{Holiday Spirit} Westfield, New Jersey Photographer

It’s that time when everyone takes time to think about their year, and gets excited about the year to come.  I didn’t have a particularly fantastic year, and I’m really hoping to turn that around in 2011.  I’ve been thinking about the things in 2010 that may have impacted the overall “ho-hum” regard I have had towards the year, and each and every thing can be adjusted so that it doesn’t have that affect on 2011.

What’s that saying?

Oh yea!

Don’t React. Respond.

It is just so easy to allow the little things in life to become overwhelming.  It’s easy to let them pull you down.  The one thing that helped me so much when I was suffering from postpartum depression with Aubrie was to focus on the every day miracles, and allow those little moments to carry me through.  I spent time documenting the little bits of beauty that were surrounding me.  The little messages that the universe sent along to tell me, “it’s going to be ok, and it really is worth it to keep carrying on”.  Slowly, little by little, those happy little blessings became more and more frequent powerful.  They started to become what mattered.

So, this year has been a roller coaster, but the recovery after each fall seems to have been a little easier.  I’m looking forward to the new year, new possibilities.  But, I’m not waiting until January 1st.  I started on November 22nd, the day before my birthday.  I’ve been working on my patience, my understanding.  I’ve been trying (trying trying) to think about the elements in my life that are damaging, and remove them.  Stress about things I can’t control (thanks to my husband and a good friend who had many talks with about the desire to control.  I’m focusing on the little bubble of things that I CAN control!), reactions to toxic personalities, feelings of guilt or sorrow about things that I haven’t had a part in.  It’s all got to go.  And of course we are always a work in progress, and of course these things have been affecting me, but it is my overall response to these things that is strengthening.

And you know what? I’ve also cut myself a break because 1) I’m making a person. 2) I’ve already made two people whose physical and psychological well beings are my responsibility and 3) We’ve been sick and tired (literally. all of us) for a long time and even though there really is no room for being pulled down by junk, being sick and tired really does make it harder to deal with it, and it’s easy to slip.

BUT, then again, it is the Holiday Season, and it is nearly impossible not to be caught up in the magic.

So I’ve picked up my cameras.  I’ve been taking shots with my trusty 5d mark ii, but I’ve also decided to spend some time learning about the Polaroid SX-70.  I burned through my last pack of film, and am just giddy to have walked away with 4 of 8 images that I am happy with.  The Polaroids below were shot with The Impossible Project‘s PX-100 Silvershade.

I still feel like my images are a bit washed out, but the point is that these films are still experimental (hence having to be seriously careful that the images aren’t exposed to light once ejected) so I should relax about it.  It just seems like the images on the Impossible Project site, and some of the images in the Flickr groups, have so much more contrast.  I’m thinking maybe I need to play with that little light dial a bit?  I don’t know.

And how does that light dial work?  There is “lighter” and “darker”.  Is it referring to your current state of being? Like, put in on lighter if it is really freaking bright and sunny outside! Or, is it referring to how you want the image to come out? Like, it is dark in here, so I need the image to be lighter, so I better put my dial on lighter!!

I guess I need to do more research.

Ever talk yourself in circles in your post and wonder if you really said anything?

Ok, I’ve got it. Moral of the story is, don’t let the small stuff bring you down, because isn’t it all small stuff?  So why not allow the magic of the Holiday Season lift you up and inspire your happiness instead of having this time be a cause of stress!

Happy Thursday. We’re almost there…


  • Meg, I’m glad you are reviewing things and working on changing your outlook. It’s not easy…..baby steps, baby steps, baby steps. It’s not been particularly easy in our house this year either.

    Here’s a good piece of advice…I don’t remember where I picked it up, but it rings very true (and easier to say than live by…) :

    “What affects you is 15% what is done to you, 85% how you choose to react.”
    Loaded huh? But oh so true.

    I’ve got more to share with you, but I gotta get some work done!

  • Rachel

    What a beautiful post. It’s easy to get caught up in the small stuff, isn’t, especially at this time of year. Thanks for the reminder to back it up and chill out. It has been a pleasure getting to “know” you through the 365, your photos and attitude are an inspiration. I hope 2011 is full of all kinds of wonderful for you and your family.


  • Rachel

    What a beautiful sentiment – and a timely reminder to take a step back and chill out a bit. It has been a pleasure getting to “know” you this year through the 365project, your images and attitude are an inspiration. I hope 2011 is filled with all kinds of wonderful for you and your family.


  • Just what I needed to hear! Thanks Meg…love those Polaroid photos!