"S" Family 1st Birthday Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

Fun fact.  This family use to be our neighbors!  =)  I saw this little guy and his parents practically every day, whether it was walking into the house or just chatting on our back porches to pass time while our dinners cooked on the grill.   Either way, I felt like I kind of got to see him get older each day until the day we moved.  I have to admit I was sad with a few things about moving and this was one of them - leaving familiar faces that I enjoyed getting to chat with on a daily basis, plus seeing this little guy.  

When we moved Colin was just crawling around, so when I got the call about planning his first birthday session, I was shocked.  How could he be turning ONE already?  I felt like I just did their newborn session (click here to see).  

Dear Colin,   Keep being your sweet curious self and don't forget to keep your parents on their toes for me, ok?  =)   Happy 1st Birthday!

Miss all of you.  

blog 1.png
blog 9.jpg
blog 11.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baby "A" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {West Chester, PA}

I first got a call about sweet baby Alijah when he was first born and in the NICU getting stronger.  I remember his parents telling me that they didn't want to miss an opportunity to have pictures done but they weren't sure when or how it would work since he was born 6 weeks early.  After weeks in the hospital, they finally got to bring this sweet baby boy home and we began to plan right away.

During the time of their session,  Alijah was a month and a half old, but as you will see we still had the most perfect day shooting.  There was one part of the session that stuck out the most to me though and that was when Alijah was getting a little fussy and his dad said "can I lay down with him for a minute?  It calms him and we do it every afternoon together."  Of course, I was all "ummm...YES, I would love for you to do that because that is what these sessions are all about".  The moment was so peaceful.  So special.  And so quite.  They just laid there together, like they do every day and one day when his son is older he can show him just how much he was loved and how they spent their early days together.  <3

"When I look at you, I can feel it.  I look at you, and I'm home." - Finding Nemo

blog 2.jpg
blog 9.jpg

 

 

 

 

Baby "C" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Fort Washington, PA}

Meet baby boy, Cameron.   A super chill little boy which made perfect for our simple, sweet and relaxed session in their Fort Washington home.  But let me tell you, Cameron wasn't the only star of the show....enter Bailey.  The couple's boxer, who wanted to make sure he was also the star.  

I have to say, Bailey and Cameron sure make a cute duo.   Don't you think?  I also think Bailey might have put on 5 lbs of dog treats I gave him to get the posed family photo, but it's all good.  Better him than me.  =)

Update since my session with them:  Just a few weeks ago, I got a heart breaking email about their sweet dog, Bailey.  Bailey who was undergoing treatments when I met them sadly got sicker this late Fall and they had to say their goodbyes.  It broke my heart to hear and yet I was happy I was able to give them some keepsake images of Cameron and Bailey meeting.  THIS is why I love shooting in clients' homes for newborn or any lifestyle session because you get to incorporate your pets, aka "the other kids".   I always get asked "soooo, I have a dog.  Do you think we could maybe get a shot with them during the session?"  And the answer is YES, YES, YES!  

RIP Bailey.  You were a little sweet heart.  <3

 

 

 

"B" Family In-home Lifestyle Session - {Fort Washington, PA}

There is no secret that I love a good lifestyle session and I'm not just talking about newborns, but with sitters, crawlers and toddlers, and even older kids!  There is something so amazing and so real about shooting in a home of a client.  I did an entire post on lifestyle session and why I love them so much (click here to read).  So when I got a call about this little doll turning ONE and her parents wanting to capture her at this age, I couldn't resist.  But when I found out they didn't want your typical fashion cake smash, I fell in love with their idea and basically jumped all over this because how fun, right?  

It did not disappoint and we had a ball....sang a lot of songs, gave lots of kisses, took many airplane rides, calling her boyfriends (check out the phone picture), and even a little outdoor time.  The bonus in this session for mom - they never had to leave their house.  WIN. 

blog 10.jpg
blog 2.jpg
blog 9.jpg
blog 3.jpg
blog 6.jpg
blog 5.jpg
blog 12.jpg
blog 13.jpg

 

 

 

Baby "D" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

This family.  I love everything about them and I might just be a stage five clinger when it comes to them.  Their warm hearts and positive energy they give off, I just love being around them.  You can read more about my love for them on their maternity session blog by clicking here.   

When it came time for their newborn session, I wanted it to be perfect.  Not because I was forcing them to practically be my friends, but because this sweet baby boy, Declan that you are about to see, means more to his parents than he will ever realize.  After a rough few years they were blessed with this perfect rainbow baby.  And let me tell you - he was perfect.  

Oh and the bonus to their session -their kids had red hair.  Just like me.   =)  

blog 1.jpg
blog 7.jpg
blog 2.jpg
blog 3.png
blog 11.jpg
blog 4.png
blog 15.jpg

"M" Family 1st Birthday Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

Oh Emilia.  This girl's mom probably hears this all the time, but her daughter has the most kissable cheeks.  When you see the photos below you will agree.   I was so excited to see this family and especially this little girl again after I did an in-home lifestyle session in Philadelphia a few months before this session (that session can be seen here) just to see how much she has grown.   And just like I suspected, she looked older but that happy, easy going personality of hers was still there.  And if you're wondering...yes she loved to eat her cake but she also may or may not have wanted to eat a flower or two from her arrangement. =)   How can you not love that?   

blog 5.jpg
blog 8.jpg

Maternity Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

You ever meet someone for the first time and you feel like you have known them forever?  Well, that is how I felt when I first talked to this mom-to-be.  Within 2 minutes of our initial phone call, I felt like I was talking to an old friend.  I'm not exactly sure what it was, but I felt this connection with her and her family before even meeting her.  And the bonus - her daughter sounded like my daughter's twin.   So the session couldn't have come soon enough.   

Then came the day of the shoot.   I pulled in and met them for the very first time.  It was like meeting up with old friends.  And you know what her daughter said to me within a minute of meeting?    "When my mom and dad told me I was going to be a big sister I was SO SO excited."  And THAT my friends is how I knew this session was going to rock.  Which it did.  

A beautiful night with a beautiful family.   

 

 

Baby "J" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

James, James, James.  You didn't really want to sleep unless you were all bundled up, but that is ok when you are as cute as you are - with those baby cheeks and hair of yours, you could win over anyone.   You definitely won me over with your big sleepy yawns that I obsessed over and won best yawn (see below).  But seriously, how cute is he?  I want to kiss those cheeks of his.  

You are going to be a heartbreaker, baby James.  Miss your sweet face.  xoxo

 

Baby "V" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {West Chester, PA}

Finally blogging a session that was taken in May in West Chester, PA, with the one and only sweet baby Vivian.  She was so calm and sleepy for her session with the cutest hints of little smiles.   And her mom....an amazing woman.   I can already tell that these two are going to be best friends when she grows up.   I remember talking to her mom during her maternity session about becoming a mom and the anxious waiting game of wondering what she will be like.  And I now that the waiting is over, I have to say she is so perfect.   <3     

4.jpg
6.jpg
9.jpg

 

 

Is a lifestyle session for me?

Let me first start off with telling you to go grab yourself a drink and snack because I might ramble a tad in this post but I PROMISE I will do my best to stay on track and keep this to the point.  

Lifestyle sessions have become near and dear to my heart.   Before I get into what a lifestyle session is and whether it is for you, let me give you some background.   I know you're thinking, "oh god, here she goes into a ramble," but this is important to understand why I do what I do now.  If you have followed me from the very start of my career you probably remember me offering studio sessions and holiday minis all throughout the year, but about almost a year and half ago I gave it all up and yes, I still get emails and calls about studio sessions.  

I love studio sessions and I follow other photographers all around the world that shoot those and adore them and even as far as doing a few for my kids but they aren't what drives me.   I wasn't feeling "connected" to my studio and as a mother myself what spoke to me was taking photographs of my littles in their environment and being drawn to their everyday life.  You know those every day moments that you never want to forget?  Messy bed hair or them playing with their favorite toy or just sitting in their room reading books.   But mostly when I look back at old photos, I want to not only see my children growing up, but to see myself and my husband there with them in our everyday life.  Lifestyle has given me the spark of passion I thought I was losing during those later months of studio sessions.   (And let me make it clear, I still shoot outdoors and LOVE being outside in those warm months with my clients).   

So hello Lifestyle.

 I adore you.  

You make my heart happy.  

So what is lifestyle?  Well to me a lifestyle session can be anything you want it to be.  They almost always happen in the comfort of your own home.  So yep....you don't even have to leave your house.  Whether it's a newborn session or a family session, I always ask the mom during our pre-session consult "what is the most important thing to get out of your sessions?"  And sometimes the answer is the same client to client, and sometimes it is completely different.  It can be what YOU want it to be.  If your daughter insists on playing dress up every single day and you want to capture that - let's do it!  Or you're about to become a family of 4 and life is about to get that much more crazy - let's get the real you with bouncing toddler and new baby and then all of you loving together as that family of four in your home!  Or is it you just want to capture life at home in whatever age it may be so you never forget these moments?  ( 6-8 months is the perfect age for those)

If you made it this far....thank you and I promise I'm just about done.   =) 

Is this for me?    I know, I know what you're thinking,  "My home doesn't look like Pinterest."   OR "My kids aren't babies anymore."  OR "I don't know what we would do during our session."   I get it.   But do you also take iPhone photos of your kids in your house DAILY and sometimes even of the stuff they do over and over and OVER again?  It's because those moments, whether it be the milestone of crawling or just watching your little girls have a dance party, you take them over and over again because they are timeless.  They are YOUR family and YOUR memories to hold onto.   So lifestyle is for you if you answered yes to that question.  They are for you if you think "gosh, I wish someone could take our photo together as a family all snuggled up."  Well...now you do.  

As I said before, I'm a mom.  I know that your little(s) are your life and that each day they get bigger and bigger.   Give yourself a moment to slow down and appreciate these days and capture them.    And let me say this...your children will appreciate these one day.  TRUST ME.   Not only will they love seeing themselves in their home but you in them as well.   Because years and years from now when you or your children sit down to look through them, it's the simple little moments that will bring tears of joy.       

To end, of course like any sessions, there is planning.  Whether its newborn or family lifestyle because each session is specifically designed for you and your family.  <3    Being a photographer means everything to me so thank you for taking the time to read all about my passion.    

And of course no post is complete without some pictures to enjoy so here are a few favorites from lifestyle sessions over the past year.  

"P" Family In-Home Mommy and Me Session - {Media, PA}

I swear I was just taking his newborn photos the other day then I blinked and this little guy is 7 months old already!  I'm sure his mom thinks it went even faster.    Am I right mom?   

So we had to reschedule this session for what felt like a lifetime due to weather (hello snow in March) but we finally nailed it down and boy oh boy did we have fun.   To Mr. Henry it was just another day of play and cuddles but for his mom it was all about creating images to stop time.   This is the PERFECT age to capture those amazing in-home lifestyle sessions.  Soon she will blink and she will be holding onto these images saying "oh my gosh, look how little he was!"     

"R" Family Outdoor Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

Oh this sweet doll face.  She was turning the big ONE so we did a mixture of cake smash and family time.  It was so perfect.  Not to mention they got one of those random warm days.  YAY.   

I think the best thing was getting to watch her try a cupcake for the first time.  I just love watching it because there is something so sweet and innocent about it.   Plus you never know what they will do.  Will they go to town on it or will they just stare at it and not want to get dirty?  HA!  I would definitely say she was a perfect lady about it....very clean.  =)

And oh the sun.  How I long for the summer months to come!  Want a little warm sun in your life...check out below.  

 

 

 

"M" Family In-Home Lifestyle Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

Nothing is better than capturing some Philly Saturday morning snuggles with a family + their furry loved ones.  Yes, I'm a sucker for animals.    And this dog, ugh, I want to steal him!  So fluffy, so sweet and so well behaved.   But no one loves this little pup more than this little girl so I guess I can't take him.  She just loves on him like no other and he just lays there and welcomes it.  =)  Kids and dogs are the cutest together.  Am I right?

But let me just take a minute to also tell you about the last image I'm posting in this blog.  It was the end of the session and I was just chatting with the mom and her little girl was ready for nap, so like ANY mom, she scooped her up while finishing our convo and her little girl just rested on her mom.  So, of course, I had to take a moment to capture a moment that shows just how moms are everything.  

Going to end this post with a quote that I LOVE for all the moms out there.  "There will be so many times you feel like you've failed, but in the eyes, heart, and mind of your child, you are super mom." - Stephanie Precourt 

 

 

 

"M" Family In-Home Lifestyle Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

I feel like I don't even have to write much about this session because the photos speak for themselves, but just for the sake of it I will tell you a little bit about this Philly lifestyle session.  

If I was asked to describe the session in one word I would say "magical".  Without a doubt.  Most are probably thinking I'm talking about their insanely drop dead gorgeous nursery or their stunning master bedroom but I'm actually talking about them as a family of three.   Let me explain...sometimes parents have a hard time during their sessions because they are worried about how their kids are acting or making sure everything is going perfect and TRUST ME I do the SAME thing during my family sessions.   I get it - it's hard not to but not them.  They focused 100% on their little girl and just loved on her like any other day and doing what they do.   It sure does make for an amazing, magical session.

Now get ready to see the cutest little girl with cheeks that make other babies on the block jealous.  =) 

 

"D" Family In-Home Lifestyle Session - {Malvern, PA}

DANCE PARTYYYYYYY!?!?!?!?!  Yes please!  So with all my lifestyle sessions, during the planning process with mom, I always ask her "what do your kids do every. single. day?"  And for this particular session mom, without any hesitation, said "playing dress-up and dancing".  Sold.  I mean how could you not be?  We blasted music and just let the girls have at it.   Of course we played their requested music which was very specific to the soundtrack of the new Trolls movie.  =)  

But before we danced, the littlest one was just waking up from nap when I arrived.  So big sister showed me her Barbies and we might have goofed off a little.  Jumping on a sofa is just a little, right?   I absolutely adore lifestyle sessions.  They make me SO incredibly happy.     And as for these girls.... they will appreciate these pictures of their childhood on day.  Don't we all cherish any photographs we find of ourselves that were the every day moments?  

Now....check out their session below and then go have yourself a dance party.  =)  

Baby "R" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

These girls are going to melt your heart when you see how beautiful and sweet they both are.  Oh, and they have the most gorgeous hair.  Like, total hair goals.  It took a minute for big sister to warm up but once she saw I was taking pictures...she couldn't get enough.  I'm not kidding either because when the baby was eating she was putting on the charm and just smiling and giggling away to the camera and wanted more and more photos.   HA.  A child after my own heart.  <3

And as for baby Ryan.  Well, that cute little peanut was just everything.  Sweet, calm, beautiful and perfection.    I could blog their entire session easily BUT I can't, so below are some of my favorites.    

 

Baby "S" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

This family is so dear to my heart because they have been with me from the very beginning of my photography venture.   I mean alllll the way back when I was working two jobs and this business of mine was just a creative outlet for me. Oh and not to mention my business had a different name!  So yes, to say I love them is an understatement.  Actually all my families that have been with me for years are so dear to me and I feel like they are friends I get to catch up with when I see them.    

Now, enough of my side story and back to their brand new baby boy!  When his mom contacted me about expecting another baby boy I was SO over the moon excited for them.   This little boy is so sweet and has the most amazing hair.  Hair for days, I tell ya.   Like out of this world best spikey, soft hair.  But I wouldn't expect anything less because big brother has a head full of the best curly hair.  =)  

And one of my new favorite's is the last picture.  I like to call it "Life with two. The true life."  <3

"O" Family Outdoor Session - {Ambler, PA}

Fall weather + sunset = Deliciousness.    As I sit here freezing, wrapped in blankets trying to type, these images make me miss warm weather so much.  Even though their session wasn't a hot evening, it was still perfect because we got to enjoy that cool crisp late fall afternoon and that feeling of the sun on your face during those days is so comforting.  

Oh...and this little boy.  The happiest.  Just smiles, smiles, smiles all the time.   Like you could say "hey" and he would just light up and smile.   I found myself literally smiling on the other side of the camera as if I was in the photos.  I couldn't help it every time his face lit up, I just smiled back.  =) Like look at his face.  How could you not smile back?   It sure made for a super easy and relaxed session of just hanging out.  

Baby "C" Lifestyle Newborn Session - {Philadelphia, PA}

Are you ready to see a beautiful baby boy?   Everyone meet baby Colin.    Such a "little" (almost a 9 lb baby boy) snuggle bug.    Some babies just want to party during their session and some just like to snooze through it all and as for this boy....he half and half.  We totally welcomed it though because his eyes were GORG and he had the best eye contact!  I swear!!!   Take a look below if you don't believe me.  But he eventually had enough of my camera in his face and decided to check out and take a nap.   =)   

And the bonus to their session....their dog!  I remember talking to Colin's mom when she was pregnant and she told me that their dog didn't do so hot during their engagement session back in the day BUT of course I had to try because aren't dogs family too?  It was a huge success and I have to say the picture of the dog sleeping on the bed is one of my favorites from their session.   Dogs and babies....life can't get much better.