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Why I marched on January 21st, 2017 along with 2.9 million other people…

Here is some of what happened the day after Donald Trump was inaugurated president of the United States, after winning the electoral vote, but losing the popular vote by close to three million votes, because of his campaign promises to make America sexist, racist, homophobic, and full of hate again:_54a1817paigegreenmarchoak01242017City officials estimate that 500,000 people participated in the main march in Washington, DC._54a2227paigegreenmarchoak01242017250,000 in Chicago._54a2165paigegreenmarchoak01242017250,000 people in Boston._54a1950paigegreenmarchoak01242017200,000 more in Denver.

_54a1930paigegreenmarchoak01242017In New York, the estimate ranges from 200,000-500,000.

_54a2038paigegreenmarchoak01242017An estimated 60,000 people marched in Atlanta._54a2257paigegreenmarchoak01242017In Los Angeles, the estimate is anywhere from 200,000-750,000._54a2129paigegreenmarchoak0124201760,000 in St. Paul, MN._54a2048paigegreenmarchoak0124201750,000 in Philadelphia._54a2106paigegreenmarchoak01242017100,000 in Madison, WI._54a2077paigegreenmarchoak0124201720,000 in Pittsburgh._54a2043paigegreenmarchoak0124201720,000 in Nashville, TN._54a2108paigegreenmarchoak01242017And these are few of the 60,000 who I marched with in Oakland, CA._54a2196paigegreenmarchoak01242017In the history of the United States, there has never been a one-day protest that was this large._54a2021paigegreenmarchoak01242017These numbers prove that we are not going accept the agenda of the Trump administration without a serious fight._54a1924paigegreenmarchoak01242017But now that the marches are over… it is time for us to get to work._54a1894paigegreenmarchoak01242017-3

This is not about democrats vs republicans. Or conservatives vs liberals. This is about human rights and decency. This is about love vs hate. To find out what you can do to make your voice heard after the march click here: www.womensmarch.com/100

 

who wants to play next…

The Sonoma County Economic Board hired me to document the different businesses within Sonoma County for their new website. It was like a three day scavenger hunt for good food and people… and getting paid for it.

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I definitely finished the week feeling very lucky to live in such a cool place and to have such a fun job… now which county wants to play next?

so much more than a haircut…

Huck and EZ have been hanging out together every week since they were 6 months old, and their babysitter would walk around with one of them strapped on her front and the other one strapped on her back.

Now at age four, the boys share a mutual love for Star Wars and Legos… preferably Star Wars Legos.

In the weeks since EZ was diagnosed with cancer, the boys have only seen each other two times. And that has been hard on both of them.

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So when the time came to decide how to deal with EZ losing his hair from chemotherapy, the moms agreed that the best way to help EZ feel better about shaving his head, was for the boys to shave their heads together.

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And seeing as Huck had always wanted a buzz cut, this seemed like the perfect plan. So we had our date scheduled. Celebratory hair cut presents were purchased and wrapped. I arrived and picked out the best spot for light in front of a big beautiful mirror. The hair stylist arrived and we were all ready.

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But when EZ arrived, we learned that he was in a lot of pain and he was not having a good day. It became very clear, as Huck was in mid-shave, that our perfect plan may not work out the way we imagined.

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The adults tried to reason with EZ, letting him know that shaving his head was a much better option than having his hair fall out in patchy clumps every day.

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But it wasn’t until I was driving home that I could really understand how this was about so much more than a hair cut for this four-year-old little boy. This little boy has had his life turned upside down and inside out… he can no longer walk, he can not use the bathroom without pain, he hasn’t eaten in days, his bones hurt, he gets poked, prodded, taped and needled every day.

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And in the middle of all this change, he lost his father, the only person who had ever given him a hair cut in his life, to a heart attack. It makes perfect sense that the last thing EZ wanted was to shave his head.

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So he very clearly said “no,” and they got back in the car with his beautiful curls untouched.

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Despite the tough morning and the head shaving protest, Alex did have some very good news to share about EZ’s progress with chemotherapy. Since so many people have so generously sent their love and support to this family, I wanted to share Alex’s update:

EZ’s last two scans reveal that the chemo has currently stopped his cancer from progressing. It has also reduced his tumors by 50% in size. This is a good start to a very long marathon of treatments that EZ will endure.

Dr. Month, EZ’s oncologist, shared that while his lungs and spine look worse to the eye, the bones will take the longest to heal. His lungs just look worse because he had a chest tube (from original biopsy) and he just got over a terrible cough and cold.

She reminded us of how important keeping him in his little Frida brace is, so his spine is protected. Meanwhile, we are pumping him with bone broth, probiotics, wheat grass and other homeopathic remedies.

To all sending your distant healing and prayers, we are deeply grateful and thankful for each and every bit of support, hope and love we are receiving. The children and I, as well as our extended family, are missing Roneil deeply. EZ is very clear on what has happened and shares that he misses his dad everyday. LU also is being very expressive and sharing her grief. We are pursuing different grief support measures.

A million thanks to all. XO, ap

Mabel Mai and The Big Flip are going on The Katie Couric Show!!!!

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It is an exciting time for the Wan-Rees family and for The Big Flip! On May 22nd, 2013, sweet Mabel Mai was born and we were lucky to have the opportunity to document what day 5 looked like for this family of 6…

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And now for the Katie Couric part…. on Tuesday, June 11th, Mabel Mai is going to New York, with her parents and The Big Flip, to tell Katie Couric what it is like to be in a modern family with a breadwinning mom and a stay-at-home dad. We are crazy excited for this amazing family and for the opportunity to share our documentary project with the Nation.

To find out how you can watch the Wan-Rees family on national television and to learn more about the The Big Flip click here: http://bigflipdocumentary.com/action

who wins your bread…

I was eight months pregnant with my son when Izzy Chan asked me if I would help her document the increasing trend of women becoming the primary breadwinners of their families.

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She had statistics and facts for this new role reversal that painted a pretty dismal outlook.

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As the primary breadwinners of our own households, we were not satisfied by the statistics so we wanted to learn more.

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We wanted to hear from real families…

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From both sides of the story…

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From real dads, husbands, men…

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And from real moms, wives, women…

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Who have very real needs, dreams, responsibilities…

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And that lead us to Bonnie and Chip and their family of five, soon to be six…

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We spent a Sunday…

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And a Monday morning…

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…following these two around, asking questions, listening and watching.

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We have just gotten started and already we have learned a lot from the Wan-Rees family, and from the other five families we have followed.

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Our goal is to share how real families are making it work in the Modern Home Front, so we can all learn how to move through these new gender, family, cultural changes as successfully as possible.

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So we are currently in the middle of editing a sneak peek of their story, to help us raise money so we can go back…

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And capture the next chapter of their story…

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To (hopefully) be continued soon.

You can follow our adventures on the ‘The Big Flip: Stories from the Modern Home Front’ here: https://www.facebook.com/BigFlipDocumentary and here: http://bigflipdocumentary.com/

the most beautiful home birth I almost saw…

If you asked me how my home birth was, you would not hear me say, “My home birth was beautiful.”

Instead I very honestly would tell you, “It was extremely long, incredibly painful and very, very messy. I can understand why drugs were invented and why people take them.”

Between endless hours of back-breaking contractions, I kept repeating, “This is ridiculous. How can there be 7 billion people on the planet.”

I couldn’t see why anyone would voluntarily choose to do this more than once in their lifetime, let alone 7 billion times.

People told me eventually I would forget and the hormones would win again, but I refused to believe that I could ever forget what that day felt like. And I announced that I was quite happy with one.

Yet here I am, one year and 5 months later, just like everyone said, wondering… if, maybe, should we?

So I was excited when Rose sent me an email asking if I would photograph the birth of their second baby girl, who would be born at home some time in March. It would be a good test. How would it feel to see someone else go through labor? And what was a home birth like the second time around?

I was also excited because I have never seen a human being born. I have seen cows, sheep, and dogs… but not a human (I had my eyes closed the whole time during HAH’s birth.)

And I got a small taste of what it must feel like for doctors and midwives. For once in my life, I had my cell phone almost always charged and I almost always knew where it was. And at gatherings with friends, I would announce, “I can’t drink tonight, I’m on call.”

But then it didn’t happen. The due date came and went. I started filling up my calendar. I had photo shoots scheduled every day. Arann got sick, so I was working all day and on solo parenting duty at night. Until finally at the end of day two of photographing flowers in SF, I got the texts:

4:12pm “I think we are in early labor, midwife is coming over. Will text again.”

4:57 “Come now!!”

I was in San Francisco.

The family was in Oakland.

For those of you not from the Bay Area, 5pm on a Thursday means… Fat chance.

I only had to drive 10.5 miles.

It took me one hour.

When I finally arrived at the house, Rose’s mother let me in and said, “The baby was just born, come on in.”

And this is what I saw…

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While I was disappointed to have missed the birth, it was probably for the best because I got to experience all of the joy and none of the work. Which means I can confidently say that it was the most beautiful home birth, I almost saw.

Thank you, Rose and Jonathan, for inviting me to be a part of this amazing moment in your lives. It was such an incredible honor and I am so excited for your family. And, as Rose said to me after the birth of HAH, “Have fun falling in love.”

Eight months strong…

This was Elizabeth on day one of her chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer…

This is what happened next…

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Eight months later, Elizabeth is doing great. She is more beautiful than ever and her positive attitude is inspiring… but her trip through cancer is not over yet.

Homage…

I am excited to kick off a creative new year with a group photography show at Toby’s Feed Barn in Point Reyes Station…

Each photographer was asked to pay “homage” to something and I chose to pay “homage” to the amazing women I have been lucky to photograph.

We would love for you to come celebrate with us this Sunday….

I want to send a special thank you to: Michael for bringing us all together, Jude for hanging my photographs while my family and I were crossing the country, Mary and Nicole Fassbinder for the amazing frames, Sean at Light Waves for facillitating the printing, Tyler for the awesome postcard, and Arann for everything else.

Thank you,

Why Am I Doing This Again… (Best of 2011)…

Once again I feel so incredibly lucky because 2011 was another very good photography year for me.

Not only were two books with my photography published this year…


(Harvesting Color by Rebecca Burgess.)

(Cooking My Way Back Home by Mitchell Rosenthall.)

But I also started work on my third book

And I had two photographs published in The New York Times.

(Fibershed made it in the New York Times on July 7th, 2011.)

(A photo of my grandparents in The Lives They Loved)

I was hired for the first time by biggies like Nike…


and William Sonoma.

And by some cool local companies like Stemple Creek Ranch

Nest Architecture Studio

And Susan Hayes Handwovens


I also met and photographed so many inspiring individuals (especially women) who are doing inspiring things…

…Jean Near.


…Leslie Santos.

…Elizabeth Boothby.

And then there was this guy called George Lucas.

And 12 amazing weddings…

And 14…

…very…

…cute…

…families.

But as I was running around documenting other people’s lives, I was also making a little life of my own…

And now 2.5 months later, this crazy little person I created is constantly reminding me how fast everything can change in just a matter of seconds let alone a whole year.

Which leads me to the one photo from 2011 that makes my heart swell like I never knew it could…

I love this photo of my grandfather and my son not because it was published in any magazine or because it is of anyone famous. I love this photo because it helps remind me that in the end none of that fancy stuff really matters. This one photo reminds me that life is too short, we never know what is going to happen next and there are some moments we just need to hold on to.

Happy New Year everyone. Thank you for helping make 2011 a wonderful year. I look forward to seeing what lessons life brings in 2012.

Introducing… Harper Albi Harris

Born at our home on October 14th at 12:20 am.

Named after my most favorite grandparents, who taught me the importance and value of family.

(photo taken by the talented Jude Mooney.)

He is only three weeks old and I am still completely blown away by it all…

By the fact that he was once inside of me.

By how absolutely amazing women are.

By seeing my son bundled in my husband’s arms.

By the love we have received from our incredible community.

By the multitude of faces…

…one creature can make…

…in a matter of seconds.


By my mom.

By my dog, who sat quietly with me during the whole (very long) birth.

And by this new person…

…who is making me fall in love…

…a little bit more…

….every day.

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