Newborn babies are probably most fun when they are wrapped in taco blankets and accompanied by a dog named Taco, don’t you think? Baby Avital was welcomed into the world by loving parents Haley and Asher and by extremely-inquisitive-and-affectionate-so-doesn’t-quite-understand-personal-space-when-it-comes-to-babies older brother Taco. Taco is quite adorable and fluffy and fearless. He enjoys sweaters and pets. Avital is quite adorable and little and fearless. She enjoys koalas and owning a variety of fabulous blankets. Her parents tell me that she’s a future National Park Ranger, but there’s still some debate on which specific National Park she’ll choose. For now, her possible choices of future outdoorsy employment are on display via, you guessed it, her variety of fabulous blankets (camp sites and cacti) as well as her adorable stuffed koala. Haley and Asher are great parents, NYC transplants, and have incredibly interesting jobs. Also, there’s no quicker way to get to know someone than to move heavy furniture with them, which we did flawlessly, so I give them an A+ humanity rating. Plus how can you not like people who wrap their baby in a taco blanket?
Recently caught up with my forever friends at Gilded Bridal to work on updating some store photos and to grab some headshots of Susan’s new girls, Jensen and Makenzie. It’s no secret that Gilded is one of my favorite places to photograph not only because it is ALWAYS FUN to photograph fancy dresses, but because Susan is a ridiculously fun person. This is quite evident in everything she does, but also evident in how happy her staff is. Everyone is relaxed and incredibly silly, and they all make my job easy just by being themselves. I had already worked with Jensen at another shoot, so I was aware that she’s a super chill and funny person, but I hadn’t yet met Makenzie until this shoot, and SURPRISE: she is also a super chill and funny person. I don’t think Susan would hire anyone who wasn’t, but still. I love how much I always love her staff. I don’t work at Gilded but I kinda wish I did because look at them!
Kim and I have been trying to set up a magical photography date since 2017 but the stars just would not align. Then this year I finally got to photographer her and her beautiful family! And in one of the strangest coincidences of my professional life, it turns out that Kim and Peter had been frequent visitors of our house before we owned it! I just mentioned that we live in a contemporary in a certain neighborhood, and they mentioned their friends’ names who also used to live in a contemporary in that neighborhood. But the previous owner had kind of a unique first name, so I recognized it and was like WAIT A MINUTE, I THINK THAT’S OUR HOUSE. And BAM! Same house. Small, crazy world. It was a small chance of it coming up, a smaller chance of names being exchanged and remembered, and an even itty, bittier chance of it being the same house. Whoa!
Anyway, besides having a Twilight Zone connection with me now, Kim and Peter have a fantastic family consisting of 3 kids (Luke, Thomas, and Ellen), 3 dogs, 1 cat, fish, and chickens. All creatures and children were extremely friendly. The kids are outgoing, funny, and like to talk to me about what Star Wars video games we have in common. While this age group is not overly eager to have their pictures taken, eight and ten year olds DO tend to make a lot of ridiculous faces at the camera on purpose which I personally enjoy. They’re also excited and willing to attack their parents in pictures, and enjoy decorating Christmas cookies in a variety of hilarious ways. Ellen and Kim did take great care in decorating theirs, but I think Luke and Thomas had a competition of who could make theirs the weirdest, and they turned out like wonderful Christmas monsters covered in ooze and with google eyes scattered about. A game of Memory at the end was won by the children (as Peter pointed out, they had him and Kim beat with numbers and youth), which won them additional video game time. They were very excited to explain Fortnite to me before zoning out completely. I had a joyful afternoon spent with this crew and was happy to finally meet and photograph them!