Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Leon Family

I have had the privilege of seeing these kiddos and this family grow throughout the years. It was great to photograph the Leon Family last week, they are one sweet family of four! 

Alyssa recently began her own business, Cherry Blossom Beginnings. She is a labor and postpartum doula and childbirth educator. We took a few head shots after the family pictures for her to use in the future. If anyone reading is interested in more information from Alyssa her e-mail address is 

Friday, September 20, 2013

Happy 1 Year Audrey!

I met this little sweetie a year ago to take her newborn pictures and it was fun to see how much she has grown and changed since then! Audrey is a happy 1 year old who loves to move and smile. I loved her little grin that showed off her three tiny teeth and the way she would babble about as if she had lots to tell us:) She definitely brings much joy to her family!

After the 1 year pictures were finished I stayed around to photograph some of Audrey's Birthday party. It was a sweet little celebration and Audrey sure loved her cake:)

Friday, September 13, 2013

Month Four

When Jake and I were taking our training classes we talked about honoring the culture that our foster child would come from. Our little buddy is Native American and his tribe has a fun and unique tradition that we were able to celebrate this past month. On August 23rd, baby boy laughed for the first time so a week after that happened we threw him a First Laugh Ceremony. The tribe believes that a baby's first laugh marks it's birth as a social being. It is believed a child assumes the qualities of the person who witnesses, or coaxes his first giggle, and that was me! That also means that I was the one who gets to host the ceremony. It was actually perfect timing because my parents and two youngest siblings were visiting from California so they were able to come as well as many other family members. 

Once a baby has laughed, training in generosity begins immediately and that is one aspect of this ceremony. We had each guest take home a yummy drink, each one contained a different quote about laughter.

This quote was one of my favorites:)

Once the family started arriving baby boy got lots of love and attention, and a few attempts at making him laugh again:)

We gave Ivy one job and she took it very seriously. She gave each guest a smiley face sticker when they arrived. She went a bit overboard and started putting them all over the place. Soon the furniture (and most guests foreheads) were adorned with happiness.

Once everyone had their dinner I read about why this ceremony takes place and baby boy and I passed out salt to each guest which they immediately put in their mouth. The salt is meant to rejuvenate the good character in each recipient and serves as the first in a lifetime of generous acts by the child.

After the actual ceremony part of the party was over, and after being passed around for hugs and kisses many times, Bubba was pretty tired. We let him rest a bit.

Babies are just so entertaining:)

My husband and mother-in-law made some Indian fry bread for dessert. It was delicious!

I wasn't able to get everyone who came to the ceremony in this post since a majority of the pictures had baby boy's sweet face in them:) But I am so thankful for my loving family who came to support our little guy!

One quick update about month four: baby boy has two teeth, he is wearing 6-9 month clothes, and he has officially moved on to a stroller since I can no longer last with him in the Baby Bjorn. He is a big boy and we sure love all his chunkiness!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Back to School

Ivy started Pre-K today! She was so ready to go and what a wonderful experience it was dropping her off without any tears:) Some of her classmates from last year are in her new class this year which really helps and her new teachers are just awesome. I am so excited for her to make new friends, create cute artwork, and hopefully get even closer to reading. Most of all I am just thankful that she loves to go and has so much fun! I asked her a few questions this morning and wrote them in her quote journal so we will be able to remember her little personality forever, wanted to share a few...

Favorite color - Pink
Favorite food - Carrots, like a bunny
Favorite animal - Leopards and cheetahs
Favorite book - The Jungle Book
What do you want to be when you grow up? - "A princess but a mommy too, and a fireman so I can see Jake McDaniel." He is my sister's boyfriend:)

Now that Ivy is a big 4 year old we let her pick out a backpack and some new shoes for school. As you can see, she is all girl:) Twinkle Toes are apparently the "it" shoes in the preschool world and she is all about My Little Pony. I think I had more fun watching her pick out what she wanted than she did:)