In all my years of doing photography I do not think I have ever enjoyed photographing a family more than the Dunhams. The first time I did their pictures it was through the school our kids attend and it was way back around 2012 or something. I’m not exactly sure of the year but I know I was taller than the boys and that is definitely not the case these days!
Not only do we laugh a lot at their sessions but I also love how the grandparents join us. This year only one grandmother could be there and they requested this special photo. It turned out pretty cute I think.
She’s such a tiny little thing, isn’t she?
Another photo that we did is one that we repeat every time we do pictures. It started the very first year and just became a tradition.
My goodness, how those cute little faces have grown into handsome young men! But the same sense of humor has carried through the years for sure.
They really are a precious family and I am already looking forward to the next time we do pictures.
This is the sweetest little guy and it’s really no surprise because his parents are two of the nicest people you will ever meet. I first got to know Charity when she started working at the school my kids attend and I met her love when I did their engagement pictures a few years ago.
I was so excited when she got in touch with me about doing family pictures along with some first birthday pictures! The majority of the time when people want pictures it just seems like a given that we will do them in Pensacola. Don’t get me wrong, there are some great places in the big city obviously, but I had recently done a session at a park in Milton and knew it would be a great spot for their family.
(Don’t you just love her hair?!) I’m so glad they were willing to drive out to Milton because I was so right about the park being the perfect place with all the gorgeous green and summer beauty. Her baby boy has been a walker since he was about nine months old I think so he had no problem tramping around either. And just check out that little curl in his hair! I think he is going to have the dark hair of his dad but with some of mom’s curls.
As a bonus she wanted to forgo a traditional cake smash in favor of a watermelon session and it just so happened that we had planted late and not gotten any fruit but my watermelon vines were prolific and would make an excellent backdrop for that part of the session.
She mentioned that he really loved watermelon and she was not kidding! He was eating it as fast as he could and loving every minute of it! And he was willing to share and even offered me a bite.
Happy birthday, little man. May you always love the things of life that are true, good and beautiful as much as you love watermelon!
He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Man, I love their story! It’s one of heartache and faithfulness in the midst of grief and the joy that comes in the morning.
About seven years or so ago our church experienced a baby boom of sorts. We had two mamas due in September and then one due each month thereafter until February or March if I remember correctly. Except for January. We all just sort of laughed and said that must be JJ and Katy’s month to adopt. And wouldn’t you know it January rolled around and sure enough they got a call that a little fella had been born that morning and the birth mom had signed over her rights, did they want him? Within hours of his birth they were able to be there holding him and loving on him. At his baptism a few months later they were also able to announce that they were expecting in November.
Those Irish twins were quickly followed by another brother and then their first sister.
I say their first sister because baby number five is due next month. That’s right…five kiddos in seven years. What a full noisy home and full happy hearts! Who would have thought of the life God had planned for them?
“For to have been born in God’s thought and then made by God is the dearest, grandest, and most precious thing in all thinking.” ~ CS Lewis
The long awaited Stout family portrait! Okay, it’s been about two weeks but still I think it’s safe to say that they have been eagerly waiting to see the photos from their session. We took them at a park in Milton and I always forget just how lovely a location it is for portraits. The ground can be a bit mushy because it’s by the river but they were troopers.
I love doing multi generational pictures. And I love how the personalities of the kids are so front and center. The only thing that would make this better were if Patricia and her husband and kiddos could be in it. (Fingers crossed that maybe one day that will happen!)
We tried to recreated one image with Al and Mary from our first family session back in 2012. I don’t think we did too badly. Al’s hair definitely looks a bit lighter though.
Whenever I do multigenerational pictures I like to get various group shots like all the men folk, all the women, folk, etc. We did these as well as a really great father, son, grandson portrait that I love.
We also did some sweet pictures of each smaller family units. I was really happy to get these pictures of the Johnson family because they will be moving to Virginia in a couple of weeks. Man, are we going to miss them! Sean has been a teacher at the school our girls go to and having wonderfully delicious dinner parties talking about literature with him and Heather has been a highlight in our lives the last few years. I know that Virginia is gaining a gem with their move.
Oliver wasn’t sure how he felt about all this photo business and it was such fun catching his expressions throughout the session. Alice has not been home since we did his pictures at around three or four months old so it was great getting to know him now that he is a little older and meeting his little brother Teddy. And who doesn’t love Josh and Alice? Two of the funniest people I know and such fun to hang out with.
It was just such a perfect morning especially considering that not an hour after we wrapped it up the bottom fell out of the sky. I loved spending time with these dear friends both behind the camera and just in sweet fellowship while everyone was in town.
“In friendship…we think we have chosen our peers. In reality a few years’ difference in the dates of our births, a few more miles between certain houses, the choice of one university instead of another…the accident of a topic being raised or not raised at a first meeting–any of these chances might have kept us apart. But, for a Christian, there are, strictly speaking no chances. A secret master of ceremonies has been at work. Christ, who said to the disciples, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,” can truly say to every group of Christian friends, “Ye have not chosen one another but I have chosen you for one another.” The friendship is not a reward for our discriminating and good taste in finding one another out. It is the instrument by which God reveals to each of us the beauties of others.” ― C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves
After last week’s throwback post we were all happily reminded of how much life our families have lived together. What a blessing to have family friends for over a decade! Graduations, weddings, babies, all manner of celebrations sprinkled among the ordinary life stuff.
And oh, how much fun was it to spend the morning capturing various family groups for them last week! So much fun to see the little people with their various personalities who have added to their number. But some of my most favorite images came from Mr and Mrs. Stout…married fifty-six years come August and never have I seen a young man look as tenderly upon his wife as Mr. Stout does his bride.
He is a very gentle and thoughtful gentleman and while all of the children were running around and appropriate parental units were in hot pursuit he quietly moseyed over to the river and stood for a few minutes.
Most men don’t really like being in front of the camera and it shows but he didn’t seem to mind cozying up to Mrs. Stout and letting me snap away.
Very little direction was needed and there was just such a sweetness between the two.
What a precious example to their family of faithfulness.
Later in the week I will be sharing more pictures from our session but I couldn’t think of a more fitting bunch to share first. Someone once said that “Newlyweds become ‘oldyweds,’ and ‘oldyweds’ are the reasons that families work.”
I think there might be something to that, don’t you?
Man, I thought last week’s throwback post was a sweet stroll down memory lane! But on Tuesday I did family pictures from some dear friends and decided I would look back at pictures I have done with them over the years and oh my goodness, it was so fun to remember all these times!
The first time I photographed anyone in the Stout family was also the first time I was surprising someone with pictures. I approached the kids about doing pictures as a gift for my friend Mary on Mother’s Day. That was way back in 2008 and they were just the cutest bunch of kiddos! Heather and Patricia, the twins, are the oldest, next is Alice, and Jerry is the baby of the family.
And this is where I needed to double check my dates while I was writing this blogpost. Because I was looking at those pictures and the next thing I photographed was Heather’s bridals. Three years makes a huge difference in the life of someone. HUGE.
I mean seriously. Those first pictures would have been taken about the time the twins turned seventeen. Three years later I would have photographed Heather’s bridal portraits and then her and Sean’s wedding.
Crazy, isn’t it? In June of 2012 I did family pictures before Patricia moved away and I think Sean and Heather moved to Dallas, maybe?
It was funny to me as I looked at the pictures how I could suddenly remember that day clear as could be. That is what makes pictures important I think. The ability to call up moments that happened so long ago but seem like they happened yesterday. It was also the last time I had the whole immediate family in front of my camera. Alice would graduate not long after we took these pictures and her class was the first time I did senior class pictures. All five seniors. (The perks of being in a small classical Christian school.) She was also the only girl in the class. Those were good times.
Alice moved to Idaho for college, joining Patricia who had since married and I cannot remember which came first on these next pictures. I want to say it was the family pictures but I might be wrong and it was the 50th wedding anniversary celebration of Mr. and Mrs. Stout. Which was amazing because the family was able to pull off a huge surprise party without them knowing a single thing about it until they got there.
Also, by 2014 Heather and Patricia both added sweet babies to the family fold. (There are now ten grandchildren with number eleven on the way.)
Jerry graduated and moved to Idaho and then on January 1, 2016 Alice came home and got married.
The next time she was in front of my camera it was a year and a half later and I was photographing her son.
I love doing pictures for the same family over the years and watching them grow! I am looking forward to sharing some of the pictures from Tuesday’s session with almost all of the family. I have my fingers crossed that maybe one day everything will come together and I can do pictures of the whole family. I don’t know when that might happen but I am keeping my camera batteries charged!
So last week I shared a few throwback images of a sweet family I have been honored to photograph through the years. Today I am going to share just a few of my favorites from our recent family session and it may look a little bit odd and you might notice that it’s missing a family portrait. But trust me, we took one and it is precious but I cannot share it for the very best of reasons.
Since our last photo session when Miss Jojo turned one they have become a foster family! Right now they are loving on and caring for the cutest little peanut you have ever seen and it is so sweet to see this family embrace the heavy joy of caring for children who need a home. What a gift they offer by opening their home but also what a gift they receive in return for doing so.
The crazy thing is that right after they brought the little Peanut home they found out they were expecting and that was an amazing surprise in and of itself. Pregnancy is hard on mama and G and Jojo were both born very early and spent some time in NICU before coming home.
The newest little Guernsey stayed put safe and sound inside for longer than either one of her older siblings but not without some considerable help. These needles represent barely half of what mama took everyday during her pregnancy.
Pretty sure they all agree that she was worth it! She is their six pound wonder.
But can you imagine it? A brand new baby girl and a sweet nine month old? Life is very full but so are their hearts. And G-man and Jojo are old enough to be fabulous helpers I know.
One of my favorite things about shooting families is when the children get involved and start giving me ideas and places they want me to us while I photograph them. I really loved that G took me to the tree house he built for a few pictures. There was just something about this shot of him and Jojo that I love. It conjures up all sorts of Swiss Family Robinson nostalgia for me for some reason.
It was such a delightful morning spent with them and once again G captured my heart while holding his new baby sister. Such a tender moment, isn’t it?
I am looking forward to keeping up with them in the months and years ahead to see how God blesses this sweet family!
I love looking back and gathering pictures for a post like this! I first did G-man’s pictures when his mama was teaching at my kids’ school. He was such a cutie with those big blue eyes!
I don’t think he was even a year old at that time but a few years later I got to do family photos out at Ft Pickens. Honestly, it has been so long ago I almost forgot I had done them but as I looked through them again I was reminded of how absolutely adorable they turned out! These are some of my favorites from that day.
Fast forward a few years more and we did family pictures again that included his new baby sister! My heart still melts when I see his precious smile and that cowboy hat.
I think Jojo was my first watermelon one year old session and she could not have been any cuter!
We also did a family picture when we did her first birthday photos and it has always been one of my favorite images! Definitely one for the portfolio with the beautiful light and sweet smiles.
I cannot wait until next week when I will be sharing their most recent family session!
One of my favorite blessings in Scripture is found in Psalm 128 and it came to mind as I edited these images, particularly the final verse…“May you see your children’s children!”
What a special delight grandchildren must be and what a special delight it is for me to photograph this special relationship. There is something incredible and amazing about being a parent and from what my friends who have moved into that phase tell me grandchildren are just even more of that incredible amazingness.
These friends are blessed to be the grandparents to the four precious kiddos who are all a part of the Week of Edgar. I think they enjoy them, don’t you?
Can I just point out how well the girls did keeping their eyes trained on me and their sweet smiles while the shenanigans were taken place with the two little guys? And there were shenanigans! But my goodness, those littel fellas are adorable!
We did manage to get some really lovely portraits of the six of them together though. I really hope I get to do more of these grandparent/grandchildren sessions. There are precious few pictures of my grandparents much less ones of me and my sisters with them. What a treasure to be able to look back on these and see portraits from a time in our lives that we don’t really remember that well as we get older!
Once I knew we had gotten “the” shot the girls were off and playing so what else was there to do other than little those two young men work at getting their legs under them?
I love how fat both their little feet are! And I also think it is great that they are so close in age and can grow up as the best of friends.
Sometimes the opportunity to photograph a family takes a little while to become a reality. Schedules can be hard to navigate and just finding the right time weather wise can make for a delay. Sometimes it can take years. That is exactly what happened with this sweet family. Lockett (cool name, right?) is a teacher at my girls’ school and we have talked in general about doing her family’s pictures, in passing, and in depth. Finally, last week everything came together and we made it happen.
And it was so much fun! I mean, at least, I had fun and at the end of our time together Dad said it was the least painful picture session they had ever had done and I am going to count that as a win and high praise.
Sometimes I am amazed how much kids have grown and changed when I look at them through the viewfinder on my camera. While my girls don’t have any classes with her boys our school is small and so I see them frequently but there is something about narrowing my field of view and I suddenly notice how much of young man her oldest has become and how her youngest has lost that little boyish babyness.
You know those boys are full of shenanigans and keep mom and dad on their toes! They were cracking me up photobombing a few of the pictures I was taking.
As I said, I really enjoyed my time with this sweet family and while I hate that it took us so long to make it finally I happen I loved having them in front of my camera. Lockett, be sure to let Chris know that next time will be even better 😉