Connection

Tessa Turns 1 | Seattle Family Photographer

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There is so much to say about this session. So many thoughts about my best friend’s youngest turning a year old. Katie and I have been mothers together since the early days when we were hauling strollers up subway stairs and sitting in exhausted silence while the babies did NOTHING on the floor and we wondered if we’d ever be mentally alive again. And now we are older, softer, living on a different coast and marveling at how time can crawl and be a thief all at once.

When my friend told me that she wanted to book a session to capture this particular moment in time, my heart leapt. THIS. This is motherhood frozen. Kissing the fingers, squeezing the thighs and really breathing them in. Teaching them to clap and point and know what it is to be loved.

This is the relief of realizing that newborn exhaustion does not last forever, and the crushing heartache of understanding that actually, nothing does.

Here’s hoping that every mother has at least one other mother she can call and sob to. Someone she can text late at night with just the words - “I CANNOT!”

A friend who loves your children and totally agrees with you that they are monsters. Pass down the clothing, pass the french fries. Make another pass around the lake and around the sun. Together we mark the milestones and swear under our breath.

We sit in exhausted silence and watch the babies grow.

Happy Birthday, Tessa. And happy transition to you, Katie.

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Hudson's Birth Story | Seattle Birth Photographer

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As I sat across from Chamari and Colt in a Starbucks somewhere between our two homes I noted immediately the deep affection they have for one another. Smiling glances across the table and easy laughter as we talked about their blended family and their excitement for the new baby that would be joining them. Colt expressed his admiration for his wife and his absolute faith that she would be equal to the task of an unmedicated birth if that’s what she wanted. (unwavering spousal support: check). Chamari talked about being excited to give birth - eagerly anticipating this event and doing her research on the physiological birth process. She had envisioned the way she’d like her birth to go and was willing to be flexible with whatever needed to happen on the day their son would be born. (positive birth associations, informed mother, willingness to go where birth would take her: check. check. check.)

These were all excellent signs that this birth would be a beautiful experience for everyone involved.

After being sent home from Labor and Delivery once with “false labor” and hardly getting any rest, we texted back and forth about the possibility that Chamari was experiencing prodomal labor and I encouraged her to keep resting, and to feel confident that her body was doing exactly what it needed to do to bring her baby here.

It wasn’t many hours later that I received a text that they were headed back to L&D. “Hopefully there’s some progress because I don’t know how much more of this I can handle.”

When I arrived to the hospital I found a woman laboring with focus, determination, and grace. It was clear that these contractions were asking the very most of her, and she gave herself to the process completely.

I’ll let the photos take it from here.

That love and support. Unwavering. He was present with her in the most challenging parts of this process. And in the moments of rest she cracked jokes and we all laughed. Birth is a wondrous unfolding.

I could not be more proud of this beautiful family. For loving each other so fiercely, for birthing so fearlessly, and for inviting me along to witness the miracle. If you’re interested in having your birth documented - let’s have a chat in a random coffee shop. It just could be the start of something beautiful.

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Goyal Family | Seattle Family Photographer

I’ve known Ena since we were freshmen in high school.

Shout out to all the cool kids on Speech and Debate Team!

I first photographed her sweet family when their oldest was just a bump in the tummy. And now look at them - two spunky girls and a houseful of laughter. I have a weakness for those cheesy grins and a refusal to look at the camera. Little kids keep me on my toes and I wouldn’t have it any other way. My friend, your family is so beautiful. Thank you for inviting me to document this moment in time.

Canalichio Family | Seattle Maternity Photographer

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It’s such a pleasure to photograph families on the precipice of welcoming a new child. There’s joy and excitement, and frankly, naiveté on the part of the older sibling to be. An oldest child myself, my heart goes out to all the young ones about to be displaced as the center of their parents’ world.

Just kidding, friends. It’s true, adding another child does rock the family dynamics — but in all the best ways. Siblings are a gift to one another. A built in friend and confidant, a reliable sidekick for all the misadventures of childhood. No one challenges you and prompts your own growth quite like a brother or sister. I can’t wait to catch up with this delightful family again after baby is born and see what looks different, and what is still the same when three become four.

Fast Fact: Maternity sessions work best when you are around 32 weeks pregnant. If you’d like to schedule a session, send me a message and let’s chat about what you’d like to capture about the weeks of waiting for baby.

Brimhall Family | Seattle Family Photographer

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Calling all Seattle families! Bring your chubby babies, bring your blankets and meet me on the beach. Even if the sun refuses to peek out, we'll have a grand time. Those rolls, those eyes - have you ever seen a cuter baby?!

Evangeline Newborn - Seattle Newborn Photographer

Sweet Evangeline was born so fast I didn't get many images on the night of her birth - but we more than made up for it with her newborn session. I LOVE this gorgeous family - their graciousness and their honest connection with each other. This shoot sums up my approach to photographing newborns. The images are relaxed and REAL and they include all the sweet details of diaper changes and breastfeeding and family snuggles. I feel so honored when families invite me into their postpartum bubble to capture these memories. I'm excited to watch this family grow together for many years to come.

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I love to photograph mamas and their babies from behind. That's how I always remember my babies. Staring down at them from that perspective for so many hours - you wonder if you can hold every detail of their faces forever in your mind. A photo like this feel like a memory.

I love to photograph mamas and their babies from behind. That's how I always remember my babies. Staring down at them from that perspective for so many hours - you wonder if you can hold every detail of their faces forever in your mind. A photo like this feel like a memory.

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Look how much she changed in just a few days! Great Grandma came to town and I just had to grab a photo of these two holding hands.

Look how much she changed in just a few days! Great Grandma came to town and I just had to grab a photo of these two holding hands.

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The first post is the hardest...

A new website, a new blog - two months into a new year. It's a lot of change. I've been away from any real blogging for a few years now. It started to feel like too much work to live my life AND present it in some beautifully packaged form. I edited my words and my photos mercilessly until they just wouldn't come anymore.

It was also a huge burden to keep my business blogging so divorced from my personal thoughts and the events of my own life. As though these things could ever be neatly separated. Being a birth photographer, a woman, a mother, a creative - it's all intimately connected.

So now I return to blogging with a promise to myself: That it doesn't have to be perfect. That it doesn't have to match some ridiculous notion of what "professional" looks or sounds like. I'm declaring this space to be about connection over perfection.

I give myself permission to show up imperfectly.

I give myself permission to play.

I give myself permission to explore creativity for the pure joy of it.

I give myself permission to make mistakes.

I give myself permission to claim this small corner of the internet as my very own. A place to connect with my people - to talk to my people.

Are you my people? If so - Welcome! I'll be showing up here the best that I know how and I invite you to do the same if you'd like. So tell me, friend, what are you giving yourself permission to do in 2018?

*Photo by Courtney Holmes Photography