The Whiteside Family | Home Family Sessions

“after all," anne had said to marilla once, 
"i believe the nicest and sweetest days are not those 
on which anything very splendid or wonderful or exciting happens
 but just those that bring simple little pleasures, 
following one another softly, like pearls slipping off a string.” 
 l.m. montgomery | anne of avonlea
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The story of her life is charmed, relatable and yet entirely dreamy.  Anne of Avonlea has had a handsome way with words for years.  " pearls slipping off a string..."  The best part of her simile is the reality of a broken necklace.  Most women, no doubt, would moan and clench if their real pearl necklace snapped and the beads strolled off one by one.  There's the profundity: life rips apart sometimes, lots of times, but look!  Isn't it neat how the pearls slide off the string?  Simple pleasures,  small instances,  a crocus crown working to stand tall in the snow.  
And, so, here are the simple pleasures that can perhaps be missed in the breaking, the moaning, the frustrating.   The financial issues, the church issues, the relationship issues, the health issues, the house issues, the greater-world issues.  Here is a home, a family, a house and some of their best pearls.  Meet  steel-eyed Nora, and her copper hair.  She's the little lass of the household.  Her mama, Ashley, is an interior designer -- making the world around her beautiful is her speciality.  Nora's pops is a pastor and all-around good, kind man.  
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Currently this sweet family of three have friends living with them.   These friends are doing coffee-shop ministry.  They have given their life to creating comfortable, inviting spaces made for meeting and knowing people.  And, of course, drinking coffee.  "Come in!  Welcome!  It smells good, hey?  Sit for a while.  Come back again soon: bring friends."  Their love of people, all shapes and ages, and well-made coffee aren't just for "work," either.  Little Nora looks at them like I imagine she would look at the midnight stars.  They purposefully teach her the ropes, and she takes their confidence seriously.  She has each and every step of coffee-making memorized, written on her heart.  She copy-cats these two and her infectious pride and adoration is impossible to miss.  They even do yoga together!
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Okay, so the coffee was a little weak.  And the meditation and exercise benefits are a little cut short when a toddler is your teammate.  One pearl, two pearls slipping off the strand.  Simple pleasures, little stories, memories made.
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Special games with daddy fill the house and murmur onto the front porch.  Story time is where imaginations, vocabulary and life-skills begin to engage; where they sprout so green and bright.  Nora is an old-soul, with a watchful mind.  She examines the people around her, and watches -- learns! -- what they do.  She is her father's need to learn; her mother's need for order and systemic beauty.  She wanders off along, and also nuzzles and laughs until she can't breathe. 
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That day has passed, those pearls have fallen, the problems of the morning are gone now, and the joys of the evening are another piece in the jewelry box; the beautiful, shining, display case of a family and their life lived in the nicest, sweetest days.  Thank you for welcoming me into your home and hearts, Whitefield family!  I'll be sure to be back again.  
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to book your own i'm kristen home-family session, 
especially in the maryland/virginia/dc, new york, or oklahoma to dallas areas
(i'll also be traveling around southern california + the lake tahoe/nevada areas in coming months.)


  1. Beautiful, Kristen. Lillian and I were talking about how good you are at what you do . . . there's a warmth and whimsy and wonder to everything you create. Love you.

  2. These are my favorite people. You captured them perfectly. :)

  3. Missed your blog posts + photos. These are exceptional. <3

  4. I've so missed your posts, Kristen. These are absolutely wonderful. You bring such a beautiful, simplistic life to your photos.

  5. I'm always happy to see your work, Kristen.

  6. kayla moschel28.4.14

    lovely Kristen. Just lovely!

  7. Love your in home sessions. And your words. Your words are so sweet.


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