Browsing Tag

family

Black and White, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day

I want to be just like the woman at the coffee shop when I grow up.

May 10, 2020

When I was around 20 years old and playing in a band full time, I would stop by the coffee and donut shop, near my apartment, after the gig. You’d always find me and several other regulars there, night after night, winding down from our “shifts” with coffee and a donut.

Or was that the reason we were there?

I knew that, for me, it was more about visiting with the woman behind the counter than it was for any coffee or donut — but oh the donut! The reason it was so good was that she knew I liked the maple glazed kind so, when she saw me coming in, she would take one and drizzle extra maple on it just for me. She’d greet me with a smile and a hug and tell me how happy she was to see me and then she’d always ask how the gig went? 

But here’s the best part.

She listened (really listened) to what I had to tell her. She’d laugh and smile her beautiful smile — I mean, who wouldn’t want that coffee and donut?! She made sure I knew I was special and she knew how special she was to me. Then one night, many nights into this coffee shop routine, I looked around the room and saw on the faces of others what I felt inside — welcomed and cared for — I mattered. If to no one else, I mattered to her and so did they. 

I listened to her conversations with them, as much as I listened to my own with her — this woman — this wise and beautiful woman was in her way…well, healing people from the inside out. Over the years I watched from across the room as laughter erupted, tears fell, and anger subsided. I don’t know what all the stories were about, but I do know they were made better by her. 

One person — one beautiful, wise, kind and caring woman — intently listening to people and making a difference in their lives.  What a gift! Making people feel…no, scratch that, making people understand that they matter and sometimes (by my observations) for the first time. I felt privileged to watch it happen. 

I was reminded of those times as I watched my mother from across the room, listening to my Yittle, just as beautiful as she was all those years ago in the coffee shop. Listening in that special way that she has always listened, and as I saw the look on my little girl’s face (a look I have seen on so many faces before), I felt privileged all over again. Privileged and grateful that my children have this beautiful woman in their lives to listen and listen well. 

Mom, in case I haven’t told you lately, you pour the best cup of coffee — ever. When I grow up, I want to be just…like…you.

Happy Mother’s Day — I love you.

 

I wrote this a few years ago, and it has now become a tradition to share it every year. To all the mothers — I hope your day is special and Happy Mother’s Day!  💐💝🌺

 

 

 

Featured, Moments, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day, Uncategorized

Q. What does visiting my son, an antique store and zebra finches have to do with this image?

August 1, 2018

A. Everything.

I see stories — everywhere — and all the time. I feel blessed this is the case and I do know why. Besides loving to read, I grew up with some of the best storytellers that ever lived. Some are still here but most are gone now, and I owe them so much of my joy. All of my uncles, most of my aunts, my dad, my mom, all of my grandparents, (one grandmother would tell her stories for so long, that as little kids, we’d sneak out of the room before she was done. Hahaha!) However, I’m so grateful to her now. When I was growing up, I remember sitting around listening to the adults tell their stories — so many stories — these people lived life! Even the mundane was made funny and interesting (at least to me). One uncle (who could not hold a note) put his stories to music and whenever he would visit he would bring his guitar and “sing” his stories. I LOVED it! Many in my family are musicians, singers, dancers and so music was ever present. I have memories of my parents dancing to Motown in the living room, my mom having me sing for any company that showed up, singing at the missions with my sisters while my mother played the piano, and listening to my grandmother sing in church (so loudly that it would put Ethel Merman to shame).

Anyway, because of this wonderful cast of characters, I see in stories, and so when I went and visited my son recently, and he took me to a lovely breakfast, and then a walk around town, we wound up in this beautiful, upscale, antique store. In the store was an amazing birdcage (we’re talking the Taj Mahal of birdcages here) and in the cage were the most beautiful sounding zebra finches. I’d never heard a zebra finch before then, but they make the sweetest sounds, and those sounds and the birdcage drew me right in. I started thinking; one could imagine that they’d be some of the happiest captive birds while living in this beautiful cage, looking at all these beautiful things. They were even positioned in amazing light. But when I got in closer to take a better look, I realized, from their perspective, it was still just a cage and looked like it. They were just looking out onto beauty but not living it, you know? I was thinking hard about this (and hearing the song The Lark Ascending in my head) when my son said, “Mom, there are a lot of other things in this store.” Giggling a little, I had to agree, and we moved on but…this is how this image (and the finals from the shoot) came to be. Here’s how I explained it to those on set…

“Our little birdie finally got her wish to be human. Breaking out of her gilded cage she was finally able to live the free and glamorous life she had watched so many live in this room before.”

I imagined this image, but my husband brought it to life with his photographs. I like that about him. ☺

Grateful to all the crew, Christina, Jason, Steve and Viktor from KelbyOne, Julio and Kathy for photo assisting and to MJ for modeling, Hendrickje and Anna for makeup and hair and Julia for her unique and perfect dress. Such an amazing team. Here are the Instagram and social contacts if you’re interested.

Photographer: @scottkelby
Creative Director: @kalebrakelby
Production Company: @kelbyonepics
Producer: Christinam007
Model: @mjbutterly
Costume Designer: @xiaolindesign
Makeup Artist: @hendrickjemakeup
Key Hair: @style.hairandmakeup
Camera Assistant: @julioaguilar
Camera Assistant: @kathyporupski
Behind The Scene Stills/Video: @steven_nicolai_417
Behind The Scene Stills/Video: @darkrequest
Location: @rialtotheatretampa
Special Thanks: @thehiproom
Lighting by: @profotousa

You can see the entire shoot and final images at Scott Kelby’s Adobe Spark page.

Happy Wednesday everyone and I wish you stories.

Featured, iPhone, Moments, Nature, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day

I was reminded that…

July 28, 2018

Love is a verb. You can give it by showing kindness, through a shared experience, or by simply listening to someone. If you manage, somehow, to accomplish all three of those at the same time? Well, that’s a little bit of heaven on earth. This image is from a moment like that, and I will hold it in my heart and never let it go.

I wish you peace, joy, and an active verb. 😉

Featured, Moments, Nature, Personal Side Interviews, Travel

The Personal Side of Moose Peterson

July 10, 2018

In this Personal Side Interview, I get to sit down with my friend, award-winning wildlife and aviation photographer, Moose Peterson. Moose talks about his childhood, his family, and how he met his wife Sharon (Mrs. Moose). For Moose, art and photography were always a part of growing up and the combination sparked a true passion for him, making photography a full-time career. This interview was one I truly couldn’t wait to do and I hope you’ll take the time to watch it here at KelbyOne.

Thank you, Moose. It’s always a delight when we get to talk and the times we’ve shared with you and Sharon are some of the most wonderful travel memories I have — you two are the best!

Kalebra

Personal Side Interviews

The Personal Side of Serge Ramelli

May 9, 2018

Photographer Serge Ramelli sees art in the world around him. Being an artist and having creativity is all about putting beauty out in the world – with many different ways of how to express it. Serge himself expresses art both through his photography as well as through acting and filmmaking. It was fascinating to hear the stories of how he got started, of his supportive family, and the dreams he’s still pursuing. His ambition is inspiring and motivating — I hope you’ll make time to watch the entire interview.

Merci beaucoup, Serge!

Kalebra

Featured, Personal Side Interviews

The Personal Side of Tracy Sweeney

March 14, 2018

What happens when your passion and determination are led by grace? Incredible, wonderful things that’s what. Sit with Tracy Sweeney and me as she talks about how she got started, her role as a mom, how she connects with the families and children she photographs, and how it all comes together to serve her purpose. The love and gratitude she has for her family shine through in every moment, as does her teaching background in the stories she captures in her work.

This Personal Side of Tracy Sweeney interview was inspiring, fascinating and joyful for me and I know it will be for you too—I hope you’ll make time to watch it.

Thank you, Tracy, you’re kinda marvelous.

Personal Side Interviews, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day

A Peek at The Personal Side of Tim Wallace

February 1, 2018

“I’d rather live an amazing day that I would remember always than ten years of dull grayness.”Tim Wallace

After Tim’s Personal Side interview he became known around our offices as the real Batman. The full interview can be found here at KelbyOne.

Thank you, Tim, for the honor and pleasure.

Kalebra

 

Moments, Things I Hope My Kids Will Read One Day

Happy New Year! From Three Wise Men? That’s Weird.

December 31, 2017

I’m not one for resolutions but I don’t want to leave 2017 without saying something to you so I’ll let my late uncles do the talking for me. Since they’re all passed this should be interesting. My mother’s three brothers were all characters and very different from one another—making them the best uncles ever and I loved each one dearly. You can take their advice into 2018 (or don’t) either way, they were awesome, and I wish you a bright, healthy, and Happy New Year!

From the oldest to youngest…

The Coach/Businessman who said, “Don’t let anyone just bring you a problem. They also need to show up with three possible solutions.”

The Cowboy who said, “Never follow a snake into its own hole.”

And the Hippy who said, “Give and keep it—to yourself.”

Love and Hugs and a Happy New Year!

Kalebra