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We have been shooting back to back weddings for four weeks now and this was our last wedding before a couple-week break. It was one to end with!! The energy and joy left us so thankful for the sweet couples that we get to call our own! Will and Allie have infectious smiles… and if you think they seem happy in these images, you should see how happy they are in real life. They are the cutest couple. They are totally obsessed with one another in the best way and you could just feel how ready they were to be husband and wife!

Allie mentioned to me that their wedding was retro-inspired and I just loved that. It’s fun when couples do something a little different from all of the trends! Their venue played into this inspiration perfectly. The John Marshall ballrooms were amazing backdrops for their ceremony and reception! This historic hotel has old, vintage signage on the rooftop and Allie mentioned wanting a shot of it in the background of their photos. I remember that I had done this shot  YEARS ago but it took some serious google-mapping to find the right parking garage with the correct view. We were a little rushed but Will and Allie were on board to drive to the top of the garage and I’m so thankful that we did because it was a portrait-location goldmine! The view, the neutral tones and the light were just perfect! I can’t wait for you to see the final product!

As I write this blog post, it seems like it wasn’t that long ago that I was capturing Kristen and Mike’s wedding day at Lewis Ginter.  While my work has changed a little bit since 2013, our love for our couples and what we do has not. From the moment I read Allie’s inquiry email over a year ago, I have been excited and hopeful that we would have the honor of capturing this day for them and their families.

Allie and Will, I hope you’re enjoying your honeymoon and are relaxing with a gorgeous view. I also hope you have some WIFI so that you can relive this magical day through your images!! We love you both! Enjoy your blog post!!

Allie LOVES shoes. We learned this about her during her engagement session! It only  seems appropriate that her perfume bottle would be a high heel!
I just love her mom. Every time the tears started to come, they would both start laugh/crying. They are basically the same person when it comes to their smiles and so I love  these series of images!

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So what are the hard parts with Baby Graham? Well, he’s a great sleeper…. I have no complaints in that area!! We are SO grateful! Just last night he slept from 10pm to 6:30am and then we both went back to bed from 7am to 8am! What a dream, right?! Honestly, the hardest part was at four weeks. He went through a week-long phase of not knowing how to be content and happy when he was awake but not nursing. I worried he was going to be categorized at “colicky” but around week five, that started to change. We figured out what he liked and what made him happy. Dada would walk him down the driveway, he LOVES baths, he learned to love the lights above the kitchen island and he loves laying on his changing table… just out in the middle of the kitchen.

Graham’s hair is so similar to Evy’s and his vocal chords are similar to Evy’s.  He can SCREAM! But he’s also extremely snuggly and it’s so sweet. He’s really strong and it can make getting his onesies on quite a challenge. He loves to be swaddled even though he acts like he hates it at first. He’s not a smiler yet…. only in his sleep or when he’s nursing… but we know the real smiles are coming and I can’t wait!!

We love this little boy so much. I still feel weird saying “Michael, who’s going to watch the KIDS that day?”  or “What are the KIDS doing right now?”.  We have KID(S)…. plural! I love seeing Michael walking around the house holding a little baby again. It’s a sweet season for us. Everywhere you look in our house, you can see reminders of Baby James and when you see those images while you’re holding Baby Graham, it makes you hold him a little tighter. We celebrated Baby James’ first Birthday when Graham was just a week old. I worried about whether or not it would be hard for me to love another baby boy after losing one the way we did with James but that isn’t a concern at all. If anything, James’ life makes me love and cherish Graham MORE and I’m so grateful for that.

When Baby Graham was three weeks old, we started our wedding season! Whew! What a whirlwind. We have photographed three weddings in a row and while it has been hard to leave such a tiny baby at home every weekend, it has been good for me to do what I love and get out of the house!!!

This first month with Baby Graham has been wonderful and redemptive. I never want to forget how grateful I am for this baby boy and this new season of our life. Here are some moments and memories I don’t want to forget:

One Month Memories:
  • We thought Graham didn’t know how to spit up. He would eat like a champ and burp big but nothing would come up! That has since changed! ha! I think everyone has been slimed a time or two.
  • Nursing was hard the first two weeks for me, not baby Graham. He’s a pro at it. It was painful because he has an abnormally strong latch but it’s all good now. So thankful!
  • Emy and I have to pump on wedding days…. which a lot of times means doing it the back of our minivan! We recently got the Willow Pump and tried to use it right before a wedding… for the FIRST TIME, that was a HUGE and hilarious mistake! Don’t cry over spilled milk? Oh, we were almost in meltdown mode!
  • He’s peed on everything.
  • He poops non-stop…. like every diaper change.
  • We realized around 4 weeks that he liked pacifiers for 16 month olds!
  • Evy thinks that baby Graham is drinking “smoothies” when he’s nursing and has offered to feed him herself!
  • Graham LOVES riding on the boat…. when it’s moving!
  • He’s not great at self-soothing… but it’s getting better as he gets older! PTL.
  • He could stay in a bathtub all day.
  • We took him to church around two weeks old and he has slept through every service since!
  • He will nap for 3+ hours some days… and wakes up STARVING.
  • EVERYONE thinks Graham looks like my DAD! Everyone except us! haha
  • His night-time sleep is amazing. Thank you Jesus.
  • He doesn’t mind getting his clothes changed… Evy would lose her mind when something went over her head.
  • Evy loves to give him kisses and shoves the paci in his mouth… sometimes with a little too much force.
  • He passed his hearing test and I cried walking out of the appointment because I was so incredibly relieved that everything was ok. What a gift it is to receive good news!
  • He isn’t always thrilled to be in the car… bummer. But when he’s asleep in his “bucket” (his car seat…. I don’t know why my family calls them a “bucket” now) then he was sleep for hours in that thing!
  • He takes 5oz bottles when I’m not nursing him. Wow.
  • He seems very serious right now… which  is actually pretty funny when you compare him to Harper because this is the month at she started smiling at EVERYTHING!!!
  • It’s HARD to take pictures the way I did with Evy but I desperately want to. I’m learning to accept that it’s different for the second baby and that’s ok. At least I’m taking some!! And at least this post is happening before he’s officially two months old! I’d call that a win!
Ok, Enjoy some pictures from Graham’s first month of life!!!! ….. Please notice this first image… this was literally 30mins after we brought him home. Poor guy!!!
Oh but she adores him…. Meeting Aunt Momo and Unke Corey! Harper girl…. her smile is the best thing!  First “head” bath!  Meeting friends!!!  Evy and Alton! The Tummy Time Challenge with Harper… he was only three days old!
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There is nothing I love more than walking into a bridal suite and seeing familiar faces. I  immediately felt welcomed and loved as soon as we stepped foot into the Presidential Suite. Emma’s beautiful mom and sisters were getting ready in gorgeous striped blue robes with eyelet detail on the edges. They were so pretty!! This was my first introduction to how amazingly well-planned and photogenic this day would be! Emma’s mom planned all of the intricate details. The custom watercolored invitations matched the reception florals and the macaroons to a T! As you scroll through this blog post, you’ll see her hard work on display!

It was such a peaceful morning.  We started shooting in the bridal suite and the hotel room was filled with hair appointments, makeup touchups and lots of gummy bears being consumed. I didn’t know this until the wedding day, but Emma has an obsession with gummy bears…. and  I understand this obsession completely. There is no greater candy than a Harigold gummy bear!! Am I right?!  Emma even shared some gummy bears with Chris during their first look and in that moment, I couldn’t have loved her more!! Ha!

During the toasts, Chris’s older brother shared how Chris and Emma met… on a Habitat for Humanity trip during college.  Ever since that trip, their lives were never the same.  They were years apart in school and the chances of their paths crossing were incredibly slim…. so it wasn’t by chance  that they found each other.  God had a beautiful plan for them all along and now,  after 7 years of dating, they are finally husband and wife! They were surrounded and celebrated by the sweetest family and friends at the top of the Historic Hay Adams Hotel overlooking the White House.  It was perfect from beginning to end and we felt so incredibly honored that we were welcomed back into this family to capture it all.

Enjoy scrolling through my favorites! And Emma and Chris, I hope Hawaii is amazing!!!! We love you both and we couldn’t be happier for you!

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It was an absolute JOY to be with Christian and Amanda on their wedding day this past Saturday! They were married at the gorgeous Dover Hall Estate near our home in Manakin Sabot, Virginia! The light was incredible, the portraits were insanely beautiful and everything went as planned. The day started with tears from Sharon (the Mother of the Bride) as soon as we walked in. I get it, when my photographer walked into our house on our wedding day, all of a sudden it hit me that THIS WAS HAPPENING. It was game time!! For Amanda and Christian, they had been engaged and in planning mode for over 18 months and so you better believe that they were ready to see this day happen!!

It seems like just yesterday we were getting to know Christian at their proposal and during their engagement session. We had a few quick moments of time where we had the chance to get to know him prior to the big day.  However, after experiencing their incredible wedding and spending an entire day together…. we are probably Christian’s biggest fans! (And that’s saying a lot because he has a ton of good friends!) Christian is thoughtful, genuine, well spoken, well loved and incredibly kind. His love for Amanda is so evident in every interaction with her. He blew us away with his amazing letter that he read to her after their first look and then he toasted to her during their reception. He thinks the world of her and because of that, we think the world of him. We love our “youth group kids”(who are now very much adults) and we want the absolute best for them….. and it’s evident that Christian is the best. Watching Amanda marry such an incredible guy brings us so much joy.

The entire day was such an honor to be a part of. From the moment we walked in the door to the end of the night when we hugged goodbye, we loved being there. I love capturing beautiful images of GORGEOUS people but really, what I loved even more was watching Scott and Sharon experience such a huge milestone with their first baby. It made me teary multiple times throughout the day because I can’t help but try to imagine what this day will feel like for us when Evy is getting married. It gives me a whole new perspective on the day and how special it is to not just the bride and groom but to the parents as well.  I could go on and on about how much I love this family and how perfect their day was…. but I have shared WAY too many pictures in this blog post and it’s going to take you a while to scroll through them!!

Christian and Amanda, you are an incredible couple. Your love for one another and for other people was shining so brightly throughout your entire wedding day. We couldn’t love you more and we can’t thank you enough for allowing us to be the ones to save the memories of your big day!!!! Enjoy!!

Ps. We got to work with our FAVORITES! Ty and Ashley Herrinton filmed their day and here’s a sneak peek! :

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It was beautiful from beginning to end. Their friends drove and flew from many different states and even different countries! One of my favorite things about Evan and Grace is how loved they are by their friends! You could tell that everyone was ecstatic about being there to celebrate with them. They had ten bridesmaids and ten groomsmen in their bridal party and even though everyone was from different parts of their life they all seemed like one big family because of their shared love for Evan and Grace. It made for a fun day full of entertainment and excitement.

Evan and Grace were married in one of the oldest and most historic churches in all of Richmond and then they had the most amazing party afterwards. The band, the decor, the food . . . everything was just perfect. As toasts were shared it was easy to see that Grace’s wedding was not the first time her parents had created an inviting space for their friends and family. Grace may have been an only child but the Merinar’s were parents to many. The maid and matron of honor shared stories of sleepovers and many memories of time spent with Grace’s family as they grew up.  Our daughter is only two years old, but I can only assume that hearing Grace’s friends share about how much they loved being around her family had to be such a gift to Grace’s parents.

This beautiful day was the perfect way to get back into wedding season. We left our 3 week old at home for the day, and it was so good for us to work.  As much as I missed the baby snuggles this was a wonderful change of pace! We have looked forward to seeing Evan and Grace again ever since their engagement session in Colorado! Their day didn’t disappoint!!! You’ll see what I mean as you scroll through my favorites! Enjoy!

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I gave birth to James on May 1st and we said hello and goodbye on that day. Three months later, on August 1st, I was pregnant with Graham. We had prayed about trying and realized that we had potentially one chance to get pregnant with our rainbow baby before needing to wait a significantly longer amount of time because of a crazy wedding season. Michael and I prayed about this…. it was such a risk… emotionally and physically. After everything we had just been through… every heartbreaking appointment, every disappointment, every hard detail of losing James… should we really put ourselves in a position to potentially relive something like that again? It was definitely scary, but we knew that we wouldn’t get pregnant if it wasn’t the right time, and we also knew that if we did get pregnant God would have a purpose for whatever would happen next in our story.

I have always heard of women who say they just KNEW they were pregnant from the very beginning and I have always thought that seemed impossible…. but this time around, I knew. I knew we were beginning the next season of our story immediately. Lots of tears… lots of hope… lots of anticipating. I remember being at the lake with friends and family a week or so after trying and feeling crampy out on the boat. I wanted to be hopeful but I also new it was a long shot. Michael and I came home from the lake and I told him I was going to take a test. We laid on our bed and prayed as we waited to see if two lines would appear…. and they did. Very clearly. I couldn’t believe it. Insert more happy tears. I quickly realized that this baby’s due date would be within 7 days of the one year anniversary of James’ birthday and once I realized that, I truly started to believe that this could really be our redemption story.

The months and weeks following were hard. I envisioned having to tell the world that we were pregnant, only to announce a miscarriage later on. I envisioned hearing hard things at every appointment. I could see us getting hopeful just to be devastated…. but those things never happened. Week by week, this baby continued to grow. At 8 weeks there was an umbilical cord cyst and protein in my urine that made us think that I may have had some damage from developing pre-eclampsia right after James’ delivery, but by week 12 those things were gone. We continued this pregnancy with one good appointment after another. It felt surreal to leave our doctor’s office with only good news to share with our families.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago…. I was around 38 weeks pregnant and I started believing that our easy pregnancy would turn complicated at the very end. Complicated was all that we had ever known!

If you don’t have 3 hours to read through Evy and James’ birth stories (HERE and HERE), here’s a recap of our past…. I had gestational diabetes with Evy, an aggressive tumor that almost ate through my knuckle on my index finger and had to be surgically removed when I was 9 months pregnant, and an awful OB experience being told that I could never deliver my first baby vaginally because of her size. James was our second baby. It was a surprise pregnancy when Evy was just 8 months old. At 20 weeks he was diagnosed with Down Syndrome with severe complications, including a cystic hygroma and hydrops, and was not supposed to survive past 24 weeks. He lived until 31 weeks and I delivered him the day we lost him. I developed severe pre-eclampsia immediately after his birth because of all that was wrong with his placenta and his swelling. I had to spend two extra days in the hospital and was put on magnesium in order to correct the pre-eclampsia.

Whew.

See why I was so convinced that my third pregnancy would have to be complicated somehow? But it wasn’t.

Monday morning, April 22nd, I had a massage at 10am and then an OB appointment at 2:00pm where I had my membranes stripped for the third time. I then came home and told Michael that I wanted to ride on our zero-turn lawn mower… hoping that the bumps and jolts around the yard would start labor. Nothing happened throughout dinner but at 8:00pm, we hopped on a zoom call with some friends of ours, and I noticed a few contractions that were low. They weren’t Braxton Hicks… they were different.

They were 10 minutes apart and then 20 minutes apart. I had no idea if this was labor…. I hadn’t ever been in labor before! So I finished packing the hospital bag (I was 2 days from my due date… procrastination at its’ finest!) and I told Michael to sleep upstairs. I was having a hard time sleeping through the contractions and hearing him snore just made me mad! :) I got some sleep and then woke up feeling like nothing was happening. After being up and walking around for about an hour, contractions restarted and were about 4 minutes apart. They stayed that way for almost 5 hours. I called the OB office and they told me I could come into the office, but since I had the monitors to check my blood pressure and his heart rate I chose to stay home a little while longer, and I’m glad I did.

They say go to the hospital when you don’t want your picture taken anymore…. I was getting close to that point! ha!

Our good friend Jill drove into town and came to the house for lunch. Momma, Emy, Michael, Jill and the toddlers all hung out while I labored at home. I always wanted to be able to labor at home for a while before heading to the hospital. It got to the point where I didn’t want to eat anything… the only thing that sounded good was a Chick Fil A chocolate milkshake! (I mean, when doesn’t a Chick Fil A milkshake sound good?!) We decided to head to the hospital around 1:00pm and I was admitted by 2:00pm. I’m just going to put this out there…. TRIAGE is INFURIATING when you are in labor! One nurse said “Ok, we need to figure out if we’re going to keep you or not!” and I wanted to say “Oh, you’re keeping me!!! I’m not going anywhere!!!!”. Don’t get me wrong, the nurses and staff were great… we adore this hospital… I was just in PAIN!

I was 5cm, 80% effaced and he was engaged. It was a little disappointing to hear that after hours and hours of strong contractions at home I was only at 5 cm… but I was halfway there and so I needed to just focus on keeping things moving. I got to our room and met our midwife. Her name was Brenda and she had the most peaceful demeanor. She talked to us and asked why I wanted a natural birth, and so I told her our story (in between contractions of course!). I have to admit…. I didn’t go into the hospital 100% committed to a natural birth. I wanted a natural birth but I also knew that an epidural had done wonders for me in the past and I wasn’t afraid of them….. in fact, I’ve only had good experiences with them! I’ve heard that if you go into this process without fully dedicating to a natural birth no matter how painful it gets, you usually don’t end up avoiding the epidural, and I remember that statistic floating around in my head throughout the day. I really had no idea how this was going to go.

Brenda asked our nurse to move us to a room with a tub (praise the LORD for that tub! It came in handy later on). I’m so thankful that she knew that I needed this. Brenda, our nurse Steph, and Michael helped me make it down the hall to a new room through a bad contraction and once we got there…. it seemed like I couldn’t get a break. I stopped having conversations in between contractions because I needed to just rest before another wave hit. I rotated on the ball, tried standing and holding onto Michael’s shoulders for some, tried laying down for some (horrible idea), tried just leaning over on the bed for some (much better idea)…. but no matter what I did, it was intense. The pain level was HIGH and I started asking Brenda how much longer she thought it would be…. which she obviously couldn’t tell me… but I was desperate to have a gauge of how long I would have to live like this.

In my mind, I felt like I could keep going if I knew when the end would be…. but that’s not how labor works. Brenda reminded me to take it one contraction at a time… and I would… but then I would think “Um, If I have to do this for 8 more hours, I CAN’T!!!”. It was getting to the point where I would cry during the worst part of each contraction and I was starting to lose hope that I could keep going without an epidural… but then I noticed something that I had noticed with James’ and Evy’s births. The nurse started prepping the baby warmer thing. Then I noticed that Brenda never left the room like she said she was going to do. This may sound like no big deal, but it was a big deal for me. I knew what those things meant…. they could tell something was happening and they were preparing for it. Praise the Lord!!! Maybe the end was closer than I thought!!

I remember asking when I could be checked again to see if any progress was being made. In my mind, I wanted to be checked because if I was only at 6cm, I was going to ask for an epidural. It had been two hours since I had last been checked and while I know they normally want to wait longer than that, I was desperate for an update. Brenda checked me and much to my surprise (and relief!) said “Ok, you’re at 8…. this is transition… let’s get the tub ready.” I laid my head back on the bed and cried. I felt so relieved that this was IT… this was the worst part, I was progressing quickly and I knew the end was coming. I got in the tub and it felt like the closest thing to an epidural. Heavenly. The water was HOT and it was wonderful!! It was the first feeling of relief that I had had for hours. I remember Brenda somewhat sternly telling me “If you feel like you need to push, you HAVE to get out”. These were not birthing tubs, they are for relief but not for delivering babies. I stayed in the tub for about 20-25 minutes, and Jilly came back to the room around this time.

This is where it got kinda confusing and scary for me. I had no reason to be scared… but I knew the hardest part was coming and I had never been able to feel pushing 100% before. I went through a few contractions on the bed that were just awful. It hurts just to think about them. I felt like I was close to pushing but looking back, I probably could have waited another contraction or two. I hadn’t hit the “I need to push! I can’t help it!” phase, but I did feel a ton of pressure and so I started pushing. It seemed so foreign to me because it didn’t feel like the pushing I had experienced before. With Evy, I could feel the pressure but didn’t feel pain. Pushing was a relief with her and I felt like I got the hang of it quickly. James was breech but I only pushed for 15 minutes. In my head, I had planned on pushing like TWICE to get this third baby out and that was a horrible expectation to put on myself. Now that I know I was about to push out my biggest baby yet, I should have had more realistic expectations!!

I pushed and I could tell what a good push felt like and a halfway push. I felt beyond exhausted and I think I even said “I don’t think I can do this!!” and someone said “Yes you can, and ummm….you have to!!!”. I don’t know if I have ever felt more overwhelmed in my life. I just felt like nothing was happening, and I didn’t have the strength to push as hard as I knew I needed to, AND I was terrified of the pain. I remember saying “What can I do better?! Oh no, I don’t feel the ring of fire… it’s going to get worse, isn’t it!?!”. Brenda would say something encouraging and I would say “Ok, ok, ok” and then try again. The interesting thing is that while this part was painful… the actual contractions were slower and less intense. How nice of my body to give me a little break while I figured out how to get a huge baby out of me and into the world!!

Something I will never forget…. right after pushing started, our nurse from both Evy’s and James’ birth came in. Sweet Sarah. Just seeing her gave me such a sweet sense of comfort and familiarity. I just love her and so does Michael. She held my leg, and I remember that feeling so clearly from past births because she’s STRONG!! I also remember that she had counted for me during pushing and it helped me hold a push longer than I normally would. She told me that some people HATE the counting, but I asked her to count during each contraction and push, because it was really helpful to me!

About the time that I was truly feeling like I couldn’t go on…. which was probably only 18 minutes into pushing (but felt like an eternity!), I pushed one really hard push and Graham’s head stayed where I had pushed it. The nurses and Brenda praised this progress but I was still just as overwhelmed as ever. This is when Jill prayed over me, and I asked Jesus to help me because I felt beyond incapable. Maybe it was the new position of his head or maybe it was an immediate answer to prayer, but my body started pushing without me. I couldn’t help it. It’s like it just took over. Brenda told me to slow down, and I apologized and said I couldn’t! It may have been a few pushes later… I don’t really remember.. but I heard “Ok, his head is out” and I honestly couldn’t believe it. It was over. Oh my gosh, it was OVER!!!! The physical relief that flooded over me was indescribable…. and then the emotions of meeting our rainbow baby hit hard.

I heard baby Graham cry for the first time…. a sound I had longed for since May 1st of last year.

As baby Graham laid on my chest, I put my hand around his head and just closed my eyes and sobbed, and so did Michael. I remember saying right after giving birth to him…. “This is so much sweeter after you have walked through what we walked through”. I said that with tears streaming down my face and holding my chunky third baby in my arms. I don’t know of anything that could have been more redemptive to our story than what we experienced in that moment.

I know what it’s like to do all of this and then hold a baby who will never take a breath. I remember holding James for the first time feeling so in love with him and so heartbroken at the same time. That memory was etched into my brain so deeply that I had forgotten the incredible joy of what it feels like to hold a living baby for the first time. This is going to seem so sad… but I cried thinking about how warm Baby Graham was and that he wasn’t going to turn cold. I cried watching Michael cry and rejoice over this precious baby that we had prayed for. I cried seeing Michael holding and kissing a son who we would get to take home…. and I cried realizing that we were finally on the other side of the hardest year of our entire life. We finally had a healthy baby boy in our arms.

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You want the invitation layout to look natural, balanced, editorial and cohesive with the style of the entire day. However, accomplishing all of these things is no easy task! If you struggle to lay out and style invitation suites during your wedding days, I hope you enjoy this free video from this month’s KJ ALL ACCESS video!

FREE EDUCATIONAL VIDEO : How to Style an Invitation Suite - YouTube

Photographers are calling KJ ALL ACCESS a VISUAL LEARNER’S DREAM!!!!! And we have to agree!

There is nothing else like this and it’s changing the way that photographers are learning to grow in their technical skill and their confidence on their wedding days and portrait sessions!!

Whether you’re a veteran and you need new inspiration for your next wedding or you’re a brand new photographer who wants a virtual second shooting experience, KJ ALL ACCESS episodes were made for you!!!!

Not only am I teaching you through watching me shoot behind the scenes, I’m also including an editing training video each month as well!! This means you can watch me EDIT some of the images that you actually watched me SHOOT!!! So fun!!

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It was easy to fall into thinking that we didn’t do enough today… like we should have had a party for James… we should have started more traditions… we should have acknowledged him more. It’s easy to feel like we’re forgetting him because we have a new baby in our lives who needs me every 2-3 hours… but I know in my heart that that isn’t true.

Today may be Baby James’ birthday, but this is not the only day that we celebrate his life and talk about him. We share about him constantly.  Sometimes I tell strangers about him even though I know that it’s a lot for them to hear… but I don’t care. When people asked me if I was pregnant with my first, I never say our second…. even though that would be the easiest thing to say. James’ life is still a part of our lives and will forever be a part of our story that we will share without hesitating.

Today, the four of us went down to visit James’ willow tree on the other side of our property with one balloon for his first birthday. I’m praying this tree lives for decades and I have told Michael we’re never leaving this house because of this tree!!!! :)  It was a sweet day full of the kindest messages from so many friends and family who wanted us to know that they still love and remember our baby.

Baby James…. Happy Birthday sweet boy. You would have been one today and even though our heart ache to have you here… doing all the things little one year olds do…. we rejoice that you are in the place we all ultimately long to be. We love you and we’ll never stop sharing your story.

Read more about Baby James’ story HERE, HERE & HERE!

Thank you Aunt Emy for taking these!!!!

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Every shoot has its’ own challenges but when you have the tools you need to overcome them, you aren’t crippled in any situation! Overall, these shoots were amazing and while I loved showing our KJ ALL ACCESS members each shoot beginning to end, I’m only sharing three little snippets as a sneak peek today in order to honor those who have invested in being a member!!! Even though these are only three clips from the two engagement sessions, I hope you enjoy getting a free sneak peek into this month’s episode!!!

Free educational video from two very different Engagement Sessions! - YouTube

Photographers are calling KJ ALL ACCESS a VISUAL LEARNER’S DREAM!!!!! And we have to agree!

There is nothing else like this and it’s changing the way that photographers are learning to grow in their technical skill and their confidence on their wedding days and portrait sessions!!

Whether you’re a veteran and you need new inspiration for your next wedding or you’re a brand new photographer who wants a virtual second shooting experience, KJ ALL ACCESS episodes were made for you!!!!

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We gradually overcame that season, and then about the time we felt like we were getting back into the normal swing of things I found out that I was pregnant with James. Then we lost him at 31 weeks, and three months later I was pregnant again. Whew.

So really, I should just be proud that this post even exists and that Evy’s nursery was completed in the midst of all of those ups and downs!

I LOVE everything home decor, but our season of life has really kept me from being able to share much about our new home and what we have done with the place!! Evy’s room has been a work in progress for a while. I started with a neutral/wooden/baby pink theme and then found pieces one by one to make her room feel complete. I love that her mirror, her chandelier, her lamp and her dresser are all a similar wood grain and the crib is different! So often I feel like people think all of their finishes need to be EXACTLY the same, and it can really make a room feel redundant without any transitions!

These polka dots are from Urban Walls and let’s be honest, they are just stickers!! So easy! The curtains and chandelier were a splurge from Restoration Hardware. The mirror is from Pottery Barn (and the Crib, but it was a gift from Grammie and Paw!). The ladder shelf was bought years ago from Joss and Main, and the lamb rocker was a gift from Aunt Susan and is from Pottery Barn Kids! The Rocker is from Wayfair and the ottoman is super old from Homegoods!! The dresser is Pottery Barn Kids and the faux olive tree is from Amazon of all places! The book shelves are from IKEA and the picture frames are from West Elm! Whew! See why it took me a while to gather this stuff!!! Well, despite the delay of it all coming together, I love the way it turned out. It’s peaceful and bright, and Evy calls it “Evy’s House”!!!

Enjoy a little peek into Evy’s space! Oh and PS. That floral watercolor painting is something that I created for Evy’s room! It stressed me out and so I don’t think I’ll be doing that for baby boy’s nursery!! ha! However, the other “Everly James Alsop” watercolor that looks professionally done? That was done by Grammie, Michael’s mom!!!! She also made one for Baby James and we cherish these sweet gifts!

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