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365- Month Eight by Amanda Powell

On Fire

August, the month of fires. A fire burned in us to capture everything left of summer, pull it towards us, and never let go. We were outside as much as possible, as much as the air quality would allow. We had a dog get super sick on us, we bought groceries, we stressed, we worked, we parented, we drank coffee of course. Life happened.

And fires, in our state, to the North in Canada, to neighboring states in the south and to the east. So much has burned this year. And it continues.

I worry that one of these years it’ll touch our city. Will it be a nudge, or a full on assault? They say so much land along the west coast just needs to burn. That the population here has left forests who once regulated themselves through burning, out of whack. Its understandable. And with the change in our climate, there are conditions where fire would be (and currently is) devastating. The human desire to exist and live in beautiful places isn’t wrong, but these consequences are hard to watch.

And ideas, spreading like fire. Good ones, and some really bad ones. Ignited, people are acting on these ideas, horrendous things are being said and done. A lack of empathy seems to have caught hold of so many, too. And I worry how long that particular fire is going to burn.

So everything around us feel like kindling. And what can be done? You douse things with as much watery love you can, donate your extra garden hose, manage your own fires so surrounding growth stays healthy. You hope, once the heat is over, things can calm down and you are able to breathe again. And in the interim, you learn to breathe smoke.

Fire is a powerful, destructive force. But it can also be a catalyst for change, and even more beautifully, regeneration. I hope we start to see more of the later.

365- Month Seven by Amanda Powell

Some thoughts to go with the month of July:

No matter what, moving forward is about movement, not about the where. We have to learn to love the process of this one life, instead of searching for a final destination, or arriving.

Results are tantalizing. They are the evidence of our how. But they can’t be what we chase. We have to enjoy the running part.


365 Photo a Day- Month Two by Amanda Powell

Our February was

2 Birthdays, lots of Treats,

Several Archival posts, and a new place for my work on Etsy.

This Month's 28 images:

Halloween in Bellingham 2.0 by Amanda Powell

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Get ready, this is a long one, folks. ;-)

Bellingham does Halloween right. It's been a while since I could get excited about the holiday, but now that we have a safe, fun, simple, family-friendly place to take the kids, I'm hooked. I've always loved this time of year. Trick or treating in Fairhaven is like going to a neighborhood where everyone knows each other and gets really into the holiday. And it starts pretty early, which is super helpful for those of us with young kids.

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Eliza was very funny with the whole event. She didn't quite understand what was going on, but about halfway through, she looks up at me after getting something in her bag and says, "more?" She had a great time. Don't worry though, didn't give this little owlet any of the candy. She doesn't even have all her teeth yet.

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We saw several of our friends out this year, some pictured, some not. Charlotte, of course had a fantastic time, but seeing so many of her friends was icing on the cake.

Charlotte and Charlotte (aka Goldilocks). 

Charlotte and Charlotte (aka Goldilocks). 

A fairy and skeleton share a hug!

A fairy and skeleton share a hug!

David S. Pumpkin's everybody! If you have any questions, look up SNL season 42, Episode 4.. I can't guarantee any answers, but that entire episode is pure gold.

David S. Pumpkin's everybody! If you have any questions, look up SNL season 42, Episode 4.. I can't guarantee any answers, but that entire episode is pure gold.

Eliza thought our neighbor-friend's skeleton costume was hilarious. She wasn't bothered by it at all, the little hoot.

Eliza thought our neighbor-friend's skeleton costume was hilarious. She wasn't bothered by it at all, the little hoot.


A carebear brigade, made up entirely of middle school aged boys. 

A carebear brigade, made up entirely of middle school aged boys. 

Guys^^^^ The mom was a golden ticket, unfortunately hidden behind Wonka in this candid shot. Don't know these people, but based on the costumes, I kind of wish we did!

Guys^^^^ The mom was a golden ticket, unfortunately hidden behind Wonka in this candid shot. Don't know these people, but based on the costumes, I kind of wish we did!

Candy from a storm trooper. Umm, YES!

Candy from a storm trooper. Umm, YES!

She's done with trick or treating, and we got the photo to prove it!

She's done with trick or treating, and we got the photo to prove it!

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This Halloween was magical. Watching The Great Pumpkin, trick or treating in Fairhaven, pizza delivery when we got home, pumpkins painted (instead of carved, because 4 and under) and Stranger Things 2 after the girls went to bed.

A fantastic way to start the holiday season!

... by Amanda Powell

It's windy, or sunny, or overcast, or all of the above. This place has many emotions. Lots of things it may or may not choose to reveal through light, texture, and color. Last Sunday, for example, was a beautiful variable. A misty, wet morning, which gave way to a cerulean sky and mild temperatures. The northwest can't decide some days. This is a place that changes, shifts, and grows as much as we aspire to. It's mysterious, and uncertain, but at ease.. 

Charlotte 3.5 by Amanda Powell

Back in July we went on a "little adventure" in the field behind our house for some pictures. Charlotte wanted to wear one of her special occasion dresses, which was a great idea. She's growing fast, and I wanted to get photos before this particular moment in her life was past.  The result was super sweet, and very much Charlotte. Outside exploring, but still in a dress. 

We only spent maybe 15 minutes, but she really enjoyed herself. Kind of funny how that works. Some times I feel like I need to plan some huge thing, bursting with activities or "learning" projects, when in reality, the simplest things will do for this age. Like traipsing around in a field with a nice dress on. 

Goals for 2016 by Amanda Powell

One of my goals in 2016 is to put my best foot forward in photography. To say yes to more opportunities, thereby giving myself room to fail. It's kind of a scary goal, but that's what I'd like. Room to fail = room to grow, as hard as it is to accept. 

I'd also like to change how many photos I share of each particular project. When it comes to portraits, I'm going to (try to) limit myself to 10-20 of my favorite shots from each session. This is going to be a challenge. Consolidating the images is always so difficult. I want the images to both have variety and flow, which feels harder to accomplish when presenting less.

2016 is going to be a personal transition year as well. As I've written before, we're waiting on the arrival of our newest member, a little girl coming in February. We are really looking forward to this little one. And our first is so ready to be a big sister, she can hardly stand the excitement when we talk about her. It's interesting to see a 3 year old be so involved in what's going on. Her face lights up, she points to my belly, and launches into a (sometimes non-comprehensible) monologue about how great the whole sister thing is. I know there will be new challenges with two instead of one. The dynamic will be different with our family. I don't want to be held back mentally by this by having too many expectations in either direction. The goal is to keep moving, keep loving, keep working..and do it all to the best of my ability. 

So, mov-ing right along.. looking forward to sharing the first session of 2016 with you in the next couple hours (or even tomorrow, depending on how things go)! I need to go pick out those 10-20 images...