As I am sitting here typing this I am currently 40 weeks pregnant, and by the time this posts I may have our own little one in my arms. It felt like an incredibly apt time to share this overdue, but very special newborn session from two of our best friends and their little one Max.
He is going to live such a life filled with so many rich experiences and so very much laughter.
From the mobile of well wishes, to the myriad handmade quilts by friends and family, this little one already has a fan club that is utterly devoted to him and spans the country.
I can’t wait for our little ones to get to meet. I hope that Max likes our new addition as much as I love these three, because let’s be honest, Max is one cool dude.
As my best friend and amazing photography assistant, Dorothy, prepared to have her baby turn one-year-old, I couldn’t help but look through all the photos we had taken over the first year of his life. From the baby bump, to her baby shower, to his birth, to the first few days of his life, there is nothing more special then being there each one of these incredible milestones.
I also realized there were some photos that we didn’t get to share when they happened.
Here are some of those amazing moments around six months old. Theo was pushing up, crawling, and discovering how amazing his hands and feet are.
His little expressions are just the most amazing. I hope you’ll come back next week to see how much he had grown by his first birthday. You won’t believe how much he has changed (although still just as cute).
Meet Isla and Margaux. These two amazing girls arrived on March 12th into a house filled with so much love and family who just couldn’t wait for them to arrive home.
Sue and Andrew are just such remarkable parents, loving each one of these little girls as their own unique person right from the start.
Such proud parents, the sweetest big sister (it’s hard to believe that two years ago this was her!) and one amazing growing family.
Thank you so much to the Slater family for letting me be a part of this incredible moment for their family. I am so honored to have been able to watch your family continue to grow and only hope that watching you will allow me to do it half so gracefully with one as you have done it with three.
When I first heard from Ansel’s mother it was two weeks after he was born. I found her first email illuminating. She wrote, “While I didn’t think I’d want professional newborn photos, having him here now makes me want to capture the memories!”
This is exactly why I do this job. I feel honored to capture these tiny fingers and toes at the moments when families are first meeting and everything feels so new and special.
Newborns change so remarkably from week to week and most certainly from month to month.
When I come to show families their photographs only a couple weeks after taking them, I am always amazed by the new little person the same family now holds in their arms.
Having just spent hours editing these images, I’ve had the honor of seeing their little one from myriad angles, up close, and far away. Yet within a number of days another new person is emerging. It’s truly amazing.
Ansel was an incredible baby to photograph, because not only was he adorable, but he was already chocked full of personality. Though he had little interest in sleeping, he was highly curious about what we were doing. His little eyebrows told a whole story.
I truly hope that having seen these photos Ansel’s family feels like I have captured these early days of their firstborn son as they have seen him over his first month: sleeping, stretching, yawning.
We had so much fun meeting him and can only imagine how his incredible personality will continue to develop as he grows.
This sweet little boy at twelve days old was the most adorable little peanut at just around five pounds.
He was already funny and full of personality.
And parents who just couldn’t love him any more.
(Although I’m sure they do every day.)
After waiting so long, it is just remarkable when he arrives.
We’re so excited to watch you grow up.
One of my favorite things about newborn photos is getting to capture babies at their very tiniest.
He will grow out of his squished nose and his little hand tucked up by his ear.
When I did the viewing of these newborn photos for the parents, Dorothy kept repeating, “I can’t believe how much he has already changed.”
Since the first few days and weeks are an amazing profusion of every new things at once, constant change and learning, I feel remarkably lucky to get to capture a moment in time.
When I was knitting these pants, they seemed so small, but they were still too big for this little guy. It’s easy to forget how truly tiny newborns are.
I’ve been waiting so long to share this one. Theodore Douglas, ten days old, and his gorgeous family.
Of course, there was way too much adorableness to get into one post, so please come back next week for the second installation.
Nine months ago, Dorothy and I met up at Georgetown-Rowley State Park for a hike. We walked for hours talking about the kinds of things you only share with your very best friend. It was a gorgeous day and I can still remember the scent of cedar as our boots crunched over the trails. Before we parted, Dorothy said, “Oh, before you go, there is something I want to tell you.” She didn’t need to say anything else, I just started crying and hugged her while shouting something super eloquent like “Really?! Really?!” That’s how I learned my best friend was pregnant on the very same day she found out the amazing news.
Since then, it had been nine months of anticipation. Dorothy and Alex had prepared everything that could be done: reading the books, taking the birth class, cooking and freezing meals, hand crafting mobiles, the baby’s blanket, the crib, and hanging shelves full of books from those who love this little baby already. (For more images of the of all the preparations you can see the maternity photos here and the baby shower photographs here.)
Since I can remember the Trippe’s have always been a part of my family’s community. They are not family friends; they are family. Growing up, I used to hear the story of how my mother was in the room when the two youngest Trippe children were born. They retell the story of how in their sleep deprivation my mother and their father, Mike, tried unsuccessfully to convince a laboring Mary Kay to name the baby Trina Thomasina Trippe (Clara Mary was a much better choice) and about Mary Kay almost biting my mother in the middle of a contraction. For this reason, it seemed incredibly normal to me that best friends would be present at the birth of their children, even in the room. However, when I mentioned to my dismayed husband that I hoped to be at the birth center, in the waiting room, at the birth of baby Moerlein, he wisely suggested I should probably check before driving up at the first news of labor. Maybe not all families feel the same way about friends in the waiting room.
Out to dinner one night, I “casually” brought this up to Dorothy. Emphatically, she grabbed my arm and said, “Oh thank goodness, because I really want you to be in the room.” Somehow the universe really did perfectly match us as friends.
For weeks, I excitedly checked my phone every time it vibrated. My amazing co-workers heard me talk about it every single day (they really are the best). I checked and recharged my camera equipment every night before bed to make sure I would be ready for a call in the middle of the night. In the meantime, Dorothy was as calm as I had ever seen her. She was ready, but waiting patiently.
After many hours passing on this gorgeous spring day, there was an hour of contractions five minutes apart. Alex called the midwives. The next time they passed through these doors there would be a new member of their family in their arms.
Dorothy and Alex are one of those couples who give you faith in marriage.
Watching them this day, I was astonished by their care for each other, and certain that they will be the most incredible partners for each other and parents to this child.
I am honored to be their friend.
Only Dorothy could make labor look this pretty.
The care Dorothy’s parents and Alex displayed throughout the day restores ones faith in how remarkably powerful love can be.
This has been one of the most surreal and fantastic experiences I have had in my life.
I am so remarkably grateful that Dorothy and Alex let me be a part of this indescribable experience and let me try to tell it through photographs.
Welcome to the world: Theodore Douglas Moerlein.
You are already loved endlessly.
Stay tuned for newborn photos, coming soon!
I always feel so grateful when I get to photograph friends, family and colleagues as they have these special moments in their lives.
I have known Hillary for many years and have always been inspired by her kindness, patience, and thoughtfulness. Seeing these qualities embodied in her role as a mother, was a distinct privilege.
There is something remarkable about sharing these early days of a growing family, when baby is sleeping and big brother is so excited about his new role. Andy and Hillary somehow make two children under the age of five look easy. Although I’m sure it’s not as easy as it looks, you certainly can’t tell by looking!
He’s so sweet to her; already trying to hold hands.
In his first endeavor to take care of his little sister, Tyler gave her two of her own lovies (this pink blanket). When we showed the family the slideshow of these pictures on the big screen two weeks after they were taken, Tyler was most excited to see the pictures of the lovies he had given Charlotte.
You can already tell she is going to be full of joy; having already brought so much of it herself!
It was my distinct honor to get to photograph Charlotte, six days after she joined the Fotsch/Roselund family.
We got a smile!
Her parents, Hillary and Andy, clearly couldn’t adore her more. The love on their faces is just incredible. Here they are holding her in the blanket she was wrapped in when she returned from the hospital.
Tyler is such a proud big brother. Having just turned three himself, he was already such a helper for his little sister. He was constantly running over to check on her, giving us ideas to help her to fall back asleep and staying very still as they lay together for this picture. He has a lot of energy and a lot of love for his new baby sister. Such a loving, caring, happy family.
This family was so wonderful, I just couldn’t get all of the images into one post. Check back next week for more images, or visit the gallery to see the whole shoot.