I remember long, slow holidays at my grandmother's house. Always in velvet dresses, tights and patent leather shoes, Nana's best silver and china and the delicate red glassware my great-grandfather made himself. With French delicacies I wouldn't touch and, as we got older, what seemed like hours of dishes to do. Growing up with Nana, holidays were very formal; it was a tradition I appreciate much more now looking back than I did at the time.
But I always had my sister and sometimes my cousins. We'd shift around in our dresses and pull at our tights, laugh at each other as we each tried not to gag on our creamed spinach, but we did it together and always made it fun. This Thanksgiving, Francesca was alone in the sibling department, which sometimes comes with having half-siblings who alternate holidays with other relatives.
She drug me through all nine rooms and up and down the windy staircase in Grandma and Grandpa's huge, old house. It was quiet, she was contemplative, I heard 'Are there any toys?' more than once. And then we stepped outside to walk around in the sun while the adults gathered in the kitchen, and the tone of the afternoon changed quickly for her.
Because right out of the shrubs popped a new little friend, the most dog-like cat I've ever seen, who trailed around at her ankles 'til the sun sunk low and it was time to head in for our meal. For Fran, she got an instant playmate and for me, it really made me think about the definition of 'friend' and what it means for a child, actually for all of us.
I also used Grandma's beautiful home and Francesca's new Thanksgiving dress as an opportunity to photograph the most dainty little necklace by L.A. designer Naina Kids for my friends over at MiniStyle Blog. Fran had been coveting this precious star pendant for weeks before I dreamt up the perfect setting to show it off.
For the original post over at MiniStyle, click HERE.