Thirty Minutes in the Life, October

We’ve had a pretty crazy couple of months.  Really crazy, actually. 

We moved.  We photographed a couple of weddings.  It’s the busy season for photography.  We’re adjusting to life in a new community.  We’re trying to find our life buried in the bottom of boxes.  We have a seven year old.  And a six year old.  And a one year old.  To name a few.

Many people could go through much more and not be phased by it.  I admire those with “roll with the punches” personalities.  I look up to those who thrive on busy-go-go-go-what’s-next lifestyles. I wish I could be more like “those” people. 

But, I’m not.

Instead, I exist in survival mode and count the days, minutes, and hours until things slow down.  Until we can breathe. 

(Did I mention we have a one year old? Things aren’t likely to slow down anytime soon.)

However, there is one thing I have found that seems to remedy the chaos that often invades my mind.  One thing. . .

Taking one big, huge step away from everything. 

I’m not talking about traveling over oceans or through mountains to escape the reality that is before me.  And I’m not referring to a mental or emotional escape that requires extensive money or time or commitment.  I’m just talking about one step away. . . for thirty minutes.  (Give or take a few.)

We did that recently.  Just the five of us. 
A rainy afternoon had turned into a light evening drizzle.  The sky was thick with clouds and the chill of autumn was just beginning to settle in.  Boxes remained unpacked in every corner of the house and sessions sat waiting to be edited.  My head was swirling with the ‘need-to’s’, have-to’s’ and ‘musts’ and I knew something had to be done. 

I looked at Chad, can we go. . . just for a bit?

My ever supportive husband was quick to answer. . . let’s go. . .

So we went.  Chad, Charlie, Chanelle, Meadow and I loaded in the car and took a five minute drive to a place where we could feel the cool air against our faces and experience all the beauty that nature so graciously offers.

I am quite certain that there is a healing agent in fresh air.  Somehow, just stepping outside and breathing in the fumes and feeling the damp earth under my feet put everything into perspective.  What matters, what doesn’t.  What is really important and what is less so. 

I feel it in their laughter, their curiosity, their playfulness and their seriousness.  I feel the truth of life. . .

This moment.  These moments right here.  These moments that unfold right in front of me are the most important part of life.  This is it.  This is my one chance.  This simple moment of togetherness is really what life is all about.

And there you have it.  Thirty minutes buried deep in the darkness of the forest offers more light and perspective than the best medication on the market or even a week on a secluded beach.

And that’s all it takes.  An intentional getting away.  A small step that offers big rewards. 

Thirty minutes. . . that all it takes.


I would love if you would take a moment to visit 30 minutes in the life of a most wonderful photographer, Kristi Burton.  She is a Bountiful, Utah  Photographer at  Kristi Burton Photography. 

  • Colleen Putman - I totally agree! Even half an hour in nature is so healing for the soul 🙂 Looks like your entire family enjoyed it as well! Love the photo of them petting the sheep!October 28, 2013 – 10:12 pmReplyCancel

  • Sharleen - I am so envious – I would love to live in the countryside. It looks so peaceful. I love the two close ups of your daughter – her face is so expressive. Just gorgeous. And the one of your husband with your little one – just so special. And the two older children petting the sheep. Great share – thank you. October 28, 2013 – 11:28 pmReplyCancel

  • Juli Isola - Summer…these photos are beautiful. I want to go for a walk with you too! Really nice captures and the portraits…those eyes…precious!October 28, 2013 – 11:58 pmReplyCancel

  • Stacey - Summer,
    These images and your words are just beautiful. Often times we need to force ourselves to step away and take that "moment" we need together as a family! Life is too short to worry about all the "stuff" that needs to get done because it will always be there, right?!. I need to take more moments like this myself. Thanks for the inspiration!! ~StaceyOctober 29, 2013 – 12:07 amReplyCancel

  • Cindy Cavanagh - Summer your words and images are gorgeous…as always. October 29, 2013 – 12:19 amReplyCancel

  • Karen Hunt Photography - Summer, these are so beautiful! I love the woods and your girls are just lovely. Honestly, between moving, photographing weddings, and getting settled I do not know how you have time to post all those gorgeous images you always post. In this post I really love the close up shots of your oldest daughter. She has captivating eyes. Very great post! October 29, 2013 – 12:55 amReplyCancel

  • Ashlee Tomes - Summer, these are just wonderful!! Goodness, how I relate to your post so much. Sometimes you just have to step away. It's too hard to choose a favorite. All of them are fantastic. I will say, though, that Chanelle is so natural in front of the camera 🙂 Beautiful kids!!October 29, 2013 – 2:45 amReplyCancel

  • Ky | TwoPretzels - Amen.

    "This moment. These moments right here. These moments that unfold right in front of me are the most important part of life. This is it. This is my one chance. This simple moment of togetherness is really what life is all about. "

    There are so many gifts you're giving your children, but the permission to take 30 minutes, and get away… It's huge. They'll take that with them forever.October 29, 2013 – 7:11 pmReplyCancel

  • Kristi Burton - Summer, you are the loveliest and your images are beautiful. I'm not one of those busy go go go people either. 🙂 I need trees and fresh air and I'm sure with kids, it feels so great to get out there and let them play and learn to appreciate nature. Your children have stunning eyes and I love the name Meadow. Fantastic job! xoOctober 31, 2013 – 3:09 amReplyCancel

  • Mame Voelker - Oh Summer. I so agree with you and am always amazed how a step away can make all the difference. I do struggle, however, with actually taking that break when needed, rather than waiting until the breaking point. I love these photos. They are so beautiful and it makes you feel like you are in a world of your own. I also LOVE the processing on the last one of your oldest daughter. November 13, 2013 – 2:48 pmReplyCancel