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All Eyes On Us

The week leading up to the wedding of Jack and Bailey on Saturday, September 15, 2018 was filled with tons of rain. The forecast was even calling for high rain chances for that Saturday. As the week crept by, those high rain chances slowly begin to decrease. As everyone continued to cross their fingers, Saturday arrived and those rain chances were pretty much gone. The sun was shining and it was a perfectly calm day. It was a picture perfect day - literally!

That Saturday at 6:30 pm, under clear skies, Jack and Bailey would say, “I Do,” at the beautiful Wind Dancer Retreat in Bryan, Texas.

Jack and Bailey first met...

...in Corpus Christi at work.  Bailey was working as an office manager and Jack was one of the vendors.  He delivered goods to her workplace for a month or two and he would always ask Bailey what there was to do in Corpus.  Bailey noticed that Jack was always very polite.  Bailey's best friend noticed (and insisted) that Jack was interested in Bailey, however Bailey just thought that Jack was being professional by creating small talk.  This continued for several weeks until one day he was in his truck and asked Bailey if he could take her to do dinner.  Bailey told him that he could IF, and only if, he could remember her phone number and she shouted her number to him as he sat in his truck.  

Bailey did not expect Jack to remember her phone number.  He was sitting in his truck and she shouted it to him rather than writing it down for him or allowing him to write it down. But Jack did remember her number!  He sent Bailey a text about an hour later which said, "You owe me dinner ma'am."  

That same evening Bailey replied to Jack's message and told him that she was caught up at work and would not be able to make time for dinner with him, even though she was actually at home.  

The following week Jack showed up to deliver goods at Bailey's workplace and he asked her if she would make time for dinner with him.  Again, Bailey said that she would.  However this time she actually did go to dinner with him.  They drove to three different places before finding a restaurant with good customer service.  They enjoyed dinner and laughed...a lot!  

Over the next few months they continued talking casually.  One weekend Bailey decided to travel with Jack for a weekend trip to visit his parents.  They met his parents at Texas Roadhouse (THEIR place to eat) and then went to the family ranch, where Jack showed Bailey around.  Jack had Bailey put on some torn up dirty overalls and they began working on the ranch.  Bailey had a great time!  It was completely different than her life in Arizona.  

Eventually Jack asked Bailey to move in with him and ever since they have been inseparable.  

One day Jack surprised Bailey…

with a shopping trip for a fancy dress.  Jack would not tell Bailey why she needed the fancy dress.  The next day Jack told Bailey that they were going to dinner that night and she had to be ready at 5:00 sharp...and she HAD to wear the new fancy dress.  Bailey joked about dressing up for dinner at Texas Roadhouse!  Jack laughed and told her to get ready.

At 5:00 Jack told Bailey that it was time to go and she headed to the garage as she normally did.  Jack told her to just use the front door.  After all, "It's easier," he said.  Bailey questioned Jack about this as she walked out the front door and saw a limo waiting for them.  Bailey was so excited and began to get tears in her eyes.  They enjoyed the limo ride to Del Friscos Steakhouse in Houston, a beautiful restaurant with an amazing view.  They enjoyed a delicious dinner, even though Bailey noticed that Jack was acting...different.  Jack told her that he loved her and would continue to love her forever and he would do everything he had to in order to give their family a good life.  He went on to say that it was not the right time to get married because they weren't stable enough yet, but he just wanted her to know that she was his world.  

When they finished their meals, they decided to order dessert.  Bailey ordered cheesecake since that is their favorite dessert.  Jack left to the restroom and was gone for awhile.  When he returned Bailey told him that she didn't know it took 20 minutes to bring out dessert.  About this same time the dessert arrived...and it said, "Will you marry me?" Bailey began to panic because she was sure that the waiter brought them the wrong plate!  She looked at Jack to tell him how embarrassing it was that they brought the wrong plate to their table and saw Jack on one knee with a ring.  Bailey jumped into his arms as she cried and said, "YES!"  She gave him her right hand instead of her left hand!   

You can read more about Jack and Bailey’s engagement here.

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Special Note to the Newlyweds

Jack and Bailey, I wish you both a lifetime of happiness. The amount of love and respect you both show each other throughout your words, as well as actions towards one another is so calming to all those that surround you. You both have tons of love and support from your families and that is absolutely priceless. Kaden is truly blessed to have such wonderful parents and grandparents in his life!

Vendor Credits

Venue: Wind Dancer Retreat, Bryan, TX

Coordinator: Shana Wells

Florist: University Flowers

Linens: Party Time Rentals

Cake Artist: Dianna Brannan

Caterer: C & J Barbeque

DJ: Downtown Entertainment

Make-Up and Hair Artist: Naturally Flawless

Bridesmaids Dresses: David’s Bridal

Bridal Gown: VIP Bridal

Tuxes: Men’s Wearhouse

Officiant: Floyd Stanley

Special thanks to Angela Bailey with Angela Bailey Photography for assisting me in capturing the memories for Jack and Bailey!

Top 5 Reasons To Hire a Birth Photographer

The birth of a baby is truly amazing!  There are so many emotions - nervous, scared, anxious, excited, happy, and overjoyed are just a few that come to mind.  Each doctor's visit means you are one month, week, or day closer to meeting your new baby.  The emotions continue to build.  The big day FINALLY arrives!  Every labor and delivery is different.  Some progress quickly, while others progress slowly...and at any moment things can change.  This is such a big day for your family as a whole!  Your lives will be completely changed forever. 

What will you remember from this day in a year?  5 years?  20 years?

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Technology has made it possible for so many of us to own a smartphone with a decent camera built in to it.  This makes is so easy for us to take photos of all sorts of things that happen in our lives each and every day.  What about all the "big" things?  Weddings, senior years, first birthdays, and family photographs?  We usually hire a photographer to photograph those big things in our lives for obvious reasons. 

What's more live changing than a birth of a child?  Looking back on all of the events within my own family, I can say that the birth of my children has been the most life changing event in my life - even more so than marrying my husband!  Our entire family as a whole changed at the moment a new baby entered our lives.  For this reason, I have compiled a list of the Top 5 Reasons to Hire a Birth Photographer.

1.  To document the birth of your child.  This is probably the most obvious reason that anyone would want a camera in the delivery room.  After all, this is the ONLY time this child will be born.  When they ask about the day they were born, what details will you remember?  What would it be like if you could show them what it was like when they were born?  After each birth session, the moms cry when they see the photographs.  The emotions are captured and it truly is amazing to SEE and FEEL the emotions from that day.  Words cannot begin to describe the day.

Dad holding mom's hand, supporting her during the birth of their baby.

Dad holding mom's hand, supporting her during the birth of their baby.

2.  To remember more than bits and pieces.  During the labor and delivery of your child, you are focused on one thing - bringing your baby into this world.  There are so many details that you do not see and comprehend at that moment because of the task at hand.  The look on your husband's face while you are laboring and the look on the face of other family members as they meet the new addition.  You spend the majority of the time in the delivery room in pain and often times your eyes are closed.  How can you possibly notice all the details from the day?

The beautiful baby girl!

The beautiful baby girl!

3.  A professional photographer knows how to get quality photographs.  Delivery rooms have poor lighting that can negatively impact the quality of photographs.  As a professional, I have studied and practiced various conditions with my camera.  I know what settings to use to produce photographs that are of professional quality. 

Proud parents are SO in love with her!

Proud parents are SO in love with her!

4.  Let me take photographs so dad can help you.  You will need your husband's support during the birth of your child.  You will more than likely want his hand to hold and comfort you during the labor process rather than him standing next to you with the camera.  I'm sure dad would rather experience the birth with you rather than trying to figure out the camera settings and checking to make sure that the photograph turned out.  A birth photographer allows dad to be 100% present in the birth of the child.

Precious baby girl holding her daddy's thumb.

Precious baby girl holding her daddy's thumb.

5.  This is an experience for BOTH of you.  Are you going to remember, or even notice, the look on dad's face the first time he sees your baby?  You obviously won't remember the look on your own face since you can't see yourself.  What about the look on dad's face when he holds his child for the very first time?  When you hold your baby for the first time?  Hiring a birth photographer allows you both focus on the entire experience AND have the details documented.  Looking back on those photographs will be priceless!

Mom and daughter bonding.

Mom and daughter bonding.

I have had five children and I never had a photographer in the room.  My oldest child is 17.  I remember very few details other than the "big" ones.  The one memory from that day is a photograph that was taken after our son was born by my mother-in-law.  This photograph was of my husband holding our son for the very first time.  The look on his face, the love in his eyes, cannot be described by words.  My youngest child is 2 and again, I seemed to have only remembered the "big" details.  In just two short years, those tid bits of memories are gone. I'm scared to ask, "What will I remember in the next 10 years?" 



New Year, New Package!

Last week's blog post mentioned a new package that would be introduced.  The time has come for its arrival!  We are excited to announce our "Watch Me Grow" Package! 

Our "Watch Me Grow" Package is designed to document the first year of your child's life through several photography sessions at different stages in their development.  This package will include five sessions during the first year - maternity, newborn, six month, one year, and cake smash.  Each session will include a product credit that may be used towards prints and/or digital images.  The choice is yours!

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The Maternity Session is typically done when momma is at least seven months pregnant.  The session includes a $25 product credit.  We understand that some mothers do not wish to have a maternity session, therefore we are providing the option to exchange the maternity session with a family session. 

The Newborn Session is typically done when the baby is about ten days old.  The session includes a $50 product credit.  This session can be done at your residence if you wish, however we will be limited as to what items we can bring.  Some items such as posing beanbags are rather large and difficult to transport.

The Six Month Session is a fun session!  Babies can typically sit up on their own or with minimal assistance at this stage.  They laugh and smile....a lot!  This is such a fun age!  The session includes a $25 product credit. 

The One Year/Cake Smash Combo Session is so much fun!  We begin by taking photos for the one year portion of the session.  Often times parents change outfits and request a certain theme to match the child's upcoming birthday party. Some parents even request a certain setup for party invitations.  After the one year portion of the session, it is time for CAKE!  We get the setup ready for the cake smash portion of the session while you get your baby ready. The cake smash portion can go very quickly or it can take a long time...it all depends on the child and what they decide to do with all that cake!  After the cake smash portion of the session, we move onto the bath.  After all, do you want your child in the carseat covered in frosting??  This session includes a $40 product credit and a personalized 8x8 storyboard of the cake smash.

After all of the sessions have been completed, you will choose your favorite image from all the sessions.  This image will be given to you as an 11x14 canvas gallery wrap. 

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Our normal policy for booking a session requires a 50% deposit with the remaining 50% due anytime before the day of the session.  However, since this package includes so much we are offering a payment plan for those that would like to take advantage of it.  A deposit of $89 will be due at the time of booking, with the remaining amount due divided into 4 equal payments of $89.  Each of these payments will be due at the time of each session. 

We are looking forward to watching your baby grow in front of our camera! 

Mighty Mart Panthers - Times Two

The 2015-2016 school year is well underway and many seniors are now scheduling their fall senior portrait sessions.  Some seniors choose to wait until the spring season for their senior portraits.  Others prefer to have senior portraits taken year round.  This week's blog post is going to be all about two Mart seniors - Eric and Alyssa - that decided to have their senior portraits taken in the fall.

There's no buts about it...Mart is a HUGE football town!  Every Friday night during football season the town is literally dead.  Why?  Because everyone is either at the game or at home listening to the game.  Mart is serious about football.  This coming Friday is going to be especially eventful due to all the Homecoming festivities.  This Friday - Homecoming - is going to be a great day to be a Panther!

Meet Eric.  He is one of the football players that will entertain the crowd on Friday night.  He is a handsome young man with a bright future ahead of him.  He isn't quite sure where he is headed after high school just yet.  There are just so many things to consider.  After all, what's the rush?  He still has several months to narrow down his amazing plans.  One thing is for certain, he LOVES football!  He LOVES being a Panther!

Meet Eric.

Meet Eric.

Eric is always ready for gameday!

Eric is always ready for gameday!

Senior Portrait sessions with Smith Family Photography are fully customizable based on the specific memories that the senior would like to help capture.  For Eric, this meant the Mart Football Field.  For his mother, this meant the Mart Football Field and the grassy field behind the stadium to showcase his "country" side.  Many guys don't really care for the photographs to be taken.  They do it for their moms.  During Eric's session, he put his foot down and said he was staying on the football field - no grassy field photographs!  THAT is how much Eric loves football! 

I recently stated that I truly enjoy senior portrait sessions for several reasons, but most of all I enjoy interacting with the young adults and capturing their personality within the portraits.  As the session proceeds along, they start opening up more and more and finally they just seem to forget about the camera and just be themselves.  To me, that is when I capture the best portraits!  Things weren't any different with Eric.  At first, he was very attentive to what I was asking of him.  As the session progressed, he would wonder off to play football with his little brother, Alan.  He was relaxed and completely in his element.  He is a Mart Panther. 

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Let's take a look at another Mart senior.  Meet Alyssa.  She is one of the Mart cheerleaders that will entertain the crowd on Friday night.  She is an amazingly beautiful young woman with the whole world ahead of her!  She plans on heading off to college at either Baylor University or the University of Mary Hardin Baylor.  She plans on trying out for the cheer squad at both universities.  Alyssa LOVES cheerleading!  She LOVES being a Panther!

Meet Alyssa

Meet Alyssa

This year's Homecoming game is especially exciting for Alyssa!  She is nominated for the Homecoming Court!  I will be at the Homecoming game this Friday night to cheer on Eric and the Mart Panthers, as well as support Alyssa...and capture a few shots of her looking dazzling in her gown!

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Young women are typically less reserved in front of the camera than young men are.  They just seem to be more comfortable with having their photograph taken.  As their session progresses, their personalities shine through just the same.  However, with girls it seems to happen much quicker.  I think we have the era of new technology to thank - cell phones with nice cameras and selfies! 

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As Alyssa's session was nearing the end, she had a few requests.  One, she loved sweaters so she wanted to wear one during some of the shots.  Two, she wanted to take some photographs on the tire swing.  And three, she had to take a special photograph for her close friend, Sadie.  I absolutely LOVE it when the clients begin to take ownership in their photographs! 

Alyssa with her sweater.  She loves sweaters!

Alyssa with her sweater.  She loves sweaters!

Alyssa swinging on the tire swing!

Alyssa swinging on the tire swing!

Alyssa striking a pose for her close friend, Sadie.

Alyssa striking a pose for her close friend, Sadie.

Senior Portrait sessions are fully customizable based on the needs and wants of the senior.  After a session is officially booked, we begin collaborating on everything from locations, clothing, poses, themes, etc.  Senior sessions need to be authentic and really showcase the individual.  That is why it is so important that we work together to build a session that will let them shine and give them memories to last a lifetime.

If you are interested in booking a Senior Portrait session, you can message me or give me a call and I will give you more information.  Until next time, head over to Mart, Texas this Friday night (or any Friday night) and watch a football game!  It is an experience of a lifetime!

Advice for New Parents - What I Wish I Could Say to My Expecting Clients

Let me begin by saying that I LOVE maternity photo sessions!  There is an unexplainable energy that gives you a certain "high" to be around.  The mom is glowing.  The dad is so proud.  They are both so excited, maybe a little scared, but definitely looking forward to the unknown.  There is so much love surrounding these two people and the little baby that they created through that love.

With that being said, I always wonder to myself, "I wonder if this beautiful couple is ready for reality?"  The reality that everything is not as cute and cuddly as we often perceive it to be.  That got me thinking about this blog post - advice for new parents that I wish I could tell them.

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As I began working through Trevor and Jezebel's images from their maternity session, I could hear my small children in the background and I thought to myself, "Kids, just give me a few more minutes..."  Thoughts like this prompted me to look up some one line pieces of advice for new parents and I stumbled upon an article that had some great - and extremely accurate - pieces of advice that I'd like to share. 

Here are some of my favorites:

1. When people ask if your child sleeps through the night, just lie and say yes. It helps you avoid all that sleep advice. -Nancy

SO TRUE!  I wish I would have known about this "trick" before I had children! 

2. It’s okay to mourn your old life and think, “Dear God what have we done!” -Lindsey

Again, SO TRUE!  I have thought this several times, although I have never vocalized it until now.  There are times that I miss it just being in the bed by myself...without kids.  I miss laying in the bed, snuggled up under the covers, eating all the chocolate my stomach could handle, and watching movies.  Those quiet times are gone for now...not gone forever however.  I love having kids crawl into the bed with me, but there are times I think I'd love to watch a movie without interruptions a little bit more.  Which leads me to number three.

3. You’re not a bad mom if you don’t love every single stage of child-rearing. -Susan

There are parts of raising children that I do not enjoy.  Potty training is a PERFECT example!  And in the middle of the potty training stage, remember...

4. This too shall pass. -Bree

Even during those times of success, there will be setbacks.  It's easy to become frustrated, but remember...this too shall pass.  It is just one stage in the child's life.  There are plenty of other stages that you will enjoy more than you ever imagined!

5. Ask yourself whether what you are upset about will be important in five years or even in five minutes. -Nancy

I try to remind myself of this often when something happens, such as spilling a 6 ounce bottle of expressed breastmilk!  At that moment my world just ended as I knew it.  Then the next thing happens and I don't even remember spilling that liquid gold.  Learn to let the little things go and give it the "Test of Five" before you act on it.

And last, but not least....

6. You’ll never look back and wish you held your baby less. -Christine

Never believe any of those comments about spoiling your baby by holding them too much. Soon enough they won't want to cuddle and it's true, you will never look back and wish you held your child less.  You will wish you held them even more.

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Trevor and Jezebel, I sincerely wish you the best for your growing family.  The love you two share is just going to grow more and more each day as you guide your baby girl through this crazy thing we call life.  There will be difficult times.  There will be times that you feel like crying - and that is okay - CRY!  But I promise you, the laughter and love that you are going to experience is SO going to be worth every second of it.  I'm looking forward to capturing memories for your growing family in the years to come.

To read the complete article with 21 words of advice for new parents, check out: http://coolmompicks.com/blog/2013/08/26/best-parenting-advice-for-new-parents/

What are some words of advice that you'd like to give to the soon-to-be-parents?  Feel free to leave a comment below.

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From Teacher to Photographer

What do you want to be when you grow up?  Isn't that the question we ask young adults all the time?   I personally have asked this same question to hundreds of children throughout my thirty-six years.  Over the years I have heard many responses to that question - NFL player, dancer, fireman, teacher, etc.  Growing up my response was always, "I want to be a teacher when I grow up."

You might be asking yourself, if you always wanted to be a teacher then why are you a photographer?  Well, simply put...things changed.

After high school I decided to have a family instead of pursue my dream of becoming a teacher.  It didn't take long for me to realize that I loved my family, but something was missing in my life.  I still had that longing to educate young children.  I began taking classes at Boise State University and in 2007 I graduated with a degree in Elementary Education. 

I left Idaho and moved to Texas for various reasons and began my first teaching assignment at Marlin Elementary School in Marlin, Texas.  I taught fourth grade for three years and kindergarten for two years.  I loved working with the children and families in Marlin!  I found it to be an extremely rewarding career! 

As I began my sixth year of teaching at Marlin Elementary School we received a completely new administration.  They were not accommodating to my needs as a new mother.  At this time I had a newborn and needed time to express breastmilk for my daughter.  The administration told me they could not provide me with the necessary break time to provide this for me and my family.  I then resigned.  I was forced to choose my career - my love of education - or the needs of my family.  I chose my family and it killed me. 

At this very moment in time I realized that a career in education was not all that I believed it to be and I began to search for something else that could be equally rewarding, as well as provide the needs required by my family.  As I thought about possible career paths, my love of photography came to the front of my mind.  I pushed it to the back of my mind because the thought of starting my own business honestly overwhelmed me.  However, the possibility of owning my own photography business gradually seemed to sound exciting.

I have had numerous photographs taken of my kids and family.  Some I absolutely loved and others were just "ok."  I consider myself a pretty tough client.  I have a large family which consists of eleven if you count all the children - mine, his, ours, and the ones we picked up along the way!  There are two major issues with photography sessions I had as a parent of such a large family. 

The Smith Family with two kids missing from the photo.  Left to right:  Lily on the back of Gracie, Bradley, Sadie being held by Ethan, Thomas, John, Anna (myself), and Colby.  Not pictured are:  Anthony and William

The Smith Family with two kids missing from the photo.  Left to right:  Lily on the back of Gracie, Bradley, Sadie being held by Ethan, Thomas, John, Anna (myself), and Colby.  Not pictured are:  Anthony and William

One, patience.  It is nearly impossible to get all eleven of us to fully cooperate through an entire photo session!  The kids don't want to be there and it shows.  I would receive the prints and love the concept, but as a family we just looked so...unhappy.  I couldn't feel the love or emotions.  The photographs were just photographs instead of a memory that was captured forever. 

Two, cost.  The sheer cost of photographing a family of eleven is scary!  Photographers seem to have a pricing which is a certain amount for four individuals and every additional individual is an extra fee.  Well, when you have a family of eleven the additional individual fee is astronomical! 

If I was going to have my own photography business, I knew what I wanted to provide.  I needed to provide a patient and carefree atmosphere which would make families and individuals feel comfortable and allow them to be themselves.  People have told me over and over that the session was so easy and comfortable or that they could feel the emotions in their photographs.  Those comments let me know that what I am doing is rewarding.  It gives me a sense of purpose as a photographer.

I also wanted to provide affordable photography for people.  Obviously I can't work for free.  I have business expenses I have to pay.  I don't like giving families a time limit.  I don't like charging additional fees for "additional individuals."  Whether you have a family of four or a family of eleven, you will pay the same session fee.  I have my pricing set up in a way that is straightforward and is affordable at the same time.   

I read a TON of information about photography and business!  After all, I do LOVE education! I seek help from fellow photographers as needed.  I am constantly learning so I can provide the best to my clients.  This is not a task I take lightly. 

Recently I received some of the kindest words after a mother viewed her family photographs. 

I adore Zachary’s face in their pic together and Vanna’s face in our family picture. It totally captures them! You are truly talented. I think people go through life finding out what their purpose is, and struggling with just a job. It shows this is your passion. And your artistic ability with editing and adding the right elements. I hope you have years and bounds of success. Thank you for taking the time to end our summer on a fantastic shoot. Making memories, and capturing a moment in time when families love each other IS making a difference. We get so caught up in living life, and arguing whose turn it is to do the dishes, and please get off your phone and stop yelling at your brother, that we forget to always say I love you’s, and be kind to one another. Even if just for a second. We did in the photo. - personal message from Misty Rae Bridger (August 2015)

I made the move from teacher to photographer.  I am extremely happy.  I am looking forward to meeting many more families and capturing many more memories! 


National Breastfeeding Month is HERE!

August is National Breastfeeding Month and each year this special month gets off to a start with a bang!  Every year the first Friday and Saturday are the days of the Big Latch On event.  You might we asking yourself, "What is the Big Latch On?" 

Groups of breastfeeding women come together at registered locations around the world to all latch on their child at a set time. All the breastfeeding women and children are latched on for one minute at the set time and are counted by the witnesses. The numbers are added up and we see if we can beat previous Big Latch On records! 

The Big Latch On supports communities with identifying and growing opportunities to provide ongoing breastfeeding support and promotion.

The key to the Big Latch On's success is allowing communities to hold their Big Latch On events, empowering them to create an event that relates to the people of their community, while still taking part in a worldwide event.  You can read more about the Big Latch On here

I have co-hosted the Big Latch On in Waco, Texas for the past two years.  The first year (2014) we had roughly 20 successful latches at the set time.  This year (2015) we had 22!  Next year will be even better!  I was pleased with how the event turned out this year, but I'm already making plans for improving the event for 2016. 

The group photograph for the Big Latch On in Waco, 2015.  There were 22 successful latches!

The group photograph for the Big Latch On in Waco, 2015.  There were 22 successful latches!

In 2015, a new record was set globally for the Big Latch On with a whopping 14,889 successful latches!  The old record was set in 2013 with 14,536 successful latches. 

People often realize that the first week in August is World Breastfeeding Week, but in fact the entire month of August recognizes the importance of breastfeeding.  Here at Smith Family Photography we are celebrating by offering Breastfeeding Mini-Sessions for the entire month of August!

Breastfeeding Mini-Sessions to celebrate National Breastfeeding Month.

Breastfeeding Mini-Sessions to celebrate National Breastfeeding Month.

My favorite quote to summarize my personal feelings about breastfeeding can be found on a collage I put together with the help of several nursing mothers and their babes.  This collage was originally put together for an art piece to be displayed at the Texas State Capital to support several breastfeeding bills. 

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Just Hangin' Out at the Ranch

When clients contact me inquiring about sessions they most often times ask me for suggestions as far as locations for the session.  As a photographer I have several favorite places to suggest, but I love it when they say they are looking for a rustic, country type setting.  When they tell me that they would like that type of setting I almost always suggest my husband's family ranch between Groesbeck and Buffalo, Texas. 

The family ranch has a unique setting with an array of scenery.  There is an old fashioned type cabin that is constructed from wood and materials from the original farm house, a party barn, and my personal favorite...a covered bridge!

As I meet the family at the ranch I like to spend a few minutes touring the grounds with them and just talking to them.  I like to make my clients feel relaxed and comfortable before we introduce them to the camera. 

We begin our tour by walking past the back of the party barn heading towards the quilting house.  The afternoon sunlight shines beautifully between the two buildings!

Photo between the two buildings

Photo between the two buildings

In that same area there is a beautiful flowing bush that makes for a gorgeous backdrop!

In that same area there is a beautiful flowing bush that makes for a gorgeous backdrop!

From this point we meander to the main attraction...The Covered Bridge!  It is unique and full of fun photograph ideas! 

The children are the focus of the parents' lives.

The children are the focus of the parents' lives.

When the mother saw this photograph on my Facebook page as a "Sneak Peek," she immediately messaged me and told me how much this photograph described her and her husband's outlook on their family.  She said, "The kids are the focus of our lives."

I really wanted to get some photographs of this amazing family on the bridge, but the sun was still too high in the sky at this particular moment.  We had to wait...plain and simple.  The adults talked about life and the kids enjoyed running around playing a friendly game of chase.

Sister had a slight advantage in the game of chase!

Sister had a slight advantage in the game of chase!

The sun finally set enough so we could take some photographs on the covered bridge without being blinded by the sun!  We had to take a family photograph of course and we ended with a fun shot of mom and dad as well.  It was a perfect session by many accounts!  Perfect family.  Perfect weather.  Perfect location.  PERFECT!

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"Family is the most important thing in the world." - Princess Diana

If you're interested in scheduling a family session, I'd love the chance to discuss session possibilities with you!