Lauren is One! (Charlotte baby photographer)

All the way from Morgantown WV, mom brought this sweet little pumpkin in for her 1 year portraits. Mom and dad work for my husbands alma mater WVU, so we love them even more! Especially after the big win in the Orange bowl last night!

Lauren is a doll and you would never know it took us a little extra time to get her to warm up. Our work paid off though and we captured her beautiful smile:) Definitely more shy than her brother Brady who just turned 2. I think mom is going to bring both of them in next time to do some portraits of them together. Well here’s to another great year in WVU sports! Let’s go Mountaineers!

Sweet Baby Clare (Charlotte newborn photographer)

After a weekend of one year olds, I was back in my baby groove with a precious little girl on Monday. Clare is a week old and so adorable. She has lashes that most women would pay for :) I have photographed her older brother and sister over the past 5+ years and was so excited to meet this little doll. What a perfect little gift she is! Take a peek at Sweet Clare!

Some fun art pieces… (Charlotte children photographer)

Thought I’d share a couple of images I created of my youngest daughter, Savannah. She is a doll and when she is in the mood a great model. I was working on my Christmas card images and this was not what I was going for, but we were just getting warmed up. If you’d like an original art piece like this for your home, let me know and we can create something that fits your style :)

 

 

Levine Children’s Hospital annual butterfly release (Charlotte newborn photographer)

This weekend was Levine Children’s butterfly release to remember all of the sweet NICU babies who went home to heaven this year (and in years past). It was a beautiful ceremony and a wonderful way for the families and amazing staff at Levine to remember the children and heal their broken hearts. Cindy Lail, a NICU nurse at Levine, along with several other staff members helped to organize this years ceremony.

The story behind the butterfly release is about a Native American legend, it was said that if you wanted to speak to God you could whisper your prayers to a butterfly and he would carry them to heaven. Needless to say I saw many children sending up prayers to their siblings as well as parents who whispered to the butterflies before releasing them into the sky.

Jerry Mudge, a mother who also lost 2 of her children in a car accident, was present at the ceremony. She spearheaded the children’s memorial park along with other volunteers. “People wouldn’t have come up with the idea, this was God,” Mudge said. “It took eight years for us to listen to him and get in tune with His timing.” She wanted a place to help parents heal and have a physical place to come remember their children. “These are stories of hope. By building the walkway, we’ve given these people hope. It’s a place for them to heal,” she said. “When you remember your child and others remember, it helps you heal. You are doing something about your grief.”

Needless to say as a photographer for Now I Lay Me Down to sleep, it was healing for me as well to see these families hearts beginning to heal. Often times I am with them at the most heart breaking moments they will ever go through. It takes a toll on us as photographers as well. As it does the nurses and other staff members who care for these families. The butterfly release is for us too, to help us heal from the grief that we see and carry for these families. Here are a few images from the ceremony. If you’d like to see the entire slideshow, there is a link attached as well.

See all the images on the slideshow!

http://video214.com/play/07Nly8wLQ7MSQM0gffVsNQ/s/dark

Charlotte Flashes of Hope

I had an awesome opportunity to work with 10 children and their families at Presby in Charlotte. I was working with an amazing organization called Flashes of Hope who goes out to the area hospitals and works with children who are undergoing treatment for life threatening illness. It is amazing to me to see the spirit of these kids while there are fighting for there life quite often. We had smiles all around! I even had a little girl make me a paper flower! I will cherish it always :) So glad to share some of these great kids with you! If you’d like more info on Flashes of Hope and how you could help, go to their site at  http://www.flashesofhope.org/

Take a  peek…

 

 

Spring is here… and everyone wants pictures:) (charlotte area children’s photographer)

I have been busy capturing some cuties the past couple of weeks! Here are a few of the latest and greatest. First, sweet Elliot… This little darling has been coming since he was in the womb… Now six months old, he is just beautiful. A beautiful mix of a handsome blue eyed papa, and a gorgeous latin mommy! (You should see there maternity pics:) Take a peek at Elliot…

Next we have the beautiful Delany. Her sister has been so excited to show her off to the world. Time got away from mom and dad though with the overwhelming task of baby #2, so we did Delany’s newborn photos at about 7 weeks old. OOOOPs, mom’s just going to tell her she was a big baby:) Take a peek at Delany (and proud big sister, Savannah)…

 

And last but definitely not least…. Sammy. This little bundle of all boy came in for one year photos this week. At a whopping 30 pounds, he is solid and ready to play ball! Im sure he will be a linebacker someday :) He has the most beautiful blue eyes, and a grin that just melts you. I just want to squeeze his perfect chubby little cheeks (that nearly swallow up his adorable dimples mind you). Take a peek at Sammy…

Sweet Kaitlyn (charlotte area children’s photographer- Niemann Pick disease)

Kaitlyn is 19 months old. Her daddy, Chip called me back in January to discuss capturing some images of her and some with her new brother and family.  You see Kaitlyn has Neimann Picks type A. This is an autosomal recessive disorder that is just unimaginable for a family to go through.  This is Kaitlyns story…

“My name is Chip Bourgeault.  My daughter Kaitlyn Kay Bourgeault was born on 7/1/2009 a seemingly healthy girl.  She had a number of complications along the way that other children didn’t have, but we wrote off the majority of it to her just getting sick from daycare.  By about 7 months we and the doctors began to notice she wasn’t reaching milestones of talking, sitting, or crawling.  After exhaustive visits with the top doctors in our area, we received results on April 23, 2010 from a blood test that indicated she had an extremely rare fatal and degenerative disease called Niemann-Pick type A for which there is no cure or treatment.  Her body lacks an enzyme that breaks down a fatty substance in her cells.  Ultimately this fatty substance builds in her cells and slowly causes her to wither away and develop severe neurological disabilities including the loss of muscle use, loss of ability to swallow, and eventually death by the age of 2 to 3.  She is currently 18 months old.  We are not sure whether the time we have left will be 2 months or a year, but we know her progression continues to worsen as time goes on.

I came across the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep website and wanted to share our story with you and find out if families like ours fit into the services offered by the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep foundation.  Prior to her diagnosis, my wife and I both worked and we were well off enough to afford photography sessions every three months for Kaitlyn’s first year of life and we cherish some of those photos the most.  As you can imagine, the diagnosis turned our world upside down.  We relocated back from Dallas to Charlotte shortly after getting the news to be back near family, my wife quit her job to stay home full time and care for Kaitlyn, and the medical bills don’t afford us the ability to do professional photography or much else any longer.”

Hearing this story absolutely broke my heart. I have 6 healthy children and I can’t imagine the pain they are going through. NILMDTS is not really directed at this kind of service, but I am so glad they found me anyways. Kaitlyn was scheduled for a surgery, so we got her in on the weekend before. Chip was concerned that she may lose some of her spirit going through the procedure, and wanted to make sure we captured her how she is now. Fortunately it looks like she is doing wonderful and spirit filled:) This family is going through so much and Im sure would love the support of as many people as possible. If you’d like to follow Kaitlyn journey, or send her parents a msg of encouragement, please do. Her blog can be found at

http://niemannpick.blogspot.com

I know they are trying to raise funds for her care and are doing an auction with the Cajun Canvas in Charlotte! Take a look and see if there is anyway you could help:)

Here are some of my favorites from our session in January! God Bless you sweet girl:)