Fellow photographer and Wichita Mom’s Blog contributor, Erin Kata asked me if I would be willing to shoot a nursing session with her and her newest addition, Lincoln for her most recent post for WMB. I’ve never done a nursing shoot before and was excited to try my hand at it. Pure magic happened.
The sky was overcast with beautiful dramatic clouds which seemed fitting for a nursing shoot. Isn’t breastfeeding a beautiful yet stormy part of motherhood? And that hat. With that baby. And Erin, your lips! Holy cow, woman! Obviously, I enjoyed myself on this shoot.
Photography is definitely my most tapped into artistic expression. There are so many variables to work with, some within your control and some outside of it. For some people that may sound daunting, but I find the times that there are areas I cannot control or mold are the times I get the most creative.
Case in point: Lifestyle shoots. I simply love them. No sit here and smile at the camera (not that there is anything wrong with that). No. It’s interactive, meaningful, and engaging. It reminds me of when I used to shoot weddings. The best parts were when I was capturing the essence of the day. Now I get to do that with families. Capture their essence. Their vibe. Their emotions. It’s energizing.
Shooting with the Paulys was an absolute delight. They are a straight forward family who are who they are. Laid back, blunt, warm, and tender. I love that. And I LOVED this shoot. Enjoy.
I thoroughly believe people are put into your life when you most need them. Kruze and her outstandingly wonderful momma were that to me this past year. Not only did I get the privilege of watching this newborn baby grow into her spunky one-year-old self, but I grew a friendship with a strong lady who supported me during a particularly rough year (more on that later).
I had every intention of sharing Kruze’s monthly photos are she grew, but as mentioned previously, this year was not exactly what I expected. So instead, here are the fabulously fun pictures from her one year session where she shared the camera with her doting family. Enjoy.
My Darling Girls,
Another month goes by with endless opportunities to learn and grow, and I’m mostly talking about myself. Between 2 colds and a bout of food poisoning, I feel like I’ve been in constant recovery. I’ve also learned that once a perfectionist always a perfectionist, and so I’ve been working on that not running and ruining my life. Those tendencies towards perfectionism sneak into my life from time to time, and I don’t even notice it most of the time because it’s such second nature. The good news is that when I realize that I’m going down that path again, I can try to pull in the reigns and calm down a bit which really helps me mentally and emotionally. So here’s looking to you January, let’s make it an even better month.
Spunk Nugget (i.e. Isla Rose),
You are so very spunky, full of sass and life and as stubborn and strong willed as yours truly. We’re still in the same mode we’ve been in: easy-to-get-along days and everything-is-a-fight days. There really only seems to be hot and cold, but I guess that’s life with a toddler. Not helping this situation is the double ear infection and two teeth you have coming in. Poor baby, I can’t blame you for being a little pissy.
You’ve been getting into everything you’re not supposed to lately. You practically gave the babysitter a heart attack when she thought she lost you, but you had just found your way into the garage. Every morning you now get out of your bed, open your door, and come find us. You then announce, “I got out my bed.” You then shrug your shoulders and give the most adorable little giggle like it was the most unusual thing to happen as of late.
The Christmas lights, Polar Express, Christmas movies, there is just so much to love about Christmas time! You’ve been to see the lights at Rhema in Tulsa and at Botanica here in Wichita. You met Santa 3 times, and you got to ride on the Polar Express (I was so sad, because I had to miss out on this). You like to point out the stockings on the mantel and for some reason always ask, “I eat them?” So very random and so very funny. It’s true what they say, the Christmas magic is stirred in your heart when you see your children’s eye light up with the wonder of the season.
Your flavors of this month are frozen blueberries (pronounced “boobies”), pretend play (which I adore), helping us in the kitchen, and singing “jingle bells, jingle bells, HEY!”
Pop Nugget (i.e. Penelope June),
Happy 3 months, baby! You are 100% a different baby, and the whole household is thrilled! Your presence feels so much more like you were when you were first born. There is a calmness and awareness about you that I just love. When you smile, it starts in your eyes and then washes over your whole face. Your eyes squint and you bashfully turn your head to the side. I live for those smiles.
You also love a good conversation. Your voice starts off small and soft and a few minutes in your inflections are boisterous and completely adorable. Getting to chat with you makes my days so much brighter. Just these small glimpses of your personality are so thrilling to experience. They remind me of what I loved about Isla’s first year: the miracle of the growth and development of a person! That is no small miracle!
You are incredibly strong and rock tummy time like it’s nothing. You’ve rolled over from your tummy to your back a handful of times, but it’s almost always accidental. You’ve started to be much more active while rolling around on your blanket, more kicking and bopping around. You love this play mat that has a mirror right above you and a keyboard at your feet to kick. It has some toys that hang down, and you’ve started to bat at them. You’re quite focused when your working at reaching for the toys; I love seeing the wheels in your head turn.
Thank the good Lord above, you have been sleeping so well 95% of the time at night. We’ve had a few nights you’ve slept a full 12 hours even! Nap times during the day tend to be pretty short, but I don’t have to fight you for them most of the time and you’re not grumpy when you’re awake so I’ll take it. Something special we’ve done lately is take a nap together while Isla is sleeping. Not only has it been nice for this sick mama to get a nap in, but those warm, sleepy snuggles are what dreams are made of.
I love you girlies. Until next time…
My Darling Girls,
My goal (and no promises as life does happen) is to write a letter to the two of you every month. I did an okay job of that with your first year, Isla, but not such a great job on your second. You just celebrated your 2nd birthday, and, Poppy, you just turned 1 month old so this seems just as good of a time as ever to start.
Isla Rose you are fun and frustrating at this age (more fun some days, more frustrating others), and I’m learning a thing or two about growing my patience. You have been the best big sister to Poppy, very loving and caring, and I have a feeling that once Poppy can interact with you more you’ll be in heaven. It is hard for you to learn to share Mommy and Daddy, and so we have some behavioral things we’re working on… but you are only two so you’re very much just acting your age.
You have so many things you love right now. You love your family, and often times we’ll go through a “role call” if you will where you ask where everyone is at any given point in time. You are your mother’s daughter because you love to color, paint, and create (when you say, “I made that” my heart warms and tears come to my eyes). You are always going a million miles a minute. When you’re awake, you’re BUSY… jumping and dancing. It’s pretty dang cute. You’ve been on a big Mary Poppins kick; you could watch it over and over without losing interest. With that has come lots of singing, and you have such a sweet little voice (and surprisingly good pitch). You also love Daniel Tiger and Curious George.
You also love to talk…. all day long… often times the same thing over and over again. Right now some of those phrases are:
“I like that/I don’t likey”
“I lub boo”
One of my favorite moments leading up to your birthday was the week of your birthday. You knew that for your birthday you would get cake (you’re a big fan), and one day you started singing “happy birthday to me…. cake?” Your dad and I laughed so hard, because my child, your humor and delivery are on point.
We love you so much Isla Rose, and I look forward to seeing you grow even more this year.
Poppy, oh my darling girl, you are WORK. When you sleep, you tend to sleep like an angel, but GETTING you to sleep sometimes takes an act of God. You’ve had a lot of issues spitting up and with food sensitivities so there have been periods of time when you are so uncomfortable. When you would be awake, sometimes you would just scream. It broke my heart (and my spirit a bit to be honest). We also just found out that one of your nasal passages isn’t full open (actually, it’s practically closed) which makes you sound perpetually congested. The doctor said that it’s open enough to not need surgery, but closed enough that if you get sick we’ll have to watch you like a hawk to make sure you’re getting enough oxygen. Scary stuff, so we’ll pray our hardest and try our best to keep you away from illnesses this year. It’ll grow as you grow which is good news though.
You ARE growing like a weed though! Since you were born, you gained almost a pound a week! You have easily filled out your 0-3 month clothing no problem, unlike your older sister who grew much slower. Your face is so round, and your body is so squishy. I just love giving you kisses and cuddling with you during Isla’s naptime. Since sleep is very hit or miss with you, you’re a pretty sleepy babe. Every once in awhile we’ll get some tummy time in, and if we’re lucky (and you’re feeling well) a few sweet smiles.
We love you sweet girl. I hope you start feeling better soon, and I can’t wait to see your little personality grow…. and to get some more sleep (#keepingitreal).
This little boy and his parents… where to begin? I am so grateful for them. It has been such a thrill to shoot MJ’s newborn pictures, as well at his 6 month, and now his 1 year! MJ is a happy, sweet boy who I love being around, and his parents are just as sweet and wonderful as he is.
It’ll take you all of 5 seconds to realize that my job as their photographer is pretty dang easy. They are happy, genuine, loving people who also happen to look like models. Darn my luck, right? It was about 100% humidity out when we took these pictures, and you would never know it looking at them.
More than that, they are clients who have turned into friends, and for that I am even more grateful. Let’s do this again soon, shall we?
There really isn’t anything better than a brand new baby, and I’m talking brand, brand new. Baby Collins was only 3 days old when we had our lifestyle newborn session, and she couldn’t have been any more precious. So sleepy and cuddly. So pink and tiny.
And one of the absolute highlights on this session was watching Nicole with her children. Talk about a mother at ease. Her peaceful, loving energy towards not only her newest addition, but also her two oldest boys was refreshing and simply inspiring. I hope that I can provide such an outpouring of love to my growing family the way she does.
When Isla was born, I wanted to do a little mini photo session every month around the date of her birth. Any new mother can tell you this is not always easy, but looking back on those pictures can bring this mama to tears. I thought maybe other parents would be interested in this concept so I developed a package to offer these monthly mini sessions for a babe’s first year of life, and I was beyond thrilled when I had my first taker.
If you haven’t already met baby Kruze from her newborn session, you’ll be seeing plenty of her in the months to come! Here are the images from her 1 month mini session. Enjoy!
Kruze’s sweet mother asked me to take these photos even before the announcement of her pregnancy was made (which made me feel very honored might I add). So basically I have been very patiently waiting for this little one to make her appearance!
With 3 gorgeous girls, 1 beautiful babe, and 2 “not-so-bad-yourself” parents, I knew this shoot was going to be spectacular. Kruze’s three big sisters are so in love with their new addition as you will soon see in these pictures. And there’s that special look only parents of brand new, tiny babies can give. It’s a perfect mixture of love, awe, and maybe a little bit of disbelief.
I can’t wait to get this fabulous family back in front of the lens. Enjoy!
I don’t know too many people who don’t look forward to spring here in Wichita. The freezing chill of the 20+ mph winds are swapped out for sunshine and slightly warmer blustering winds… hey, I’ll take improvement where I can get it. Not only is the weather a little more temperate, but the tulips and daffodils start to bloom!
Where my parents live there is a huge section of daffodils that take over every spring. It’s gorgeous, and I love driving by it. One day a very nice mother of mine was babysitting my darling girl while I took pictures of a beautiful family. That same very nice mother suggested that I go take Isla out to the sea of daffodils for a little impromptu photo shoot.
And so that is exactly what I did. And even though the noon light was a little harsh, I absolutely love these pictures. And I absolutely love that little girl.