Ellery Grace's Summer in Iowa {4th Birthday Portraits}

I was so excited to take Ellery’s photos because I actually got to know her more than I usually get to know my clients! It’s a funny story actually…

Around the end of May I took my son, Bennett, to try out a Tae Kwon Do class. He had been curious about it and wanted to learn how to “kick good.” He’s 4 so I’ll excuse the grammar lol! Anyway, we showed up, a little unsure of what to do. He’s pretty skeptical of new experiences and was relieved to find another little girl who was also trying it out for the first time. I sat in the parents’ area to watch and had a nice conversation with the new girl’s parents. I learned they were here for the Summer from Texas and their 3 year old daughter’s name was Ellery. I never did get mom and dad’s names and actually kicked myself for forgetting to ask because I really enjoyed our chat.

The next class time came around and Bennett threw the fit of all fits about not wanting to go. I really have no idea why because he had so much fun! Kids, you just never know. Instead of forcing him to go we decided just to give it a couple months before trying again. No big deal!

A month passed by and I got an inquiry from Lauren for a 4th birthday session for a little girl named Ellery who was living in Iowa for the Summer. Now this may seem obvious to every reading this (because it totally should have been!) but I did not make the connection that this was the same Ellery from Tae Kwon Do! So we chatted through email and got the photo shoot all set up. You guys, I even knew they were from Texas!! I tell ya…

The following week, I was sitting at my kids Gymnastics class and in walks little Ellery and her mommy. It was in that moment that it all connected in my exhausted mom-brain! I quickly asked mom her name this time and confirmed it was Lauren! “I think I’m taking your pictures in a couple days!” I told her and we both laughed about the coincidence! She said I was the only person she’s really met in Iowa and we now crossed paths on 3 occasions. It seems it was meant to be!

Lauren started telling me about this thing called Tinkergarten in Bettendorf that she was planning to take Ellery to. It sounded like a lot of fun! After getting all the details from her I decided to sign my own kids up to go as well. We ended up carpooling a few days and I’ve gotten to know both of them while exploring the great outdoors and finding nature treasures at Tinkergarten. It’s really an awesome program and if you have kids 18 months to 8 years old, definitely look into it! www.tinkergarten.com

Anyway, now I was even more excited to take this sweet girl’s portraits. Our first date got rained out but we finally found the most beautiful Friday evening to get them taken. Dad even got to come along this time and we all explored Eagle Point Park. It’s always fun to have people from out of the area see the beauty of that park. When you’re from Clinton it’s just an everyday thing and often gets taken for granted. But we really are very fortunate to have such a beautiful area in our own backyards!

Anyway let’s get to the pictures! Happy 4th Birthday Ellery Grace; I hope we get to join you on lots more adventures this Summer!

Just Grandma and Me {Donna + Lillian}

I got to meet sweet Lillian last Fall at a photo shoot with her mom and dad. Lucky for me, her Grandma Donna contacted me shortly after to set up her own session with me!

Donna recently moved to Iowa from the western side of the country to be closer to her sweet granddaughter and of course her son and daughter in law too. She was able to bring work with her and set up an office in her beautiful new home. It was important for Donna to capture this stage of life and I took my job as her storyteller seriously. We photographed some of the things that make her who she is. Her craftiness, kitchen skills, love of reading, Christianity and the love she has for Lillian.

I loved walking into her world for an hour on a sunny Winter afternoon to get to know her and her family a bit better and photograph what I hope will be meaningful images they always hold dear. I’m already looking forward to working with them again someday!

Highlights from miss Maggie's Photo Shoot

Maggie is such a sweet, beautiful and kind little girl with a bright future! Her mom won a gift certificate from a silent auction benefit and was excited to use it for some new pictures of her daughter. Between difficult weather, busy work functions, school schedules and road closures… we found a fifteen minute time slot that would work for everyone and made it happen! The sunshine was gorgeous and gave us beautiful light for Maggie’s photo shoot. She did awesome! Here are a few of my favorites: