It was my second time photographing these two sweet girls, Hailey and Hannah. This was Hannah’s 6-month session and I tell you … and that girl just might be the smiliest baby girl I have ever photographed. She made me so happy every time I talked to her because she’d totally encourage me with her huge grins. I just love this stage in a baby’s first year. Hailey & Hannah’s mom and I had such high hopes for this pretty little lane next to a park in their neighborhood. The light coming through the trees was just beautiful. We made plans for shooting here on Hannah’s 9-month session this fall, when the trees are all orange, red and brown … and then the ants came, biting at little Hailey’s feet. She was such a trooper when her mom and I weren’t sure why she kept saying her feet hurt. Then we figured it out and high-tailed it out of that icky road. I’m hoping all the ants will be gone by fall when it’s colder but we’re going to do a thorough once-over on that pretty little lane before we settle in for pictures. There … now you have the behind-the-scenes story. Isn’t Hailey a pretty fairy?

And because we loved it so much (and there weren’t any ants inside) we ventured back to a favorite spot from Hannah’s 3-month shoot. Can’t wait to see what adventures we’ll have on Hannah’s 9-month session in October!

This was my third time photographing this sweet family. I got to meet Phu and Samantha last year to do Sam’s maternity pictures and then see the whole family for Christmas photos last fall. Now their little Kalia is one and we met again to do family photos and a fun cake smash session to celebrate Kalia’s 1st birthday. We did these pictures at Chism Beach Park in Bellevue. Kalia was so inquisitive, I didn’t have much trouble getting her to make eye contact whenever I put the camera up to my face. She was always aware of where I was and where her parents were … trying to keep us all safe, I guess. 😉 Thanks for another fun session, Phu and Sam! Your little girl is such a sweetheart and I’m lucky to be able to take her pictures!

Meet Connor. He’s a recent graduate of Newport High School and about to become a Coug (woo-hoo!). This session was pretty cool, as we incorporated some of Connor’s favorite things … and you all should know by now that that’s MY favorite thing. Making your sessions unique and including the things that are important to you. We all love talking about our interests — taking pictures showing your passions is even better (in my opinion).

We started Connor’s session out around the perimeter of Safeco Field, a place he and his family have been many times. We had hoped to get inside, but at that point were unable to connect with our contact to get in (at that time). Connor was the pitcher of the Newport HS baseball team and loves his sport. His mom, an awesome woman I’ve known for years through the dance studio we both adore, is one proud mama. It’s so sweet to read the things she posts on Facebook about her kids. She was proud of Connor and how he excelled in baseball. When we went to a baseball field later on during Connor’s session, there was a small boy in Little League gear tossing a baseball back and forth with his dad. I asked her if, looking at that little boy, it brought back memories. She said,”Oh, it breaks my heart.” That reminded me to slow things down with my own kids because it sounds, from what I hear from the moms with high school-aged children, like we blink and all of a sudden our little ones are grown and ready to leave the house. That very thought, right there, is what motivates me to take the very best story-telling pictures for my own family and for my clients and friends.

After we left Safeco, Connor put on his Washington State University t-shirt and I was ALL for it! Remembering my own senior year of high school and what I felt that summer before leaving home and going over to Pullman, I got all kinds of thrilled for Connor and the adventures he has ahead of him. We talked about residence halls, other cool campus spots, things you might learn during your freshman year, how Pullman just worms its way into your heart forever. And although he said he wasn’t sure if he wanted to play baseball at WSU, I secretly REALLY hope he does. How awesome would that be?!?

I had never been to Newcastle Beach Park but we ventured over there and found this awesome little lane lined by trees and it was a perfect spot. The photo above is my favorite from the whole day. Want to know what Connor was laughing at? It was something his younger sister said to him and I won’t embarrass him with the details here. Pretty cool that his little sister can make him laugh, huh?

While we were at the park, Connor’s mom’s cell phone rang. It was our contact at Safeco Field. I convinced Connor, his mom and his sister that we had plenty of time to drive back to Seattle and get inside to do some more pictures. How could we pass that up? Not only did we get inside but we got a great tour of the locker rooms, the media rooms, coaches areas and other neat spots. It made for a long morning but I had a great time and I think we got some pretty fun senior photos for Connor and his family in a place where they have lots of good memories!

Dawn, Connor and Molly, thank you for having fun with me on this session. Connor, I’m super excited for you and all you have ahead of you at WSU. If it were possible to do so, I’d ask you to give Pullman a hug for me. I miss that place. Since you can’t hug a city, I’ll just tell you to go eat a calzone at Sella’s, drink a peanut butter frost at the Daily Grind and have an awesome time — you’ll be making memories over the next several years that you’ll remember for a lifetime. Congrats. And go Cougs. 🙂

  • Maranda - LOVE this! How neat that you were able to get into Safeco to do this- totally gives the session a very personal factor. As always, love the photos 🙂

  • Dawn - Thank you for such a wonderful blog on the session. It was a fun morning and I really appreciate your flexibility with the locations Mandy. The photos turned out better than I imagined. 🙂 Thank you!!

  • Christy - Seriously loved this session. I loved all the creative ways to showcase Conner and the things he loves. Way to go Mandy!!

Welcome to my first time photographing newborn twins. It was awesome.

My friend Rosie and her husband Todd welcomed these two sweet girls into their lives this May. I’ve known Rosie since we were young. Rosie’s parents own the dance studio I attended from when I was five until I graduated high school (and have since come back to dance with the adult class and brought my own little girl with me, who completed her first year of ballet this June, too). Rosie and I danced together, her older sister and her mom taught my ballet classes and Rosie also attended Washington State University the same time my husband and I were there, too (go Cougs). I was so happy to get to meet her daughters and take their first pictures (don’t forget to check out the sneak peek here).

It was definitely a learning experience — but one I LOVED getting to learn from! We broke the sessions up into two because a normal newborn session is typically 2-3 hours. When you have two newborns, it sometimes takes double the time to get them soothed, fed and sleepy at the same time. The girls were SO sweet and every time we got them sleeping next to each other, Rosie and I did little happy dances and I just clicked the shutter over and over and over again. It was really fun (I have fun on all of my sessions, but this was a brand new experience for me so it was unique!).

Todd and Rosie, thank you for being so patient with me as I pushed pause on all my editing during show time last month. I can’t wait to see you and your girls again soon. It is such an honor to photograph your family and so great to reconnect after all these years! Hugs to you all! xoxo

  • Katia - My oh my… SO precious! I bet they have changed so much already.

  • Hollie Renner - Gorgeous Mandy! Love it!

We’ve got a busy week here at our house, so this Flashback Friday has no real theme. It’s a random smattering of single pictures from July 2010. The first is Emma with the first crop of broccoli and zucchini from our garden. This is the third year we’ve planted a vegetable garden; 2010 was our first. Our best harvest came from that first year! We had a TON of veggies that year. This year, we discovered the neighborhood cats have been using our garden as a litter box (EW, I know) so we’re gonna have to dig it all up and hope our container plants and side gardens will suffice. Bummer. The second two pictures are from my sister-in-law’s birthday and are two of my favorites from that summer. The next pictures are of my roly-poly boy reading stories with his Grammy. And the last … well, I think it’s self-explanatory. Your guess is as good as mine. Nutella? Barbecue sauce?