{{.First real snow. february 2016.}}

Our first “real” snow of the winter.

I’m a summer baby, so I’m generally unhappy if the weather dips below 70*. Winter is my least favorite time of the year, and I’m not one to hide my hatred of shoveling. However, I feel like there is something to be said about the beauty of freshly fallen snow. I feel a childlike excitement seeing the first “real” snow of the year, every year. By “real” snow, I mean at least 6”, and school closings, not 1-3” of light powder that you can’t even make a snowman with.

fallin snow 2.5.2016

Falling Snow in Southern Massachusetts // February 5, 2016 // http://www.truelifepics.com


While I prefer the summer, I can take comfort in the knowledge that winter is only a few short months, and soon enough I can put away the winter clothes for another 7-9months. I hate the winter less if I get a few warmer days (days above 40*), and get to go exploring in the sun.

Hassanamesit Woods

What a difference 3 days make, oh New England. // Hassanamesit Woods, South Grafton, MA // Hiking with my Love


Our first real snowstorm of the year this year was on February 5, 2016. We got maybe 8-9” of heavy wet snow. It bent and broke trees all over my neighborhood. I had been battling some serious sleep deprivation, and my Love let me nap and took care of the Mini Human (and even cleaned a bunch), since they both got a snow day. He woke me up about 40 minutes before the sunset so I could go for a walk and get some great pictures of the freshly fallen snow, since it had finally stopped snowing. (Did I mention I love him??)

Snow feb 5, 2016

The snow stopped falling, just in time for sunset // February 5, 2016 // South Grafton, MA // http://www.truelifepics.com

xoxo, Jess

PS: I have plenty of dates available for photo sessions in the months of February and March! (If you’re looking for a May date, book ASAP!! I’ve only got 3 available weekend dates in May 2016!)
PSS: If you’d like to purchase prints from my walk in the snow, please {{Prints For Sale}}


{{.Heart Health Awareness.}}

February is heart health awareness month. Did you know that I (Jess) am a two time heart surgery survivor.

My first surgery was in October 1984, just 4 months after I was born. The doctors tried a new procedure, and used veins from the back of my leg to repair my heart, instead of putting in synthetic ones that would have to be replaced as I grew.


Me in 1984 at Boston Children’s Hospital – After open heart surgery for “miswired” veins in the heart – they experimented on me and used veins from the back of my leg to repair my heart

They told my parents that I would be lucky to reach the age of 2. When I was 2, they told my mom I would be on medication for the rest of my life. When I was 5, they told my mom that I would be just fine. She never treated me like I was sick, and as she says “I just let you take naps whenever you were tired”. Now, I’m almost 32, and I KNOW I have limits, and I don’t push myself too hard (usually 😉 )…

Then, when I was 12, I started having crazy chest pains. I wouldn’t be able to breathe and it felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest. It didn’t last long, only a minute or two, but I’d be exhausted after. This went on for years. When I was 16, I finally started seeing a cardiologist again, and after just 2 heart monitors and 3 visits, I was told I needed to have another operation.

My cardiologist was stunned when I didn’t freak out, but honestly, after hearing for years the only reason I was having these chest pains was because I was “too skinny”, it was really nice to know there was an answer for it. There was a reason I felt awful. New Years Eve 2001, I went in for my second surgery.

Now, I’ve gotten an (almost) 30 extra years, and I’ve got a mini human. I love hiking, exploring, and in general, not defining my life by my limitations.

chest scars

2016 – Now, almost 32 years later