Vulnerable {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

Someone asked me recently when I stopped being afraid, in reference to the vulnerable job of raising tiny babies.

That question kind of echoed around in my mind for the last weeks because I felt like I should have had a better answer than “never,” but today brought a fresh reminder that the answer truly is never. The fear just changes and if you are the faithful type, you cling to a Father who’s plans are for good because it is all you can do, short of hiding from life.

 

If we hide from life, isn’t that worse?

 

My oldest daughter left for school this morning and came back almost immediately with tears in her eyes. Someone was threatening to shoot kids at her school. Word spread like wildfire and social media had become a modern day version of “telephone.” We didn’t know what the original message was or how it may have been misconstrued, we just knew that the name of her school was trending on Instagram, along with words like “shooter” and “bullies” and “kill.” We sat down together and we talked, and then we prayed and then we decided to live our life. She had classes to attend, I had an example to set: we both needed to live life today, no matter how scary it felt.

The worry, new moms, never leaves us. As a mother, you will be afraid for the rest of your life, but the day will come, with enough practice, that you recognize that living life is worth the risk. If you had allowed the fear of motherhood keep you from having children, you would never know that love so deep it hurts. With greatness comes risk. Your heart will forever be outside of your body from the moment your baby’s lungs fill with their first breaths outside of your belly. You will forever be the most vulnerable you’ve ever imagined because you realize it is all out of your control and yes, that sucks, my friend. Every day, though, is preparing us for more and harder challenges. From that first night your baby sleeps in their crib, to the first day on the bus, to the first night they spend away from home… you will never stop being afraid, but fear will be overshadowed by pride as you watch your children blossom into who they are meant to be and fear will be a small price to pay for the reward of watching them grow. Love them well today. We cannot control tomorrow but I promise that the reward is worth the risk. We are raising the future, and when I look at my kid’s and their peers, I feel confident that we are raising them well. 

Baby T {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

I absolutely LOVE this family. Their maternity session was one of my favorites and I knew their little girl’s newborn session would be a favorite, too. They just have so much love for each other, and now for sweet baby T.

I am also a big fan of tradition and when they wanted to incorporate their Indian heritage into both sessions, I probably squealed because the colors and rich textures are a photographer’s dream come true!

Plus, daddy is a US Marine and who doesn’t love a uniform?

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Applesauce {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

I love to cook with my kids. My fondest memories of being young were spent in the kitchen with my grandmother and I try to pass those memories along to my kids. From the toddler to the teenagers, I try to take turns with each child and it’s my hope that one day they will do the same with their kids. It’s such a nice way to force me to find quiet, calm time in the midst of a life of chaos.

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One of our favorites is applesauce and I especially love it since discovering these pouches from sqooshi. (you can get yours here) Why is it that kids like to eat boring stuff out of squeeze pouches? I have no answers but these are the cutest, reusable pouches and are much more economical and environmentally friendly than the single use variety. Plus you are in charge of the ingredients, so it is a win!

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When we make this recipe we like to keep about 1/3 chunky and warm and eat it immediately on top of vanilla ice cream. The rest gets pureed and I just use a funnel and an extra large measuring cup to pour into the pouches. I also leave some in a bowl because teenagers are all like “I am not eating my food from a bear pouch, thankyouverymuch.”  Whateverrrrrrrrrrr. Be that way.

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Homemade applesauce:

6 lbs of apples, we usually use a mix of two-three varieties, peeled and chopped into eighths

1/2 lemon, squeezed

1 c apple juice or water

1/2 c firmly backed brown sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

pinch of ginger

1 adorable assistant

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Add all the apples, the juice and the lemon juice to a large pot and bring to a boil. Simmer for 15 minutes and add the sugar and cinnamon. Continue to simmer until soft. I use a potato masher on 1/3 and pour over ice cream. The rest we put into the food processor, carefully processing until smooth.

A sweet surprise {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

It is such a treat (pun intended) to have a friend who owns a bakery… especially when they are super kind and generous and happened to be thinking of you and decided to love on your family with adoption themed sweets!

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It was such a yummy surprise but also just so thoughtful. Adoption is a long and challenging road but sweet reminders like this remind us of what we are working towards!

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Check Ashley out here at her facebook page! She can ship her beautiful and delicious cookies anywhere, if you know a family that could use a little love! Henry gives them his seal of approval!

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Little things {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

I am obsessed with little things. Often times my kids will be doing something totally mundane and normal and I will become super emotional at how miraculous it is. I will try to commit the moment to memory, or even better, will trek down a flight of stairs and grab my camera to document it. I firmly believe that one day it will be the little things that seem the biggest.

Like tiny little toes that need help getting on socks. And tiny, grubby fingers messy with graham crackers, clutching the cars they have to carry wherever we go. Some days those hands could be anything… a surgeon, mechanic, author, mathematician, loving father…and those feet may carry him away from me…but today, they are little and all mine.

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baby H {Fredericksburg VA newborn photographer}

It’s always such a special thing to capture a friend’s growing family. You almost feel badly because you know they are stuck choosing you as their photographer… hahahaha… but I do so love this little lady’s beautiful session.

It is so special, as well, that our babies are just 22 days apart and we get to watch them grow together! Thankfully, baby H was FAR more cooperative than my Eli :)

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