“For all the things my hands have held, the best by far is you.” – Andrew McMahon
Last week, I heard one of the sweetest sounds of my life, during a newborn photo session in my Puyallup, WA Studio…
A Sunday ago, here at my Newborn studio work space in Puyallup, WA., I was introduced to the sweetest little babe. Baby G was a wholesome three weeks old, and arrived sound asleep for his session curled up in his mothers arms.
Just moments after he arrived for his newborn photo session here in Puyallup, Wa I could not help but notice the hair on this little guy! He had this honey golden blonde hair evenly growing in with a very handsome lock of curls flipped to the side on the top, making him look like such a classy little man (trust me, check out the pictures and try not to smile!) Instantly you could tell how calm and comfortable he was in his mothers arms. We talked as I took some test shots and brought out the first outfit, hand made by a wonderful company based in London, called Unravelled Sheep. It was a blue hand knit onesie complete with a little bear hat, that I added wooden heart buttons to several weeks ago for some of that old world charm.
As I laid Baby down and began settling him in for the first photo set, I gently pulled the binky from his mouth and found resistance. I was pretty impressed at the amount of suction and sheer force this little guy was using to hold onto that thing! I tried again and this time was successful, but it was at that moment that I heard one of the sweetest little sounds I have ever known.
His “fake cry” (as his mother described it) was the most gentle and adorable little half attempt at a cry you’ve ever heard! I wish I could describe it better, but you would never think of a cry as adorable until you heard this little ones. It totally tugged on my heart strings and I looked over at his Mother smiling as she returned me the same expression back. “I know, right?” She said smiling. “It’s so funny. He does this half attempt at a cry and it is so gentle and so forced and fake sounding that we call it his “fake cry”. You seriously might have had to hear it to believe what we are saying. It might sound far fetched or presumptuous, but we truly aren’t kidding you!
The beauty of it, was that he was very much not in any kind of distress at all. Here he was, bundled up in a little cocoon of the warmest and softest handmade blankets you could ever imagine, with nothing in the world to complain about except that I had pulled his binky for a moment. And there was that little fake cry. I will never forget it.
Have you ever heard a toddler do a fake cry? You know when they are really digging deep, and force a cry that could not be further from the real thing? That is what this little guy had going on. His mom and I had a laugh and several smiles just kneeling over him, seeing this first hand. I have never heard a baby do that before! I love when babies have little character traits specific only to them. It is part of what makes my job so incredible.
Baby decided that he would simply only cooperate if he had his binky in his mouth, which proved to be an interesting challenge. One that I have not run into very often. You have to move fast, and pay attention to what keeps them comfortable. Even if that means pulling that beloved binky for a quick shot or two and then putting it right back in. Every baby is different, and my job is to keep them relaxed, comfy and content so I can capture the true them. If he loves it that much, yes, I really will pull it, snap a picture for team mom (#onecutepictureisallineed), and then put it right back 63 times in a row if needed. If that makes him happy, I will do it. 100% of the time, every Puyallup newborn photo session.
Well, this little guy surpassed all the other babies that have ever stayed awake in the studio here in Puyallup, Wa. At the one hour mark I was pretty impressed at his alertness, but as time turned to two hours I became simply amazed at his ability to stay awake far longer than any other baby I have had in a newborn photo session. It was truly amazing this little newborn could stay awake that long!
“We have a huge family,” Said Mom as she looked over from her spot on the comfy couch just feet from where I was working with Baby. “He has so many brothers and sisters running around that the house is always noisy,” She continued. We laughed as we came to the conclusion that maybe it was “too quiet” for this little guy in the Puyallup Newborn Studio; though the baby shusher was going, with the womb noise complimenting it in the back ground. He lay wrapped in such comfort, and was at ease, but still he could not let himself dose off if the binky was not in his little mouth!
At this point, I simply adapted and took advantage of the situation. I gently picked baby up, tossing out my plans for the various creative sets I had prepared with a new idea in mind. One word, Mom. Baby would totally sleep in his Mom’s arms, without his beloved binky!
So our newborn session turned into an impromptu family session with both mom and dad taking turns having their pictures taken with their sweet but alert little newborn. We followed this with some family pictures of them all together, that were beyond darling. They turned out beautifully, and I was so glad to adjust the session and get something even better that also kept baby happier. I will never force something that is not right just to get a picture, when it comes to newborn photography.
Every little babe is different, and its finding those little differences and adjusting the session for them that makes for the best pictures. I really truly give each baby at these Puyallup Newborn Sessions my absolute attention to every little detail. They deserve it. It showed in the pictures and the family was delighted.
All in all, it was another wonderful session and I was so lucky to meet this beautiful family. This little guy really has no idea how lucky he is just yet. There has got to be so much love in this big family for this little guy. “The littlest and last addition to a big family,” the mom said peacefully smiling as she looked down on her sweet baby. The love was nearly palpable, and such a special thing.