One Morning {Thirty Minutes in the Life, November, 2013}

I am so happy to join a group of lovely photographers from all around the world to capture just 30 minutes of time.  It may be just thirty minutes, but I’ve found when I really look and see, there are endless treasures to be found.


Tuesday afternoon the girls and I were in the kitchen and I was
mashing potatoes with the electric mixer.  The girls were sitting at the
table, but I could see Chanelle eying me out of the corner of my eye.  I
knew what she wanted.  As soon as I turned the mixer off she made a
beeline for me and held out her hand.  I removed the beater (is that
what they are called?) from the mixer and handed it to her.  By the time
I had the second one out, Meadow was standing at my feet like a puppy
awaiting it’s precious treat.  The girls sat down on the kitchen floor,
side by side, and licked warm mashed potatoes from their beaters as if
they were a decadent dessert.  Between licks they clinked their beaters
together like they were wine glasses. 

It was a simple
moment, but it somehow jarred the place in my brain that had gotten
lost in the chaos of everyday life.  It took a few minutes to wade
through the cobwebs of my brain to figure out what that moment had
touched, but after some time, I remembered.


the previous year, I have been so caught up with SummerK and various
projects (you know, like moving) that I forgot why my heart was so
pulled toward photography and documentation in the first place.  I had
forgotten that this all started with our simple everyday moments.  The
simplicity had somehow gotten lost in the the business of creating
images and studying composition and figuring out business. 

My mind needed jarred.  As Oprah would say, I had an ah-ha moment.  So, I made a decision.  I was going to force myself to slow down and see.So that’s what I did.
this morning, I skipped my run so I would be ready to take it all in.

That’s just what I did. . . I took in our morning. . .

. . . which begins with our early riser.  Thankfully, she gets up in a phenomenal mood and greets me with a hearty, HELLO!!!  Typically, I’m on the treadmill when I hear that HELLO!!  On
most days, she destroys our basement while I finish my run.  However,
this morning we made our way into the kitchen together. 

. . . after she disrobed. 

While I emptied the dishwasher, she, um. . . cleaned?

Our pace was slow and the room was quiet.  While she babbled, I watched and I listened.  I required myself to be more present. 

I didn’t even hear Chanelle come up behind us, but when I turned around, there she was. . .
I wish I could say there was something extremely monumental about our
morning.  You know like I made a gourmet breakfast or that we all sang
Cumbaya or something like that.  Nope, it was a typical morning.  A
morning when Chanelle agonized over what she would eat, Meadow taunted
everyone, animal friends joined us, and I sucked down coffee like water.
. .

It was a morning like most mornings, but I was more present.  And you
know what I noticed?  I noticed that the when I was calmer, so were
they. . .

I wish I could say that this was easy.  I wish that I could say that I
didn’t have to fight the urge to hurry them along or make everything an
emergency.  (I’m pretty gifted at that.) I wish I could say that it
came naturally. . . but it didn’t. 

Instead, I forced myself to be present and take in the tiny little
moments that I often overlook while looking for the bigger ones.  Maybe
it seems silly, but it’s true.  As I watched them do what they do every
morning, I realized just how blessed I am.
Simplicity. . . I’m directing my sails back toward it–as much as I can. 

In the end, I’m pretty sure it will have been worth it. . .

Please take a moment to visit Naples, Italy Photographer, Amanda, at Amanda Voelker Photography and see how she spent Thrity Minutes in her life. 

  • M - I really enjoy your photography and how you find meaning in your life. You are as I always say an inspiration and I am thankful for "stumbling" upon your work and your life on Facebook…..thank you!November 25, 2013 – 2:21 pmReplyCancel

  • Colleen Putman - Really loved these photos from a simple ordinary morning, especially the one with the girls looking into the pantry, and the fruit loops bowl. 🙂November 25, 2013 – 8:45 pmReplyCancel

  • Cindy Cavanagh - Summer gorgeous as always, and your words always make me think…and each morning i wish "that we all sang Cumbaya or something like that"…love it.November 26, 2013 – 11:26 amReplyCancel

  • Stacey - Beautiful, Summer! I am the same Mom in that I always rush my kids to move onto the next task and really need to step back more to take in the moments and just take advantage of the time we have together 🙂 Beautifully captured! November 26, 2013 – 4:04 pmReplyCancel

  • Sharleen - Somehow we tend to make our lives complicated and it is even harder with young children. Simple is good for me. I especially love the image of your little one waiting for coffee. Beautiful.November 27, 2013 – 1:28 amReplyCancel

  • Kristi Burton - Summer, Fun new look to your blog! I just think you're such a wise woman. I love what you wrote about simplicity and couldn't agree with you more. Beautiful family and wonderful job capturing "the treasures" of that lovely morning! xoDecember 7, 2013 – 4:02 pmReplyCancel