Posts in LIFE
In Sickness and in Health

I’ve been sick for over three weeks. What started as a simple sinus infection and sore throat quickly blossomed into a double ear infection that had me in tears all throughout the night. After ten days of antibiotics, I still can’t fully hear and can still feel the fluid sloshing around inside my ears. It’s been miserable to say the least.

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On Turning 36

I turn 36 today and suddenly I feel old. 30 didn’t do it, even 35 didn’t. But 36? It feels dangerously close to 40. It feels as if I’ve been ripped from my youth and now I need to be a real adult. I can’t claim young and dumb anymore - not that I have recently, but it felt nice to always have that as a backup excuse if I needed it.

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Growth

The shutter clicks. I step back and look at the image now frozen in time, smile. I move slightly to the left, crouch down until I’m eye level with him, push the button. The rapid shutter click is so satisfying to my ears. Later, I’ll scroll back through my shots, pausing for just a second on each, choosing to save or delete. Later still, I’ll upload them to my computer and savor them all as I edit. Excited to share them through Facebook and Instagram, excited to look back on them a year, two years, ten years from now. These are my memories, forever captured by the lens of my camera.

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LIFESarah HartleyComment
24 Hours a Day

I feel as if I am “on” and “working” 24 hours a day.  My only break during the day is the 1 hour of silence in the afternoon when the baby is napping and my oldest is having quiet time.  During those times, I pull out my laptop, get to work, and before I know it, the silence is up and I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface of what needs done.  My break at night? The six hours of sleep I get each night - IF both kids sleep all night, which is a rarity. If not, I’m lucky to get 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep.

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I Don't Think You're Fat, I Think You're Strong

When I look in the mirror, I suck in my stomach, I turn a bit to the side, I see the stretch marks from my youngest son, and then I smile. It’s taken me a really long time to get to this place. I’m okay with what I see. Do I love my body? I love what it can do, I don’t always love what it looks like. But I accept it. My strong legs that propel me in a game of chase around my yard with my oldest. My strong arms that carry the weight of my youngest all day long. And even the stretch marks that marked the baby it took us nearly a year to conceive. I’m getting there. I’m starting to see the beauty in the mirror.

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Making Myself Small

“Have you spent a lifetime muting yourself for fear of what others will think?  Are you an entrepreneur who calls your business a hobby because you worry about what your mother-in-law will say or because it’s safer to keep everyone’s expectations low?  Do you hesitate to admit your dreams aloud because you’re nervous about others making fun of you or judging you for your choices?”

All of these questions made me stop instantly.  I read through them again and again and again while the power of the words pulsed through my ears.

This is me.  She’s talking about me.  

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LIFESarah HartleyComment
Our Own Private Kingdom

The breeze is blowing through my hair as I push the purple double swing. I'm watching both boys, and they're both grinning, holding tightly to the metal chains.  Henry leans back and forth, trying to propel them higher in between my pushes.  It's quiet aside from the squeak of the chains and the babble between two brothers.

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Mothering as an Introvert

I am an introvert through and through.  Though I may not have had the name for it early on, I always knew that I felt physically drained from being around people for long stretches of time.  Groups of people intimidate me.  Having to make small talk makes me want to hide in a corner.  And I need time away from everyone in order to feel like myself again.  For a long time I thought there was something wrong with me, so I just kept pushing myself to be more "normal". 

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The Fear of Failure

When the word fear comes to mind, I tend to think "I'm not scared of much, really".  But then as I sit with the question and analyze it all a bit more, I realize that isn't true.  I'm fearful, terrified really, of one big thing that affects different parts of my life in many ways.  Failure.

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The Start of My Next Chapter

Today is the close of one chapter and the beginning of another. 

Ever since I was old enough, I have worked full-time.  Throughout college I worked while going to school, with a new job ready for me as soon as I graduated.  The longest absence I’ve taken from the working world was for the maternity leave I had with both of my sons.

Well, today I’m leaving behind the corporate world as I step into a new chapter of my life.

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5 Things At the Moment

Life has felt overwhelming lately.  In both the best ways, and some really tough ways.  I sit down to write and nothing comes out.  I don't know where to start with all of these thoughts swirling around in my head.  Some of them I'm not able to say out loud yet, others just sound repetitive.  So instead I walk away.  I take a break.  And somehow I find myself back here three weeks later feeling the same.  So instead, here's a run-down of things in my head...

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Capturing the Mundane

Seeing me with a camera in my hand is a pretty standard sight in our house.  I'm always capturing little moments of our days - some that seem pretty important (like when we announced Baby 2), others seem fairly boring (like many of the photos below).  But still, I keep clicking.  I was asked recently why I like taking photos and the answer is simple - there is beauty in the mundane and I want to capture it. 

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