Hello friends!  It has been a very VERY long time since I’ve shared a personal post here, and it seems like the perfect chance to do so as we just had our third sweet little girl join the us!  Her name is Cienna Rae (she shares my middle name) and she was born a week later than expected, on February 20th, 2017.

The first time I held her, I was flooded with gratefulness… an overwhelming feeling I was grateful to have.  Four years earlier, the doctors were handing me my firstborn, Brielle, who has lit up our lives ever since.  But on the day she was born, I felt a sinking feeling of inadequacy, and a haunting sense that I was not meant to be a mother.  Especially of a little girl.  How could I, a girl who struggled with deeply sewn insecurities and brokenness, do right but such a precious little life?  And one day make her proud to call me her mother?  It didn’t hit me until she was in my arms and they called her mine.  And it hit me like a wall!

Looking back, I can see what a lie that fear was.  Not that I’m unbroken, surely I am.  Not that I am a perfect mom, surely I am far from it!  BUT what was missing from the picture at that time was the Truth, that I would not be reliant on strength of my own in raising daughters.  I have fallen head over heels with a role I never thought I wanted, and I give all credit to Jesus.  It is my calling above all other things, and one of the greatest gifts I’ve been entrusted with.

My journey as a photographer has forever been changed by the love I’ve found in being a mother, in experiencing the most tender and fierce love of my life.  I have an insatiable need to capture every detail of them, my beloved girls, because it all goes so fast… and while we celebrate the here and now, and look into the future with excitement and hope, there is something I treasure so much about reliving our yesterdays.  I look at these photos and can hear the sounds of their voices, Mila’s belly laugh that escapes her when Brielle does almost anything, and our new baby’s little hiccups and breaths.  And I can still feel the dust under my feet as we walked on our newly laid floors in our halfway renovated home.  It wasn’t a perfect day, but it was one of my favorites.  And to relive this precious and fleeting time as many times as I want, every time I look at our pictures… this is my why.  To have the chance to give memories to others who feel the way I do, who wish they could freeze time but instead choose to smile at the beauty as it passes with tears just about to spill over… it’s one of my greatest joys!

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The Clements Family

The beauty of this family, who I hold so dear to my heart, leaves me speechless.  Dani and Blake came into our lives just as they found out about their pregnancy.  Though elated, they had suffered through many miscarriages and faced fears that only the Lord could comfort.  We all prayed for this little girl daily, and in December, they welcomed their precious daughter, Vada!  So as Dani and Blake held her tenderly in their arms, taking in every sweet detail of her, surrounded by God’s warm light, I fell more in love with what I do.  I am so grateful to have taken their first family portraits!! 

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The Jardines | Waiting for Avenley

jar-1These photos were taken almost a year ago when my best girlfriend in the whole world was just about to have her little girl, Avenley Scout.  It’s amazing to look back at the anticipation they (and we) were feeling to meet her and know what it would feel like to adore her sweet face… nothing could prepare us for the joy that she is!  My heart palpitated to the point of pain-love as I curated this post… Kristin, you just mean so much to me.  How could anyone make pregnancy look more beautiful and serene?  Congratulations to the Jardines!  And Sawyer aka best big brother… I can’t wait ’til you’re my son-in-law one day ;)

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