Family photographer

Kang Family

Last time I saw the Kang Family it was just mom and dad anxiously awaiting the arrival of their little guy.  We captured their maternity session at the park, and I had such a great time getting to know these two.  I actually think Esther and Dustin may have been the first people I told I was pregnant (besides Ted!) They were asking me if I had any little ones, and I couldn't contain my excitement to share with them I was expecting.  They were so sweet about it and shared in my joy, since we were still keeping it a secret from family and close friends for a few more weeks.  

Now their little one is here! Esther had the sweetest idea of doing a photo session on Carter's 100th day.  I love that she made the sign that says, 'today we have loved you for 100 days.'  Carter was so great for his session, and can we just talk about those big brown eyes?! What a cutie!  Carter is just learning how to smile, so we had to click fast when we saw those little giggles.  We were pushing him right up to his nap time, so that last image really was his way of announcing he was done! No tears, just some big yawns! 

Thank you so much for welcoming me into your home, Kang Family, and trusting me with capturing these exciting life changes with you.  I hope you enjoy the next 100 days of loving your little guy even more than the first 100! 

Henry turns 1

A while ago I wrote a blog post about why I chose to be a lifetime photographer and why I think finding a lifetime photographer is important for your family.  If you missed it you can check it out here.  This family right here is a perfect reason why I love getting the chance to be a family's lifetime photographer.

I met Sarah and Ben when they were expecting baby Henry.  I photographed their maternity session and then a few weeks later I was able to photograph Henry as a newborn.  We captured his 6 month photographs later that year and now he is one!  It has been such a pleasure watching him grow over the past year and getting the chance to catch up with his mom and dad along the way.  I love that this family knows who they are looking for when they show up for a shoot, what to expect from the session, we can joke about past shoots, catch up on Ben's job, and they even ask about my past adventures.  It makes the whole process so much more enjoyable and comfortable for everyone.

So enough about lifetime photography (even though I think it's the best!) and back to this sweet family! Sarah and Ben were prepping for their little guy's first birthday later that week, so we captured a few photographs of them together to celebrate.  Henry was so enamored with his new surroundings that he tried to hold out on us with those smiles.  He just careful took in everything at the park- from a group of high school kids that offered to blow bubbles for him to all of the dogs out for their evening walk.  Thank goodness, Mom and Dad knew how to pull those big laughs out of him!

Henry's favorite part of the shoot had to be his cake!  That cake was almost too gorgeous to let him smash, but once he saw it there was no holding him back!  For someone who had never tasted cake, he certainly knew that he liked this new sweet treat! Happy first birthday, Henry!

Cole Family

Sometimes when I take a look at my calendar for the month or week, I am excited for a shoot simply because I get to hang out with a family.  Yes, I will get to photograph which I always love, but I also get to know a family better that I may not spend much time with.  Photography gives me such an amazing opportunity to get to know families on a more intimate level than I would ever get the chance to do normally.  

We attend church with the Cole family and we exchange pleasant hellos and how are yous on Sunday mornings and at other church events. but getting to explore the park with their family and capture their giggles together makes our relationship so much more meaningful. I had a chance to really get to know their little ones and learn what brings out their biggest smiles.  For their oldest son I learned that thing is Star Wars and their little guy certainly adores bubbles.  

I just love how these pictures capture their family, and it is all because of how comfortable they were during their shoot.  They let themselves giggle, laugh, and cuddle.  Each person truly has a genuine affection for their other family members and it shows so clearly in these photographs.  Thank you so much for letting me capture this crazy and fun season of life with you, Cole Family!

Emma turns 2

Happy 2nd birthday to you, Miss Emma!  I met Emma and her family last fall for their first family shoot and was so excited when they contacted me to photograph Emma for her second birthday.  They are one of those families that I could spend an entire afternoon with, and my time with them feels a whole lot more like fun than work.  Not to mention, their family is quite adorable.  Little Emma with her big smile and dark curly hair, such a doll!  So naturally I jumped at the chance to photograph them again!

Emma was so great for her shoot and sang along to just about every nursery rhyme I know, which I realized isn't many, so I will be trying to up my repertoire. This shoot is such a great example of doing a lot with what you have.  The heavens opened up right before Emma's shoot and because of the weather we did the majority of her shoot inside.  Really all we did was move a chair and table, remove some photographs from a wall and with Mom's awesome props we had a perfect little studio. I love when clients keep things simple, and the finished product is gorgeous!

Also, can we talk about how hilarious two year olds are?!  Emma is really talking now, and I couldn't help but laugh as she let us know exactly what she wanted in the sweetest little sentences.  I imagine life at the Sirhan house is never dull!  Not to mention, Emma is going to be a big sister this summer, so the fun continues! Already looking forward to meeting your little sister, Emma, but until then enjoy just being 2! 

Baby Sophia

I have to be completely honest with you here.  Sophia may have been one of my easiest babies to photograph.  She was totally out when I got there and pretty much stayed in a deep sleep the entire shoot.  I also have to be honest, I had some awesome assistants for this shoot- Mom, Dad, Grandma and an auntie- they helped streamline everything and doted on little Sophia.  They moved props, changed Sophia and came up with some of their own fun poses.  So, what I want you to know is that I can't take all the credit for how amazing Sophia looks, because between her awesome nap skills and her kind family- it basically took a village for these photos, and I am so grateful for that. 

This little lady arrived early, so when her mom e-mailed me to say she was ready to schedule her shoot I was a little surprised.  It wasn't even her due date yet!  But, as babies sometimes do- Sophia made an early entrance into the world and thankfully she is doing great.  Mom and Dad seemed to have everything under control, and I couldn't help but watch as they lovingly passed Sophia between the two of them.  I know I have said it before, but one of my favorite interactions to watch is between a new mom and dad.  They pass their little one back and forth so gingerly, basically radiating love between the three of them.  I mean if you ever need a good dose of positiveity in your life, just watch a brand new mom and dad pass their little one between the two of them.  It is the sweetest.  

Sophia is undoubtedly already so loved.  Remember that village I was talking about?  I think they all would do just about anything for Sophia.  She is going to be so lucky growing up with that kind of love and support around her.  I am continuously grateful that I get to share in these moments with families and feel that indescribable love in their homes.  Enjoy loving on your little lady, Giannosa family! 

Baby Shea

Photographing the Barlage family is always such a treat for me.  Jess and I were good friends in high school and played volleyball and softball together.  After graduating and attending different colleges we didn't see each other much, so it has been so wonderful seeing her and her family regularly to capture this season of life with them.  

Their newest addition, Shea, totally rocked her newborn session.  And by rocked her newborn session I mean she slept the whole time and let her older brother crawl all over her.  What a champ!  Her big brother was so excited to introduce me to Shea and he wanted to be near her at all times.  Too sweet!  

Being a part of these special moments with families is something I will never take for granted. It is so encouraging for me to see the way these families adjust and welcome their newest additions with such selflessness and love.  How did I get so lucky? I will always feel so thankful to be capturing these irreplaceable memories with families.

Baby Elias

This newborn shoot was so good for my heart.  I walked into Heather and Joe's home and it was a photographers dream- beautifully decorated to reflect their family's unique style. clutter free, natural light pouring in, and a bedroom with a big bed with white linens.  All of the good things.  Not to mention, it smelled heavenly- so basically I was about to move in.  We chatted for awhile and then quickly got started on the shoot since little Elias was sleepy and clearly very ready for his time in the spotlight. This guy was an angel, and didn't make a peep until the very last set of shots, where he politely let us know he was done modeling for the morning. 

Heather and Joe doted on their little guy.  They passed him between mom and dad, giving him gentle kisses with each hand off.  They seemed to have settled into their role as mom and dad seamlessly in the week since they brought Elias home.  When I asked them to just look at their little guy, they would really look at him- just get lost in his little features and whisper to each other how in love they were with the newest addition to their family.  

During my time with Heather and Joe we started chatting about all of the things that a baby brings into your home- the toys, clothing and blankets.  I asked Heather how she kept things minimal, and she shared with me the sweetest reminder I have heard in awhile.  She said, "all he needs is to know the love of Jesus displayed through us."  Wow, powerful, huh?  In a world where we think about the registries and showers, headbands and blankets- it was such an amazing reminder.  I am not a momma yet, but one day I do hope to be one, and I hope I continue to repeat Heather's words to myself.  Because what more can we give little ones than to truely display to them the love of Jesus. 

Baby Emma

Currently we have a whole bunch of friends expecting little ones and growing their families, and it is pretty much the best.  It has been such an honor to walk through these seasons of life with those closest to me.  Being a photographer I get to spend even more intimate time with friends in these seasons- spending the whole day with them on their wedding as their photographer, capturing their family a few days after their little one is born and joining them in their homes for personalized lifestyle shoots.  It really is such an honor and these are memories I will always cherish.  

Chris and Lindsey welcomed their second child early this year, making that 2 under 2 for their family!  We captured their sweet family during a lifestyle newborn shoot a little over a week after Emma was born.  Big brother Ethan was cautiously curious during the shoot.  He wasn't sure how he felt about all of the attention being on Emma, but he was willing to give her love and spend some time quietly cuddling with her while Mickey Mouse played in the background.  If you follow along on Instagram you may have seen Ethan in my stories.  He decided he wanted to sit on my lap while I photographed Emma, and he was sure to approve each photograph on my screen before we moved to the next pose.  It was so sweet and also totally hilarious.  Thank you for letting me be a part of these milestones with you, Tapping family!  

Baby Luke

Oh you guys, can we please take a minute to talk about how cute big siblings are with their newborn baby brother or sister.  Yes, I will be totally honest that when parents e-mail me saying they would like to get some photographs done with their 1 week old and 2 year old a slight wave of panic runs through my body.  Attempting to get a 2 year old to sit still can be exhausting in itself, but add a newborn baby to their lap and who knows what will happen!  But when it goes right, it is so good! Thankfully, I have met some pretty amazing big siblings these past few months and they are willing to love on their new baby sibling for at least a few moments.

Graham was such a rock star big brother during our time together.  I first asked him if he might want to hold baby Luke and he answered with a very direct and very polite, no thank you.  Oh no, I thought.  As we talked to Graham about how important his job is as a big brother, he slowly decided that he was up for the task.  He held his brother, laid with him on the floor and kept placing his little hand right on Luke's head.  These two are certainly going to be lucky to have each other.  

The interaction between big and little brother was so sweet, and I feel so thankful I was able to capture it.  Welcome to the world, little brother Luke! 

Wilson Family

I just adore the Wilson Family.  Nikki & Jake are another pair of Albion grads- I know they show up all over this blog!  Ted and Jake were in the same fraternity and Nikki and I were in the same sorority, and after Nikki graduated she came back to help coach the Albion volleyball team while I was playing, so our lives have been intertwined all over the place.  I have seen Nikki and Jake a few times throughout the years as their family has grown, but it was so nice to spend some quality time with them. 

Their three little ones are off the charts cute.  They each have their own little personalities, and love to interact and take care of each other.  At different points during the shoot I heard their oldest daughter say, 'mommy, Miss Caryn is a really great photographer' and 'can you please wait a minute, mom, someone is calling my cell phone.'  Oh the personality!

We had to reschedule a few times because of the weather, but it certainly worked out for us!  The morning of their shoot a thick blanket of snow covered the ground, so we snuck outside for a few wintery shots and then made our way to downtown Rochester and used those gorgeous lights as our final backdrop.  Just like any good shoot it ended with frozen yogurt on a 10 degree day, because we all know I am a big fan of treats after a successful shoot!  Thanks so much for sharing the day with me, Wilson family!