Everyday Stories | Long Island Family Photojournalism

This past week was Spring Break from school, and it was such a good, full week! We went up to Copake for a few days, spent a few afternoons at various playgrounds, visited Planting Fields Arboretum and celebrated Easter. We capped off the week with a trip to the zoo yesterday. Today it is back to school, but the break was the awesome kick-off to spring that we had been looking forward to all winter.



Something your Nana is really good at (which I am not) is coming up with ways for you to help her while she is doing something. I am the least patient person in the world and I have trouble slowing down when something needs to be done NOW, in order to let you in on the activity. I am working on it. On this night in Copake you really wanted to help Nana while she was making dinner. She made the time to show the two of you how to trim the ends off the green beans and you both were so happy to help. I loved seeing the sense of worth and accomplishment that you both gained from the task and it was a good lesson for me. Life is not a race!

"Happy Place"

The porch upstate is your happy place. It's where you head when we first arrive, and every morning you are the first out there. No matter how cold or how warm, you love to potter around out there with the fly swatters, sit under the table and relax in the rocker. I understand. The fresh air is pretty magical. And being surrounded by trees. The quiet. The view of the hills. The peace that we don't regularly experience living so close to the city. Enjoy it. Soak it up. Let it feed your soul until the next time we return.


I had been waiting for this day all winter. The day we could finally sit outside in the sunshine under a tree filled with blossoms and breathe in the spring air. We went to Planting Fields in the hopes of seeing some flowers, and although it is still early in the season, the grounds did not disappoint. The blossoms had arrived, and although most of the surrounding trees were still waiting for their leaves, the sea of pink was such a welcome sight. The long winter is over.


I love that the two of you have reached an age where I can ditch the stroller for periods of time and rely on you to be a a bit more independent on your feet. We have been to Planting Fields dozens of times and have never explored the greenhouses because I have always been saddled with some large stroller or another. On this day though, we abandoned it outside and decided to see what the greenhouses were all about. They were amazing! The two of you ran from room to room, exploring all the pathways, all the different nooks. You looked at the cacti, you played with the fountain, you sat on every bench. I loved watching your excitement, your fascination with every new discovery. This is just the beginning, my loves.


This right here. A holiday spent surrounded by family. Perfection. You don't yet know how lucky you are, but one day you will. 

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!