Perfect little Blaise. So fresh and new, he just wanted to be curled up back inside his mom’s belly. This little man loved being swaddled and held, and was already sucking his thumb and fingers all by himself. Mom, dad, grandma, best friend, photographer — we all took turns passing him around, getting our “baby fix.”
Spending a few days living with friends and their new baby is a wonderful way to capture newborn portraits. From diaper changes to cuddles on the patio to best friends making pot roast to grandma napping with big brother and sister. This is life with a baby: real, raw, exhausting, exhilarating, thrilling, and full of love and wonder. This is the story of Blaise’s welcome into his family, days one through four.
I first photographed this little cutie a year ago, right when she turned the big ONE year old. This time, we headed out to nearby fields to give her more room to run and roam than our downtown Rochester location last year. Running and roaming: two very important things to a two year old! I confess we used a bit of bribery to capture some of these images, up to and including fruit snacks, promises of hugs, and my personal bribe of choice with my own kids: an iPhone. Kennedy loved the music, and spent several minutes dancing with the volume turned way up. And she insisted on holding the phone herself. She knows what she wants.
This particular family knows how to have fun together. I first photographed brother and sister two years ago when I was just starting out. This time, the whole family showed up, including a new little sister.
The kids played, romped, twirled, swung, laughed and cuddled their way through the session. And near the end of the session, with their encouragement, I tasted a “fiddlehead” — the brand new curled bud at the tip of a fern’s new-growth. It tasted like spinach. Earthy and green. Except it was crunchy. (And then this week at Trader Joe’s, I actually saw of bag of fiddleheads in the produce section!)
This family will soon be leaving Rochester for new adventures out west. Together. Because that’s what matters.
I remember when I first heard about the possibility of a children’s museum here in Rochester. My oldest – now almost 6 – was about 2.5 years old and we were waiting in line at Rochesterfest one summer so he could spray the fire hose. Off to the left on a grassy lawn was a small group of activity stations, which turned out to be a local grassroots effort to raise awareness and funding for a children’s museum.
This group has been the real-life version of the Little Engine That Could. They fought for their cause, found a location, spend hundreds of hours fundraising, and partnered with the Minnesota Children’s Museum in St. Paul to become the Museum’s first satellite location. Their grand opening was last month, and the wonderful people who work there asked me to spend a couple of hours documenting the first few days of the museum’s life here in Rochester. Additional images are on the children’s museum web site: check them out, buy a membership and go have some fun!