All it takes is a day


The 8th annual Run/Walk for Adoption is coming up this May 21, 2017. Click here to learn more about joining.

playing with giant balloonsIn just one day

These families managed to create happy memories for their kids while ALSO helping find foster kids forever families. The world is pretty awesome, isn’t it?

Photographing for MARE is SO MUCH FUN, you guys. My face literally hurt from smiling – the last time that happened to me was on my wedding day (there was a camera in my face – I paid good money to document those teeth!) But was I having the MOST FUN last week? Probably not – there were even bigger smiles everywhere I turned.

Last weekend, I got to meet some awesome families at the 2016 Run/Walk for Adoption hosted by Jordan’s Furniture. Families raised over 70K to support the hard-working efforts of MARE. My friends there work really hard, because what they do is super important:

“MARE is the only agency in Massachusetts whose sole objective is to find adoptive homes for the hardest-to-place youth in state foster care, including sibling groups, older youth, and youth with disabilities.” – The 2016 Run/Walk for Adoption Website

Lucky for you – when you join the Run/Walk, it’s more of a family-fun activity day. (I’m going to get tired of typing ‘Run/Walk’, so let’s just call it the walk, OK? OK!)

If you’ve got kids, you’re going to want to join us next year.

I can’t remember the last time I heard so many squeals of laughter and giggles.

little girl playing

The After-Party

Before the day devolved into a massive tug-of-war for enormous balloons, there was face-painting, free family-portrait key tags, frisbee spin-painting (that is a thing!), necklace making, and glitter tattoos. Also buckets and buckets of food. Fun Enterprises basically made it heaven on earth for the kids.

balloon sword fights

There Was Walking! Also Running!

Oh, right, and there was a race. Some people ran, some people walked. It was three paces around a short, paved loop. Super-stroller friendly, and many kids brought scooters. One smart kid even brought her bike. Everyone was grinning and happy just to be there. Some of the toddlers cheated and rode on  mom & dad’s shoulders. No one cares! Walk one loop of three – they’re just happy to have you (it’s cool, I won’t tell.)


An Extra Perk

While I was there, I also got some great family portraits. Posing is not usually my thing, but every family was kind and patient (thank you!). I’m still polishing everything up, but I’ll be emailing free portraits out to those who attended. So if I didn’t grab your email while I was there, make sure to shoot me an email and I’ll send you your free portrait when it’s ready! If you’re expecting portraits – I’m hoping to get them finished and sent over to you in the next couple weeks – so keep an eye on your inbox!

laughing with momMeet the other Do-Gooders

This was my first chance to meet some other Heart Gallery photographers

It was awesome discussing digital teeth-whitening techniques and trying to work during nap-time with Ken Kotch and the importance of documenting our own young families with Jackie of Jaclyn Kate Photography. Visit their websites the next time you need corporate head shots for work (Ken) or sweet, warmly traditional, shabby-chic kids portraits.


face painting

Get in on this, you guys!

The walk is an annual event – which means all you have to do is make space on you calendar next May. Sign up to receive notifications from MARE’s Facebook Page and be sure to join us for next year’s festivities. Imagine – you could be having this much fun creating your own family memories while uniting families.



dashed_line_2pt2017 Updates!

The 8th annual Run/Walk for Adoption is coming up this May 21, 2017. Click here to learn more about joining.

Looking for more ways to help kids in foster care? Click here for a comprehensive guide to helping kids in foster care with any budget, busy schedule, or skillset.

If you liked this post and the photos in it, you may want to join my email list to stay in the loop about my do-goodery projects. (Bonus – free family portrait planner!)