some version of normal

Summer is over!
This morning I sent the littles and bigs off to their schools. Everyone was happy. I hid tears behind sunglasses I did not need on this cloudy gloomy day. (First time I can remember it raining on the first day of school, EVER.) Normally it is hotter then hell, with everyone wishing they could wear the new Fall clothes they purchased while sweating and dreaming of cooler temps. Some do even though it is 90 degrees, and they regret it. But today they got to wear their new flannels and hoodies and boots, and they were happy.

Now, my house is quiet, I have a few hours to myself, and I feel a tiny bit lost, but I am sure I will get back into the swing of things.
My first thought was, “I HAVE TO BLOG.”
Thank you for hanging in there with me – I know this summer has been a little light in the blog department. I just couldn’t bring myself to spend much time on the computer when the pool and a book and the ipod and the kids and maybe even a beer were calling my name.

But now I am back, in some new version of normal. I say new version because I feel a little bit like I went through a revision in the last few months. A reboot. Realizing that I wanted to and then writing about my truth has given me a sense of calm, a sense of relief, a sense of ME – that I haven’t had in a long time. I am grateful for that. I like how I feel right now. I am grateful for that, too.

I am grateful for you.

There are so many sessions to share, so many personal stories to tell and images to edit – I guess I will start with what we did this weekend and go from there.

Emily is moving from Perth, Australia to the East Coast. She was in southern California for just a little bit, getting ready for the move. We had a three day sleepover with both of our families, (just like the good old days), before saying goodbye for another long while.

These are some of the photos I took of our time together, edited using the ShakeItPhoto app on my iPhone.



Join the Conversation


  1. Tara, I’ve been following your blog for almost two years now. I can’t believe it’s been that long. I don’t ever comment because, well, who am I to you anyway? What would what I have to say that really matters in your world? But, now, here I am. Leaving you a comment. Why? Because your last few blog entries have impacted me more than you would know and I just want to say thank you for sharing. Thank you for putting yourself out there. And, thank you for just being YOU. The world needs a Tara Whitney in it, just like the world needs a Jessica Swatts in it. I’m still trying to find my place in this world, but because of things you have shared here, I’m thinking that I will strive to make it a little bit more like ME instead of something else. It’s not easy to truly put yourself out there. Thanks for that.

  2. Thank you for sharing the real you Tara. So many times I read blogs where everyone’s lives seem so damn perfect and then I think, “what am I doing wrong?” or “what am I going to write about when everything seems to be negative?” Thanks for keeping it real! ;)

  3. such a bittersweet time isn’t it? i know how much you will miss each other. but in nowadays, there are digital pictures, skype and blogging… will see each other often in this digital world.

    besides, tara, this gives you the perfect opportunity to head east on vacay next year, and stop to see me in michigan on your way.


    much love, cindy

  4. As a working mom, I always missed this melancholy day. We had our own traditions, but I know I missed out on the transition in a big way. It’s good to have you back on the blog with the NEW approach :) And something tells me, the road between the coasts is far shorter than that between Australia and LA!! And of course, the photos are striking.

  5. i just read your “truth” post about your daughter. i don’t know what she has…..but it sounds very similar to what my little sister was diagnosed with a couple of years ago…..sensory processing disorder. i know from watching her and my mother trying to deal with the exact same issues you expressed that it is a debilitating experience as a parent. after raising 5 children….she has this one that throws out every parenting rule she has ever known. just wanted to let you know that you’re not alone and thanks for sharing your honesty.

  6. Have to say I’m pretty grateful to have this place to visit. Guess that means I’m grateful for you. You’re killing me with all these great shots… LOVE the one with you and Mr. Whitney. Maybe love isn’t so yuck.

  7. I snuck over to Emily’s blog to see if she wrote where she’s moving to. All I could find out was New England. I’m in RI….hope she’s coming close! I’d love to take a class if she’d offer them!

    Great set of photos.

  8. Every single time I read your blog, I end up with tears in my eyes. Every. Single. Time. Know why? Because no matter what, they’re always so full of love. Plain and simple.

    Btw, yesterday was back-to-school day here too…I *almost* managed to keep my tears hidden.

  9. I love that shake it app!
    I got the iphone last week and can’t stop using it!
    driving my girls NUTS with all the pix! but it’s so worth it!
    I just posted a TON of them on my blog~
    yours are gorgeous!

  10. Hi, Tara!
    I’ve just found your blog a few weeks ago and I’ve been hooked ever since. Your “truth”-blogpost-statement was really great to read, as sometimes I feel I’m the only photographer in Sweden who dares to show her real self in my blog.
    I came to your blog because some of my friends/colleagues have been talking about you to me, on how much my work and my crazy life with three kids reminds them of you.
    So, thanks for being there, for also being a mom with the love for photography and children so alive we cannot hide behind them.
    A big warm hug from rainy Stockholm!


  11. I saw your friend and thought, ‘I’ve seen her before’. I knew exactly where….Emily is featured in a book I have called, “Sharing your Stories, recording life’s details in mini books” by Ali Edwards. I just absolutely love her work and style. Adore this collection of photos. Makes me wish i had an iPhone! Especially like the one of Emily and her family, bottom left, in the long grass. I Just found your blog not so long ago and oh how i Love it. Thank you for all that you share.

  12. Man, I feel exactly like this today. I took over a month off of blogging for the same reasons. Summer. Regroup. Can’t deal. Traveling. Figuring some things out.

    Back to the blog today and it feels intimidating. This is a nice way to re-enter. Good luck with the iMac tho. Argh. See you soon. :)

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