It’s our pleasure to welcome the always wonderful Cat+Mitchell into the CSP 4-Timers Club, and their son Cameron into the 2-Timers Club! Somehow Cameron has gone from infant-wearing-headphones to toddler-wearing-headphones practically overnight, and in that span of time Cat and Mitchell have really upped their A-game on the glasses front with Mitchell now sporting a mint green and Cat wearing ones with gold glitter. When Cat and Mitchell aren’t being great parents, they’re out being great friends to us. They’ve picked up obscure Coheed records for us on Record Store Day, and bought us tiny little striped toy cats from Ikea, and have always gone above and beyond on the friend front. We love and appreciate them very much, and are so happy to take photos of them and Cameron.

There were many wonderful little family moments during this session: bed jumping, book reading, Cameron texting while operating a feet-motorized vehicle, eating ice cream, finding and identifying every canine within a 10-block radius and shouting “DOOG” in its general direction, and splashing around in the city waterpark. But the best moment (at least for me personally) was Cameron getting onto their bed and seeing a little framed photo we took of Cat and Mitchell at their wedding. And he pointed to it and said, “Momma! Dada!” and took the frame down and held it and pointed to it and looked happy. >> insert sentimental Carolyn monologue here >> I have always operated under the assumption that someday our photos will be passed down to kids or family friends or whoever. Who doesn’t love looking at pictures of their parents on their wedding day? They were younger, more awake, well-dressed in their wedding clothes, and somehow you didn’t exist when the photo was taken. It’s hard to imagine your parents without you, so I think wedding photos always carry with them a sort of strange mystique and awe to kids of all ages everywhere. It is a great feeling knowing that Geoff and I are the ones who took those pictures. We’re enabling the kids to get a glimpse into their parents at a different time of life. I love imagining kids looking at these pictures later, and it was so so so so SO great seeing Cameron do that in front of me. >> ends sentimental Carolyn monologue, wipes away tear. >>

So anyway – we love these three guys and Biscuit the dog and June the cat and are so happy to have them in our lives as friends and clients.

Guys! Tyler has now gone from a baby to a toddler. How does that happen? Science, I guess, and time. And now that he’s older, he’s starting to show some preferences and affinities that I hope he carries with him through the rest of his life. Namely: his love of cats and his overuse of sprinkles while making cookies. When I say cats, I mean their two pet cats Bongo and Max who stare at us from the top step and then run, and also his orange stuffed cat named Tom who does not leave Tyler’s side. And when I say overuse of sprinkles, I mean that 99% of that cookie is comprised of sprinkles, and I’m really not sure how you’d eat it, but I support it.

Tyler also likes painting his parents, running through bubbles, and looking aggravated while sitting on top of a gnome stool. He also likes making Super Target stores out of sand in his sand box (he is going to be such a catch). We are told that he wants to be a “big fat morning dove” when he grows up, and he enjoys riding his tricycle, identifying dogs on walks, and feeding ducks when they are at the pond. Laurin and Tim enjoy really wonderful art, really wonderful wallpaper, Game of Thrones, and keeping up with Tyler. The best part of taking photos of repeat clients is seeing how they got a large print made of Tyler looking aggravated while sitting on top of a gnome stool. We absolutely adore this family.

This was a wonderful reunion for us with Abby and Matt, whom we first photographed in 2009 when they were just dating! Abby was my beloved coworker when we were both elementary school teachers. Her classroom was connected to mine and she was my go-to if I needed anything. She was a fabulous teacher and all the kids loved her, and I loved her too! Then I did a major career change and quit teaching, and she became my lovely model along with her incredibly nice boyfriend Matt. And ::SUPER LIFE FAST-FORWARD MONTAGE:: they are now married with two kids and have relocated up to Rochester, New York! And WE were gonna be in Rochester and they found out and we had a lovely chance to see each other again and to work with their adorable kiddos! Olivia is the oldest clocking in at 3 years, and Amara is the youngest at 3 months. Olivia enjoys her sparkly light-up Crocs, covering her mom in a barrage of pillows and then jumping on her, and reading books with her dad. Amara enjoys sleeping, eating, sleeping, eating, eating, and eating. They are CUTE KIDS!! who have FABULOUS PARENTS who enjoy hanging out with each other and making things fun for their children (not surprising as Abby was such a great teacher, and Matt is one of the kindest and friendliest people on the earth).

Together we hung out in Olivia’s room (where she, like many CSP child-clients before her, discovered to her delight that she was somehow, for an unknown, mysterious reason, suddenly allowed to jump on the bed without being reprimanded and took full advantage), and their light-filled living room before heading over a near-and-dear park in their neighborhood. Olivia went down the same slide repeatedly and showed off her mad soccer skillz with a giant rubber ball (that at one point was stolen by a 2-year-old playground thief and I had to show some strong muscle to get it back), and Amara and her mom hung out on a blanket. We had a lovely sunny afternoon with none of that NC humidity that we were all accustomed to living down here, and it was so nice to see our friends again. <3