My long-time dance friend Katia and her sweet family spent some time with me out at her parents’ beautiful home in Renton this summer. I think this was my fifth time photographing the L. family and this time was extra special because I love visiting her parents’ house. Back in middle and high school, Katia always hosted tons of dance slumber parties. We made several home movies, took tons of pictures, choreographed many routines, ate lots of snacks and laughed practically nonstop. Her parents still live in the same place and it’s always fun to go back there because although the house and gorgeous yard look slightly aesthetically different in some ways, it’s still the same place where we made memories as kids. And pretty much every time I go there I remind Katia of her old bedroom decorated with fish, in blue colors and with an awesome aquarium. The things that stick with you. 🙂
Katia & Jared’s little girl Ava is so precious and very strong. She knows what she wants and has a heart for her mama like I’ve never seen before. She would only let Katia out of her sight for mere seconds … unless her Grammie Chou (Katia’s mom) was nearby. Katia’s mom is from Switzerland and her native language is French. I love talking to her — her accent is beautiful and she’s so funny. Katia’s kids know a mixture of French and English words for things and I think that is awesome. The story goes that from the time Katia’s dad (from Seattle) met her mom, he always called her “chou chou,” which is like our term “sweetie.” So when Katia made her mom a grandmother back in 2008, the name Grammie Chou began and stuck. The direct translation of “chou” from French to English is “cabbage.” But I’m told that’s not the meaning here. 🙂
Jackson is such a cool kid. He looks so much like his mom, my pretty friend, and is sweet like her too. He cracks me up every time I see him. One minute he’s showing some superhero moves, the next minute he’s dancing like Michael Jackson (appropriate Michael Jackson). And I’ll never forget that when our kids were young and we used to have baby/toddler playdates together, Jackson’s favorite song to dance to was Beyonce’s Single Ladies. “If you liked it then you shoulda put a ring on it!” Yup — he knew the words AND the moves. 😉
I got to witness how much Ava adores her big brother, too. Jackson was cracking Ava up in the photo above, whispering funny words into her ear. It had everyone laughing to see her reactions to her brother’s antics. It’s hilarious to watch the two of them play together. It always warms my heart to see siblings enjoy one another and laugh together. I’ve seen the two of them giggle together a lot.
Katia, thank you again for letting me take pictures of your family! You were one of the very first people to ever trust me with my camera and I’m grateful for all the chances you’ve let me help you preserve some of your memories. I hope we have lots of memories ahead of us still to accompany all the ones from our past. You’re a dear friend and we adore your family! Hugs. xoxo