My niece Karsyn (oldest child of Darin and Jodi) is 8 this year. It took us FOREVER to get her pictures done. I think this was our fourth attempt. Every time we scheduled, one of Jodi’s kids or mine got sick. At long last, we were able to go up North last week and get ‘er done. Of all the kids in the family, I think she looks the most like my mom – the blonde version. (Well Tori too but from a genetic contribution perspective I have to give it to Karsyn). Karsyn shared her shoot time with her cousin (Jodi’s sister’s daughter) Kennedy. K and K were born only six weeks apart and are such precious little cousin/friends.
We had such a fun day together. It was Jodi and the kids, me and mine with the addition of Noah, and Jennifer and two of hers. Quite the group of us trying to do pictures and track babies. Thus the reason for bringing Noah! He and Tanner were assigned kid duty. Those boys came in plenty handy a time or two. I’ll get to that more later.
During our shoot, a summer storm hit. In order to keep girls and camera dry, we had to hide out under a tree for a bit. Never a dull moment. As Aimee said, in this family, we GO BIG because we don’t GO HOME.
I asked Kennedy to ignore my presence and just play her guitar. It was adorable how perfectly she could execute that. Allowed me to capture KENNEDY – just how she is.
My very beautiful sister Jodi. I love her in this hat and insisted that she bring it.
And here are the mamas. I love that I got a shot of the two sisters laughing. Story of their life.
Just another example to show Tanner of how sometimes the baby is the tallest. (He is hoping this will not be true. He is going to be out of luck.)
I don’t know whose idea it was to climb that tree for shots but it was a good one. I LOVE these ones.
This may sound silly but I love this shot because somehow it still manages to convey the personality of both girls. My little Karsyn is so fun loving but also the serious, studious type. Kennedy, is full of whimsy. She reminds me of a little fairy that just surrounds herself with beauty and quiet and loves to live in a whimsical, dreamy place (of her own creative making). You just see it in the far off looks in her eyes. A little dreamer…
When I imported these shots, they imported in a very random order. I want to explain this picture of “The Grand Escort” but you’ll have to keep reading to get to it.
And. Here it is.
So the boys disappear on us (naturally) with a small troop of toddlers in tow and we find them under the bridge in the creek. Looked to be a great shot spot so we followed. As I am shooting, Karsyn says “Aunt Sissy I think there is a snake looking at me in the water”. I say “No. That is just a stick.” She continues to insist. I continue to debate the point. I truly thought it was a stick. From the sidelines, Jodi says “The stick moved!”
Sure enough. Snake.
Shortly after, we saw another. (There ended up being at least 3 that we saw). Us girls began the frantic (and predicatable) dialouge then about whether or not we had cotton mouths or water mocassins (which turn out to be the same species by the way) in AZ. Jodi calls her brother who works for the Forest Services and he confirms Noah’s assesment. We were dealing with harmless Garter snakes.
Deciding that we needed to GO BIG, I encouraged the girls to cowgirl up and ignore the snakes. Not so easy to do by the way. I wish I would have caught the snake in the water but I didn’t. (CAUGHT IT WITH MY CAMERA! Re-read that previous line and wanted to clarify). Karsyn eye balling it was a pretty good capture though. This was right BEFORE I was convinced the stick was a snake.
In retrospect, I should have listened to my niece right out of the gate. You know what ornament Sweetie bought her for Christmas last year? A snake. Why? Because my Karsyn was in Papa’s backyard bird aviary and my mom watched a snake slither down from the top right over the top of her head. My mother (like Jodi), tends to laugh when she is nervous, and she was doubled over laughing trying to tell Papa and Karsyn about the snake. I think it was a red racer (also harmless).
Do you recall what happened at Karsyn’s shoot just before Troy was born? When I was shooting her on that tire swing up in Payson? A snake. Above her head. Eating baby chicks out of a nest. It was huge. I posted pictures of that event too. TWO SHOOTS in a row where Karsyn has snakes interfere with our plans. This is seriously getting flat weird. Getting nervous about the next shoot already. What in the world is up with that? Can’t she be a little St. Patty and drive them out of AZ? She sure seems to be able to attract them!
After that initial snake set back, we asked Tanner and Noah to please (a) do a snake inspection before we placed the girls in their strategic spots (b) escort them to the spot and (c) stay close by with a watchful eye. I loved having the escort shots as part of the memories captured. I am sure the girls will NEVER forget that experience.
It was pretty funny because Ryker and Cooper were yelling “SNAKE” the moment we arrived. Jodi told us to ignore them because they claimed to see snakes everywhere, all the time. So I did. That was a mistake.
We ate lunch at a quaint little farmer’s market that is really close to where Jim and I honeymooned (nearly 19 years ago!). I had the BEST turkey and pesto sandwich. I think Jen and Jodi and I may want a girl’s day out just to go back there. So good.
I love the art of photography. I love the creative side of the processing. But nothing – I mean NOTHING – can compare to spending a time with my family. That is truly full package. Love you girls! Thank you for adventuring with me and for choosing to be brave. I promised you wouldn’t be sorry!
Again, because my family gets a boat load of shots, I have lots more from this shoot that Jodi and Jenn gave permission to share so here is the full gallery if you would like to see it: http://livelovedphotography.pass.us/karsynandkennedy/