Mommy Guilt is Real

As parents we often create a long list for ourselves according to what we “thought” parenting would be like. When you bring that precious bundle home you are giddy to take everything in. You create a sweet little love story as you embrace that precious newborn and wonder how your friendship will grow. And much like the clever “Luvs” advertising you realize that life is not a fairy tale and simply far from perfect. 

As a mommy I have yet to wrap my head around it. Those fairy tales still dance through my mind stirring up a fair amount of mommy guilt on a regular basis. For years I worked away from the home to keep our family afloat alongside my wonderful husband who so carefully devoted each evening to caring for two young boys. While working outside the home I was able to make intentional moments of time together with my boys because I knew when I would leave next.

Years later and with the blooming of my photography skills and blessing from God I was able to slowly work into being a Work At Home Mom. Wow, who knew that being a WAHM would be harder? Instead of having set work hours you are working all hours to keep afloat. I personally have struggled with placing my energy and identity in my success, forgetting what I had spent years praying for the opportunity to do, be at HOME. 

Through a series of events that only God could orchestrate it has been brought to my attention the deep love that I have for my children. The only parallel on this earth that I have found to help me grasp the love of Christ and his willingness to die on the cross for me. As I stood up and spoke at the latest school board meeting and continue to fight for my children’s futures, as I have chosen to simplify my career goals and commitments and as I take time to not focus on furthering my photography career aggressively, but instead to just take things as they come my way.  I also plan to pick back up on blogging and  I realized that life has a journey and being a mommy is all about being placed just where you need to be.

The strangest thing has happened since, I have been at peace. It has been a moment by moment prayer type of thing but the overwhelming feeling is peace. I am sure that the timing is not accidental, in fact it is the very first Easter that I have truly grasped what it meant for Him to die on the cross. Much like the love I have for my kiddos except for the fact that He is perfect, so I don’t have to be. 

PS. I am not quitting photography and never will be! I am simply choosing not to be intentional about advertising but instead creating and maintaining relationships with clients to bring a new level of creativity. Creativity not based on strict profit or self-fame. Creativity channeled to bring God glory through beautiful moments that he has placed you in today. 




Jumbo Cupcake Smash? Molly’s Cupcake’s North Liberty

I have yet to find a flavor that I do not love from Molly’s Cupcakes. For instance, I had to buy a 1/2 dozen when leaving this sweet cake smash session on Friday morning. “Oh, we just added Lemon Meringue” Jamie casually mentioned as I was browsing the case of cupcakes. And yes, that was delicious. As I stood there telling my children we were “splitting” the cupcakes mommy stood there and ate the entire thing. 

The funniest thing is the taste of a toddler who has yet to understand the addiction of sugar. Most likely due to a very cautious and wonderful mommy she literally turned her nose away from the cupcake. Those tiny little fingers, so pretty and delicate,  merely pointed at the sprinkles across the tray and considered climbing out of the vintage high chair to grandma who was just outside the photo frame. At any rate, we enjoyed the cupcakes and she looked pretty cute next to them. 

Molly’s Cupcakes | NORTH LIBERTY HOURS
MON – THURS: 10am – 9pm | FRI – SAT: 10am – 10pm
SUNDAY: 12pm – 9pm

Simply book a session with me. Call Molly’s and order your jumbo cupcake 319.333.1297 to be delivered to North Liberty the day of your session. We can do indoor or outdoor. 

Dear Mommy: Time is Running Away

As a mom of two boys I know how time runs. It runs through the last feeding, the next lunch, another nap, and odd hours of the night. It runs by piles of toys and through sippy cups and messy kitchens. It runs right along side a “quick trip” to Target and another set of immunizations at the pediatric office. Time grabs onto our hips and keeps our designer jeans in the back of the closet it turns fashion into fashionably late, every trip you take.  And while days can feel like eternity, years pass by at warp speed. 

One thing time does not change is that it runs away and you cannot get it back. You will never see this moment in front of you again, unless of course you capture that moment and hang on to it forever. ❤ 

Have you booked your newborn photos?

Hello World. 

As a mommy turned photographer sessions such as these get me wishing for another sweet baby. This sweet little man was simply angelic. We scheduled his session for a day within his first week of life to capture the pure newborn look that so many of us long to gaze at once we finally catch up on sleep. 

Having a newborn is demanding. Schedules are turned upside down, sleep is a blessing and feeding and changing the newest member of the family becomes most important. If you are expecting your first or even your 10th you will realize that planning for your newborn involves many things. Is photography one of them? 

Speaking from experience I know how easy it is to be so focused on the newborn and sleep that you have a hard time concentrating on anything else. For this reason booking your newborn session during the third trimester of your pregnancy is of highest importance. By contacting me in the months leading up to your new little bundle’s delivery we are able to meet and have a consultation in your home to discuss packages and session guidelines. 

During the consultation we will discuss the importance of scheduling during a time of day that fit’s your family’s schedule best and a location in your very own home where we will set up.

Some may wonder how we make the home look like a studio?

Take a look at this image from this last newborn session and you will see how we can make any space into the perfect place for family photos. 

As you can see the father and child are sitting on their living room couch and the setup for the newborn session is in the dining room area. The room is open concept and so there fore while mommy was taking a nursing break we took time to capture big brother with daddy. Once we selected the images that we loved during the ordering session (also held in the home) I went to work in my editing software to minimize the distractions from the background. 

Will your baby sleep or be wide awake?

Most brand new babies under 10 days old will be very sleepy and pose-able. When baby is awake we take the close ups of those sweet baby eyes.

And once we have diapered and captured several super cute wide awake poses we move to shush-wiggle-bounce-to-sleep mode. Yes, I have been called a “baby whisperer” before. I enjoy rocking those sweet babies to sleep. At this point in time we try images that are only can only be attempted with the newborn is fast asleep. This is also for the newborn’s safety. A wide awake wiggly baby is not as likely to relax into the poses needed to achieve the following images. 

And classic beautiful sleeping baby images. 

My personal newborn photography style is relaxed and classic.  Props that are special to the family are the one’s that make it into the session. I bring along several neutral layering pieces to lie baby on and then situate the newborn in a warm, well-lit area of the home to capture the brilliance of new life. 

Please contact me today to book your very own maternity consultation within your third trimester of pregnancy. 

North Liberty Photographer offers Holiday Edition Photo Class

The first Oh Snap class was a total success. It was an evening of learning in a group setting away from the kids. We enjoyed ourselves so much that I decided to teach another class, this one being a special holiday edition. 

Come to learn with me on Thursday December 4th from 6-9pm in North Liberty Iowa just off HWY 965. I will help you take better holiday photos and teach you the basics in running your camera. 

If you love to use your camera and want to take better photos of your children this holiday season this class is for you! 


Shop Local | North Liberty Family Photos

Buy your mini session ticket today! This is a deposit to hold your spot for Holiday Card mini sessions.
Only 10 slots available!!! One day special pricing. 

Choose your 4×8 slim line Holiday photo card template (one of dozens of options for single sided 4×8 photo holiday card design.) 
Choose your backdrop (2 backdrop options:Snowy winter trees or Night before Christmas)
20 minute session
Family size 1-4 people
2 poses
Decide how many cards you need: 25, 50, 75 or 100 customized holiday photo cards
Pick 1 digital image

$50, $75, $95 or $100 based on how many holiday cards you would like. (6% tax applied to all orders, must pay in full on day of session. $25 non-refundable deposit is due upon booking, no walk-ins accepted. May not be used in combination with any other offer or on previous sessions) The more you purchase, the deeper the discount. May purchase additional digital images, prints, framed images,canvases. Options available for upgrade to press printed two sided or folded cards. Please verify the time you are reserving when purchasing. 

Small Business Saturday® was founded in 2010 by American Express to help business owners with their most pressing need — getting more customers. Four years later, shoppers across the nation continue to rally in support of small businesses on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. This year, Small Business Saturday is Nov 29. 

Shop at local small businesses and spread the word on social media using #ShopSmall.

Holiday Family Photo Sessions | Iowa City Family Photographer

So many things happen this time of year. You gather friends and family and celebrate together in your home the joy of the season. What would happen if this year you made a spot to drop your smart phone as you walked in the door and let me take those beautiful memory photos for you?

This holiday season (with the exception of Thanksgiving day, and Christmas Day) I am available to come and take lovely documentary style images of your family and friends as they gather together to celebrate and have fun. 

I will drop by just long enough to gather the group for an impromptu shot and then wander through the home as you celebrate, capturing just the perfect moments of food, fun and decor. 

Ideas for the perfect shoot:

-Thanksgiving dinner (weekend before or after)

-making Christmas candy, cookies or gingerbread houses



-decorating the tree

-hanging the Christmas lights

-sledding or building a snowman

-picking out and cutting a fresh Christmas tree at a tree farm

One half hour session will give you 15 documentary style images in digital format at an investment of $300+tax and give memories for you to keep for years to come. You will also have the opportunity to order photo books, holiday cards and canvases. You may also extend your session to one hour for an additional $50, giving you 30 digital images.