Well that’s accurate.

There’s a thing going on Facebook right now where you type keepgif.com/yourname into the comments and it automatically posts a gif related to your name and I was a little worried about doing that because what if I accidentally post something horribly offensive, but then I decided to just do it and this is the gif for my name:

So fucking accurate, y’all.

Unrelated:  Ten years ago I found a child’s dress in a thrift shop that was a bit ripped but lovely.  It was too big for Hailey at the time but she adored it so I used safety pins to make it fit and she wore it until it frayed.  It gave me one of my favorite pictures of her when she was just a few years old.

I kept the dress but somehow missed the window when the dress would actually fit her, so a few days ago when I stumbled across it in the closet Hailey and I decided to cut it so that it would fit her and use it to take pictures underwater.

Hailey doesn’t like to open her eyes underwater so I ended up with a ton of half-face pictures, but they looked awesome so it was totally worth it.  And a bunch of you asked how I did it so I’ll give you my secret: Put your phone in a waterproof bag and instead of taking photos just take video.  Then go through the video in slow motion and screenshot the best images from the video. Photoshop the bathing suit straps and pool vents out. Add a black and white filter to make it look artsy. Don’t drown.

And the images looked strange and muffled and fairy-like and surreal.  Almost as surreal as the idea that it’s been 10 years since Hailey first wore that dress.  It’s all going by far too quickly.  It’s a bittersweet realization that I can only suspend time in my photos and my memory.


134 thoughts on “Well that’s accurate.

Read comments below or add one.

  1. Dear god those are gorgeous. And the gif thing…it doesn’t work for me. I tried twice. Now I think I might be a figment of my imagination.

  2. These are all spectacular (and what a fabulous way to get those shots!). That last duo of pictures, the BW on the left – that is my favorite. I love her reflection under the water!

  3. Those pictures are amazing! So beautiful and haunting and absolute perfection.

    My On This Day posts on Facebook sadden me when I realize how fast my kiddos are growing. My ten-year-old can wear my shoes. They’re still a little big on her, but she can wear them. When did that happen?!?!?

  4. Holy cow Jenny! I’m loving ALL the photos. I’m not a big fan of being underwater, so the virtual trip makes me feel like I’ve accomplished something outside my comfort zone just by looking and commenting. Cheers

  5. These pictures are beautiful! Pretty sure I’d look like a drowning frog.

    Also, I’ve been trying to do the keepgif.com/myname, except it seems we hugged the site too hard and now it is overloaded. 🙁

  6. Beautiful! She is just precious. Great job with the pictures! And the gif thing doesn’t work for me either. What. The. Heck. (Sorry, I can only curse in my head.)

  7. Those are beautiful! I love thrift-store finds that become treasures. I have a ratio of about 1 treasure out of 15 finds. Some things they wear once, others are just in rotation for when their favorite stuff gets dirty.

    Curious. Do you use first name only, or first AND last on Facebook?

    (Just first name. ~ Jenny)

  8. So beautiful! Then and now pictures me cry they were so divine! Thank you, I need something gorgeous right now!

  9. The underwater pictures are the definition of ethereal. The shot with Hailey and her bear makes me smile. Thanks for sharing these — I needed some beauty and some adorableness today.

  10. Absolutely beautiful – Hailey was a darling toddler and an even prettier young lady. You and Victor should be very proud of her.

  11. These pictures are so beautiful – and great tip re waterproof bag!
    And so I just type this thing..!?

  12. Your photos are stunning! Wow!
    And I so enjoy your posts – so does my fiancee when I read them to him in bed. We’ve enjoyed some great belly laughs together!

  13. Magical!

    I too had a dress I’d been saving (tailor made for me when I was a kid in Bangladesh) and missed the window where it would fit my larger twin. It’s not a perfect fit for smaller twin (too large in the bust), but she loves it, although she won’t permit photos.

  14. Gorgeous girl you have there, then AND now. My daughter is 34, my son is about to turn 24 (note to self, BIRTHDAY CARD), my granddaughter is about to turn 5. I still don’t know where the time has gone.

  15. Gorgeous photos! Living that same sentiment right now with my girl. Exciting to see who she’ll become, but lamenting the end of the little girl chapter.

  16. The child years are fleeting, but the beautiful human being you created turns into an adult who is to be cherished and adored, just as much as the child. My kids are both bigger than me, and smarter than me, and more talented than me. I couldn’t be happier to know them as adults.

  17. I can NOT believe these pics are taken with a bagged phone and screen-shotted video. Mind. Blown. Now I need to un-age my boys a few years so I can take underwater phone pictures.

    Is it just me, or doesn’t the second underwater photo (the black and white one) look like a skull a little bit? Not at all in a creepy way but in a super-cool way. It could just be a result of me not wearing my glasses and I can’t see anything in focus anyway but DANG I love that picture. I wonder if I can get my son to wear a flowy dress underwater so I can try that too…….

  18. Love the photos. The one that makes her look like twins makes me want to write a story and use that as the cover.

    That dancing fan gif hypotized me. It wasn’t that he was a sports fan — I assumed that. It was the bear creeping up behind him. I wondered if it was going to rip his head off. Then it didn’t, and I wasn’t sure if I was disappointed. So I watched it again. And again. I’m still not sure.

  19. Beautiful…Like most things you do…Hailey is gorgeous, and so is the dress. It’s so awesome that the 2 of you can plan and do things like this. Bravo!

  20. Beautiful photos, Jenny. Beautiful daughter, as well. You do good work (and I suppose Victor deserves some of the credit for Hailey as well).

  21. This is awesome! Love the photos. And I don’t need to do the gif thing because you and I have the same name. So, thanks for doing my work for me!

  22. What beautiful pictures–very ethereal! As for the gif, mine kept showing people falling down and getting hurt, and now I’m worried.

  23. These pictures are so beautiful!!! Now excuse me while I go see what gif is associated with my name, I can only hope it’s as good as yours

  24. I totally need to do this! I love your underwater pics so much! How do you get the phone to cooperate and go down just right and stuff?

  25. That’s not true you can suspend time in canning jars full of honey, you taught us that……

  26. don’t drown. somehow i think that should be the FIRST instruction….. (at least in my world)!

  27. Magnificent
    I’m out of big words that mean delightful and soothing and just wonderful….

  28. Love the photos they look awesome underwater you are so frickin creative!!!

  29. Little Hailey was so adorable in that dress! I wish you hadn’t missed the “window.” But the underwater photos were unearthly! Love them!!!

  30. I love that when you come across an old dress in the closet, your first thought is, let’s take underwater pictures! You and Hailey must have amazing adventures together! That will never go away.

  31. Still swooning over these. I need to make friends with someone who has a pool so I can do a shoot like this.
    Except that would involve talking to people.
    Maybe I can just find a public pool with lax after hours security.

  32. She’s so beautiful! These photos are lovely! I had 7 kids over 25 years. I was raising kids from 1971 to 2013. More than 40 years, and I still can’t believe it went by so fast. I cherish all the memories so much. And now I’m enjoying all the grandchildren, of course! 😉

  33. Very cool photo shoot. On another note, I did the gif thing and got dudes stacking cups on another dude in a stadium crowd. Idk. The sports are beyond me.

  34. wow the pictures are amazing!
    I’m scared of the gif thing though; I’m afraid i’m giving away my soul to the internets if I type in my name, so i’m going to let it be a mystery

  35. Reminds me a bit of Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children. And by peculiar I of course mean beautiful and awesome!

  36. I love the pics. Sorry beautiful.
    The keep gif is cool, it picked up on my personality disorder. Every time I click on it, it’s something new,and very accurate. Lol

  37. Damn auto correct. Not ‘sorry beautiful’. Supposed to be ‘So beautiful’.

  38. I had to write a thing about Bruce Mozert for a photography class in college. Underwater photography has been a fascination ever since! These are wonderful!

  39. Those are so beautiful. I wonder how I can bribe one or both of my girls to do this type of photo shot. Increadable!

  40. The other night I could not sleep. I decided to read your blog and I went back to 2009 where you talk about going to conferences with all these different bloggers. Anyways there isn’t really a point here. Oh and I met you back in March at the book signing in New Orleans. Your publicist was really nice-she said she also travels with David Sedaris. Who is also a very good, humorous writer.

  41. I can’t wait for you to do a book of your photography. In fact, I insist you do one, cause you are so good at it. And I always get my way, so don’t disappoint me.

  42. The black and white one look like they belong in Miss Peregrines home for Peculiar children

  43. I think we broke the internet trying to do the gif site… it won’t work anymore… but your daughter looks absolutely stunning in those photos!!! She’s lucky to have such an artsy mom! If you want a good underwater camera, wish.com sells one that’s wicked tiny and you can take 10 pics in a second and choose your favorite. I love it! it’s called a wimius.

  44. Your photos of Hailey are breathtaking – you have a true gift with the camera
    I think the .gif thing is broken still….it probably just says keepgif.com/pamela down below instead of some funny gif. Or some embarrassing .gif of Pamela Anderson doing only what Pamela Anderson can do. le sigh Sorry Pamela.


  45. OMG Jenny. These are so beautiful! Hailey and you are magical.Thanks so much for being on the planet the same time as me.Waves of love in your direction.

  46. These are hauntingly beautiful.

    The gif thing doesn’t work for me. I keep trying and it keeps acting like I’m not a person with my own gif. Which is bullshit.

  47. So lovely, you should sell prints. I’ll take a 36×36 of the first photo in the group.

  48. I love these so much! I am so glad it isn’t just me that misses that window when the clothes that you save actually fit the kid.

  49. Lovely, beautiful photos. Your artistry knows no bounds.

    And ITA with how fast their childhood disappears. My boy is the same age as Hayley and it’s a WTF daily with how much he’s changed and how far he’s grown.

  50. I like the one going around about typing in glamour shot and then your name.

  51. Seriously, that photo of Hailey and the dress and the teddy bear is one of the cutest photos I have ever seen of any child.
    And she looks just like you, Jenny.
    Soooo adorable.
    the underwater shots are awesome, as well.

    But……..I fail to see how that gif has anything to do with you…………what am I missing here…..

  52. Just want to say thank you, Jenny. And thank you to your amazing blog and twitter following – everyone who posts comments here and responds to your tweets. My brother suffers from depression and it was your words, Jenny, that I used yesterday when I could sense he was nearing his lowest low. All I know is today he is going to the dr (in a new town and new state for him, so adding to his anxiety). I told him that depression lies and he doesnt deserve to be feeling the way he has been feeling for weeks. And today he took the steps to reach out for help. Thank you. I picked up your first book with my mom and brother in mind. And the book led me to your other books, and your amazing online community. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

  53. Those are so beautiful. You should add some of your photos to your next book. Please!!! We love them so.

  54. extraordinary! thank you for sharing these images. so well done.

  55. I love these. Why does time have to move so fast? It is making me feel really sad today.

  56. Fun story about your gif: that guy used to dance at every home Blue Jackets game (columbus, ohio’s hockey team). It was always entertaining yet cringeworthy to see him take his shirt off and shake what his mama gave him. Last year he came back after having lost a ton of weight and danced like a fool and received a video announcement about all of his hard work and a standing ovation!

  57. Mine is a bunch of cats going apeshit on catnip. Go figure 🙂 Love the pictures.

  58. My gif is a pigeon jumping off of a building and not flying. Two thing on this:

    As I contemplate suicide multiple times a day recently, it appears that this keepgif thing is legit.
    A favorite Douglas Adams quote came to mind: “The knack [to flying] lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss.”

  59. The first 10 times I watched that gif I missed the bear. How am I only now seeing the bear? The bear is everything, Jenny!

  60. I missed the bear at first too! 😀
    And those underwater pics are gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous.

  61. Those are amazing photos. Pure genius; congrats to both you and Hailey for coming up with them. And you are so right about how time runs away from us with our kids. Somehow, my girls grew up, and now my grandkids have grown up, and I have a great-granddaughter who is doing the same thing! I tried to tell my girls it would happen, and I have tried to tell my granddaughter to watch out, because the young one will get away and turn into a big person, but I don’t think anyone ever believes it until it actually happens to them. Them, it’s like–How did that happen? They were little just yesterday?!!! Hold onto those pictures, paintings, drawings and memories. They are so precious.

  62. After seeing your photos, I wanted to show you this painting my niece did recently. She just graduated from an Arts Academy in California, will be going to Ecuador for a year, and then to Tufts University. She’s an amazingly talented young woman.


    Okay–I tried to copy the picture, but all I could get was the link. Check it out. Remarkably similar I thought.

  63. Amazing! Love the tip about the plastic bag. I’ll remember that one!

  64. I was listening to music when I scrolled down to that gif of the fat guy dancing without a shirt, and it is perfectly timed to “Gangnam Style.”

  65. I know I’m super late to this post but goddamn it I want to participate!

    Gif: Dancing bear and everything…it IS accurate!

    Dress and Photos: Thanks for the Don’t Drown tip cause I would have probably forgotten. The dress is incredible and OMG she grew so fast! Also, artsy as hell! Absolutely beautiful pictures. Also, Hayley is looking so much like you in them. I don’t know if it’s the underwaterness or the fact that you gave birth to her…I vote for the second, but who knows!

  66. Upon reexamination, the fat guy gif also works with Sleater-Kinney, Tom Waits, and just about anything up-tempo. It’s a very versatile Fat Guy Dancing gif.

  67. Beautiful photos! Rest in the fact that there are more wonderful memories to come.

  68. The app Vhoto will automatically break a video into screenshots, then let you scoot forward/backward from any of them. Excellent for moving shots.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: