Jen here with another First Year post!

Over the past week, I have felt overwhelmed. Like most of you, I wear many hats and my attention is needed on multiple things at any given time. This is our norm. Although things can get a little crazy from time to time, I happen to really love my norm. But this week, I felt a deeper sense of needing something, searching for something. I’m not sure what caused this restlessness, as nothing from my norm had changed. But I decided that maybe – just maybe – that might be the issue.

During the last six months of being in full Mommy Mode, along with being a business owner and as much of a domestic goddess as I can manage, I hadn’t taken much time for myself. It was – and is – so easy to get caught up in it all, to keep moving forward from one thing to the next. I hadn’t really taken a moment to hit the pause button and do something for me, to refresh my spirit and fill me up. Weekend trips to the grocery store alone do not count.

I realized the one place I often go to find some rejuvenation is the ocean. And although the ocean is just 20 minutes from my home, I hadn’t set foot on a beach in maybe 9 months. Something about that breeze traveling across the water, the smell of the salt air, the sound of the waves, has always been quick to quiet my inner restlessness and revitalize my whole being. I need only to spend a few moments on the sand for this simple transformation to take place. It’s a little slice of magic, really. Although I wouldn’t be alone this time, I knew that’s where I needed to go. It would also be Logan’s first time to the beach, and that made the decision to go even more exciting.

I packed a simple bag, and we were on the road. Just driving to the beach already seemed to uplift my spirits. We arrived, put a big, floppy sun hat on Logan’s head, and began our trek to the sand. The humid salt air welcomed us, as I found a little nook in the dunes to spread out our towel to sit. I placed Logan on the towel and watched her take in her new surroundings. I snapped a few images of her with my smartphone and sat down next to her.


For a few moments, I closed my eyes and breathed deep. The ocean’s magic was quickly working. I looked down at Logan in her floppy hat and found that she was doing the same thing – breathing in this little piece of heaven. She noticed the sand and instantly became fascinated. How thrilling it was to hold her as she squished the sand through her toes for the first time!


When the wind quieted down, we packed up and walked to the water. The small waves danced along the shoreline, and the soft music their movements made lulled away any of my remaining restlessness. After 15 minutes on the beach, I was smiling big.


I love my norm. I love spending the day with my baby girl, teaching her new things and taking care of her in a way only her momma can do. I love when Jason comes home from a long workday and joins us for family time. I love running my business that enables me to capture beautiful memories for families so that they can enjoy those moments for generations. But I now realize the importance of carving out a place in my norm that is reserved just for me, to decompress, breathe and revitalize. By making a habit of this – of incorporating some “me” time into my routine and refreshing my spirit – I not only benefit from it, the people who are a part of my norm benefit from a happy, healthy me, too.

Today’s post was supposed to be a photo recipe, but I felt it was important to give a voice to what I had been feeling and share it with you. Do you make enough time for yourself in your routine? What is your go-to method for revitalizing your spirit? If you don’t already make a habit of it, how would you and the people who are a part of your norm benefit from you carving out some “me” time on a regular basis?

Meet me here next Monday as I share with you how one of Me Ra’s photo recipes can feature one of your baby’s milestones…and make you look good, too!

First Year Cheers!


Are you ready to do something just for you? Are you ready to learn about your camera so that you can confidently tell your family’s story in pictures? Are you ready to revitalize your spirit? Then check out the CONFIDENCE workshops my fellow teachers and I are offering this summer! My next workshop is July 28th in Southeast Georgia, but we have workshops available all over the country.  Click HERE to find a teacher near you!