La Dolce Vita | Our Italian Vacation

By way of an explanation/apology for why I’m so behind on blogging client shoots, I thought I would give a little peek at our summer travels.  Recently, we took our two-year-old son on a ten-day trip to Italy.  We started in Florence, then trained to Rome, then ended our journey in Puglia, where we attended the beautiful farmhouse wedding of a friend.   It was the best vacation I have ever taken . . . solo, with my husband, or with family!

Here’s the thing: before we left, everyone cautioned that traveling with a young child is a nightmare.  We packed heavy and prepared for every possible disaster.  But all that anxiety was not borne out by reality.  Our son did awesome.  We kept him on Boston time, so that he (and we) slept until 11 am or noon each day, napped around 5 or 6 pm, and woke up in time for us to have the long, luxurious meals that Italians love.  He loved exploring new places and having adventures.

To see the eyes of a child open wide at the sheer scale of David, to experience ancient Rome through their imagination, and to watch your child rocking out to a twenty-piece Apulian drum band at midnight . . . these are images I’ll never forget.  

Baby Charlotte | Boston Newborn Photography

It was rainy, gray, and cold on the morning of baby Charlotte’s photoshoot.  But all the dreariness disappeared as soon as we stepped through the threshold of her parents’ house.  Once inside, it was warm and calm.  A sweet Charlotte was sleeping blissfully, and her parents were awaiting the return of the extended family, who had come into town to celebrate the baby’s arrival. Although Charlotte is their first child, her parents were interacting with her and each other like they were pros.  It was lovely watching the gentle, quiet confidence they shared as they fed, diapered, rocked, or handed her off to each other.

What I love most about Charlotte’s photoshoot is that we were able capture some of those moments: the delicate way in which her dad held her little feet as he rocked her to sleep, the love with which her mom cradled her as she fed her, the look both parents had for her and each other when they held her in their arms.  I like to think that one day Charlotte will look at these photos and know that from these very first moments, before she was able to talk or sing or dance or even smile, she was already so deeply loved.  And of course she’ll see that even at just over a week old she was already so very beautiful, be it curled up in repose or “wearing” her mother’s wedding jewelry.

A Very Merry(-Go-Round) Second Birthday Party | Boston Children and Family Photography

I am woefully behind on blogging, but I’m going to take my posts completely out of order so that I can share the adorable photos from my favorite photography subject’s second birthday party.  After slavishly planning every detail of his first birthday party last year, I veered to the opposite end of the spectrum and threw together a party this year with about 6 days’ notice.  And here’s the thing: he loved his second birthday more!  Lesson learned: A toddler doesn’t care so much that there are 7 patiently made layers in the jello cups, or that you ordered the really big balloons from a specialty party shop in Canada, or whether you created a Pinterest-worthy backdrop for the cake table.  Rather, a toddler can’t help but have a great time if you throw together all the things he loves — in this case, carousel, cupcakes, pizza, goldfish crackers, a doting family, and dear friends.

By the way, I highly recommend the Greenway Carousel as a location for parties.  It sits on the beautiful Rose Kennedy Greenway in downtown Boston, straight across from Faneuil Hall and the New England Aquarium.  It is a truly New England experience.  In fact, there is not a single horse to be found on the carousel.  Instead, all the creatures are native to Massachusetts, including a sea turtle, a peregrine falcon, three types of butterflies, and a harbor seal.  And while I love the jangly organ tunes of old-fashioned carousels, I also loved that this one plays a contemporary and fun soundtrack that swung from Springsteen to Bruno Mars.

What I loved most about having a party at the carousel was that you didn’t have to worry about entertainment for your guests: everyone, from the babies to the adults, had a toddler-esque good time riding the carousel.

And there’s something poetic about celebrating a birthday on a merry-go-round, no?

Leo at 3 Months | Boston Children and Family Photography

Cheers to the seasons!  On this surprisingly quiet day in the Arnold Arboretum, the fall foliage could not have been more perfect, punctuating the still emerald green lawn of the Shrub and Vine Garden with a sprinkle of gold.

Leo’s beautiful mama and I met through a wedding blog, where she thoughtfully documented the planning of her Vietnamese-American wedding.  I was thus particularly thrilled to be able to do this photoshoot of her young family.  The three of them were so sweet together: I could tell from their quiet, well-tuned choreography that they had such love and grace with one another.  

Samuel and Family | Boston Children and Family Photography

Even with the chilly weather, there was so much warmth in this session.  There are happy babies, and there are HAPPY babies.  Samuel simply radiates joy, and it is just impossible not to get caught up in it.  So you can imagine how much fun it was to wander around the area around Jamaica Pond with him and his equally photogenic and fun parents on one of those crisp and bright fall days that make you feel lucky to live in New England.  I love being able to capture a moment in time not only in a family’s life but in the season.

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