For professional family photographers, fall can be an extremely busy time of year. As soon as school starts, people start thinking about photos for their holiday cards, so beginning in September, my weekends are packed with family photography sessions. And while summer is the busiest time for senior portraits, I always have a handful that get pushed to the fall. And of course, my weekdays are spent serving as a child photographer at a number of local schools (and weeknights spent downloading, culling, and editing). Professionally, it’s always a hectic time.

I’m always prepared to be busy with work in the fall, but this year, things are equally busy at home. My oldest officially started big kid school (so now there are room mom meetings and homework and conferences and volunteer commitments etc.) and both of the older boys are now playing sports (on different days/times, of course), and then, I still don’t have full-time childcare for the little guy, so I’m basically running around like a chicken with my head cut off! Life feels like a bit of a hot mess at the moment.

But as I think about the messiness of life right now, I’m reminded of a suggestion Harrison had several months ago regarding the messiness of our car. It was another busy period for us, and I guess I had been particularly transparent in my irritation about the state of the car – the snack crumbs and wrappers, kids meal toys, party favor trinkets, the odd stained t-shirt or smelly sock, receipts, junk mail, school papers, work stuff, etc. The mess was making me crazy, and my attempts to keep even just this one space orderly were laughable.

So one day, Harrison announced a brilliant idea. Instead of constantly stressing about cleaning it up, he said we should dump sparkles all over it – enough to cover everything up! He went on to explain that it would be so beautiful to look at, every time we got in the car we couldn’t help but feel happier. (I mean obviously, how could you look at sparkles and feel anything other than joy?)


I loved how his little mind was working and just thought it was so sweet – so much so that I told the story on Facebook. I got a handful of likes and laughs, but one mom, after the obligatory “LOL,” added some practical advice in her comment. She said to keep her car clean, she opens up all the doors and uses the leaf blower to just clear everything out! I kind of loved that idea too. (Though I have yet to try it.)

I often think my messy car drives me so crazy because 1) I’m in it a lot (obviously!), and 2) It sort of feels like a metaphor for my life. And the more hectic life gets, the messier my car gets.


So sticking with the metaphor, I have to ask myself, is it time to dump some glitter on my life or should I bust out the leaf blower and clear things out?

When I put it that way, it becomes really obvious to me that at this point in time, there’s not really anything I want to “clear out.” I love my role as wife and mom to 3 crazy little boys, but I also love my professional family photography business and my job as child and family photographer. As messy as it makes things, I love my mess. I think I just need the occasional reminder that the mess is beautiful. And a few sparkles do just the trick.


So this is me today, casting some digital sparkles (in the form of photos, of course) into the universe to remind myself – and hopefully you too – that when it comes to our busy, over-scheduled, over-committed lives, we need to look for the beauty in it. And if you can’t find anything beautiful, then it may be time to consider opening up the doors and blowing out the stuff that isn’t bringing you joy.

So what do you think? Sparkles or leaf blower?


About the Roswell Family Photographer

Jennifer McCarren of Freckled Flower Photography specializes in newborn, child photography and family photography in North Atlanta, Georgia locations such as AlpharettaMiltonRoswell, Dunwoody, Sandy Springs, Marietta and Canton.

Freckled Flower Photography is a proud member of  Professional Photographers of America.

Freckled Flower Photography has been featured more than once on Beyond the WanderlustMozi MagazineInspire- Digital or Not Fine Art Photography MagazinePhoto ArtistryPretty Forum and many others. I’ve also been published in CHIC Critique Magazine: The Vintage Issue, Young Kids Fashion Magazine and Petite Magnifique Magazine.

Contact me here to request more information about an Atlanta photography session, or you can follow me on FacebookInstagram, and Pinterest, where I announce special offers and share my favorite images from recent photo sessions. I’d love to send you my newsletter as well – scroll up to enter your email address on the left.

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