My Favorite Instagrammers to Follow

Instagram is my favorite social media platform . . . because pretty pictures! It's a little like micro blogging too, which I love. Words + pictures are always a win-win for me. It also seems less snarky, then, say, Facebook (most of the time). It is a little pocket of daily inspiration.

Today I'm sharing some of my favorite Instagram accounts to follow. It was hard to narrow them down! Each one is rich in inspiration, however. And of course you can follow me @danielleajones.

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@fionaannal

Moody rich images of life in Scotland. It makes me want to visit my ancestral homeland. And swoon over her bird's egg blue Aga stove.

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@readtome

This feed is a gem if you love children's literature. I've discovered so many great titles to purchase or check out at my local library. Literary eye-candy!

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@kellysauer

I've known Kelly since back in the "old days" of blogging and she also took head shot images for me a few years ago. Her work just gets better and better. Vintage, feminine, and romantic, Kelly sees the world through beautiful eyes.2016-01-18_011@crnnoel

Cozy, is what comes to mind when I think of Corinne's feed. I love her book reading and writing process snapshots, her knitting, homeschooling days, and scenes of the sea.

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@nataliecreates

I don't know Natalie at all but her blog and Instagram feed make me happy. Bright and cheerful images of DIY projects, vintage and chipped up furniture, budget living, and repurposed secondhand items are themes in Natalie's feed. She's a talented crafter with an Etsy shop as well.

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@cloisteredaway

It is strange and ironic that I like both the bright, vintage, and cozy clutter of Natalie's style AND the clean, neutral, textual feed of Cloistered Away. Really, in my own home I crave both. Not sure how to reconcile that. I adore Bethany of Cloistered Away's very intentional living choices from simple style to homeschooling to how she spends her money on clothes or toys. I first heard her speak at the first Wild+Free conference and have been a fan ever since. I also love her photography, writing, homeschooling resources, and personal style.

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@environmentsofgrace

I first met Lori when she pulled up a chair at my table at the Wild+Free conference. Her writing is thoughtful and her images and home beautiful.

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@gracelaced

I've enjoyed Gracelaced's blog for a long time, back when she was doing more writing than painting. But now she has found her groove by creating beautiful prints. Love her heart and her style.

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@christiepurifoy

Christie and I wrote for the same website for a while before discovering we were local to each other and meeting in person. Christie's poignant writing and soulful images reflect a sensitive and deep heart. Can't wait for her book, Roots and Sky, to come out in two weeks!

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@aliciahutchinson

I am new to Alicia's blog, periscopes, and Instagram but am gaining homeschooling encouragement from them!

What favorite feeds do you follow? Also, drop your own Instagram handle into the comments section and I'll follow you!

Emerald Isle, NC | 2015

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The ocean. It makes me feel alive. It invites me to rest. It had been two years since our family had vacationed at the beach and in September we once again headed to Emerald Isle, NC to put our feet in the sand.

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We rested. We ate well. We read books and watched movies. We took walks and gathered shells. We battled waves and floated on our backs.

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We took the annual "last night on the beach pictures" that are always so fun to capture!

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Equal parts sweetness and sass, that's our Sophia.

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Gosh, I love these boys. We've made it so far! I remember thinking someday we were going to make it to age 8 and here we are! Crazy how far away these days feel.

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And now we have this little darling joining in with all the fun!

My mom joined us for vacation this year. I just adore this candid shot of her with Ava!

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The last days of summer come to a close.

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Daily Moments

Blog commenting has gotten a lot more quiet in recent years. In part, that's because a lot of the discussion has moved to other social media outlets: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. My favorite social media by far is Instagram, with Pinterest coming in second. I follow my real life friends as well as those whose images and lives I find inspiring, despite not know them personally. Where Twitter feels impersonal, Facebook too combative, Instagram is just right. The perfect combination of words and pictures.

Although I do have the goal of picking up my "big girl camera" to document life this year a bit more than I did last year, my iphone is always on me and perfect to capture the daily moments that would otherwise be lost. I also link to my posts here and articles on other sites, if you're interested in following my writing.

I would love my blog friends to feel free to follow me on Instagram @danielleajones. Although it is private I will happily add you to my feed once I'm sure I'm not being spammed. Since my feed includes images of my kids at times, I want to make sure I know who's following me. That way I can find and follow you too!

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“Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever... it remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.” -Aaron Siskind

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Ava Claire

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I was due January 5th. I didn't think I'd last that long, but I didn't imagine that our new bundle of joy would arrive on Christmas Day!

But arrive she did, and what a sweet Christmas surprise! I still can barely believe we have another baby in the house. She gets showered with love everyday by her siblings, who are excited to have her join our family.

We have enjoyed the Christmas break and Josh being home from work. We're thankful for my mom who has helped out and family that were in from out of town who got to meet Ava. And we're super thankful for the amazing meals so many wonderful friends have been dropping off!

We're getting used to our new normal and loving almost every minute of it.

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Lewis Family Session | Jerusalem Mill

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It was wonderful to get the opportunity to photography my friends, the Lewis family, one cold day earlier in November. Look at all those pretty girls! Their crafty mama made them all their custom headbands and the baby her coordinating shoes.

I love how their different personalities came out--especially the sassy attitude of #3!

Enjoy!

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The Maher Family | Hampton Estate Session

2014-11-10_010 Every year I look forward to this family's session. And somehow, each year, their session becomes a new favorite. It's been so neat to watch this family grow. Previous years we've done orchard sessions, Cromwell Valley Park sessionscousin sessions, and baby sessions. This fall we settled on doing the session at Hampton National Historic Site. A beautiful Georgian estate that was built just after the Revolutionary War, it boasts gorgeous architecture, gardens, and grounds. It took several tries to find a day with no rain, but at last we scored one of the warmest days of the month.

This year, there was a new little cutie to capture!

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And this guy, always so photogenic!2014-11-10_0032014-11-10_0042014-11-10_005

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Thank you, Maher family for entrusting me to capture your family for another year!

 

 

Sunflowers

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On Sunday we went to a sunflower field not far from where we live to take some last-of-summer pictures.

And to announce the gender of our new babe:

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This little girl is soooo excited to have a sister!

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So are these guys!

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A nice stranger offered to take a family shot of us.

And the boys insisted on "silly faces" from mom and dad. Duncan makes his photography debut in getting this shot of us!

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A Light Exists in Spring

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On Saturday morning the light was shining and shifting through the trees and I grabbed my camera and ran outside in my pajamas, wearing whatever shoes I could find, which happened to be Josh's sneakers. The weeping cherry tree was in full bloom and I knew I wanted to capture it's fragile and fleeting beauty and had been waiting for the right light.

While processing the images a line crept into my head from one of Emily Dickinson's poems. "A light exists in the spring . . ." I couldn't remember the rest so I looked it up.

I decided the poem was the perfect accompaniment to these images. And besides, don't we all need a little injection of poetry into daily life? Poetry of both the visual and the prose varieties?

A Light exists in Spring Not present on the Year At any other period — When March is scarcely here

A Color stands abroad On Solitary Fields That Science cannot overtake But Human Nature feels.

It waits upon the Lawn, It shows the furthest Tree Upon the furthest Slope you know It almost speaks to you.

Then as Horizons step Or Noons report away Without the Formula of sound It passes and we stay —

A quality of loss Affecting our Content As Trade had suddenly encroached Upon a Sacrament.

by Emily Dickinson

Do you have a favorite spring poem?

Pick Your Portion

A month or so ago I was asked to begin contributing to a wonderful Bible reading plan blog called Pick Your Portion. The reading plan used is called the M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan which selects four different portions of scripture for each day so that you read through the Bible in one year. Each day during the week there is a post based on the scripture selections for the day. It may be a devotional post or an art response. I've been asked to create an art response once a month. I can use any medium or approach I choose: graphic design, photography, watercolor, oils, collage, etc. I'm looking forward to experimenting with various mediums in the future, as one of my goals for this year was to go back to my fine arts roots and not rely on graphic design or photography as much.

But when I selected the scripture for yesterday's post, this image I took in Emerald Isle, NC immediately came to mind. It spoke of peace and wholeness to me. The ocean is where I feel most at peace in spirit and body, so I chose it to be the image for my art response.

I invite you to join me over at my first Pick Your Portion post!

Andrew | Newborn Session

Baby Andrew's session almost had to be postponed due to the winter weather that blew in, but I braved the snow and was so glad I did! Although Andrew was probably the most awake baby I've ever photographed, thankfully, he was a chill little guy. He just enjoyed contentedly being swaddled and looking all around him and out the window. Isn't he cute? Look at that little smile . . .

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So cozy.

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I think these two brothers are going to be great friends!

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