A mother of four, photographer, nature lover. Someone trying to make sense of it all, through photos and stories. 

I try to be free in all senses of the word, so I made the leap and now work with what I love doing; taking pictures, storing this life in moments, both for myself and for clients. My heart is in photographing birth and motherhood, but I take on just about any photography job. 
(See my birth photos at www.birth.no and the rest of my work portfolio at www.mariavatne.no.)

I live on a farm in Norway with my man Nik and my children Ronja, Freja, Falk and Ulv, plus a bunch of animals. We grow our own food as far as the seasons allow it, we don't go to kindergarten, the three youngest ones will be homeschooled.

We govern our own lives, we strive for independence, we want to be in this life wild and free and full of love.

River deep, mountain high.

Yesterday took us on a bit of an emotional roller coaster ride, as life does sometimes (though not often wrapping it all into one day).

In the morning: We woke the girls up at 6 am with the birthday song for Ronja (8 years old!), a small breakfast in bed, and then presents in the kitchen (yes, Freja had some presents too). Among the gifts were a baby fox figurine which was to be united with its mum (whom has resided here for a while).

Little did we know that Mr. Fox would affect our day in other ways as well, later on.

Finally, it had snowed in the night, and the girls screamed with happiness as they ran out to play before we had to leave for school and work. Ronja said It has been a wonderful morning! as we said goodbye at her school, our birthday girl, full of expectations for the day.

At work, I watched Bergman's 1957 film The Seventh Seal with my students. In that, there's a character called Death, whom slowly sneaks up on people, depicting the black plague and mass death that followed. Little did I know that this would also be a sign of what was to happen later on.

I left work, picked Ronja up at school, she'd had a great day and was excited about the next event - pizza in town with the whole extended family. More celebration, more presents, more singing! At home, we jumped out of the car to greet Mr. Payne and Freja whom had just arrived. He came out of the barn door, and said Come and see what the fox has done to our chickens, and we instantly realized. It was like an explosion had happened. Dead chickens on the floor and outside, live chickens spread all around the farm, and even down at the neighbours'. We lost our three favorite hens (Juanita, Lola and Eggedoris) plus another two, four of our baby chicks and two of our teenagers. It was very, very sad.

So then, after a lot of crying and tidying up, we went to our awaiting birthday celebration, had pizza with our folks, cheered up, came home late and tucked the girls in bed, lit the fire and just sighed.

Sometimes it's just a little bit much, but I guess foxes have to eat, too.

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Building projects of lately.

Yesterday's party.