I still have two spaces open…
I still have two spaces open…
Join designer & stylist, Jessica Sloane, and myself, for a comprehensive experience in the art of seeing.
February 10 – 11 at The Cordelle in Nashville, Tennessee
Our objective for SEE sessions is to help you, as designers, stylists and photographers, to intricately explore how to approach a wedding both aesthetically and relationally to create a final product that is unique to each client and artist.
During Day One, we will be sharing our experience and perspective on: finding your voice as an artist, discovering inspiration, client interaction, building & creating opportunities, storytelling and timeline management. We will review photography techniques for composition, posing and lighting. We’ll also give tips on shooting and styling for getting published.
Day two will include a fully styled wedding editorial shoot where attendees can observe, participate, practice and receive feedback from the instructors. There will be a Q&A at the end of the day to ensure that each attendee walks away with a renewed sense of inspiration and direction in their role as an artist.
Seating in limited, to enroll, visit SeeSessions.com
When you’re pregnant, you have all of these big ideas about how you want to dress your little love. Before #littlebabymae was born, I had an entire style board of fashions and baby-style was on the tippy-top of the list of things I planned this blog to focus on. Every morning I waited in anticipation for the clock to strike nine when Zulily would post their new sales for the day. I favorited who-knows-how-many etsy shops and resented living in the US when all of the cutest baby stuff is European.
My how things have changed.
When Mae arrived, we battled reflux and colic so hard that she lived in a bib (or multiple bibs) for the first six months of her life. We rarely left the house because she was so fussy and refused to sleep anywhere but her crib (and even that was a miracle).
So needless to say, all of that baby-style hung in the closet unworn or neatly folded in her dresser with the tags still on. Then once we found a formula she could tolerate the reflux subsided and we were finally able to put some of her baby-style to use. Some of it no longer fit, some of it had too many buttons for her to sit still long enough to be dressed in and some of it was just seasonally off.
But we do have some fun stuff that she is fitting now and looking extra cute in! The above ensemble was tried on in preparation for an upcoming trip north to see if it would still work. The hat and booties are newborn sized and the outfit is 0-3 months. Now at 8 months, the buttons were definitely tight but once I got her in it, I fell over from the cuteness and could not help but to snap a few photos.
After posting one on insta, I had a few questions come in on where we found everything. So for those mamas, here are the best version of sources I could find:
I realize those links aren’t a ton of help since all of this was acquired nearly a year ago but the cutie photos still warranted a post anyway right?
These images showed up at the end of a roll I shot at a recent newborn session. It’s only fitting as they are the perfect representation of an important realization I came to during the shoot.
Allow me to explain. About half-way the session, it was obvious to me that this sweet new mama was getting anxious about how well her little darling was cooperating. I could completely relate. Over the past eight months I have become well-acquainted with having a specific vision for something that turns out differently than I’d planned.
I shared with her the honest truth that in every single opportunity I have had to be photographed with Mae, there have been various specific images in my mind that I wanted to capture together. Well wouldn’t you know that not one time have we ever been able to get the image. But what we did get is just as deeply precious to me as any of the pretty pins I had my heart set on.
So I told her that. I believe my exact words went something like, “I know you had your heart set on something specific and that things have not worked out that way, but try not to let that upset you because what we are getting is beautiful and I would not want you to miss that by focusing on what we weren’t able to.”
As soon as the words left my mouth I wanted to fall on my knees.
That is exactly the advice I needed to hear. I have spent too much of Mae’s life wrestling with the challenges we have faced and grieving the loss of my idealistic expectations of motherhood. Sure, we have had a rough start due to her feeding/digestive issues but there is beauty hiding amidst it all and I know that is where my focus should be.
Since I have been prayerfully pursuing this new perspective I have seen Mae transform.
Her passion for everything in life is astounding. Whether she’s thrilled by seeing a dog walk by or angry about not being able to climb any higher than my shoulders, she expresses everything with gusto. Her laughter is intoxicating and her smile could warm the coldest heart. She crawls all over the place and has the happiest feet anyone has ever seen. I am not kidding, if we hold her in the air she runs in place a hundred miles an hour. If we balance her arms she prancercises across the whole house. She can climb completely up the stairs by herself but she stops every few to look back at you with the proudest grin she’s got. Then giggles with glee when she reaches the top.
She absolutely loves to make sounds and music. She’s mastered “dadada” and often says “ha” although we don’t know if she’s meaning “hi” or if she just thinks we’re funny. She blows raspberries like its her job and can play her little piano with every part of her body. She still won’t cuddle but she will crawl into our laps and remain there as long as we are offering some sort of entertainment, of which we creatively deliver as long as we can just to keep her there.
She still knows how to charm anyone but there is no one that lights her up more than daddy. She has become a source of beauty in our lives and I know that we will grow more proud of her every day.
Sure some of these transformations come from age, (and we have seen vast improvements since working out her feeding issues) but I believe much of the joy that I am beginning to experience comes from letting go (daily) of what I thought motherhood should be and instead embracing what it is.
“Joy is always a function of gratitude and gratitude is always, simply a function of perspective” -Ann Voskamp
Perspective has such power. These moments, these days, they are not a means to an end as I once believed. They are not to be wished away for a day when things will be easier. God’s plan for them is much sweeter. I will leave you with this passage from my favorite devotional, My Utmost For His Highest
According to yesterday’s instagram commentary, it looks like there are some mamas out there in need of some tips for flying the friendly skies with a baby in tow.
I am getting kind-of hazy on exactly how many flights Mae has been on in her (nearly) eight months here but Dave counted nine and that sounds about right. Which is funny, considering my first flight was at 12 and only 45 minutes long. Oh how times have changed.
So although I will never claim to be an expert on anything mommy-wise, I have learned a few tricks to keeping the experience as pleasant and stress-free as possible. But before take-off, let me preface all of this by saying that if Mae has shown me anything, it is that what works for one baby may not work for another, so the best tip is to consider your little one’s temperament when making travel preparations.
Here’s what has worked for us:
If you formula feed: pack enough in your carry-on for your trip door-to-door and then double it in the event that you miss a flight and get stuck spending the night (and the next day) in an airport. It happens. We also bring our own water in a insulated bottle so we know that it’s clean and the right temperature. They always hand-check it at security but I’d rather that than the alternatives. This little guy is great for having the formula pre-measured out to save you counting scoops or spilling that pricey powder.
If you exclusively pump: You are my hero. I highly recommend getting a hand-pump and checking your electric pump in your suitcase. It breaks down and fits great into a ziploc in your diaper bag. If you are carrying milk on, I found it worked best to get it as cold as possible without being frozen because then you don’t have to worry about it thawing and you have a few days to use it rather than just 24 hours. Also, don’t worry about security, they are legally not allowed to prevent you from taking milk.
If you nurse: Lucky Ducky.
We did the math and figured that unless you are traveling somewhere very remote, it is cheaper to buy dipes, wipes and baby food upon reaching your destination than using up your precious carry-on or checked bag space for these items. BUT be sure use the formula rule above and make sure you have more than enough in the diaper bag to get you to where you are going.
Before you go:
-Make a copy of the baby’s birth certificate. If you didn’t purchase a ticket for them, the airline may require you to prove that they are under two years of age to fly as a lap child.
-Nowadays, airlines are starting to charge to print your boarding pass at the airport so I would go ahead and check in and print that puppy ahead of time to save the hassle when your hands are full.
At the airport:
-At Security, you may get lucky and find yourself in an expedited line. Either way, here is what we have found works best:
-At the gate, if you haven’t gotten your car seat and stroller tagged yet you will need to do that. Otherwise, just ask when they board families traveling with small children because it is usually very early in the boarding process.
-I always make sure to have a clean diaper on Mae before we board/take off because I know it will be at least 30-45 minutes before I get another opportunity to change her. That’s along time in dirty diaper land.
-On the plane, we have found that sitting in the last row works well for several reasons. One, its the loudest which helps soothe and/or drown out a crying baby. Two, it allows you more opportunities to get up and move around if you need to (when the fasten seat belt light is off of course) and three, you are the most likely to have an extra seat open to use for diaper changes, play space etc…
In the air:
-This is where each baby’s temperament really comes into play. Some of you have babies that will nurse, snuggle and sleep. Mae would much rather make friends with every flight attendant and passenger in a two row radius. So I let her interact with as many of them as she wants. I would let her do just about anything to keep the peace on a plane. If she gets bored/fussy we whip out a toy at a time and pass her back and forth amongst ourselves. We have managed to get her to nap a couple of times in-flight but it takes a near act of God and a sleeper hold.
On the ground:
I hope some of this helps and I would love to hear what has worked well for you!!
Just for fun, here’s a little clip from a recent flight.