Last time I photographed this family, Patrick was a tiny goofball with short hair and Ellie was an itsy bitsy baby with short hair. Now Patrick (not that much shorter than me at this point) and Ellie both have long hair and a younger brother named Jackson. And soon they’ll all have an even younger sister! And I cannot wait to meet her because I LOVE these people. The parents, Dottie and Jon, are quite near and dear to our hearts. They’re one of the first weddings we shot and the way they supported us and recommended us to get our career off the ground was incredible, and they continue to support me to this day. Both sides of their family are also huge supporters and continue to remain in touch which is so awesome and means so much to me.

Dottie and Jon are the fantastic, intelligent couple who manage to successfully run this incredible household and be adorable while they’re at it. They’re funny and I love them. Now for extensive psychological profiles on their children: Patrick is still a goofball, but now he’s a responsible, kind, REALLY GOOD KID (all caps). He’s helpful and sweet and is careful of where and how he strikes his mom with a lightsaber because she’s pregnant (even though she was showing him no mercy). He is close with his dog Weaver, who enjoys when Patrick rides her around the yard like a small horse. Patrick is stellar. And while the entire family has a killer sense of humor, Ellie is definitely the current comic relief. She’s super silly, makes a lot of faces, has a sharp wit, and can entertain and occupy herself, as well as hold her own with two brothers. Her parents tell me she’s also insanely responsible and schedule-oriented, and easily holds the family together. And then there’s Jackson, who currently plays the role of mischievous, too-smart-for-his-own-good, completely unpredictable yet SO CUTE small child. He enjoyed the pastime of pointing a (suction cup) bow and arrow set at my face repeatedly throughout the shoot (he was respectful enough not to fire… thank you, Jackson), eating chocolate and then getting upset when the chocolate was taken away, and climbing on top of the roof of his plastic car in the two seconds we were all looking in the other direction. He’s a whirling dervish.

All three have strong (and quite funny) personalities, and I cannot wait to see what baby #4 adds to the mix. I am so delighted to have photographed these folks again and be a part of their historical documentation (especially since Dottie is a history buff). Thank you for everything always and forever, D+J.

We photographed Sara and Jackson back in 2016 when they were freshly engaged and before I knew that Sara had a household full of plants. SARA HAS A HOUSEHOLD FULL OF PLANTS. They’re all wonderful. She’s a very good plant lady. The plants like her. She keeps alive plants I’ve killed many times. Likewise, her husband Jackson and dog Pippa are also still alive (I’m clearly running out of good transitions) and thriving alongside Sara. Jackson is still a paleontologist (YAY!) but is still not Ross from Friends (booooo) and still doesn’t spend his weekends in tan khaki shorts, wool socks, hiking books, and a safari hat digging up bones with little brushes in the desert (double booooooooo). It’s really disappointing but I still like him. Sara is currently completing her masters and just finished a complicated thesis! She was thankfully not hunched over a computer typing during the shoot but instead had that satisfying look on her face of “I’ve turned in a large paper and now there’s nothing left to do.” A wonderful feeling. Together, they live with Pippa, a VERY GOOD GIRL who does tricks and is exceedingly friendly but looks like we’re constantly embarrassing her (probably because we are). So they put her in a Christmas sweater and made guacamole and I photographed it.

Ohh, it was so wonderful to see these folks again! They’re the first in a long string of client reunions I’ve recently had and it makes me so happy. Sarah and Tim were married back in 2015 in Duke Forest and, after living in DC for a few years, they recently returned to Raleigh. And now they have the distinct pleasure of being the parents to the ADORABLE toddler Theo! So it was my mission to document them together as a family hanging around the newly renovated Moore Square. The new Moore Square is SO nice, especially when you have a Theo who loves to run, run, and then run some more (shortly before losing his shoes, which he did a lot). We spent most of the time catching him, cuddling with him until he would no longer tolerate it, then chasing after him again. When he’s not running, he loves busses, playing peek-a-boo near the Marbles balls, books, and animals of all kinds (there was a lot of high-pitched squealing when I presented him with a bat sticker and he seemed like he was working on subtly coercing his parents into adopting either a cat or a dog by saying the words a lot). He is an extremely happy-go-lucky toddler. Sarah and Tim hit the jackpot with Theo, and likewise Theo with Sarah and Tim. So glad I could see these great people again!