5 Simple ways to help Dad prep for his close up

Dear Friend,

So i've heard it before. "My husband doesn't want to have his photos taken" What do you do NOW? 

Let me tell you a little tale, well a true story, but tale sounded nice. Anyway, when I first started taking photos, my husband wasn't the keenest on getting his photo taken, smiling for the camera, willingly posing. So what changed? He saw the results, the special moments captured. The snuggles, the pictures forever saved that will forever allow his daughters and himself to see their relationship. Him as a protector, a comforter, to witness his love. Those memories and these visuals will live on after he's gone. The ones of our family, the ones of us as a couple, the ones of him as a dad and even the ones of just him. 

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So what do you do to try to let your husband/boyfriend/ finance let them know how much it means to you?

1. TELL THEM. No seriously, gently explain from your heart, how much it means to you to document whatever your special moment is.   

2. ASK THEM. This goes hand in hand with number one. Ask and explain. Nothing ventured nothing gained right?!

3. BRIBE THEM. I am not above, bribery with children, nor with spouses when it comes to photographic participation (hahaha). Make a deal, or a promise. "Ill do X if you to Y." Take over the chore they dislike the most for a week, cook their favorite meal (even if you don't like it)

4. HELP HIM GET DRESSED. A lot of guys do not like to pick out clothes, let alone have to coordinate with the entire family. Help him by helping to pick out his outfit! Something that he likes, but still works with the family/the feel of the session.

5. TELL HIM HE LOOKS GREAT. Just like how women need a little self-confidence boost, sometimes guys do to. Compliment him! Whisper in his ear, tell him he looks handsome.

Most of all remember to HAVE FUN. This is a no pressure, go with the flow, joking environment. Here at CHP, that is a goal, Capture love and beauty, through fun and have everyone leave with a smile. Guy's too. 

My best,

Cara

Brown Family

What a beautiful family of 3. Adorable, funny, and sweet. The three words that I think describes this family so well. We had a sun kissed end you our session. If you like what you see, head on over to the contact page and send me a message. I would love to work with your family.

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Cason...brand new

Oh baby!

It was so exciting to follow up the maternity session with a newborn session. Snuggling with a sweet smelling newborn and capturing their tiny fingers and pouty lips. I am enjoying taking a more baby led approach to posing and some of my favorite poses are "womb like". 

Are you interested in a maternity or newborn session? Contact me, let's talk! I love helping families to welcome their little ones into the world.

Giulie turns ONE!

Guilie is ONE. I can't believe it! I have photographed her maternity, newborn and now at one year of age. I love her smile and her sweet demeanor. She was a little bit shy when where started but blossomed as the session went on. Here are a few of my favorites below! Her mom's response, "These pictures are absolutely beautiful. I cried. Thank you so much for capturing such gorgeous pictures of my family. I can't thank you enough." Thank you so much to you all for allowing me to capture your milestone memories!

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30 years, they make it look so good!

It was a freezing cold day outside, but they were ready to think warm thoughts and capture their 30 year legacy. 30 years, that is pretty impressive. We were all a little frozen when were were done, but the results were so worth it

They are full of love and great advice. They are caring and know how to have a good time. They are excellent parents and the best grandparents. They will tell you marriage has its ups and downs, they will tell you that life isn't always easy, but they will also tell you it is better together. This very special couple are my in-laws aka my second parents. I was so honored to do this for them and to provide them with some beautiful canvases (more pictures of those to come) that were featured on a beautiful display at their anniversary party. 

Here are a few photos from they beautiful session on a chilly March day. 

On a sidenote: There will be mini sessions on Saturday May 6th. If you are interested please join the mailing list for exclusive insider information. 

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Sibling session with Henry and Lilah

A beautiful sibling session with Henry and Lilah. Lilah has reached her sitting milestone and little Henry is just such a big boy! He and I had some awesome conversation, had snack time and lots of laughter. He's got a great sense of humor and Oh how I love these two! We had a blast and I had their beautiful mother get in on this session as well. We as mom's spend so much time worrying about our precious babies we can forget to exist in photos. Get in those photos mom! Selfies, professional, candids, whatever it is be present! Enjoy the photos!!

Ps. This is in my home studio, its great for newborn sessions, and milestone sessions when the weather is less than ideal for little ones. This option is always available :-). 

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The pictures below were unplanned and unscripted. We were finished our photoshoot and just playing together on the carpet. Some of life best moments, the "outtakes" or bloopers are so beautiful.

The pictures below were unplanned and unscripted. We were finished our photoshoot and just playing together on the carpet. Some of life best moments, the "outtakes" or bloopers are so beautiful.

When he told me he doesn't like wooden chairs since they make his butt hurt...hahaha i love kids! Which resulted in the shot below.

When he told me he doesn't like wooden chairs since they make his butt hurt...hahaha i love kids! Which resulted in the shot below.

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Superhero big brother with lollipop to the rescue!!!

Superhero big brother with lollipop to the rescue!!!

Gluten free, made easier for me and my family. Our top 7.

I got are few questions on my IG page about gluten free recipies. So here is a little background: (The condensed version) We became gluten free about two years ago. Aubrey had eczema really bad and I was having some strange health issues. With the help of a health care professional we were able to determine that we have gluten allergies (The youngest included). So for us being gluten free isn't trendy. It's pretty much essential to health and well being. We deviate every once in awhile and usually wind up not feeling well, so avoidance is key. There are a few things that are essential to the world going 'round in my home. I'll share a few with you. Please remember if you have allergies or a gluten related disease to always consult with a physician of some sort (and of course if you have celiac's or think you have celiac's please consult with a physician and make sure these things are safe for you to consume). My findings are just somethings that have worked for me and my and my family. Without further delay here are a few gluten free must haves for my home.

7.  Gluten free pizza! I have had success with Pat's pizzeria (if you are local, I know one location near me has it. A separate oven and all.) Wegman's near us now carries their own gluten free pizza and it is delicious. I could make my own dough and all that jazz, but as a working mom of two that only happens once in a blue moon. So when we have pizza, this is how we get it!

6. Cheerios! With having kids cheerios are muy importante! Now cheerios are gluten free in more than one flavor! There is even a way to make a no bake gluten free cheerio crust. That I make a tasty no bake pie with (I can share at another time). Recipe for the crust is found here

5. GF toaster waffles. We use Van's and the Wegman's brand. They come in handy for breakfast. For snacks and even for breakfast sandwiches. (We also use Ezekiel bread, I know it is not gluten free but a sprouted grain. We are on the spectrum of gluten issues and are all unbothered by this so we use it.)

4. Snyder's gluten free pretzels are great for everyone! One of the better gluten free pretzels in my opinion. They even have honey mustard and hot wing!

3. Gluten free Bisquick. I like it for pancakes and cobbler. Yes blueberry cobbler to be specific. Deeeelicous!. 

2. BROWNIES. Who doesn't like brownies? I didn't for the longest time. Before the kids, i didn't really like chocolate much. Now chocolate is essential to life. Ive tried several brownie mixes and my favorite currently is Betty Crockers gluten free brownie mix. Its chocolately, and delicious

1. My number one ABSOLUTE fave is this cup for cup gluten free flour. Better batter! It is not gritty, it is easy to use. No conversions needed. You can substitute it in any recipe! This has made gluten free baking and cooking so much easier. I buy it on Amazon here.

So there you have it. These are just a few things that have made the gluten free life more tolerable. I jokingly say we joined the #glutenfreemafia. It's made a world of difference for my family. I hope this helps your family if you have gluten allergies/intolerance.

 

K Turns 3!

My heart is a little overwhelmed. Another of my sweeties turning three. I have photographed Katelyn from before she graced us with her presence on the earth. Maternity, newborn, and on up.  Her parents I have been fortunate enough to know each of them from childhood at different times in life. They are wonderful people, and framily (friends that are family). We have celebrated anniversaries, births, we go to the beach together and have been there for each other when times weren't so easy.  True friendship. Thick to thin. Ride or die. 

Katelyn means so much to my heart, My little Zoey's other pea, her soul sister. I have been so thankful to watch her grow.  Katelyn I love you! 

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I am so proud of this one! Katelyn and I took it together. This was  her dad's bear when he was a child. <3

I am so proud of this one! Katelyn and I took it together. This was  her dad's bear when he was a child. <3

The sun rises and sets with our love.

Capturing your legacy is essential, having memories to look back on, moments that can never be repeated to retrieved.

 

A little on me, a little pep talk.

This December, I turn 29. Yes, for awhile that number scared me. I can't say that I like it on paper. However, I look forward to it. I had a hard time embracing myself. Committing to myself. This past year has been full of so many changes, that have allowed me to rise to occasions, to conquer some fears, do things I didn't think that my anxiety would allow me to do.

 I want to say to you today, yes you. EMBRACE yourself, unapologetically be yourself. If you can, try something new. Allowing myself to push past the barriers of "I can't" within myself, brought me to traveling to California to visit beloved friends, driving to North Carolina to visit sweet family (I drove the whole way down, which i would normally never ever agree to, but I did and I wanted to). Letting my hair grow into a giant curly afro which I have come to LOVE because it is apart of me. I'm still socially awkward, anxiety ridden, nerdy, quirky person. Those are things that probably will never change and I'm okay with that.

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I think it's totally human that when we face changes or find ourselves at a crossroad we begin to undergo what I like to refer to as "reconstruction". We build, we change, we adapt to survive. One thing that really helps is the art of practicing gratitude. When you wake in the morning recite a few things you are grateful for. Address your mindset in the morning. I have been leaving the kids notes on the days I leave early. My favorite right now is "It's a great day for a great day." If you already put it in your mind that it is going to be a great day, your brain adjusts it's thought process when other things come.

So good morning friends! It's a great day for a great day!

Anniversary!! Let's celebrate!

Our family took a vacation to California! My first time on the west coast EVER. It was such great time. Traveling with two small kids, tons of luggage and having to take a total of four flights! EXHAUSTING, but so worth it. I have friends and family in California spending time with both and having some really quality undistracted family time was great. The children tried new things, soaked up our snuggles and even took a visit to Disney. 

While we were there, friends of ours were approaching their nine year anniversary of marriage.(July15th side note- I just couldn't wait for them to see these!) It was an honor to do my first west coast photo session with them. We laughed, we watched the sun set and create magical light.

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Here's to nine years and forever to go! Congratulations love birds.

Anniversaries continued....In honor of my upcoming anniversary of my six year love affair with photography. Keep your eye out for an exciting upcoming post!

Cara <3

Garden Bridal Shower

My little sister-in law is getting married in September. I guess she's not so little anymore!  Her bridal shower was a beautiful success with delicious food, good company, games and even a little dancing. The bride to be also gave us a to the second countdown to her wedding day. The bridal party even had a little photo-bomber in our group picture. Hahaha. I had to relinquish the camera to get into a few photos, even though I prefer to be behind it for sure! We ended up with a good bit of rain and had to move inside but a little rain didn't stop the party! I wish I could post them all, but I think the page would crash!

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Time flies when you are having fun.

I cannot believe this little girl is 6 months old! My how time flies. We had such a good time playing and joking and tickling. I love getting to know people better and talking to them about their family and their hopes and dreams.

Photographing your moments, your family milestones is making my very own dreams come true. I now have a small home studio and this was my first studio session with this new set up. There is more on the horizon and I am SO excited to take you all on this journey with me. Now when the weather is too cold for those beautiful babies, we can just bring it indoors. Yay for all year round! 
 

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Who could ever love you more?

I can't express, how thankful I was to meet such a lovely couple and capture these memories for them. I can imagine them showing these pictures to their beautiful son and telling him about how he grew under his mothers heart. I could help but think of the Celine Dion song "Miracle".  "Who could ever love you more?" What songs make you think of your loved ones? I recommend keeping a little list, it will be great to share with your spouse, parents, children at an appropriate time and a nice way to share with them how you feel.

My heart was warmed by this couple's story and you can see and feel their love. There has only been a few times where I've sat and edited a session and I cried. This was one of them. I hope you enjoy this session as much as we did. Feel free to share the link if you did!

And baby makes three!

Sometimes the math doesn't alway quite add up. Adding a new addition to your family is so special that it even defies logic. I'm no mathematician, but I am pretty sure that having your first child is the only time in life where 1+1=3. 

This couple is fun, adorable, spunky and even though Mama bear was a unsure at the beginning of the session, her beauty continued to shine brightly the whole session. She was even willing to get into the water on an only semi-warm day. You can tell by the way they look into each others eyes, their hearts have found the place they call home. <3 

The weather was so touch and go on the day of the session that I was afraid we would have to reschedule. There were showers in the morning, but the weather held out for us and we were able to really enjoy the surroundings and celebrate the coming of this new life! Congratulations to this beautiful couple. I'm looking forward to meeting this little person!

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Life lesson I’ve learned from my toddler

Almost 3 years ago, I gave birth to my second child. Before she arrived, I already had the feeling she was going to be “something else”. Our oldest daughter was (and still is) quite the little lady. In my mind, I was prepared. When she turned two, I could fully confirm…I was not. Why would I say that? Z is like a tornado that happens after the hurricane that came after the tsunami that resulted from the earthquake. I have found her four shelves up the pantry trying to get “marshmeddows”, washing her cozy coupe in the kitchen (with a play mop, and real water), cleaning a toilet, and unlocking the deadbolt to let herself out of the front door and that’s just the tip of the iceberg. We have to keep an eye on that kid. I love her spunky, and hilarious ways. Just like her big sister she is beautifully unique.  Z has taught me so much, I learned a lot from my first child as well. After all A was my first bundle of sweetness, but Z is another ball game all together. So here’s the list.

Be tenacious- She is relentless; she never gives up. If she can’t climb it/reach she finds something, anything to help her.  If she can’t get over it, she will get around it or go through it. You are under four feet tall, but want the lollipops in the cabinet on the second shelf from the top? Push a stool, climb the counter and get climbing! Her pediatrician described her as “very resourceful”. I think that might be the nice way of say pint sized criminal, but regardless, I am applying this to my life. Just because you or someone else thinks that you can’t doesn’t mean you can’t. Get out of your own way! Get moving and make things happen!

Be patient- I guess this one kind of speaks to the obvious. A strong willed child requires a lot of time, a lot of explaining and a lot of thinking. She is a master of evasive maneuvers and taking advantage of any situation. I’m a work in progress but I totally understand how hard it can be to maintain being patient, but it goes such a long way! It feels so much better than rushing or letting your frustrations get the best of you. I’m applying this to building my business/my brand. Good things take time, growth requires patience.

Be Confident - There is nothing wrong with telling yourself you are doing a good job. Z was determined to jump from the ottoman to the sofa, which were further apart than usual (I had just finished about 3 hours of doing A’s mini twists in her hair) She’s telling herself “I will do this! I can do this jump!” When she gets upset from us telling her she can’t do something she on occasion creates a song about it… -_-. That’s another story. The point is, sometimes you have to be your own cheerleader and greet the day with confidence. “Today I will… Today I can…”

Be yourself- Z is unapologetically herself. She is never afraid to tell you want she likes and how she likes it, and what she doesn’t like. She’s worn snow boots in the summer, they matched he outfit and she wanted to, a tutu for 3 days straight. It wasn’t going to hurt her or anyone else so I said why not?! Be yourself!

You can learn a lot from your little ones! Have a magnificent monday!

 

 

Family memories.

Before the kids came along, my husband and I did not take very many photos together.  Now, I regret that. There aren't very many photos of us to look back on and even now, a lot of the photos are of the kids or the kids with one parent... where am I going with this?
 

The importance of family photos. 
 

I've made a vow that once a year we will take family photos? Why is it so important? Memories, preserving the moment, being able to look back and say "I remember when".  I want my girls to have those old photos when I'm gone (not trying to be morbid here). Those photos of mom who is usually behind the camera hugging them tight. The photos where the love that reigns supreme is seen behind the smiles. Even if you don't have children, it's wonderful to have the years of change documented, even if its with a selfie stick or a tripod and a remote, or you hand your camera to a bystander and ask them to take the shot for you. Remember to take a moment to document where you are in this season of your life. Time passes by just as the seasons, too quickly and ever-changing.

KMJ is two!

I know everyone is familiar with the term "terrible twos", but honestly I love two-year olds. They are learning about themselves, the world and how it works. That can be tough! My favorite things about two year olds are the wonder in their eyes and the spunk in their souls. So here is to TWO!

This photo session was done on an unseasonably warm day in January ( the way I prefer it hahaha!). I enjoyed this session so much and have had the privilege of photographing this spunky girl from baby bump until now! Did you know that I offer a special Baby bundle package that can follow your baby's growth from bump to 1 year? Here are some beautiful photos from our warm January session!

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