You guyyys, meet Beth and Darrin! Beth is the absolute mastermind behind Early Bird Photo and also serves as the photographer for Chapel Hill, Durham, and Chatham Magazines because she’s brilliant. She also sews (she made the kickass dress with pockets she wears in the second half of this session!) and reads and likes to tell you about their dogs and is a total joy. She’s outgoing and easy to talk to and there was a lot of lamenting on both of our parts about the struggles and joys of growing your hair out, cutting it back off again, only to grow it out once more. Darrin, meanwhile, likes to ferment stuff. He ferments a lot of things! Apparently there’s a garlic habanero sauce that is fermented that sounds like I might be tempted to eat it with a spoon but then that would also be a mistake. He also enjoys gardening and cars.
They have two dogs: Willow the Sweet and Fearful, and Rooney the Cutest Dog Butt. Willow spent literally 100% of her time with us actively running away in fear or hiding behind her parents and shaking. We photographed her from far away, did not make eye contact, and did not approach, but it was still SHEER TERROR and she hated every minute of it (hope she doesn’t leave a Yelp review). Rooney, however, is indeed the Cutest Dog Butt, and is fluffy and small and extroverted. He was not fearful despite being a tenth of Willow’s size.
We documented this joyful family of 4 together at all of their favorite spots around town to celebrate Beth and Darrin’s 6+ years together, and now we have four (well, maybe three) new friends. Thanks to Pie Pushers, Letters Bookstore, and Bull McCabe’s for permission to shoot some photos inside!
Remember Amanda, Joe, Michael, Lucien, and Aria from this summer? Amanda was pregnant then, and the boys were so excited. They didn’t know if they’d have a new sister or brother, but they were cool with either, and just so excited to help their mom and dad. Amanda and Joe planned a home birth, and Michael was to announce the sex of the baby. But, as it often does, life got a little bit in the way: a bad house flood caused by a hot water tank that happened while they were on vacation put a damper on things, causing the family to have to live elsewhere during home repairs while 36-40 weeks pregnant. However, a family friend quickly and successfully fixed their home good as new (including beautiful new hardwood floors!) and Fiona, their new baby girl, was born on September 15th successfully at home on the morning of Hurricane Florence. Michael was indeed able to announce to everyone that they had a new little sister, and now another girl joins the ranks of the household, evening up the numbers to 3 girls and 3 boys (yes, of course I am counting Aria the Husky as a member of the family). So happy for all of them! It was so fun to document them again. They’re such a tight knit group, and the boys are obsessed with their little sister! We had a great time taking some updated shots around the house (Amanda was especially interested in documenting the family dynamics pre and post new baby), and then walking along the beautiful greenway near their home where Amanda, a super talented photographer herself, often likes to shoot. Such a great time working with this fabulous family again!
Ya’ll know these guys so they don’t really need any introduction, but we will say that meet a lot of people on this job, but Jo, Brad, Laurel, and Sam are some of our favorites. They’ve kept in touch with us and invite us to their lake house and cook us dinner and let us play with their french bulldog and send us text messages when Carrie Fisher dies. We love them, and they are near and dear to our hearts. We photographed them last year with Frank, their newly adopted French Bulldog who has become, perhaps, the most babied and spoiled of the family and is possibly the favorite child (I know Laurel and Sam won’t be offended by this statement but will likely agree with me, so I feel like it’s fine to put that out there). They LOVE him, and how could you not, given that face!? And lucky for Frank, he was adopted into a family who took their adoption of him seriously, and so they are doing everything they can to get Frank back on a path to health and wellness after some pretty devastating news. Frank was diagnosed with Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis. Essentially, it’s an autoimmune disease brought on by a bad reaction to a vaccination. He’s had seizures and pneumonia, as well as other significant reactions to the disease and the drugs used to treat it. Currently, he is doing quite well on chemo and is a very strong, brave little pup. He is on the upswing and his family is taking great care of him in conjuncture with the NC State Veterinary Hospital Neurology Team.
So this year – we did their family pictures at the arboretum, but Frank was recovering at this current juncture from a recent hospital stay, so he was only able to join us for half of the pictures. He has since made significant strides and we are so happy for him! He is still sporting his veterinary hospital haircut in these pictures but also sporting a cool French t-shirt to represent his heritage. We’re so glad that Frank has this wonderful family in his life, and WE’RE so happy to have this wonderful family in OUR lives. Sam and Laurel remain two of our most favorite children, and they just keep getting funnier and more amazing as they get older. Probably because they have some pretty great parents whom we adore. Happy to photograph this family once again!