I hope everyone has had a nice new year’s eve and day! I have allowed myself to not feel guilty for ignoring my work and spend these days with my family. We’ve had fun, played Wii, and even got up to IKEA in Michigan…looking for something to organize the new toys but got things for the studio instead, figures!
But I did end up taking a long time to agonize over the selection of a family for the http://www.givingisawesome.com/ donation I planned to announce today. I had read and reread the entries as they came in and cried and I was so attached to everyone, the stories were heartbreaking and everyone so deserving! I ended up printing the entries out and my husband and I made notes and went back and forth, and it was just horrible trying to pick only one. We tried to concentrate on the guidelines/suggestions of the original group, and we felt bad narrowing it down to only those who I felt we really MUST give this photo session to, but we narrowed it down.
Which left 8 families, EIGHT!
So, we made a decision…I decided that I still needed to pick the one family to receive the full session, disk of images, and after thinking about it more, an album of images. And the person nominating that one family will receive a $200 print credit.
BUT, we also decided that each of the other 7 families will receive a smaller gift of my time and pictures. I have not finalized what I will do, but it will most likely be a shorter session, maybe a day of sessions at my studio if they can make it down to Grand Rapids, or their homes if they can’t make the trip…and they will get some kind of print/digital file gift as well.
After we narrowed it down to these families, we felt we needed another opinion. I went to my assistant’s home tonight and she and her mom were there and read through all of the entries. We talked and talked and they helped me decide on which family to choose for the full session, files and album. I got home late and don’t have the full contact information, so I haven’t contacted the family or nominating person yet… but I know there are a lot of people watching for the announcement, so I will tell you that this family is dealing with a parent with terminal cancer and some of the financial struggles that comes with the medical bills, and they have young children who I just…I can’t put into words how upset I get thinking about them, and I think this gift is meant to be for them.
Now, like I said, it was very late by the time I knew what I was going to do, so none of these families have been contacted, and I hope that anyone that doesn’t receive a session will understand. I wanted to give away everything , but I just can’t, and as I found out from the many, many nominations I received, there are so many sad situations and incredible, deserving people in our community.
I know I have a lot of emails, proofs, and other things to get back on, but I will start working again tomorrow…I hope you all understand! And HAPPY NEW YEAR!