One of my favorite things about photographing babies is seeing them come back every year and watching them grow like weeds. I photographed Nathaniel and Caroline for the first time when they were teeny tiny week old newborns, then again for their 1st birthdays! Now they're 2 years old, running around with their big brother Benjamin Franklin the Airedale Terrier, who has been there every step of the way!
This time their parents joined in on the fun too and we got some super adorable family shots. Even though this year was a little different because we had to keep our distance, it was still so much fun for me to hang out with this awesome family! We decided to do the session in their backyard this year so we could all spread out and the twins and Benjamin could run around to their hearts' content! We started out doing some family photos, then the twins posed on their very cute little lounge set and in front of their playhouse. They also enjoyed some time on their tire swing pushing each other and giggling.
Near the end of the session, mom Sarah asked each of the twins to give Benjamin Franklin a kiss and of course they obliged. It reminded me of the sweet moment when they were tiny newborns and we were contemplating putting peanut butter on Nathaniel's head to get Benjamin to kiss him, but then he went ahead and did it all on his own. He has been the best dog brother right from the beginning!
Here are some more of my favorite photos from Caroline & Nathaniel's 2nd birthday session!
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Christmas is so much more fun now that I can spoil my nephew Seth. Last year on Christmas he was only 5 months old, so he kind of just sat there while we opened his hefty present pile for him. This year, after practicing at his first birthday in July, he’s going to be an old pro at opening presents! I’m excited to see him enjoy Christmas a little bit more now that he’s a little bigger. He’s still not old enough to quite understand what’s going on so I’m looking forward to next year when he learns about Santa and reindeers and stockings and everything else and can really get excited himself for Christmas.
Much like his newborn photos and his first birthday photos, Seth’s Christmas photos this year were roughly a 3 day affair. We not only had a lot of outfits and backdrops to get through, but it’s also a much different kind of session taking newborn photos as opposed to 17 month old photos. Seth is almost constantly on the move and climbing and running and screaming and laughing and just generally being a crazy person :D It seemed like the only way to get him to smile and look at the camera was for my mother and me to sing the Winnie the Pooh theme song for him. Thankfully I remembered the words!
It was amazing to see the difference from last year’s Christmas photos. He couldn’t sit up by himself then so my brother in law had to hold him up on my vintage sled and then I had to edit him out of the photo later. This year Seth was literally dancing on the same sled, just holding his Gigi’s hand for safety. It was a much quicker Photoshop job this year!
Here they are!
When we were done in the studio, we went downstairs to take a very special photo with Seth’s great grandma. She’s our Mema so we call her Seth’s Great Mema. My mother realized that the two of them, the youngest and oldest in our family, were going to be 1 and 92 this year just like in the Christmas Song. I knew we had to take a nice photo of them together to commemorate it.
And so I’m offering this simple phrase to kids from 1 to 92. Although it’s been said, many times, many ways, Merry Christmas to you!
The last time Lily was in the studio, it was a very different looking scene in there. It was fully decked out in fall decor to celebrate her first birthday in October (hay, hay everywhere, as far as the eye could see!) This time the studio was 100% Christmas. This day was my last in-studio Christmas session of the year, so I was determined to use all the props in there one more time before I had to pack them all away!
First we started with her adorable red flower pattern dress and little red cardigan. Lily was so happy and clapping the whole time, and she really loved to look at the Christmas books I had put out in the studio. I loved how she looked against the sequin backdrop I put up. I feel like it makes her beautiful blue eyes stand out perfectly. We switched to the brown burlap backdrop when she changed into her cute little Santa suit. This girl was the only toddler this whole season who was ok with wearing a Santa hat! Every other kid ripped it off crying, but Lily was happy to wear it as she played with the props and books. She did such a great job!
Here are some of my favorite photos from our session!
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Dominic came into the studio with his big smiles and stylin’ outfits earlier this month and he absolutely rocked his Christmas photo session! You might remember Dominic’s awesome first birthday shoot at Fink’s Farm back in September, (where I think I had as much fun as he did hanging out at the petting zoo), but this was his first time back in the studio since his newborn photos last year! Dominic was teeny tiny for his first Christmas, so this year he’s big enough to really enjoy himself, especially now that he’s walking!
We started with his fancy red sweater, then his cozy blue sweater, then we ended the session with some comfy Rudolph pajamas. We even tried to get a Santa hat on him, but if you scroll through the slideshow below, I think you'll see how well that turned out :D Of all the toddlers I had in the studio this Christmas season, only one tolerated the Santa hat, the rest were outrageously offended by it! Oh well, a cranky crying face is always just a *teensy* bit funny to me. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Here are some of my favorite photos of Dominic's Christmas session!
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Fall is my favorite season and Halloween is my favorite holiday, so I pretty much smile the entire month of October. Seeing the leaves change, going to fall festivals, decorating the porch with a ton of autumn decor, and planning out costumes is just so much fun for me. My fall porch is something I take a lot of pride in, so last year I took photos of Seth, Gracey and Ash out there.
This year, I had a fall set up in the studio for a few sessions, and if you follow my Instagram, you’ll probably have seen my stories about how incredibly messy the bales of hay were! I took some photos of Seth up there, and then we moved out to the porch, taking those messy hay bales with us! Gracey joined us at the end too!
Here are my favorites from that day!
Then a few days later, I took Gracey up in the studio for her close up in her Halloween costume! Again, if you follow my Instagram (or if you know just how crazy I am), it won’t be a surprise to you that I bought a little something to match her while we go trick or treating with Seth and for handing out Halloween candy!
Here is Seth in his actual Halloween costume as an Ewok from Star Wars. It was so hilarious watching him walk around with the oversized belly, he looked like a big teddy bear. It was so sweet. I love this little boy so much.
Follow along with me on Instagram for more Seth and Gracey :) and Happy Halloween!
Dominic is the son of one of my best friends, Dina and her husband Mike. Dom gave everyone a big scare when he was born and his parents couldn’t bring him home until he was 6 weeks old. That meant his newborn photos were really special for me, because I was so happy we could finally see him out of the NICU.
Now, he’s happy and healthy and today he turned 1. To see the long way he’s come is amazing! To celebrate his October birthday, his parents planned him a fall themed bash at Fink’s Country Farm in Wading River. We met there a few weeks before the party to take some fun first birthday photos!
Dominic is so fun to photograph because he’s got so many amazing facial expressions. He does this hilarious surprised face when something really strikes him and it’s the funniest thing! I loved celebrating him at his first birthday party this weekend. Happy First Birthday, Big Dom!
Here are some of my favorite photos from his session!
One more thing, just so you know, in all the photos where Dominic is sitting up high on top of things, I edited out his parents holding onto him. I'd never put a 1 year old 4 feet off the ground on top of a metal cow. I say this because I never want an amateur or beginning photographer to see something here and attempt it, not knowing the image was edited. Always put your subject's safety first, no matter what! This has been a public service announcement by Laura Pea Photography : )
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Lily is my friend Brandon's baby and she's turning one! Brandon and his wife Richelle moved to Connecticut a few years ago, so I especially love photographing Lily because it means I can see her cute face and also catch up with her parents! It also means her and my nephew Seth can see each other! They're 3 months apart and it's so cute to see them play together! My sister Lisa and Brandon's older brother were friends and Brandon and I have been friends for years and years, so now we call Lily and Seth "third generation friends". :)
It feels like just yesterday that I shot her newborn and Christmas photos last year, I can barely believe she's already a year old! She's so smiley and talkative, and even though she was a little tired during our session, she gave me such beautiful smiles! She loved playing with the gourds I set up for her fall-themed photos at the end of the session! Props to Brandon for picking out her adorable fall dress! That is not usually the dad's territory, but he did a great job!
Here are some of my favorites from Lily's First Birthday Session!
After our session, her and Seth played downstairs and I got this really precious photo on my phone. I can't take the sweetness.
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