Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Riverside: Hudson's Dramatic Arrival

"I just want to use his story as glory to God. That's all I want to do." - Hudson's Mom, Taylor

April 18th, 2018 has been marked on our calendars for a few weeks. In the early months of Taylor and Austin's second pregnancy, it was detected that their baby had developed a heart condition. 

While modern day medicine and technology is incredible, doctors and nurses were still unsure of what exactly was going on. The ultrasounds and tests were clear in some areas and in others, they weren't 100%.

Austin and Taylor soon learned that baby number two was a BOY! Joining his older brother, Hayden, this baby was given the name Hudson. Unknowingly, Hudson derives from a Germanic word meaning 'heart, mind, spirit.' How fitting. 

Taylor and I had been in communication since the discovery of Hudson's condition. Doctors explained that while they were not 100% of Hudson's complete diagnosis, they knew his little heart was going to need some help and fixing up. This was going to prevent Taylor from having an opportunity to have in-studio newborn pictures because the truth was, Hudson was going to be spending some time using the warrior spirit God created within him to fight for his life.

The day arrived and I was called at 2:30am. A sleepy Austin on the other end said it was time, I should head to the hospital as Taylor was nearing the time of delivery. 

When I arrived, Taylor was her chatting self. With that typical pitocin teeth chatter, we spoke, we rested and we waited for her body and Hudson's to near the time we were all waiting for. Because doctors were still unsure of what exactly Hudson's condition would be when he took his first breath, or if he even would, the plan was to labor in a normal room and when it was time to push, we would head to an OR. The OR gave a greater area for teams of doctors to work and just in case of an emergency C-section, we were already there and in place.

Taylor was still laboring. 5cm at 3:30pm. 7cm at 5:30pm. The sun rose and lit up the room. Taylor was turned this way and that as Hudson's heart rate continued to 'decel' lower and lower during every contraction.

It was 7:45am and within seconds, nine nurses were in Taylor and Austin's room. Taylor was quickly dressed with an oxygen mask as she started looking around frantically. Nurses were using terms we couldn't understand, moving her around. Austin was watching from the back of the room, trying to stay out of the way and listen as we were determining what's next.

"Get dressed Austin. Let's go.' A white painter's suit, cap, mask and shoe covers were laid out by the nurse. Things were about to get intense and it was time to see exactly what baby Hudson had in store for us! Taylor was rolled to the OR. Positioned onto a daunting OR bed, Taylor stopped everyone.

"Can I pray with my husband? I need to pray before we do this."

The doctors and nurses stepped back. I watched as Austin prayed over his wife. She was vulnerable and nervous. Every staff member in the room bowed their heads, folded their hands and prayed. As long as I live, I will forever remember feeling God, my good, gracious and powerful God, enter that OR. So much peace and almost a determination flooded the room. It was like an attitude of 'time to get this done' filled in everyone. We wanted to allow Hudson to enter the world and allow God and the doctors to do the rest.

8:15am, Taylor pushed. 'Cleansing breath Taylor. Now PUSH!'. Again, Taylor and the entire room took a cleansing breath. Another push. This time, nurses surrounding the room stopped. All eyes on Taylor. Another push. 'Push girl! You got this.' and 'You're doing great, push!' came out of the mouths of the supportive women surrounding her. It was spiritual and beautiful as every heart in the room reached out to her.

8:29am. Hudson Lee entered this world. While we were on pins and needles waiting to hear a cry, he immediately cried out. Relief washed across Taylor's face as Austin looked over at me and his eyes teared up. (Don't let him deny it. It was wonderful!) we were astounded as Hudson's skin started to pink up, he continued to cry, his arms reaching up and out. All of this being a better reaction from Hudson than we expected.

Hudson was assessed and monitored. While staff calculated his apgar score, we waited to see exactly what was going on. 'Baby scored 9.9' GLORY BE TO GOD! Hudson was (worst case) expected to be born needing resuscitated, possibly not crying and needing lots of medical help. But he surprised us with this. A score of 9.9 out of 10. (Apgar score is a measure of the physical condition of a newborn infant)

I was absolutely astonished. Weeks before Hudson's birth, I told her I had a premonition that Hudson was going to come out a lot better than expected. The night before his birth, I had another premonition he would be born at 8:30am. I was a minute off! But Taylor reminded me of this and I was so happy to have a premonition that was positive for once!

As of 10:45pm tonight, specialists have assessed Hudson and have discovered his condition to be much better than expected.

As Taylor wanted, I dedicate these images and this post to our Lord and Savior. The creator of Hudson and all living things. The great teacher. The comforter. My redeemer. Glory be to you, God! Our father who gives so much grace and love, you've used Taylor as a testament of faith and Hudson as a reminder that God is greater than science, the creator of science. Hudson is living evidence that you are the great I am, the sole provider who provides and protects us. You are wonderful. You are love. You are everything and we are so thankful. Thank you God for Hudson. Thank you even more for bringing the Carpenters into my life. They are an absolute blessing and have grown my faith beyond what I thought was possible.

My soul, praise the Lord! Lord my God, You are very great; You are clothed with majesty and splendor. - Psalm 104:1

I want to thank you for reading this birth story. A special thanks first to Taylor and Austin for gifting me such a beautiful experience and allowing me into an intimate part of their lives. Special thanks for my husband, my mom and mother in law for holding down the fort while I was out all night documenting this family and then allowing me to come back home and sleep after almost 30 hours without sleep. This would not be possible without you guys! You've blessed this family as well by being there for me!

Lastly, I would like to thank Riverside Methodist Hospital for their care, professionalism, and kindness towards my friends and myself. I understand I am 'just some photographer' documenting some very unique, stressful, and serious situations. Thank you for allowing me in your work space as I was documenting God working through you. Each member of the staff is blessed beyond measure with so much talent and special gifts. It was a pleasure watching you bring Hudson into this world. <3

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Little Miss Ryleigh

You might remember Angel's maternity session from a few months ago... well baby is here and she's beautiful! Meet Ryleigh! She was absolutely perfect for me during her very first portraits. She loved being wrapped up and even more loved when her mom and brother cuddles on her! She was giving me all kinds of faces toward the end of her session. It definately made my day! 

Thanks Angel for letting me photograph such an important moment in you and your family's life! I love how much sass your sweet girl has already! <3

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || The Gray Family

Oh my goodness! What a journey it's been! It wasn't long ago when we were photographing their first maternity images. Now they are preparing to welcome their second child! I love getting visits from the Gray family and can't wait to meet their little one.

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || Karsyn + Family

Karsyn is pretty new to town! She came to the studio at a sweet six weeks old for some portraits of her and ofcourse some with her family! You might remember her mama from back in the winter for maternity portraits. I love the image of her in her daddy's arms! What a beautiful family. I loved getting to meet the entire family and photograph every one of them!

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Kasen

Mister Kasen and I played a little game during his session! See, Kasen made the rules and I played along. If I gave Kasen his binkie for a few minutes, he would let me take a few pictures! He's such a funny little man. He's really precious and I was happy to capture what he allowed me to!

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Newborn: Isabelle

Sweet Isabelle is here and reigns as the little princess of the family! She has two older brothers who just absolutely ADORE her. They are so proud to be brothers to her and loved telling me all the little things she does. (Watching them mimick her facial movements was hilarious!) Her mom was so excited to have waited until Isabelle was born to find out she was a girl! Her mom didn't mind me bringing out all the girly colors and florals for Isabelle's first portraits!

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || The Grandstaff Ladies

Look at these beautiful ladies! The colors and love captured in this season is beyond wonderful! After we photographed the outfits they arrived in, I asked Abby if we could dress them in some pieces from our client closet! Ella was so excited and loved helping me choose what she wanted to wear. She's such a perfect model! 

I loved the idea of a 'girls only' session that allowed them to have fun girly moments together that they will both remember and have these images to look back on! 

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Wedding Photography || Homestead Park: Briana + Greg

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Photographer || Personal: Goodbye Geoffrey

"I don't want to grow up, I'm a Toys R Us kid. They got a million toys at Toys R Us that I can play with!"

But we did grow up. Years passed, then, we brought our children to Toys R Us to become Toys R Us kids themselves. Black Friday spent here fighting crowds for the discounts, where Lacie spent long deliberations choosing the perfect toy for her friend's birthday. I, myself, loved entering the store as a kid and wondering exactly which toy my mom was going to allow me to walk out of the store with. I REALLY didn't care because I was there. In Toys R Us. I was in KID HEAVEN, pacing aisles and aisles of toys I could only dream of.

Today, we as a family, said goodbye to a childhood staple. I can't say I didn't get choked up at one point. I watched my kid's eyes light up at each toy their little eyes graced and my heart sank. Target, Walmart, Meijer.... they just aren't the same. The aesthetic of Toys R Us was a store catered to child's play. The colors, that giraffe, the birthday club... it all built into the store dedicated to JUST toys. 

My emotions had my kid's make out like bandits. Just like his sister, Leo got his first bike from Toys R Us. The kids chose a toy and a book. They played for an hour and I thought about how this was our very last time. I'll never watch my grandchildren experience this but I was happy to dedicate time to my children to experience their favorite store one last time. I have no idea if Lacie will remember this day. I know Leo won't. Although Jon was embarrassed that I was hauling my huge camera around the store and snapping away, I know that I have these for them. The crappy store lighting, the casual outfits, dirty faces from car snacks and semi-bed head that comes with a Saturday morning.... It's all captured here. 

Today, we retired as Toys R Us kids. All four of us. What will my children be now? Amazon kids? Target kids? It will never be the same. I'm just thankful we had one last time to enjoy a store that fueled childhood memories.

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Sweet Baby Boy: Merrick

Sweet little Merrick was a 32 week premie! He was so very good for his first portraits and slept the entire time! I felt like he was too easy! haha I can't wait to watch this little one grow. 

Mom's Favorites

During Merrick's reveal, Richelle was holding back tears squealing and awww-ing over the images. I had her choose a few to include in his blog post!

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || Easter Mini Sneak Peeks!

We recently held Easter Mini sessions in studio and it was SO FUN! All the sweet kids filed in with their little suits and dresses. ADORABLE! We played catch with the Easter eggs at times and everyone got their goodie bags at the end. The kids couldn't wait to dig into them!

I'm so happy I got to host these. Having so many happy faces in my studio really fills me with joy! I love that my clients have this space to use for portraits.

Thank you to all who shared, inquired, and booked. I am always so appreciative of your support <3

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Maternity Photographer || Angel

Angel and I were beyond excited to have fresh snow for some of her maternity images! We were able to capture two looks during her session and also talk about how excited she is for her little girl to arrive in March! I'm excited to meet her also and can't wait until Angel, her son (who is being promoted to big brother!) and the newest addition come back to visit in studio! 

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Senior Photographer || Grove City 2018: Haley

Haley is such a kind, unique and loving soul! She has art in her blood and the brain of a rocket scientist! Just being around her was inspiring. Watch out world, there is NO doubt in my mind that she is going to change the world. Just wait and see.

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Newborn Photographer || Welcome to the world, Opal!

We ooh and ahh-ed over her mama in a purple gown, rocking a bump... well that bump is now a baby, ladies and gents! Miss Opal has arrived and she is precious! This little family just steals my heart. I could not adore them more!!! 

(Feel free to take a look back at their maternity session here)

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Wedding Photographer || Landoll's Mohican Castle: Michael + Kerra

Kerra and Micheal's wedding day was stunning. Dressed in her Stella York gown, Kerra had hugs from her children and bridesmaids as she took deep breaths trying to keep from crying. 'I just love his stupid ass so much!' she exclaimed. She was so extremely excited to marry Micheal. 

Micheal was smiling ear to ear all day long. He had to have been one of the happiest groom's I ever seen (so nice too!) and he really COULD NOT wait to see his bride walk down the aisle. 

This couple, their friends and family, were so happy and excited for them, the room was packed with good vibes. Jonathan and I loved being among them as they danced, laughed and shed happy tears <3

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Senior Photography || East Knox 2018:

For years, I have heard senior clients and their parents say 'No, studio portraits for seniors are cheesy!'. I can agree that if done right, you can definitely get a 90's studio feel to images that are just not up to par. When Colleen came into my studio, I was determined to work with her to create a set of images that was more Vanity Fair, Rolling Stones, modern day celebrity photo shoot appeal. I wanted to show anyone in doubt of studio portraits that they do not have to be cheesy. 

When Colleen came into my studio yesterday for her reveal, her reaction left me speechless. She kept commenting on how happy she was, recording the slideshow I had made for her on her phone, and afterwards gave me the most heartwarming hug that I really did need over a few bad days I was experiencing!

I hope to get to do more sessions like these. Allowing anyone to come in and have their portraits taken and feel like it's celebrity grade results.

Colleen, thank you for trusting me. Allowing me to dress you, choose colors, style and poses without a single doubt or question. You have been such a blessing. I can't wait to see you do great things sweetheart! <3

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || The Myers Family

This family is absolutely adorable! When they came into the studio, I knew we had to do more than just some sweet poses. I rolled out the fur rug and the kids got to wrestle, cuddle and play with mom and dad! It made for some really great images.

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus Ohio Family Photographer || Snowy / Studio Maternity Portraits

This mama is the epitome of #goals! Veteran. Military wife. Boy mom x2 that is expecting a sweet daughter! She inquired about this maternity session and I was beyond excited to explore all the ideas she had. She was not one bit phased by the cold snow when she trekked out across our field and we captured a few wintry portraits in our navy blue maternity gown (This color on her is beautiful!)

We warmed up back in the studio and captured a ton more. She wanted to include a few shots of her husband's military jacket while also using a black lace gown from the client closet to add some chic feminine vibes in too! 

I loved getting to know this amazing woman. She is beautiful inside and out. Her daughter has an increible mother to grow up to be just like!

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || Newborn: Cam

Mount Vernon, Ohio / Columbus, Ohio Family Photographer || Ashley + Nathan's Winter Waterfall Maternity Portraits

Ashley + Nathan are THE SWEETEST! Years ago, I met them while photographing their Homecoming. Ashley even remembered how we quickly met and since then she had been following my work. It's beautiful seeing these two now. They are engaged, expecting their beautiful daughter, and have a wedding coming up! 2018 is going to be a fantastic year for them and I am so happy they allowed me to be apart of it in some small way.