Rachel's story is one a lot of us can relate to, yet unique to their own family. She and her husband both work from home. They've settled into a comfortable routine, the kind that comes with doing life together for years...the kind that can be comfortable in silence and in chaos. Their life together has been built on triumph and tragedy, love and loss.
Though the home they are in is a temporary one, it's home for now. They have each other and that's home enough. The feeling of "home" is all encompassing the second you walk through their door.
Their beautiful, yet ordinary, mornings consist of Daddy getting up first and fixing breakfast for the children. Promptly at 7:30am, the girls are sent to wake up Mommy. I arrived just in time to see them jumping on the bed and snuggling in for morning cuddles. Then, the familiar routine of divide and conquer begins. Daddy brushing teeth assembly line style, while Mommy dresses and brushes hair. A quick goodbye as Daddy takes the girls to school.
And then, there were two.
Mommy and Little get quiet time together to snuggle, read, and fill up Little's heart with love and quality time before Mommy settles in for work.
I asked Rachel about her work and what it means to her to be able to work from home and share in these moments with her girls. She says, "I have shared my passion and educated my community on Young Living Essential Oils for the past 5 years and I've made a full time career out of it. We're [my husband and I] both extremely entrepreneurial minded and have been happiest working at home for ourselves! As far as motherhood, I've been super intentional with my time. I have set time blocks for work and set time blocks for family. Of course it can vary day to day which is the beauty of working from home."
Intentional. I like that a lot. Being intentional with our time, our relationships, and our commitments.
To say that I enjoyed photographing and working with their family would be an understatement. They welcomed me into their home as if I were an old family friend, greeted at the door on a cold, crisp fall morning with a warm hug and offers of hot coffee- by strangers no less. I was thrown directly into their morning routine and I was rewarded with real life goodness and given the freedom to document their truth...even down to brushing teeth and struggling to put tights on wiggly little girls. Being given that freedom and that trust is an honor.
I think being in front of the camera can do one of two things: it can make you self-conscious and "camera aware" (as we call it in the documentary community) or you can embrace it in an authentic and organic way. They embraced it and in turn, they truly have images that document this season of their life. They will be able to look back at this unscripted morning and see the real, honest love an ordinary morning brings.
Jess is a photographer serving families located in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. She specializes in documentary and storytelling photography.