Friday, August 22, 2014

Lifestyle Session with Rachel & Zach

This post was published originally at Smooth Stones in May. (Ignore the watermarks.) I'm sharing it here because I think it's an excellent example of a lifestyle session. These are the sorts of photos I've always longed to have of my own family because they capture not only the way people look (as in a studio session) but also what people do. One of the most meaningful family sessions I've ever experienced, personally, occurred the year I hired a photographer to accompany us to the pumpkin patch.

I learned to use a camera primarily in order to document adventures and regular life with my children, and at this point, lifestyle sessions are a comfort zone for me. I would love to capture special moments for your family as I have for my own. If you're interested in photos of your family's participation in a meaningful activity or tradition, please let me know.

You can see many, many more examples of lifestyle sessions at Smooth Stones, which is where I document my family's activities and traditions.
Our local berry farm decided not to open for pick-your-own strawberries, this year, because--after our cold winter and a harsh, spring storm--the crop isn't what it should be. I read about a couple other farms in the Greater Richmond Area but decided to take the little kids to Crozet for "Come Grow with Us," the children's program at Chiles Peach Orchard. Then it became a matter of convincing Rachel and Zach to go with us. That was much easier than I'd expected given the fact that Rachel's baby is already working his way "toward the light"; I just had to promise to drive her into Charlottesville at lightning speed if she went into labor :)

"Come Grow with Us" costs $7 per participating child and includes a craft, a story, a container for pick-your-own, and a snack. The craft, yesterday, was a strawberry. Each child painted and dusted it with jello (to make it smell good); glued some seeds on it; and traced one of his or her hands to become the top of the berry. Clementine's Strawberry Shortcake dress was mine and has its own, special story

I can't tell you much about story time, yesterday, because I was busy supervising Chip as he climbed into and out of a little wagon.

Chip's outfit was Cade's: just one of the few outfits I kept.

Charleigh was kind of funny in the strawberry patch. She was slowed by her concern that her fruit was ripe enough; over and over, she held up a berry and asked: "Is this red enough, Mama?"

Clementine and Zach filled their containers in no time, and Zach seemed to have a knack for finding that rare, large berry.

Chip didn't have a container, but he didn't mind; he was happy to try and fill his belly with berries (and, later, with ice cream).

All in all, it was a perfect celebration of what bursts warm and ripened into the world.

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