Shop the fall collection ➔

Mama,

Take the picture, no matter what’s in the background. I was searching through old photos on the computer to find one in particular (to no avail), but the longer I looked, the more my heart filled with joy as I saw smile after smile of my kids in their childhood messes.

I went past the formal pictures–the first day of school, the staged family pictures, etc.

RELATED: My Angelic Family Pictures Aren’t the Whole Story, but I’m Posting Them Anyway

But I lingered on the simple moments–mismatched outfits, messy faces from ice cream, playing in a room with toys everywhere, helping Daddy with a task.

The candid shots hold so much power.

They capture personalities.

They capture your kids’ hobbies.

They capture real life.

Mama, take the pictures, no matter what’s in the background. Don’t try to move the pile of laundry. Don’t clean up the kitchen counter first. Don’t sweep the floor. Don’t arrange it perfectly so the mess is hidden.

When you do those things, you’re hiding life.

You’re not fully capturing the moment.

Sure, you might not post it on social media, but maybe you should. Maybe you should show the world the reality of motherhood–the messy, the beautiful, the overflow of love.

One day, you’ll be glad you have that picture. At the moment, the small things won’t mean anything. You’ll just see them as a mess, or they’ll be overlooked altogether.

RELATED: Take the Picture, Mama—Your Older Self Will Thank You 

But trust me, when you look back in a year or five years, you’ll notice those shoes your daughter was wearing–the ones your toddler tossed out the window at a gas station, or a toy she loved playing with sitting in the background that someone else’s little boy or girl is enjoying right now. You’ll see your favorite mug sitting on the counter, waiting to be washed–the one that has since been shattered when it accidentally hit the floor. A beloved pet that snuck into the shot–oh, how you wish you could rub his belly again.

You’ll see these snapshots of life, and they’ll take you back.

You’ll linger, and you’ll see the magic that filled those moments–the magic you didn’t see in the middle of that day.

Mama, take those pictures. Don’t worry about what it looks like. Capture the moment. Capture joy. Capture life. You’ll be so glad you did.
 

Tynea Lewis

Tynea Lewis is a teacher turned work-from-home mom. She and her husband are raising two little girls, and they love spending time together at a family cabin in Pennsylvania. Tynea remembers loving to write as early as first grade, and now God uses her passion for writing to encourage other women.

He Took the Picture—and I Hated it

In: Motherhood
Mother reading a child a book at bedtime

He took the picture, just like I always ask (OK, nag) him to. My toddler and I were reading books in bed, his head on my shoulder and arms intertwined with mine. Together, we read his favorite train book over and over. My husband snapped a shot of us in action and sent it to me.  There I was, in a beautiful moment, completely present with my child. Yet the picture on my screen filled me with tears and self-loathing.  I hated how big my stomach looked, still stretched from giving birth to our second child.  I hated that my...

Keep Reading

How Pictures Of Our Struggles Can Help Us Appreciate the Victories

In: Journal, Motherhood
How Pictures Of Our Struggles Can Help Us Appreciate the Victories www.herviewfromhome.com

This morning I got caught up looking at pictures of my kids when they were babies. I was looking for a picture of the chaos that was my day-to-day with a three-year-old and triplet newborns to use in another article I’m working on. What should have been a few moments on the computer turned into hours as I stared at the younger versions of myself and my husband and at the chubby baby and toddler faces of my children. Sweet memories of times past swirled around me and I lost myself in the moment. When I clicked off the screen...

Keep Reading

The Family Photo That’s Always Worth Getting

In: Journal, Living
The Family Photo That's Always Worth Getting www.herviewfromhome.com

When I was a teenager, I used to love poring over our family’s photo archives. My mom had an entire shelf dedicated to her photo album sets that opened up like books and had rows of prints contained in plastic coverings you would flip up to view each one. It was one of my favorite pastimes to pull them all out, spread them across my green living room carpet and ask her to tell me the stories behind the photos. If it was a picture from before I was born, she would tell me about the event and who the...

Keep Reading