Home Is Where the Heart Is

Father’s Day was very hard for me this year. The first one without my dad. I had to think hard when the last time I was actually with my dad on Father’s Day. I believe it was June 19, 2005. The San Antonio Spurs were in the playoffs (Go Spurs Go!) versus the Detroit Pistons in game 5 of a best of 7 series that they’d go on to win. It was a great day! 

The years that followed were phone conversations that went something like this:

Dad: “Hello

Me: “Happy Father’s Day daddy-o!”

Dad: “Thank you baby.

Me: “What are your plans for today?”

Dad: “Depends on what time you get here

That was my dad. He wanted our time. Of course, he never hesitated to give us a wish list but time with his family was more important. 

So that brings me to this blog. Father’s Day was hard, yes. But I did have my husband and father-in-law to celebrate. I knew what I had to do. Picking up my camera and taking pictures of my father-in-law with his adult kids would be therapeutic. And I was right. My heart needed to do this. It was a way for me to thank my husband for being so supportive when my father passed away. I don’t know if I would’ve been able to get through the services without him holding me up. Sometimes literally. 

Fathers day session with adult children at home

When he saw this picture, my father-in-law gasped and jokingly asked, “Where did all those gray hairs come from?!”


This session was the perfect example of choosing the right location for your family. I thought there was no better place than my father-in-law’s home since he values the importance of home and family just as much as my dad did. 

Father and sons pose for fathers day portraits

The Figueroa Men. My husband is the oldest of four siblings.

This home is where the family birthday celebrations happen. There have been a couple of Easter egg hunts here too. It is the Friday night place to be to unwind, to talk and joke about the work week, and sometimes dance a little. 

Father and two sons pose for Father's Day portraits

The wood sign at the top is the family name and was made by my brother-in-law.

There’s a small room behind the house with so much history that it was a no-brainer to have the guys stand in front of it. 

Father and son posing for Father's Day portraits at home

It is rare to have my brother-in-law in any picture, much less one with a smile, so this makes the memory even more special.


My father-in-law welcomed me into the family with loving arms since the day we met! I like to say I’m his favorite daughter-in-law haha! He is kind, will drop what he’s doing to help someone in need, loves his kids and grandkids a ton and that’s probably why he is loved by so many people. 

This session is not quite complete but sharing it was a must for me. Portrait sessions can be anywhere. Why not your home? After all, Home is where the heart is. 

Until next time! 

Love, 

Vanessa Figueroa 

2 thoughts on “Home Is Where the Heart Is

  1. Vanessa these are beautiful and your words are so heartfelt. You did a wonderful thing where father-in-law and his kids to have these. I hate to hear how tough it was for you this Father’s Day my heart goes out to you and I’m sending lots of positive energy your way

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *