remember that jack johnson song? better together? i always loved that line - "a shoebox of photographs with sepia-toned loving." to me, it felt like nostalgia explained. 

i read something the other day on reddit that actually broke my heart. i mean it. It was one of those stop-me-in-my-tracks and i-hate-that-i-ever-had-to-grow-up moments. ready for this? brace yourselves....


at some point in your childhood, you and your friends went outside to play together for the last time and nobody knew it.
— some jerk on reddit

see guys? i had to pick myself up off the flippin' floor. what followed in the replies were more "lasts" you didn't know you were having and by the end of the thread, i was sad and nostalgic for things i push to the corners of my mind like we all do.

this isn't just about our childhoods either.

i had a conversation at some point this year with someone and it was our last. i couldn't tell you what was said or where we were but i know that the conversation came and passed and neither of us knew it would be the last we'd have. 

at some point, you'll hug your mom for the last time. one day, you'll pick up your son and hold him for the last time. he'll kiss you goodnight for the last time. she'll read you a book for the last time. you'll cook together for the last time. you'll all live under the same roof for the last time. you'll play that card game for the last time. you'll share a bottle of wine for the last time. you'll answer his phone call for the last time. you'll make music together for the last time. you'll listen to music together for the last time. you'll hear her laugh for the last time. you'll go on a walk with him for the last time. you'll sit in her kitchen and eat brown sugar toast for the last time. 

ok, now that i have you all in your feelings {i just didn't want to be here all on my own}, let me get to my point {i'm sure you're like, why did she bring us here to make us SAD?!} :

i found a photo tonight of me and the friend i mentioned above. it took me back to a different time. just yesterday, i sorted through old pictures to find one of a dear friend and me from about 1996 simply because yesterday was her birthday and embarrassing each other on birthdays is just what friends are supposed to do. last week, on the 11th, i looked at pictures of me and my grandfather on the anniversary of the day we lost him.


we take photographs as a return ticket to a moment otherwise gone.
— katie thurmes

i know that some of you are looking back at pictures wistfully, even pictures just taken this year.

for some of you, i took those pictures.

i'm glad you have them.

i'm glad i have them.

for all those "lasts" we didn't know we were having, i'm glad that we have photos to take us back and remind us of what our memories might have forgotten. it is an honor i do not take lightly that i get to capture those moments for so many people. 

so thank you. from the bottom of my heart, thank you.

for trusting me, and allowing me, to photograph you with your mama, to photograph you holding your wiggly toddler, to photograph you dancing with you grandpa at your wedding, to photograph YOU. another year of work for me all too often includes "last" photographs for several of my clients. but another year of work for me also includes "first" photographs. first smile, first step, first kiss, first dance, first birthday... i am so grateful for that.

the circle of life keeps rollin'. even as this year ends, we're given the first day of a new one. and while memories and photos keep us nostalgic for time gone by, the future is bright.

so as we end this year, let's not lament the "lasts". let's be thankful for the time we had, the love we shared, the memories we made, and the photos we have to remind us of how we lived.

here's to 2018. 

xo,

rachel