06 Jan

The Woman Evolving Podcast

Posted by Jenna, Under Work

Film-photography guru Jonathan Canlas talks a lot about the importance of shooting personal work. Yan said it too, at the workshop I attended with her in April of last year. Shoot what inspires you, shoot what you love, and opportunities will come your way because people will see the sincerity in your work and want to become part of your creative process. They are photographers, talking to photographers, but I think you can replace the word “shoot” with create/write/craft and the results will be the same.

My Womanhood Beyond Motherhood project was born out of the desire to share and connect with other people. In October of 2014 I received a message from a woman named Cami. She referenced my Womanhood project and asked if I would like to be a collaborator on a podcast/organization she was starting, aimed at helping women experiencing identity shifts and transformations. After a few months of working together, Woman Evolving was born. In my experience, Jon and Yan were right – create and share, good things will come.

Woman Evolving Logo

The effort was founded by a group of ex-Mormons, but our hope is to keep the scope broad enough to apply to any woman who is moving from one mode of thinking or life-stage to another. The podcast is so new, and there are still a lot of kinks to work out. After listening to my first recording on working on softening my consonants and rounding my vowels and not being so quick to fill the silence. I hope you’ll be patient with us if you listen to one of the initial episodes, we’re definitely learning as we go.

I wasn’t going to announce it here until we had a larger library for all of you to sample, but I think the episode Cami did on Gender Based Violence and the International Violence Against Women Act (IVAWA) is incredibly important and something I hope all of my readers will listen to. The episode combined with the blog post it’s featured on make it very easy to take action and affect change. That’s something I want to do more of in my life. Please visit the post, listen to the episode, and get in contact with your representatives to express your support for the bill.

If you aren’t a podcast lover already, but want to start listening to them (Serial, anyone?) there are lots of apps out there that you can set up so that new podcast episodes you subscribe to download right to your phone whenever they are available. I use an app called PodCruncher and have been really happy with it for over a year now.

We as panelists are all pursuing our own personal side projects within the umbrella of W.E.. I’m going to start out by doing one-on-one or small group interviews with people I know, sharing transitional experiences they’ve had. So far I’ve had a friend agree to talk with me about being raised in a religious household and coming out as gay, another who is willing to share her evolution into a feminist over the past year, and another  mom friend who is going to talk to me about being married and still wanting to be desirable (remember  the post after I chopped off my hair?) I love my hair now, by the way. I just needed some time. It grew on me. Hopefully the podcast will grow on you too.

You can hear me as host on the episode titled Making Your Evolution Known. What do you think? Tweet with me, @jennacole, or leave your thoughts on the That Wife Facebook page.

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01 Jan

One Quick Take

Posted by Jenna, Under Adventures

Portra 400, rated at 800, pushed 1 stop. Pentax 645

Portra 400, pushed 1 stop

We met up with a friend in town for Christmas break and enjoyed exploring the  San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park. On Sundays the riggers climb at 11am (see below), and the kids enjoyed exploring the visitor center across the street. Read more →

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29 Dec

Thinking on 2015

Posted by Jenna, Under Goals

Disconnecting from my regular routine right before the New Year has given me the time and space I needed to think about shifts I want to make to my daily life and my thinking throughout the next year. Depression and anxiety have become companions of mine, and it takes a lot of mental energy to keep them at a respectable distance so I can fulfill my responsibilities.

I felt rejuvenated like this twice before in 2014, each time when I went to Utah for photography workshops. What was it about those trips that meant so much to me? I think those are the things I need to focus on bringing into my life more often after the New Year in order to avoid the depressive bouts I’ve been dealing with.

1. Less time in front of the computer. I need to work more efficiently, and set firmer boundaries for when I stop working. Send more emails saying “I didn’t get to this today. I’ll try again tomorrow.” I’m shooting film more for this reason, because it slows me down and means less images to process.

Read more →

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25 Dec

Christmas Card 2014

Posted by Jenna, Under family, Holiday


Horizontal 5x7 Folded Card Back Horizontal 5x7 Folded Card Front

I am tempted to write that this has been a year of change and transition, but I think that’s probably every year for everyone. It has required some twisting and bending, as we encountered situations we didn’t expect, but we are wrapping up this year in a really good place.

I am chugging along as the family coordinator, chauffeur, rule enforcer, babysitter arranger, cook, expense manager, picture taker, blogger, and anything else that has to do with running a household and portrait photography business and multiple websites all at once.

TH switched from one Bay Area firm to another this summer, giving us the gift of even more time living in this wondrous place. He works a lot.

T1 is four-years-old and wakes up each morning with a new arsenal of stories to tell. He is observant and kind, frequently going out of his way to “fill the bucket” of those around him. He wants all the blue things, unlimited amounts of electronic time, and any food that passes his lips to be white and cheesy or filled with peanut butter.

T2 hit her baby peak at eighteen months, and we are shoring up to weather the slide into toddlerhood. We adore her kisses, baby talk, and attention to detail. She wants nothing but milk, baby dolls in her bed, endless renditions of the ABC song, and shoes on her feet.

We have a lot of good things in our life, and all those who receive this card are a part of that! With love to our family and friends,

TH,  That Wife, T1, T2

Samantha Kelly Photography-9041

Christmas Cards from 2013, 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008

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23 Dec

My Kid Chose Santa Over Mom

Posted by Jenna, Under kids, Parenting

We are a household that doesn’t buy into the cult of Santa, which until now has only meant that I write on my blog about how we aren’t doing Santa. Previously it hasn’t mattered to T1, but this is the year that playground gossip started shaping his worldview, and around this time of year talk of Santa is all the rage around the sandbox.



We were snuggling in my bed a few weeks ago, just the two of us, when four-year-old T1 said something about Santa. I knew that this was my chance to let him in on the Grownup Secret. I don’t mind if he believes in imaginary figures (if he references Mickey Mouse or mermaids I don’t go out of my way  make sure he knows that they are make-believe) but it is important to me that he doesn’t think that he is a naughty kid and therefore didn’t get any presents delivered via flying sleigh (can mom’s gifts wrapped in brown kraft paper really compete?). I’m not sure what the other kids are saying exactly, but it’s possible that he is absorbing messages that communicate he will get whatever he wants from Santa as long as he is on the nice list.

I leaned over and told him that I had a very special secret to tell him, a secret he gets to hear because he is so very grownup. I emphasized how important it is that he keep this secret to himself and not tell any of the other kids. When I said that Santa isn’t real, and that it’s a game that parents play with their kids, he smiled really big and immediately embraced the idea that he was very mature and able to handle the information. Throughout that night and the next morning he kept telling me that we need to make sure his little sister doesn’t find out the Grownup Secret because she isn’t ready for it yet. I smugly patted myself on the back and figured this meant one child down, another to go in a few years.

The next afternoon Santa came up in the car again, and I was informed that the man in the big red suit actually is real (along with the tooth fairy), and that he has proof. Obviously the secret my son and I shared was not kept close to the vest and was the topic of some intense playground discussion. T1 told me that Cora said that she wanted a unicorn for Christmas last year, and she never told anyone about it, and still it somehow found its way under her tree, so obviously Santa is real. There was also lots of talk bout teeth and the tooth fairy.

And so, this year when I was selecting the ornament I would give to T1 for 2014, I chose Santa and a small boy, skating off into the sunset together. To represent this year as the one where my kid chose a mythical Santa Claus figure over the being who actually has the power to hear and deliver on his heart’s deepest desires.

Think that next year T1 will also be choosing Santa Claus over his mommy? Tweet with me, @jennacole, or leave your thoughts on the That Wife Facebook page.

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      I'm a farm-raised almost-crunchy stroller-pushing picture-taking lifestyle-blog-writing gastronomy-obsessed divine-seeking thrift-store-combing cheese-inhaling pavement-pounding laughter-sprinkling lover of individuality and taking chances.
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