Everett's Newborn Lifestyle Session

Everett was lucky to be born into a loving family with parents Ashley and Peter, and big brother Charles. As soon as I walked into their home I got the sense that this family was welcoming, kind and creative. Their home was painted beautifully inside and I loved seeing some of their DIY projects around, like a sensory type bored for their 2 year old (great idea!)

We started in mom and dad’s room and had a little family time on their vibrantly colored bed, which fit their style well. Charles actually warmed up to me right away! That was certainly a pleasant surprise! Sometimes my big ol’ camera is intimidating to little eyes but he was all about pushing the buttons! When you scroll through the sneak peek in a minute, keep an eye out for the picture of their cat - Charles took that one!

He’s still adapting to life with a new baby. I mean, it’s a pretty big change after all! Mom and dad are doing a great job of letting him know he’s just as loved as he was before. He even got some story time while I photographed Everett on his own. And let me tell you about baby Everett! He is just such a darling little boy, mommy’s little lamb. Already sleeping long stretches at a week old, perfectly calm and cuddly. I could’ve taken his pictures all day long!

It truly was a wonderful experience spending a couple hours with this new family of four. They are gentle and loving with open hearts and minds. I thank them for letting me capture a little glimpse of their lives and I hope I do their story justice!

Meeting in the Middle | {Hoover Family Sneak Peek}

First of all, the Hoover family is pretty awesome! Jessica got in touch with me a few weeks ago to set up a session for her family since they would all be together. A rarity now that the kids are all grown up! In fact, the baby of the family graduates high school today, he’s the reason for the special occasion. They literally came from both sides of the country - California to Florida and a couple places in-between to meet in the midwest and see their brother graduate. Isn’t that awesome?! I just love that!

I’ve always been kind of envious of big families with lots of siblings and they are exactly why! All the different personalities and relationships make for some entertaining times, always a shoulder to lean on and lots of love to go around. I’d be willing to bet mom and dad would say there’s never been a dull moment raising 5 kids! And now they’ve happily welcomed 4 more people into their family with open arms.

We fought the bugs and dodged the impending thunderstorms at the BIckelhaupt Arboretum in Clinton, IA and I’d say we won! However, this was a huge reminder to stock my mom van with an array of bug spray! Thankfully, the Hoover family is full of troopers who took it on like champs and didn’t let it get in the way of capturing some wonderful memories together. I really loved pulling each couple and the graduate aside for their own little mini session. It’s fun to get to know everyone and it helps me immensely to remember names when I have a few minutes to talk to everyone! They also had some fantastic ideas of their own and I’m glad we got to incorporate them into the session! All in all, it was a great family session, but even more importantly, I hope they truly enjoy every moment all being together again this weekend!

A Day in the Life of the Tieso Family

I’ve been loving these lifestyle sessions so much over the Winter! For Melanie’s sixth birthday photos, we did a bit extra this time. We did a full day-in-the-life session capturing fun moments of her, mom Steph and dad Kris spending time doing things they love. Games, nails and makeup, cooking in the kitchen and of course jumping on the bed were all part of the fun!

Every kid is pretty excited to get the “go-ahead” to jump on the bed and Mel was no exception. She seemed like a pro though…so I’m guessing she’s done this before! She was also a big fan of showing me all the pretty things in her room. She’s had the giraffe in the corner since her newborn pictures and I’m thinking she’s about as tall as him now. *sniff sniff*

They also got comfy on what has really become the “family bed.” I know how that goes! If you’re lucky you’ll be able to keep your whole body on the very edge without falling out while kids and dogs sprawl out in the middle. Right?! I don’t think I’m alone in this!

And while game-time was super fun, it’s not always an easy task keeping kids (…and maybe mom…) from cheating a little bit. Haha! I’m pretty sure bumping into people during their turn in operation is grounds for disqualification, but we allowed it because it was hilarious! Anything for smiles and laughs!

After game-time Kris started boiling potatoes since Mel’s favorite food (at least for now) is mashed potatoes. They would finish cooking them together, but in the meantime we decided to do some fingernail painting. Melanie already had purple nails and Steph informed me that they couldn’t locate any remover at the moment. So lucky mom got to have her nails painted…for work tomorrow…with no remover in site (sorry Steph)! Actually, Mel did a pretty good job! Better than I was expecting anyway. She even knew to wipe the brush off first before painting. She also forgot to do that a few times. Hehe!

Our starving little almost six year old was anxious to finish up those potatoes so she mashed like she’s never mashed before! There were potatoes flying and happy dogs ready and willing to help clean up the mess! I knew kitchen time with dad was an important part of the day to capture because they love cooking together. In fact, Melanie’s birthday party will be baking themed. I’m thinking she’s going to be one amazing cook someday! Maybe it’s not the norm, but we ended this session with spoonfuls of mashed potatoes and it was just perfect!

Melanie’s smile says it all!