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6 month session – the Oberlin family – Parkersburg, WV

The Oberlins are no strangers to the Birthographer blog.. after photographing/videoing Jackson’s birth through one year, and then Cohen’s birth and newborn.. they have been in front of my camera plenty! I love them to pieces and for Cohen’s 6 month photos, we used my studio and then wondered around the neighborhood- mostly using my backyard for these portraits. I can’t believe how much Cohen looks like Jack but lighter hair and a bigger build.. they are way too cute!

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Three year Friend-versary!

It’s almost midnight but I couldn’t let my three year friend-versary pass with one of my best girlfriends! I was looking through old photographs today as I was helping her choose some wall art and the date came across as April 30, 2011.. Three years ago on this day I photographed B for the first time, he was one then, and now he is four and we I have photographed him officially four times (and many iphone snaps!) I can’t believe that some random lady my husband met at his job at an urgent care that he gave my card to for photographs has become someone I love so dearly.

I don’t know what I would do without your ears to listen to me when I am confused or downright upset. I don’t know if I would feel sane some days without your business mind. But most importantly I appreciate the way you love my family and support my marriage and journey as a mom. You build me up and I am grateful that God shoved you in my path.. or maybe I was shoved in yours.. either way.. I am glad to call you friend.

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(first photoshoot, THREE years ago! You can tell by the edit this is old!
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the day that B officially was adopted into this amazing family. I got to celebrate with them.

 
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Holiday photo 2012

 
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2013 Fall Family Photos

 
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Cheers to three more years… then three more after that… and then three more.. <3!

 

xoxo,

 

allie

 

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Zane is ONE!

I will never forget when Lindsey brought Zane to my home studio for portraits as a newborn. We connected immediately over some shared experiences we have had in our lives and we talked for a long time about motherhood and our fears and what we hoped for our lives as mothers. I love being a part of these early days as a new family, offering encouragement and love to new moms especially. It’s an added bonus to my life and my work.

Zane is one now. A WHOLE YEAR. (and Lindsey has done a most excellent job as his mother!)

My life travels at the speed of infants growing up, which is lightening fast. I blink and a year is gone. Everytime I schedule a one year session for my baby plan folks, I freak out a little about how quickly that first year went by. I think of my Analeigh and her FOUR years that have flown by and I want to be 1000% certain that I am living to the full while she is young. It is juggling act, and I am not very graceful in that department, but with the grace of God we have made it and I do feel like I will look back on these tiring but fleeting days and be proud of the choices we made to have as much time together as possible.

Zane had three photoshoots his first year and as you can see, he changed so fast! I hope these images are precious to you Lindsey and Scott! I loved being your photographer this year!!

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working.. interrupted.

I am sitting here putting off going into my office software and finishing up my tax expenses to send off to the accountant.. for some reason the entire process of paying taxes makes me tired.. and annoyed. Hah! So I thought this would be the perfect time to share a little bit about how I get this job done.

I have had several comments over the last four years about being a working mom. Other moms asking how on earth I run two businesses and keep a beautiful little girl alive and well. Truth is that is has not always been pretty. The struggle is real, folks. I don’t sugar coat motherhood or entrepreneurship. By themselves, both are an ever-changing challenge. Unpredictable, unstable and downright difficult; but insanely rewarding, fulfilling and inspiring at the same time. They mirror each other in many ways. As soon as you get ahead in business, you get behind again. As soon as you know your child, they grow and change and you have a new normal. Exhausting but thrilling.

I have frantically texted and facebooked with my photography friends – asking them if this is what burnout feels like and how to get through it.. I have had many many times where I went on a job search. There have been times where I foolishly but fully believed I should sacrifice my calling to make life easier.. I dreamed of waking up, working 9-5 and then coming home to enjoy my family instead of juggling 24/7/365 and feeling like I was failing as a wife and mom. I have crafted resumes and cover letters that are impressive and from the heart… only to never even be called for an interview.

but hey, I see what you did there, God.

I struggle with the reality of self-employment. The insane tax bills, the slow seasons that put us all on edge, the hours of work in the middle of the night while the world sleeps.. the sacrifice of weekends, the comparison trap, the constant putting yourself out there to be judged, the guilt of sometimes having to put clients before my home life. Many of these things I have grown accustomed to over the years but many I struggle with sporadically still. Coming to grips with the fact that the grass isn’t greener on the other side.. it’s just a totally different shade has been a breakthrough. The grass over there would probably make me very fidgety! This is who I am. This is where I am supposed to be. So I press on.

As I pack up my things for a wedding at the Greenbrier (I am thrilled to be shooting there! bucket list!) this weekend with some of my absolute favorite clients ever – I am feeling so very refreshed. Thrilled that out of all the sets of eyes in the universe, this family wants to borrow mine as the perspective they will remember their wedding by. That is my calling, that is who I am. I am a photographer and all the self-doubt in the universe can’t change that.

After my March break and trip out to the photography convention, I have been calm and peaceful. I have shot for myself, my camera feeling like an extension of myself, not a heavy piece of equipment. I have has a few instanced where I have had to work with my (almost) four year old directly alongside of me and not felt stressed about it. I have had the realization that for Analeigh’s whole life, she has known me as her mom and a photographer. That my identity to her is also based in taking photographs for people.. for some reason that was a very powerful realization to see myself through her eyes as she tells people her mom is a photographer. Just wow. I have also sat with my husband and held his hand and told him I love him and appreciate him and I am sorry for being so frantic over the course of our now six year old marriage.

The settling of my soul is a beautiful thing. I can already see what it is doing to free my work and take it to another level. So exciting.

So.. Here’s to the next phase.
Here’s to finding peace in the unknown.
Here’s to the beautiful, crazy ride called life.
Here’s to accepting and enjoying it!

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by adorable couple for this weekend’s festivities! So excited to see you and make beautiful photos, Matt & Katie!!

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Analeigh “helping” me work the past two weeks. Master photobomber.

I am not even joking.. I was posting this blog and got this text.. my sweet baby throwing a penny in a wishing well and wishing “that mommy could be a photographer everyday”.. excuse me while I go cry and thank God for her and for this job.

 

xoxo,

allie

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