I take the girls to the bus stop each morning and thenI drive to work. Each night we talk about our day at the dinner table, the time is usually filled with the girls’ stories, which never fail to require getting up from the table and going through very extended and physically dramatic retellings. It goes beyond hand talking to whole body retelling. Later, as we tuck them in, they brush their noses against mine, or trace their fingers along my face and say, “Tell me about your day. What did you do?”

It can be so hard to explain. Did I really only write emails and take phone calls? It’s me asking this, not them, though I imagine they must wonder how that many hours could be frittered away on emails without a single funny exchange in the cafeteria or escapade on the playground.

Am I doing it wrong?

Lately I’ve been thinking more and more about being aware of how I spend the minutes and hours away from them. The days pass, but then as months layer upon months, what have I done? What milestones have I hit, professionally or emotionally, as I’ve travelled the months? Later this year my company will celebrate its 10th anniversary. We’ll be moving to a new space and revisiting our business plan, paying heed to the changes that will come in the next decade—middle school, college, empty nests.

I am, in many ways, as proud of my work as I am of my family, but I want to be able to articulate in a new way what it is that I do. I want this for me, but I also want it for Briar, Avery, and Finley. As they begin to explore what they do or don’t want to do with their lives, I’d like to feel more comfortable stating if not what I do, why I do it.

Sean put together this image using photos that he and I have taken on trips to talk to our clients. It reminded me how much I love where we work and live and how passionate I feel about throwing ourselves completely into this life we’ve built between home and back.

Boreas Pond, Long Lake, Brandt Lake, Lake George.