30/335: To the many hat wearers

When I realized that Tuesday, December 1st would mark 30 days left of 2015, I *immediately* waited for the feelings of dread and "what have you done this year anyway" to set in. But you know what? God swiftly spoke to my heart saying: "think about the other 335 days of 2015. Haven't I provided? Haven't you experience joy? Haven't you found freedom? Haven't I been present?"  Yes, in the biggest of ways yes. 

So, for the next 30 days I'll be popping in and out Footes in the Heights & the CIHI Photo Blog, reflecting on the laughable, the beautiful, the painful, the everyday and the incredible. I'm calling this the 30/335 series and this is lesson 2! You can read lesson 1 here!

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To the many hat wearers, lunch hour power houses, early morning/ late night workers, multiple inbox managers, I see you.

6 years into running a business and almost 6 years into my higher education career (which just 8 months ago involved CIHI + FT work + FT grad school) I get it! For a while, it was easy for me. And then I'd move or change jobs, the business would get a little quiet while I adjusted and then I'd start to rebuild. So, with 3-4 pretty significant ebb and flow moments over the last 6 years, I think more often than not it was manageable. I don't know about that so much anymore, but I know that my days are full of the things I love-- photography, people, and educating. 

Today, as I walked into work with bags on every arm to help carry me through a day and night spent in both my worlds, I'm more thankful more than ever for a God who carries and increases my capacity. And for lunch hours that can be spent hair curling and friends who will drive you when your car's AC has given out... ha! 

 
 

But really, this "balancing act" (which most days doesn't feel balanced at all to me!) can be a blessing when I allow my heart to view it that way. I can tell you that practically, one of the best things I've done this year is to put an auto-responder on my e-mail that stays up 100% of the time. I've set my CIHI office hours to three evenings a week and there's been soooo much freedom in that.  Here's the email template I'm currently using. I hope it helps at least one person find some freedom with their schedule/inbox in 2016! Big lesson for me this year, for sure. 
 

Thanks so very much for your e-mail and interest in CIHI Photo! During this beautifully busy holiday season I am holding office hours on Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday evenings from 7-10pm. Thank you for your patience as I return all correspondence during these days and times! 

Please note, I am now booking for 2016 creative/branding, wedding/engagement, newborn and commercial portraiture and am so excited to talk details with you!  I'll be in touch soon, but in the meantime please be sure to visit www.cihiphoto.com andwww.instagram.com/laurafoote to keep up with all the fun things that are going on. 


I hope you're able to soak in this wonderful season of all things sparkly, family, and food (my favorite things)! I'm writing about the lessons I've learned this year throughout the month of December in a series I'm calling 30/335. You can visit the first post here and find links to lessons as they are added at the bottom! 


Big hugs to my full-time working creatives today! You're amazing!