sippin’ sweet tea

Bits and pieces of memories fade, resurface and transform when we recall important moments from our lives. The happy thing about photographs is that they have the transcendent power to capture these memories, to immortalize the visual details, and help ‘paint the scene’ when we ‘remember the times.’

The absence of a photograph, however, speaks just as loudly, perhaps providing even more detail, than an album of memories. How is that so, you wonder? The undocumented moments occur when we’re too caught in the moment, too busy laughing, enjoying, and just, well, being, that we forgot to snap a photograph or 7. And you know what? Those moments, despite my love for photography, are my favorite kind.

Fill my days with laughter and activities and people that make me forget about my phone and my camera. Give me sunshine that begs to be enjoyed rather than documented. Let me sit in the grass, read away the morning, and then spend the afternoon hitting balls with my brothers. I’ll drink sweet tea and chat with my baby cousins as the sun goes down.

I boarded the homeward bound train wishing I had photographs of Thanksgiving in Chicago, but as I muse about my lack of documentation, I am grateful for the special moments that made me forgot about my camera. Those moments helped make memories more valuable than a collection of photographs.

9 thoughts on “sippin’ sweet tea

  1. It’s somewhat addictive having a camera available in your pocket to capture each special moment, to preserve it in digital format to recall happily at a later point in time. The problem, for me at least, is the process of capturing that moment in a photo takes away from the inherent happiness of the scene. Sometimes, the images we lock away in our memory by being present in the moment are more precious than any image captured in a finite number of pixels. Very well formed message, thank you for sharing 😉

  2. The best memories really are the ones that you can’t revisit back with a camera. Being in the moment somehow makes you remember the moment more vividly because you were fully present and able to take in the surroundings instead of being half aware while trying to snap a picture. That’s why I like taking candid shots a lot too. Just snap away without really aiming or posing. Some of the photographs might be out of focus but then some are gold. Loved this post!!


  3. I love photography too and often don´t take out my camera because I’m too caught up in the moment. That train reminds me of one I took last summer in France, ohh, it had these old fashioned carriages that you open the doors and sit so elegantly (we had this lovely elderly woman sitting in ours, which just made it even more chique!). xx

  4. I totally agree with you. My nickname in highschool & college was papparazzo, and I haven’t gotten much better. I am photograph obsessed, and there are times when I am sitting there and don’t have my camera and really, really am upset about it, but I just have to remind myself that I can take “photos” in my head and really soak in the moment, rather then just document. I’m so glad you had a fun trip! 🙂

  5. I totally agree with you, Jen! Sometimes it is much more meaningful to just enjoy the moment. I am the unofficial photographer in the family but sometimes it is much better to just enjoy what is happening around you. Thank you for sharing and I hope you had a beautiful Thanksgiving in Chicago! 🙂

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