Homeschooling end of week #2 with a little bit of photography 01.22.2021

I have been wanting to get behind the camera again, I miss seeing things through the lens, I have missed sharing the world as I see it, I have missed seeing my life in black & white. So I am working on an ongoing photography project documenting our homeschool days. Some photographs will be posted with my blog posts but more will be posted in my projects

There are two people from my past that I have to thank for telling me it’s ok to start back into looking behind the camera with the things that are going on in my everyday.

I am now an official homeschool mom, and it’s tough, if you cut me i think it would just be coffee and wine instead of blood to flow out of my veins, did I tell you my 3 year old is potty training… it has been a very long 2 weeks.

It has been worth every minute. My 5 year old is no longer chewing on her hair, something that stated with this school year, my 9 year old isn’t talking back to me as much as she was before, my 3 year old has someone to play with all day. I’m finding i don’t need an escape from my littles like I have in the past…

School is very hands on a perfect way for little ones to learn they get to see, touch, and hear what they are learning, they are no longer sitting in front of a screen all day.

I am starting a photo project, about homeschooling, lets see where it takes me, lets see what my children will teach me, lets see where more inspiration will come from.

~mary E. J. mason

Gloomy days…

I’m not going to lie… I love gloomy fall days, to me there seems to be a bit of magic in the air, and living in a small house in the middle of a farm with nothing but homemade blankets and second hand, sometimes third hand furniture so everything matches by not matching, this house that I am renting has such a warm and welcoming feel to it. One where you are not worried about sitting on the sofa or taking off your boots before coming in, the wood floors are well worn and in need of some tlc, the walls are covered with both mine and the kids art work, so when you first walk in it’s a lot to take in especially if it is your first time seeing everything, but all of this adds to the welcoming feel.

I’m still feeling “peace” while washing dishes… dinner is in the oven… i have put on my pajamas, and the light from the gloomy day brings in this quite hue that is asking you to light a candle, to turn on one lamp, because sometimes that light you see in the fog can be the most restful, beautiful and welcoming light of all, there is no harshness to it.

Normally I would have made myself a nice pot of tea cuddled up under one of my many handmade blankets to read a book, finish a project, watch a movie, or just watch the rain and listen to the crackle of the wood burning in the stove. Today I find myself opening a beer and washing dishes while the kids scream, the dogs fight and I try to find a bit of peace watching the chickens in the yard looking for their dinner, heck it’s not even a good beer, but it’s a cold one and my nerves are very much on edge.

In the short time that I put dinner in the oven (and it was a frozen dinner) washed a few dishes from this morning the house has been torn apart. My two youngest have taken all my blankets and pillows off my bed and moved them to the living room, they have also emptied the clean clothes that I was going to fold after dinner, the sofa is taken apart… I could go on and on. I am cold because there is no fire in the wood stove, my husband has yet to pull it out from the wall to clean, I would do it, but it is too big of a job for me to do alone with the kids running around crazy, the dogs fighting and heck the size and weight of the stove, it is just a job that I can not do on my own.

I am trying to find the joy in all of this, we have a roof over our heads, and dinner is cooling, there will be clean clothes to wear tomorrow and my van has a full tank of gas, but oh is it hard. The kids have decided that they don’t like dinner without trying it, and the fighting and crying just keeps going on and on.

I may have some wine after the kids go to bed and finally sit down to enjoy the gloomy day with my book, but for now I need to be the solo mom living on the homestead that is full of living things that very much depend on me for life.

But lets be real, I’m most likely just going to cuddle up under my big blanket and fall asleep to do it all over again tomorrow…

~mary e.J mason

Welcome to… “The Your Name here” est. ????

https://etsy.me/3jcpBCC

Custom made embroidery, welcome home gift with couples new last name and the year they became a family.

This is the perfect wedding gift or anniversary gift for that special couple in your life who seems to have everything!!!

Please specify up to 2 thread colors and 2 letters.

I use DMC so if you have numbers please let me know.
If you do not have DMC colors please list the colors you would like, a sketch and color palette will be sent to you before stitching

Letters will be in brown or black unless another color is asked for, flowers and leaves you can chose colors please let me know in the comments. See above info⬆️

Since this is made to order please allow 1-2 weeks for the finished project once you approve your colors

Product is backed with felt and signed and dated, and ready to hang on the wall.

Finished product will be mailed in bubble wrap and a padded mailer, please remember that this is hand embroidery so there may be some minor imperfections, and the finished art work will not be identical to the one that is pictured.

Since this is a custom order, I am unable to accept returns
Spot clean ONLY

I live on a little homestead with lots of rabbits and chickens as well as an animal friendly home, with dogs, cats, hamsters, chickens, goats, ducks & guinea pigs & a rabbit

every purchase helps me feed them as well as my three growing children
💜💜💙

Kid life
4H life
Mom life

~mary e. J.mason

New Christmas Ornament Embroidery $$$

3” wooden hoop Christmas Ornament

“1st Christmas”. (free hand embroidery)

The perfect ornament for those of you who love hand made things! I get a new ornament for my kids every year, and one for myself, start your Christmas ornament tradition today with this one!

It’s never to early (or late) to start getting ready for Christmas 🎄 and with handmade items the earlier the better!

Custom orders on this are more than welcome! Instead of 1st Christmas I can put the year in, these will take a few days longer to mail.

Product is backed with felt and signed and dated, and ready to hang on the tree or wall with string.

This ornament is done free hand so yours may look a little different than the one pictured.

Finished product will be mailed in bubble wrap and a padded mailer, please remember that this is hand embroidery so there may be some minor imperfections, and the finished art work may not be identical to the one that is pictured due to computers and the fact that items are handmade.

Will mail 1-3 days from order date
All sales are finial!!
Spot clean ONLY

I live on a little homestead with lots of rabbits and chickens as well as an animal friendly home, with dogs, cats, hamsters, chickens, goats, ducks & guinea pigs & a rabbit

every purchase helps me feed them as well as my three growing children
💜💜💙

Kid life
4H life
Mom life

Picture perfect weather 6’ apart

This is a family session from last November that I guess I forgot to post, I remember the day after I got really sick so maybe that is why, I was late in getting them their edited photographs but THANKFULLY they were super understanding.
This session was all laughs and love, and I can’t wait to photograph them again! Also what an amazing day and location, the weather was calling for rain but we had nothing but cloudy skies (a photographers dream).

Right now is a perfect time to update your family photos because it’s not HOT outside, so if you are local in the NOVA area than drop me a line, and with photography you are able to practice social distancing, now is a funny time to rebuild my photography business, but for some reason I feel that the time is right 🤦🏼‍♀️🤷🏼‍♀️😜😷

Now is also a good time to start thinking about all those greeting cards you will be sending out for Christmas! I’m sure and hope that there will be a lot more than normal.

~mary e.J mason

L.G.T. Newborn session… May 2020

This little big guy was born when everything first started shutting down from COVID-19 so I wasn’t able to photograph him as a newborn, most of my props didn’t work, and he was awake for the whole session. Such a sweet little guy, can’t wait to watch him grow for many years to come. I love it when I get phone calls from past brides letting me know that their family is growing and they want me to be a part of the memories.

~mary e.J mason

P.S. I can’t believe that I forgot to post a few of my favorites from the session that was all the way back in MAY 🤦🏼‍♀️😜

6.10.06 – 7.27.20 you are so loved, you will so be missed

We set ourselves up for it don’t we. We give our hearts over to heartbreak. We know it’s going to happen, we know that in the next 10 years or so if we are lucky your heart will be broken with a love that you can never understand a love that you can never explain. A love that truly had no drama involved, no trust issues, no hurt, no anger, just straight out LOVE. The worst part? Most likely you are the one who has to make the choice… that is the most heartbreaking part of it all, you are the one who has to see the pain and decide that they can no longer live with it, you are the one that has to pull the trigger. And yet I would do it all over again knowing how much it will hurt, knowing that in a month I will most likely be expected to no longer morn her, so I will have to hide the sorrow, hide the pain.

14 years ago I made my first big adult decision I brought home the sweetest little puppy, a jack russell beagle mix. It’s a pretty big deal to bring a puppy home, after having babies I can say that raising a puppy is almost like having a newborn at home, you are up every few hours to put them outside, you have your choice of listening to them cry because you are kennel training them at night, or you let them come and sleep with you, I picked sleeping with me, her little whimpers got me every time.

Oh sweet girl how you will be missed! Not only by me but by your best friend, how do I explain to him that you aren’t coming back, how do I tell him to stop looking for her…

I will take a drink for you tonight, I will post random photos of you as I come across them because I have way to many to share, I don’t want to share any of you as an older dog, your pain is not how I want to remember you, I want to remember you as the hyper puppy who always wanted to chase the squirrel and catch the ball. I will remember when you growled at my pregnant tummy the first time the baby moved. How you would always get so excited when my parents came to visit, how you smiled when you where super excited, and yes she really did smile. So many memories are flooding in my mind right now, so much love,

So run sweet girl, run through the fields, sit on my daddy’s lap and kiss him nonstop like you did whenever he came to visit. I will always remember you, you are my “first born” my first “baby” you thought me to love more so than the dogs of my childhood because you where 100% mine, you picked me when you where 6 weeks old, i saw you the day you where born.

So run sweet girl run, you are free, you are loved, you are missed…

One last thing sweet girl… “SQUIRREL”

1 3/4 hours later

H (my 2 year old) is finally asleep, well not finally maybe in his eyes he is finally asleep, we or I am working on cutting out his afternoon nap in hopes he will sleep though the night, so really its 6:30 the earliest I will let him go to sleep. My husband just started a movie with my 9 & 5 year old so naturally I tell him I’m going to bed after I do all my chores with the animals (it was my idea to have them so I am the one who gets to take care of them). We finally had a storm today with a really good downpour, and I’m so happy because, well that is one less thing on my to-do list before going to bed, I no longer have to water the garden. So i feed the rabbits make sure they have enough water and make sure all the kits made it though the day (they did THANK GOD). Next put up the chickens, it’s a little early so I have to convince them with a little bit of food, not to hard, chickens are put up for the night…

I shouldn’t have looked at the garden I should have averted my eyes and just gone inside to go to sleep…

THE WEEDS oh my goodness the weeds where taking over and look at all the fresh veggies that need to be harvested! There is a nice bit of rain happening, enough to keep the heat and the bugs away, and the ground is ripe for the picking, so of course that is what I do, I start to weed and pick all the vegetables both of them could have waited for the morning, but hey why put of what you are able to do, and now in the morning I can enjoy my coffee just a little bit longer… I hope… that all depends on when the kids wake up.

So after the weeding and the harvesting I’m covered in mud so i take a quick sponge bath, I should really take a shower but… I really do want to go to sleep, and than I see all the things that still need to be done inside, I opt to just take care of the animals, yes more animals. 3 rabbits, 7 kits, 3 dogs, 1 cat 2 guinea pigs, and a hamster I feel like I’m forgetting something I hope not, maybe it’s the kids. So everyone is feed i hope and I know that my girls are going to wake me to tell me they are hungry because they didn’t eat dinner and I will give in because I JUST REALLY WANT TO SLEEP. So as I’m doing my last “chore” my 5 year old looks at me and says “mommy I thought you where going to bed” oh sweet girl I am you just have no idea what all comes with going to bed when you take care of the household…

So fingers crossed that my husband can do it, and fingers crossed that my little man sleeps though the night, fingers crossed that the new puppy doesn’t poop in the kids room like he loves to do in the middle of the night, we have no night terrors, and no wetting the bed… the house is still a mess even though I cleaned it about 10 times today, the hamper is still over flowing, and the kids are finally getting along, maybe because they are in front of the tv for the first time today…

Here’s to tomorrow, where we get to do just about the same thing all over again…

~mary e. J. mason

Regrets…

Today is a hard day that seems to always catch me off guard and makes me think of all the things that I should have done 3 years ago.

3 years ago…

3 years ago the day seemed just as hot as it is today, maybe that is because I was 9 months pregnant and my daughter was in the local 4h fair. I should have taken more photos, I should have been nicer, I should have not been acting like a very hot, very cranky, very pregnant with third child person. If I could go back to today 3 years ago and change things I would, oh how I would change things…

You see, 3 years ago was the last time I saw my dad, he died less than a month later, in fact it was the same day that my son was born, that is a whole different post.

I wish I had taken more photos of him with the girls that day, I don’t think I took any… I wish I had gotten a photo of the two of us… none where taken… I wish I had taken more photos with him and my mom… once again I didn’t take any… me a photographer didn’t take any photos, and I kick myself almost everyday when I think about it.

I still have the memory of dad and mom sitting on a bench under one of the tents taking a break from the heat giving each other a little peck, their anniversary was the day before. I wish I had more memories from that day…

I could go on and on about the guilt and what I should have done and how I should have acted differently, but who wants to read a pity party… I just needed to get some words out…

Take that photo, even if you don’t like the way you look, the person who loves you and doesn’t care will thank you later, let that photo be taken of you for the same reason, you can’t get back today… all of us where given a certain amount of time in this life, and it’s one thing that you can’t add more time to, we are all running out of it. So be nice, take that photo, give that hug, give that extra moment because you don’t know if it is your last, try not to yell at your kids, because thats not how you want your last moments with them to be. Be kind, be gentle, be loving…

~mary e. J mason