Snapshots of our Week | New York Storytelling Photographer

With the arrival of fall comes quieter days, moments of peace in between driving around to school and appointments. We turned the air conditioner off for the season this week, temperatures having dropped into the lovely sixties. The flats appeared outside the church on the corner, awaiting the shipment of pumpkins. We bid adieu to September and a happy hello to October.

School continues to go so well. I dropped Logan off for the first time on Thursday. He was more than ready to be on his own. He actually got upset when I told him I was going to the store - not because I was leaving, but because he thought he had to go with me! When I reassured him that he was staying at school he said "Oh, okay 'bye", blew me a kiss, and was off to the slide. No separation issues with this one (at least at school, anyway!). He had a great day. His teachers said he didn't look for me once. I'm so happy that he finally has this time for himself each week. Poor second child - he has been a slave to Lila's schedule for so long.

And Lila - she is happy to be back at school as well. And she loves her new speech therapist. We have a meeting this week to hopefully add another speech session and physical therapy every week. On Tuesday she started her year-long music class, part of the enrichment classes offered at her nursery school. At pick-up I could hear her laughing with glee along with the sound of the kids playing instruments. Her music teacher pulled me aside and told me she couldn't believe how much Lila had grown over the summer, that she was confident and vocal and happy. This did my heart good! We are so very happy with our decision to do a second year of pre-K.

Logan has been enjoying his alone time with me while Lila is at school. I have managed to coax his nap closer to noon (all summer he was going down around 2pm) to align with Lila's school schedule (she starts at 11:45am). Luckily the mornings wear Logan out - whether he is at school himself, or tagging along to Lila's therapies, so naps haven't been too much of a fight.

With the busy fall school schedule, there is not much time for anything else, but we did venture out on Wednesday to the bookstore to play with the Thomas trains and then to Panera Bread for lunch. 

Wednesday's are Lila's day off school. She loves the one-on-one time with me during Logan's nap. It has been a few weeks since we have played any elaborate imagination games during nap. This week she wanted to play Peppa Pig and I indulged. Next year she will be in kindergarten everyday and this time with my girl will be a thing of the past. I can't believe she is turning five in just six short weeks. Where on earth does the time go?

October looks to be incredibly busy between work commitments for me both at Kinky Boots and fall family photography sessions, school field trips, events and Halloween. I have to start work on the kids' costumes and planning Lila's birthday party before the time gets away from me. Eric and I looked at the calendar the other day and realized if we didn't drop everything immediately and head upstate, there would be no apple-picking for us this year. So we ditched school on Friday and headed up to the woods. 

The kids were a little punchy on the car ride up. We left immediately after Lila finished school on Thursday and of course hit major traffic. We stopped at a roadside McDonalds around 5:00pm when it became apparent that there was a hunger emergency taking place! We re-grouped with chicken nuggets and fries for about twenty minutes and then continued on our way to Copake.

The night ended with story-time with Nana and Pops and then it was off to bed.

As usual, my kids were up with the sun, or before it rather. 

We drove out to Philip Orchards near Hudson, NY around 10am and spent the morning running around the orchard, picking bags and bags of apples and pears. We brought home a few varieties ranging from Golden Delicious to Bosc. The kids had a great time running around and climbing ladders... until another hunger emergency had us zooming to Applebees for lunch.

The orchards were so photogenic, you'll have to bear with me while I share all the photos:

We fortified ourselves with burgers and fries and beer at Applebees before heading back to "the house in the woods".

The next morning, again up with the sun, Lila, Logan and I watched SEVEN deer graze on the back lawn! It was like living in our own personal zoo!

We went on a little outing to the local farmer's market and to explore a new section of the Rail Trail on Saturday morning. Mostly so Eric could do some target practice without scaring the crap out of the dog, but also to take advantage of the rains holding off for most of our weekend. We picked up some quiche and cookies at the farmer's market and really enjoyed the walk along the Rail Trail. It will be perfect to return with some bikes once the kids acquire that skill!

After lunch Lila and Logan's request was THE POND! THE POND! So we headed down the driveway to throw rocks in the pond and to swing on the tire swing before packing up the car to head back to Long Island.

An apple snack before hitting the road.

We drove back to Long Island on Saturday night, picking up some Burger Spot for dinner before returning to the house. 

The next day I had to work the matinee at Kinky Boots. We had a quiet morning before I left.

And that was our week. A perfect kick-off to autumn. Take a look at a film I made of weekend we spent in Copake a year ago. Tiny Logan!

Wishing you all a happy Monday!

Francesca Russell is a documentary-style family photographer and filmmaker located in Garden City South, NY. If you'd like to see more of her recent documentary family photography, head over to her Facebook page or follow her everyday adventures on Instagram. If you are looking for a family photographer on Long Island or in the New York City area to document your family's story in photos or a film, please contact her for a session!