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Blakely Jo

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Blakely Jo

Hello 2016!  Ok, so I'm just about a month and a half late ... but better late than never, right??  One of my goals for 2016 is to be a better blogger ... and I couldn't think of a better way to kick off the new year with this darling girl, Blakely Jo. .

Blakely was the sweetest little thing, and was so content in the warm studio ... she made my job way too easy!  During newborn sessions I invite parents to bring something special that they would like their new baby photographed with.  Blakely's mom and dad asked that we incorporate a handmade blanket that was a gift to them, and as soon as I saw it I knew exactly what I was going to do with it :)  This family loves everything outdoors and Blakely is sure to fall right in line hunting, fishing, hiking, snowmobiling, the list goes on ... so the elk print blanket couldn't have been more perfect!

Peter and Kaitlyn, thank you so much for sharing your darling girl with me.  I cherished our time together, and cannot wait to watch Blakely grow up as the newest addition to your wonderful family!

xo, Jessie

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Barborinas Family | Bellingham Family Photographer

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Barborinas Family | Bellingham Family Photographer

As summer slows slinks away, and we begin to turn our heads to the fall and winter, I am so excited to be scheduling more family sessions.  I have to admit however, I may go kicking and screaming into fall this year, not because I don't love it ... but because I am not ready to let go of the gorgeous summer we were blessed with in the Pacific Northwest.  Oh well, the days pass by and I'll eventually come to grips with the changing seasons. .

Speaking of days passing by, I feel like it was yesterday that we were doing Lucas's 6 month session found here ... so when Adele contacted me about doing his 1 year pictures I nearly spit out my water; how can it be that in a blink of an eye, this little guy is ONE?!  Not to mention big sister Ashlynn who is already FOUR!  These kiddos are so close in age to my own babies, that I can't help but draw on the similarities between them ... one and four are such fun ages, and boy did we have fun at this photo session!

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I so enjoy each time that I see the Barborinas Family!  Thank you Zach and Adele for sharing your family with me, am already looking forward to our next session :)

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xo, Jessie

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Annie | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

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Annie | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

Oh my gosh, sweet Annie ... I just adore you!  Annie's beautiful mama is my baby cousin (seriously ... I used to play house and use Nellie and her twin sister as my real-life doll babies), and I couldn't be happier for this new little family.  I was so excited when they said they wanted to drive 2+ hours to Bellingham for a newborn session, and for the record ... they seriously made the whole traveling with an infant look way too easy!  I so, so enjoyed my time snuggling this precious new addition to the family while catching up with Nellie and Andrew.  If one thing is for certain Annie Girl ... you are one blessed little baby, you have the most amazing parents who love you to the moon and back! .

Thank you Nellie and Andrew for sharing your little darling with me ... I can't wait to see you all again very soon!

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xo, Jessie

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Hattie | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

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Hattie | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

It was such a treat to have this sweet pea in the studio for her newborn session, she was such a sleepy little darling!  Hattie's family are life-long friends of the Bennett family, so during her session we spent a lot of time reminiscing of summer's gone by at the beach cabin ... and talking about future friendships of this next generation.  I could not be happier that my own kiddos get to grow up alongside Hattie and her cousins at the beach cabin, it makes my mama heart so happy! .

xo, Jessie

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Isak | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

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Isak | Bellingham Newborn Photographer

I had such a wonderful time getting to know Isak and his family during his newborn session.  He was such a sweet and calm little baby, and was happiest curled up into a tight little ball ... I'm guessing it was his favorite position inside his mama's belly.  Having the opportunity to snuggle these newborns, and document their first days is such a blessing.  As a parent I've heard it a million times, and I think I've probably said it a billion times ... time goes way too fast, and capturing these first days for a new family is truly amazing.  Each newborn session is so unique, but the love shared between parents and child is a constant reminder of how beautiful life, in all it's stages, really is!  I feel so fortunate to give these families the gift of photography ... and am so grateful to them for allowing me to be a part of this very precious time in their lives. .

xo, Jessie

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Nora | Bellingham Newborn Photography

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Nora | Bellingham Newborn Photography

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  Nora was such a darling during her photo session; and it was so much fun snuggling her just 4 short days after she was born.  I was blessed to be able to photograph Nora's birth store, which you can read about here, and having her in the studio for newborn photos was so special.  I have been so blessed to get to know this family over the past couple months, as Megan and I were in constant contact in the weeks and days leading up to little Nora's birth.  I am so glad that they asked me to capture this very exciting time as they grew from a family of three to four.  Big brother Henry was just as cute as can be, and I have no doubt that he and Nora will share a very special sibling bond.

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xo, Jessie

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The Pulley Family | Bellingham Family Photographer

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The Pulley Family | Bellingham Family Photographer

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When these three sisters contacted me about doing a family session as a gift to their parents, I was so excited!  Not only was I lucky enough to capture this beautiful, growing family; I was able to catch up with old friends.  I have known this group since grade school, and many of the memories I have of school musicals and bus rides include the girls. .

We decided to do an extended family session at their property and I had to chuckle when I received the driving directions which read 'You'll turn down a gravel road that you think leads to no where ... just keep going, I promise we'll be out there'.  And I must admit, about a mile into the winding gravel road I thought I had taken a wrong turn.  Shortly thereafter the trees parted and I caught a glimpse of the most darling little cabin sitting at the edge of a beautiful lake complete with docks and diving board!  Yes folks, I do believe I have been introduced to a new little slice of Pacific Northwest heaven.

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The conversation was wonderful, the weather was perfect, and the scenery gorgeous ... I didn't want the session to end!  I could have stayed all day, snapping away as I watched this beautiful family interact with each other.  I am so grateful for the gift of photography, and feel blessed that it allows me to connect (and reconnect) with amazing people like the Pulleys (and Stevens, Pendergrast, and Parrett families).  Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to share in the joy that is your family!

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... and I was only half kidding about randomly showing up at the cabin with my family this summer, consider this your warning ;)

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xo, Jessie

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Deacon's Masters Par-Tee

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Deacon's Masters Par-Tee

Well, it's official ... the golfers err, guests  have gone, the living room has been converted back to a space for living as opposed to a Par 3 course, and we have a 1 year old!  As reality sets in, I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that our little man is ONE ... however I am giving myself a little more time to be nostalgic about it, maybe until the last of the party balloons lose their air ... someday I'll get a grip, maybe :) .

As the big day approached, I was met with a mix of emotions - the mama in me was struggling, and the party planner in me was thrilled.  Those who know me, know I love to plan a party, and may or may not spend months brainstorming party ideas for upcoming events (lol, I use the word 'events' loosely ... my event planning these days is limited to my kids' birthdays).  You can find blog posts of Farah's birthdays here, here, and here.  And I will neither confirm nor deny that ideas are already swirling in my brain for her next birthday ... but I digress.

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Deacon's first birthday party theme was a foregone conclusion the day he was born.  Um, hello ... Luke is in the golf industry, Deacon was born on the 'Superbowl weekend' of golf, and his middle name (though not decided on until the day he was born) is a direct link to Augusta National Golf Course.  A Masters Par-Tee of course, for our little pro :)  I had so much fun planning this special day, and couldn't think of a better way to celebrate our little man.  We hosted a very small gathering for close friends and family to thank them for playing (pun intended) such a huge role in Deacon's first round I mean, year!

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I hope you enjoy the par-tee ...

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'Next up on the tee, with the 5:30 tee time -  Deacon Butler from Bellingham, Washington' (I think I hear a faint golf clap)

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Because the party was in the evening, we wanted to make sure there were plenty of activities for children of all ages (adults included of course), so we created a putt putt course out of an artificial grass carpet I picked up at Home Depot ... I definitely caught Luke 'testing the roll' a time or two, and won't be surprised if the holes make an appearance before his tournaments :)  I created little score cards for the indoor course and found plastic clubs at our local party store which doubled as party favors.

Post 2Post 4We also created a Caddy Shack where party-goers found golf themed cartoon illustrations to color.  Of course a birthday party isn't complete without some variation of pin the tail ... and Pin the Flag in Augusta was a definite hit ... maybe more so for the adults than the kids :)

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Dinner was served shortly after guests arrived and included BBQ Chicken 'Sand Wedges' (sandwiches), Fruit 'Slice' Salad, Fresh 'Greens', and 'Chip Shots' ... a SUPER easy menu that made it possible for Luke and I to really enjoy the party without having to worry about food prep.

Post 5And of course, no golf course is complete without a well-stocked bar.  Guests could belly up to the 19th Hole and enjoy a refreshing Arnold Palmer after their round on the Par 3 course.

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The cake was something I just threw together (lol, don't you hate it when people say that ... it's like the equivalent of complimenting someone's outfit and in return they say 'oh, this old thing?!')  I decided that I was going to brave making Deacon's 'smash cake' and found the perfect idea on Pinterest (of course) to try.  I was pretty happy with how it turned out ... aside from being gigantic, and turning my hands and Deacon's hands, face, shirt, shorts, and high chair semi-permanently green.  I also made cupcakes, but completely lost interest in the grass effect ... so guests enjoyed cupcakes (and as my 4 year old nephew said) 'with snakes on top ... but don't worry, they're not real snakes' :) I also would like to take a moment to clarify the statement 'I made' when referring to anything baked in my house ... it definitely comes out of a box, Duncan Hines to be exact ... and the frosting is ALWAYS Duncan Hines cream cheese.

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Deacon wasn't too sure about the whole singing bit, but he powered through without a tear and enjoyed his cake (or actually, he enjoyed the frosting ... it was layered so thick, I don't think he ever actually made it to the cake), of course it took less than a second for the ball to come off ... which he promptly threw (green icing and all) on the floor and clapped his hands proudly :)

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I hope you have enjoyed this little peek into Deacon's first birthday, I think it was a hit (lol, the puns just keep coming).

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I had so much fun planning this little par-tee and even more fun celebrating our sweet boy.

xo, Jessie

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Happy Birthday Deacon! | Whatcom Baby Photographer

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Happy Birthday Deacon! | Whatcom Baby Photographer

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Year | yir | noun:  The period of 365 days, used for reckoning time in ordinary affairs .

Deacon is a year old today ... a YEAR people.  He is basically about to pack up and move away to college (cue the melodrama ... and the waterworks).

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In all seriousness though, I'm not sure how we got here.  I can honestly say that I feel like he was born yesterday ... I was tracking my contractions on my nifty little app, alerting family and friends that 'it's go time!', and  getting my last minute Masters picks submitted for the office pool (no joke).  I think it was a mid-contraction frantic pick that cemented my place at the bottom of the leaderboard (no hard feelings though, I got the best prize that Masters weekend had to offer).  I have contemplated this blog post for awhile now, not really sure which direction to go ... so forgive me if I wander.

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As we come to the end of Deacon's 1st chapter, part of me feels like we haven't been here before - like we are moving into uncharted territory.  But of course we have, with Farah just 2 and a half years ago (a mere 952 days, but who's counting).  The day that you look forward to with excitement and anticipation, but hope and pray will stay off in the distance for awhile because it is also bittersweet.  The day your baby turns one.

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Time is such a puzzling thing.  How can it feel as though this tiny human was born yesterday, yet at the same time seem as though they have been a part of your life forever?  I keep going back to the definition of a year ... 'the period of 365 days, used for reckoning time in ordinary affairs' and can only come to one conclusion ... Google is obviously not a mother :)  A year is so much more than that!  It is 365 days of self discovery, 365 days of a 'new normal' that occasionally borders on pure insanity (that you wouldn't trade for anything), 365 days filled with laughter as well as tears, 365 days of experiencing the world through the eyes of a child, and 365 amazing days of unadulterated joy and unconditional love.  Days that will never repeat themselves, except in the spirit of memories; locked tight and held safe in your heart for a lifetime.

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It is inexplicable how fast it goes, and with each passing day I feel like it goes a little faster.  However I take comfort in knowing that we have tomorrow.  Another day of discovery, another day of laughter (and most likely some tears), another day experiencing the world through the eyes of our children, and another amazing day of unadulterated joy and unconditional love.  As for yesterday?  Well, we have the memories - a blessing for which I am forever grateful!  I am so thankful for this little life of ours, for our beautiful and awe-inspiring children, and for a chance to share our joy with each and every person who is a part of our children's stories.  So thank you ... all of you.  You have watched our family grow, supporting and loving us along the way ... truly, thank you.

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Happy, Happy 1st Birthday to our 'Mister Man', 'Buster Boy', 'Deaky Deaky Deaky'.  Our darling boy whose belly laugh is infectious, loves his sissy the most, is happiest with any sort of ball in his hand, runs and climbs stairs like he's been doing it for years (I have recently pulled 4 grey hairs out of my head, coincidence?  I don't think so ... ), and whose smile is almost too big for the 6-9 month clothes he currently wears :)

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Thank you Deacon, for the last 365 days, thank you for the next 365, and the next, and the next 366 (I know there is a Leap Year in there somewhere), and thank you sweet boy, for a lifetime of memories!  We love you Deacon Butler!

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xo, Jessie

 

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Lucas | Whatcom Baby Photographer

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Lucas | Whatcom Baby Photographer

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Sweet Lucas, you are beyond adorable and photographing you was such a treat!  I feel like I have known this little guy since before he was born!  Well, technically maybe I have ...you see, I ran into his mama at Target one afternoon and after we chatted for a bit we parted ways to go about our shopping.  As I was heading towards the checkout line, I definitely caught sight of her ... in the maternity/active wear section ... we met eyes, and in that instant I knew ... she wasn't picking up a pair of yoga pants (well maybe maternity yoga pants) and that a little baby was on the way!  Of course I had to wait for an actual announcement a month or so later, but alas my suspicions were confirmed and here we are with a little Lucas :) .

Six months is such a fun age, and getting to photograph this milestone is such a gift; especially for a special family like this one.  Our time together was full of sweet smiles and peek-a-boo games (and maybe just a few tears ... tummy time is for the birds people).  I was so glad to be able to capture Lucas and big sister Ashlynn's adorable bond, there is something so incredible about a sibling relationship ... and it's apparent that big sister is Lucas's favorite :)

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Thank you Zach and Adele for sharing your darling family with me, I can't wait to see you all again :)

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xo, Jessie

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