Baby Brody

A few weeks after Brody was born, I snapped some pictures of my little nephew.  Even at three weeks old, he was the sleepiest baby! He was a dream.  Also, please take notice of the adorable nursery that my sister put together!!! I told you she had an eye for decorating! The pillows, bed spread, rug... all of it was an amazing little back drop.

Get ready for a whole lot of cuteness!

Look at his LIPS!!!
Presley in a princess dress, of course :)

!!!!!! Just too much for me to handle..

I love the next series of shots... Big sister Presley watching over him..

The day Brody was born

We all anxiously awaited the arrival of  my sister's little baby.  At Jen's 20 week anatomy scan, the technician found an oomphalocele on the baby's belly. Typically, that kind of defect is also coupled with other physical and genetic abnormalities. I remember my sister telling me about the phone call she received after the results from the ultrasound came back.  In tears, Jen, Daniel and I sat and prayed over that sweet baby.  Prayed, hard, that God would protect the baby, that the doctors would have all the information needed to proceed with care, and that Jen and Daniel would be strengthened and comforted as they walked a road unknown to them. 
They did a lot of testing, and watched the baby as it grew, and PRAISE JESUS, the doctors determined that there were no other defects, and that the size of the oomphalocele was fairly small. Still, the baby would need to have surgery within the first couple days of it's life. All so so scary and hard to process when you are still carrying the baby in your womb.
My sister was a champ.  She remained strong, calm, and graceful, which I know she attributes to God. Because of the potential complications and stress a vaginal birth can have on a wee babe, the doctors scheduled a c-section.

 Daniel texted my parents and I to come out into the hallway at 9:41 am.
 We all took guesses on what she was having. Most of us thought it would be a girl.  But to our surprise, it was a BOY!

 My sister's lips!
 Wheeling the baby into the NICU.

 They only allowed two people back in the NICU room.  My mom and I went in to find that Jen had just been wheeled in from her recovery.

 It was heavy, seeing him hooked up to everything.  And I even had the comfort of knowing that his defect wasn't that bad.  My heart broke for the other babies in the NICU, and their parents.

 Brody's sweet nurses.

His surgery went really well, and he is a healthy baby boy with a bellybutton :) I can only imagine the stories he'll make up as to how he got his scar.

Welcome to the world, Brody!! You are loved!

Jen's Maternity

Playing a bit of catch-up here. Some of you may already know that my sister, Jen, had her baby already, but I had to share some pictures from her pregnancy... after all, it will be her last, and she was just too radiant to NOT share them.

Jen and I are four years apart. Those four years seemed like decades when we were young.  But once she was in college, and I was in high school, the distance started closing. As we got older, our friendship grew stronger.  She is so creative.  She has a knack for picking out the best prints, and her vision for a room is amazing.  My people pleasing ways usually hold me back from speaking up, even if what I want to say is gentle and honest.  Not Jen. I have always admired how she stands up for herself and others around her.  She tells it like it is, and she knows what she wants. As someone who is always mulling around feelings and shoulds and shouldn'ts in my head, she is refreshing. I always know where I stand.

Get outta here! How gorgeous is she?!

I love this next series of her and Presley.  As she's gotten older, P is very independent (like mother, like daughter!!!).  She isn't really into snuggling much anymore, so capturing a few of them together was really special.

Beautiful, right? What you don't see in this picture are Presley and Will running around like crazy people behind me :)

Love that last one!!

And I had to share a couple of Will. Notice the dirt on his face? He had been rolling around in it while I was snagging pictures of my sis... what ever keeps him happy so I can shoot! :)

Aaron & Erica + 2

I remember the moment shortly after my son was born when I realized how different my life would forever be. We had been at home for a couple of days, I had a touch of the "baby blues," and darn-it! I couldn't run and take refuge at Target when I wanted to get out of the house!!!  They (whoever 'they' are) say while you're pregnant that "your whole life is about to change!!" And, I knew that was true, but I had no idea how different it was going to be until I experienced the change myself. I have been around a lot of babies, so I felt a little more ready.  It was a huge change, and that was only with ONE baby.

Aaron and Erica welcomed TWO little babies into their family a little over weeks ago.  As I am a newbie photographer, I reached out to her and asked if I could document their new life at home, as a family of four.  She kindly accepted. Erica and I were friends and fellow cheerleaders in high school (SMHS, what UP?!!).  She went on to become a successful hair stylist, married her high school sweetheart, trained hard as a fitness competitor, and never left good ol' North County.  When she announced she was expecting, she kept all of us facebook-stalkers in the know by documenting her pregnancy in one of the most beautiful ways I have seen.  She shared her weight gains, her measurements, and even posted pics of her bare belly. And all along the way, I felt like I was there with her. Basically, she rocks. She has embraced motherhood fully and I felt honored to witness just a glimpse of it.

Aaron & Erica - thanks a MILLION for allowing me into your home to document your sweet little family (Hi Jameson and Chloe!!).  I am so grateful for your openness and trust.  I hope you enjoy these pictures of your new, full, life.  It is a beautiful one!  - MANY thanks, Christina

Jameson only has eyes for his mama!
Love that sweet little hand saying hello!

I love these two photos of Aaron above. Especially that sweet little smile he has on his face when looking at his daughter.