wife whose husband talks casually about "shooting people."

It's our tiny kingdom.
We run it as we see fit.

And yes.
That often requires Keith shooting people.

But they love him for it.

And I love him for it.

And I'm proud to be us.
. . . however strange we may be.

* * * * *

{{{{{ New work in the Etsy Shop this evening. }}}}}

Next Monday's morsel will be Keith's finalized photos from this shoot.


  1. Odd? Maybe. But oh so totally awesome!

  2. Lovely post, and how wonderful that you can do what you love! Nothing strange about that.
    I think the house is beautiful as is, and I am sure it was beautiful a different way before!
    The photos are very nice. I am curious about the fashion now.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!


  3. jess, i am RIGHT THERE WITH YOU! my husband and i are both photographers...and you know the direction my art is taking me (with silver!)....so, i understand completely, and i LOVE the life our families lead.


  4. What an idyllic setting for Mason to grow up in! Your priorities are straight, you have learned to enjoy the simple pleasures of life that some people have lost along the way. How blessed you are.

  5. I love it how the Monkey and his daddy have matching shirts. :)

  6. What a wonderful life! I think it's like a little adventure.. a family adventure full of no rules and only surprises. I love that.

  7. Inspirational and encouraging to see you supporting yourselves doing something you love. Wishing you continued success and happiness.

  8. The life of artists. I loved this post. Thank you for sharing with us.


  9. What beautiful family portrait you just painted! A lovely reminder of the things we have to be grateful for! Happy Thanksgiving!

  10. We do it too...me a my hubby both work out of our little home...lots going on in our little kingdom and every inch of this home used! i think it is the way of the future...I think it is the way of the family....someone is always home for the boys...though my husband is having an affair with his secretary.....did I mention that I take his calls? lol
    love love loved this post!!!!

  11. haha! thank you everyone for such nice comments and support. I was re-reading this post and really hope it didn't come off as arrogant. I guess I just get all proud sometimes that we are standing on our feet despite the circumstances of the past two years. Really it was meant to be inspirational, an "anything is possible" sort of post . . . not too heavy or self-important.

    Thank you all for being here. Well, out there. For reading, and talking and sharing. Even if I don't write comments back to all of you, I always read every word you write, and take them all to heart. I love you guys.

  12. Funny, you both remind me of Chris and I a bit. I really enjoyed this post, thanks Jess!

  13. As always, Miss Rosy, well said.


  14. ...touching...loving...beautiful...& inspiring...this is...THANK YOU!