In honor of this gorgeous mama-to-be surpassing her due date by a FULL WEEK, I wanted to get this amazing snowy Tahoe maternity session up on the blog!
(It’ll give you something to read when you go into labor Amanda! lol)
Amanda and I met at a bridal show in Berkeley in February. I know her fiance through some other friends so when she bounded up to me belly first at the wedding show I knew exactly who she was and I was ecstatic to finally meet her in person! We talked a lot about what they wanted from their photos and ultimately decided that the one thing that HAD to have was snow. Luckily I was already Tahoe bound near the end of February so we made some plans and were off to the races shortly after!
After avoiding deadly driveway ice (which nearly took Andrew out in Stooge-worthy comedic glory) and three foot deep pockets in the snow (which I promptly sunk right into) we made it to a beautiful grove of trees to shoot.
Amanda was worried about how she looked, like a lot of nearly-new-mom’s with bodies they don’t feel quite at home in, but I couldn’t imagine a more beautiful model if I tried. She was calm and relaxed, enough so that she let me snap some subtle sexy shots between outfits in the 28 degree chill. She was an absolute rockstar! All the while Andrew (a photographer, by the way) was looking at the back of my camera “ooh-in” and “ahh-ing” over my captures of his wifey in all her motherly glory. I could not have dreamt up a more perfect shoot!
Of course, not every photo turns out the way you want it, but this series of images from an attempted hair flip added an extra layer of hilarity and joy to their photos.
In the end, the sun went down right behind this big beautiful pine tree and soon after this popsicle frozen mama bear was whisked away by dad to the warmth of their Tahoe cabin for some relaxation after an incredible shoot.
Congratulations to Amanda and Andrew, I can’t wait to meet Calliope! Cheers! ❤
Today’s the day we celebrate our one and only Mothers. They’re wicked smart, they’re uproariously funny, they’re always there when we need them and darn it, they’ve put up with us since the day we took away their normal sleeping patterns. We’re lucky folk, you and I, to have moms so wonderful! So today I’ve compiled a short thank you list for all the wonderful moms that I’ve been able to work with in the past.
Thank you for becoming a mother. The world needs more moms! You’re sweet and caring and so damn strong. I love watching you rub your belly, tell me your secret name plans, and gush all about the Star Wars or Harry Potter themed room you’ve got planned for your upcoming bundle of joy. I also love watching your significant other revel in the sense of purpose and strength you’ve found while walking this path; it’s always a look of pure admiration. What you’re doing is insanely beautiful and completely unbelievable (at least to someone who has NOT gone down this road yet). Thank you for sharing this special time with me. I am so moved by every single kick and wiggle.
Thank you for sharing your journey. The space you’ve made for you and your little one is so special. I am consistently grateful that you’d allow me (or anyone else) to watch you both and be a part of something so delicate. Your baby is a cute little ball of soft skin and perfect eye lashes to me, but that little bean is your whole world. I love to watch the quiet and tender moments, witness a comforting “shhhhh” to soothe unease, see all the hope for the future that runs across your eyes as you stare down at them. It’s as close to perfection as I can possibly imagine, and I am thankful every day that I get to share in those moments with you.
Thank you for trusting me. Everyone wants good photos of their kiddo. (How else will we make the baby fat and the dimples last a life time??) I cannot thank moms enough for trusting me to capture the spirit and personality of their little ones. Whether they’re 6 months old or 6 years old, there is a story to be told. That’s not just your kid, that is a full blown person with likes, dislikes, emotions (and LOTS of feelings about being photographed). I love capturing the smiles that come with a family shoot. I can always see the infinite love radiating off of you, like heat off the ground on a hot summer’s day. I am so lucky that you chose me to celebrate whatever milestone or step your little one is currently navigating through. I promise you, you’ll never forget those moments. 🙂
Thank you for always being there. Without your care, guidance, and patience none of us would be the person we are today. We were crazy. (Like…. some of us were REALLY crazy.) But somehow you managed to see past those moments and phases and into our souls. That’s what moms do! They know us inside and out, better than we know ourselves. Thank you for the subtle but important advice, thank you for not judging us when we didn’t take it, and thank you for always being someone we can run to for encouragement, a hug, and maybe a glass of wine. Life would not be this rich and full of possibilities without you.
Thank you for everything you still do for us. Some of our mothers are a phone call or a text away. Some of our moms are right down the street or even live in the same house. And some of our mom’s are a bit further than that. Thank you, moms, for teaching us about life, the good parts and the bad. You’ve set us up to live on through the power of your memory, which is the strongest and most ever lasting form of love anyone can ever experience. As 5 year old Alice Oswalt said after the loss of her mother, “When your mom dies you’re the best memory of her. Everything you do and say is a memory of her.” Thank you to all moms for setting your children free upon the world. To the mom’s we have lost, I wish I could have met you, though I often feel like I already have.
There is no way for me to ever thank moms enough. There will never be strong enough words for me to express the gratitude and the love I feel for my own mother, my parent’s mothers, my brother’s wife, the mother’s of all the wonderful people I am lucky enough to have in my life, the mother’s of my clients, and everyone else who has held the title or MOM anywhere in the world. There is a reason I cry during mother-child dances at weddings; because that look I see on the faces of brand new mother’s their babies have just been born has returned to your mom’s face as she watches you marry the person you love. That moment is infinite and circular; it’s beautiful and full of grace. It’s near impossible to comprehend unless you’ve been in her shoes. I can’t wait to experience that one day and join the ranks of the world’s most loving brigade. Today we celebrate the Mom Squad. Today we all say thank you.
(L: Me and my mom circa ~1994; R: my mom, my niece, my sister-in law, and me in 2016!)