After I posted this picture on Facebook I realized I had a lot more to say about this quote and about how so many of us have big dreams not just one size bigger but two or even three sizes bigger. I don’t know about you, but I am that person that has huge dreams. Having big dreams doesn’t mean to make more money, to be rich, to be the best photographer, but you can have big dreams to help others, to write a book that will help others and so so many other dreams. But so many times we just get discouraged as our dreams are so big and we just give up and say.. well I will never get there, how is it possible to get where I want to get, I don’t have time, I am a mom, I have 3, 4, or even more children. I only have one daughter and I still look at my life and my dreams and think many times, there is no way I can ever reach my dream. But I don’t give up and I try not to fall into the trap that the dream that I have has to be pursued today. No I have it tucked away really good in my heart, I know it’s there and my dad always used to tell me, be faithful in small things first. So what are the small things?
Well, most of you reading this blog are probably moms with little ones that you gave up your carrer to stay home and nurture your children. I know I did that. I did not want anybody else to raise Isadora, I wanted to be home with her and just be part of her life and be able to teach her myself about life and hopefully see the result of all my love and time spend with her when she will grow into a strong, confident and amazing young girl. But while we sit at home, most of us, still miss that feeling that we are important, that we do something more than just play and clean and cook food. We want to be creative, we want to create memories for our family and we pursue that dream and when we reach that dream then we realize… well maybe I can stay home with the kids, take pictures of them and also make some money by trying to take pictures for my friends. And you give that a try and it’s working, you love photography and you love being at home with the kids.
But all of a sudden you have another dream.. The dream to get better and better at pictures, to have a studio, to have a lot of clients and so so so much more. And don’t get me wrong that is an amazing dream but what will happen is, the dream you had to be a stay home mom and be there for your kids will suffer. I know how hard it is to balance a full time business and being a full time mom, trust me. You see that you are getting clients, economy is tough, so how can you turn away those clients? Well, I had to make myself some very hard decisions this year. I know I could work double, triple much more than I work now, I could take clients every single day of the week, travel weekends and just be this amazing photographer. And maybe I did get caught up a little too much into this about 2 years ago when I didn’t have time to even put up the Christmas tree for Isadora, didn’t have time to go at the part with her or just didn’t have time for anything anymore. And as hard as it was I just had to step back and take only very few clients last year and this year I am not taking any new clients. I know my mind goes crazy thinking, well if you say no to those clients they will never come back to you. I know that is one of our biggest fears but I always have to remind myself that I have to be faithful in the small things first. The small things right now is taking care of my daughter. I work from 8 till about 3 when I pick her up from school. After that we have activities going on, dinner, homework and so so much more. Yes I can say I work from home and she is with me but I will be lying if she is home watching TV and I am in my office. I am not home with her. I know that now with FB the big competition is to have sooo many fans and who’s page has more people talking about their page.. I hate that FB put that in there. Another reason to try to work hard to be at the top. I will not fall into the trap of trying to find ways to get that number up, not at all. I can be creative and find ways to do that but for now I do my best WHEN I can. I don’t try to discourage people from being the best they can be, but we all have seasons in life and if that season for you right now is your business then you better go at it with all your heart. But if your season is to be a mom, please, please take it show and just be a mom. I was in shock one year when I looked back and I barely had time to take any pictures of Isadora.. I had time for everybody else but creating memories for her.
If you started photography with the idea to create lasting memories for your family, please be honest with yourself and see where are you today. If you are barely able to be a mommy to your children and never even have time to take their pictures, try to think back on what’s important in life. Our kids don’t want more toys that we can buy with the money we make, they want us to be there for them. I know everybody says.. Ohh time passes by sooo fast, can’t believe that my kids are all grown up and I used to look at those people and think.. hmm are you sure??? cause for me time doesn’t pass fast at all.. when I have to stay home and do the same thing over and over and over again. But next month Isadora is turning 7 and I get tears in my eyes and I have to agree time passes by soooo fast. I look at videos when she was about 3 or 4 and wow, it’s hard to think back on how little she was and how cute she was talking. NOw she is becoming a young lady.
I go through this struggles myself everyday and I had to really switch my priorities 2 years ago but just because I made that decision to slow it then that doesn’t mean that I don’t have to remind myself that I am a mom first of all and be there for Isadora first of all. I want to write so many blogs to help my fans, I want to do video tutorials about so many things that will help you guys, I want to create new free actions that will help those that can’t afford them, I want to do more sales, I want to do more giveaways, I want…. and the list goes on. But I do all that I can and WHEN I can. I will not sacrifies the time I have with Isadora to be the best in the industry. Nope, I would rather be the best mom first.. and if time allows once Isadora is grown up I am sure I can get that that has stayed tucked away in my heart for so long and follow it with all my heart. I could double and probably triple my income if I worked more, and then what would I do with that money?? Spend it on things?? I can never, EVER buy the time I had with my daughter and for me time is so so precious as we are never guaranteed tomorrow! I do want to go to Isadora’s gymnastics and yes I stay there for 2 hours sometimes 3 hours and I love watching her practice. I know that my mind could go on the many things I could do those hours but I try to always remind myself that she is only little for such a short time.
I hope this will help some of you that have been trying to balance this photography thing and your children. I know that when we first started in photography we thought, oh it’s so easy and I’ll edit when the kids are in bed. I did that too but my body will not let me go with very little sleep anymore. I need at least 7 hours of sleep now and I will not push my body by drinking coffee or other things to stay awake and not be able to be a mom in the morning. It is my believe that we have to first be faithful in the small things and I know that when time is right the clients will still be there, if not the ones that contacted you, maybe other clients that will be willing to pay so much more for your services. But please treasure your time with your kids now, don’t overbook yourself by having cheap, cheap rates. You can never buy the time back with your family, set your prices with the thought of how much that time away from your family is worth. For me that time is priceless at the time. I can’t do sessions on the weekends. That’s my time with Isadora, she is in school and gymnastics during the week so for me the time in the weekends is just priceless.
It would sadden my heart so much just thinking of the generation of kids we are raising and for them to say, my mom was a stay home mom but she was never there for me. We do have such an important role in shaping the next generation, don’t think that your role is not important. It is very important! And I was reading in a book, that sometimes God puts dreams in our hearts that are so big that it will take a few generations to make that dream come to life. I think many times that maybe Isadora will be the one making my dreams come true and I better raise her in such a way that she will have the same passion in her heart like I do. I have to be there for her and teach her what’s important in life, when all the kids are cheating at bingo in school she asked me, mama is it ok to cheat just a tiny bit by switching the papers? I could have said, Nope cheating is not ok. But I wanted to take the time and explain to her that when you cheat you actually cheat yourself first because you are cheating yourself from learning new things, you are cheating yourself by not going the hard way and learning and I explained to her that it’s ok to see others win over and over and over again, because God is watching and maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, maybe not in year, but soon her faithfulness in small things will be rewarded. And when we think about reward we think about money, but that is not always the case, for me the biggest reward is to have peace, to know that you are doing what you were born to do, to know that you are impacting peoples lives for better, that is far more of a reward for me. It is my wish that one day I will get to meet some of you and that you will remind me that you read this blog post, maybe not very grammatically correct, but you made the choice to be faithful in the small things!!
My little blog would sure appreciate a little TLC. So many things going on in my life at this time that I barely have time to come and update my blog. I mostly post everything on Facebook lately but with all the new rules and so many changes on Facebook I will have to start blogging more and hopefully share more information about photography, about life in general and just anything that I know it has helped me in the past and hopefully it will help all my readers!!!
Things have finally slowed down a bit now after the release of the amazing new collection Once Upon a Dream Collection and I have more time to focus on doing giveaways, sales, and more!! The Bohemian Symphony Collection Limited Edition has been a very popular set and so many of you have emailed me whether I will be releasing it again. Well tonight is the night!!
I am releasing 100 sets of the Bohemian Symphony Collection! You will get 9 of the most popular actions from the full Collection and the actions you are getting are listed bellow!! If you decide to upgrade later to the full Collection you can do that and just pay the difference. Thank you so much for your support and hope this will help so many that are loving the look of Bohemian Symphony Collection but would like to try it first.
Please make sure you select the right software before purchasing!!!
Here are the details for the sale!!
The first 50 sets will be $35!!
The next 50 sets will be the regular price of $45!!
$45 ONLY 25 more sets available!!!
$35 for the first 50 sets!!! SOLD OUT!!!!!
Limited Edition CS2, CS3, CS4 and CS5
ELEMENTS USERS | BOHEMIAN SYMPHONY COLLECTION LIMITED EDITION
$35 for the first 50 sets!!! SOLT OUT!!!!!!
Limited Edition Elements 6 and higher
To purchase the full Bohemian Symphony Collection click HERE
For this mornings inspirational message I wanted to put it here on my blog rather than on Facebook as it might get a bit too long. I am not a writer at all and one of the things that I always seem to put off is when I have to write something. Maybe because english is my second language and I am always so self aware that I might not say something right. However, when I have a passion for something, I can write and write and write and no worry about anything.
I always get asked what’s the secret to my success. How did I start my facebook page less than a year ago and we are almost close to 40,000 followers. I think, I view definition of success very different. To me success is not in numbers at all!! I so appreciate all my loyal fans and I love them all but I would not call myself successful because of my number of fans, because of car I drive, because what clothes I wear, because I am published in a magazine, and because so many other things. To me success is to do what I love to do, to lay my head at night knowing that I did my best that day and to treat everybody I come in contact with, not for who they are today, but for what they can be in a few years!!! I have learned that just because somebody is not as “popular” as others, that doesn’t make them less valuable. I go to my daughter’s school and all the kids know me and they all say, hi Mrs. Boicu, and I make and effort to remember their name and I always say Hi… and say their name. It makes their day. One little boy was so amazed that I remembered his name from kindergarden. I am a strong believer that just as I was a little girl and remember every time somebody paid attention to me and how I felt and how it gave me courage to believe in myself, there are a lot of children just like me. I had a dream since I was a little girl that I want to go somewhere and help those that don’t have as much as I do, and trust me, I grew up in the communist era and we were poor. I didn’t see a bottle of coke till I was I believe 12 or so? We didn’t have bananas, oranges, chocolate, gum, nothing. But I still saw pictures in some books of kids in countries that lived in a tent and even though we didn’t have a big house still we had a house so my dream as a little girl was to go one day and help those people.
So why am I writing all this? I got in a bit of hot waters yesterday on Facebook over a picture that I edited and somehow implying that I don’t like people because of their skin color. And no matter how much I try to explain that the picture overall was just underexposed and all I did is edit the entire picture, not just the skin to somehow make somebody’s skin lighter. I grew up not even one time thinking that somehow I am supposed to not like somebody because of their skin color. Since our country was so poor and because the communists were so strict who came into our country, I actually never saw a dark skin person till I was in my teenage years. And that person was a missionary that came and brought us, our first bottle of Coca-Cola and our first bananas. I was about 21 years old when I came here, and when I first heard the notion that for some people the skin color matters. To be honest with you, I am 36 now and I still don’t understand the concept that skin color matters and why some people don’t like others because of the skin colors. I know that there are some words that are politically correct and non politically correct to say and if I ever say anything that offends anybody, please understand that I try so so hard to say things right but some concepts are still so hard for me to grasp in a culture I didn’t grew up in. Sometimes, I google certain terms before I post something to make sure nobody will be offended. I love what I do, I love encouraging my fans on facebook, but I don’t want to live in fear, in fear that I will say something wrong and offend somebody. I respect everybody and if I ever say something that is not “politically” correct please email me in private.
I see potential in each and every one of my fans, I see potential in anybody I meet in my day to day life, I treat people with respect not because I am somehow better than everybody else but because I remember how I grew up, I remember how hard it is to work hard, hard to try to make a living. In the hot Texas summer days, we have some people that help us with our lawn, and it’s over 100 degrees outside and they come and cut our grass and you can see on their face how exhausted they are, and I always make sure I go and get them something cold to drink and ask them if they want a snack!! I respect what they do!! I know they have a family and they have to make a living!! Why do I do that?? Well, maybe because I remember how hard it was when I grew up, during the communist times, we didn’t have the luxury to have sugar, oil, or rice. We had to take eggs, milk, chickens to the state in order for us to QUALIFY to even buy just a tiny bit of sugar, once a month. Since I was the oldest in the family, my parents always send me to the store and I would not even open the door all the way to enter the store and the man in charge of the store would say… “Grigorean (my maiden name)… and he would wave his hand for me to leave the store… you can’t buy anything today.. tell your parents you didn’t send eggs, or chickens or milk so you are not allowed to buy anything!! ” I mean this concept is almost unreal to me just thinking about it now.. but that’s how I grew up!! And I am not complaining.. I am so very thankful of how I grew up because I appreciate everything so much more today!!! But, to me all those events and so so many other more where I was turn away from a long line that I have been waiting for, for over 2 hours to buy some bread, and I was turn away because I didn’t have a “CITY” ID (we lived in the country), all this to me is hard imprinted in my brain that life can take people to places we never thought possible!!!
I can’t tell you how hard it was for me to come to a new country and people to say to repeat again what I am trying to say because they can’t understand me. I struggle so hard to learn a new language and I am already afraid that they will know I have an accent the minute I open my mouth and then when they say to repeat cause they didn’t understand me I just get terrified. Well, I used to not so much anymore. I was working at a bank call center answering phone calls 10 hours a day and even with an accent and all the new terminology in a new country, I worked hard, and I was always in the top 5% from the company. I always loved to work hard and do my best. But one day when I answered call somebody heard my accent and they didn’t even want to talk to me, they just said, give me somebody that speaks English!! Wow!! I didn’t know what to say!! I did cry and cry and cry that day and many days after that but honestly I am thankful for that because that’s the reason why I treat everybody today as if they were gonna be the president of the United States tomorrow!!!
There are a lot more things I could write about on why I treat everybody with respect and that I never, ever would try to put somebody down!!! Why should I ruin somebody’s dreams and tell them they are not good enough, that their photography is not good enough, why would I want to ruin somebody’s whole dream with a few words!!! We don’t know why some people do photography and even some of the pictures that are posted on my wall get criticized sometimes and it makes me sad. I can’t put here some of the emails I get from my fans, on why they are doing photography, maybe they have lost somebody and photography is their way of coping, I did that too when I started, I got into photography as a way of copying with cancer. It was the only thing that gave me pleasure and joy!! My pictures where not anywhere close to what you see now, but in my mind I was happy and I was so eager to learn more things!! We never know people’s lives, their struggles, I want my facebook page to be about support not about trying to prove who can win or who can use the meanest words!! My goal in life was never to be published on a big magazine cover (even thought I have the highest admiration for those that are published) but that is just not where my passion is. My passion is to support people!!
Here are some of my pictures from only 4 years ago. What if somebody told me I am not good enough? I would have probably put that camera down and never looked at it again.
I know that drama in life is inevitable, but many times we have a choice on what to say or what to write!! Our words are so very powerful so please use them to built people up and not tear them down!!
I am sorry if maybe some things I wrote don’t make sense. I wrote from the heart and if I try to re read I question myself too much so this is just me from my heart!!! A very simple girl, with a big dream!!!