The Houdaigui family welcomes baby #3 in this gorgeous Houston in-home newborn session
Normally I photograph a newborn within the first one-three weeks after birth. Most families want to schedule these sweet memories pretty quickly after birth to capture exactly what life is like with a brand new baby.
But sometimes I work with mamas who already have a kiddo or two, and they’ll be juggling not only a newborn, but other children too. For some, planning family photos with a newborn + older kids sounds like a bit much immediately after having a baby!
That’s exactly how Sonya felt as she was expecting Mia, her third baby. She was already busy with her four-year-old son and two-year-old daughter. Instead of scheduling her session for right after birth, we put her photos on the calendar for when her newborn would be about eight weeks old. This gave her plenty of time to adjust to being a mama of three, as well as heal after her third c-section.
The result was a super relaxed Sunday morning with this lovely family of five! I loved that Sonya took those extra few weeks to get back on her feet after a major surgery, and could enjoy the session with her husband and kiddos.
A sunny Sunday morning in Houston
The majority of my clients live in the north Houston area, so it’s always an adventure when I head to other parts of the city! Sonya and husband Mehdi have a beautiful home not too far from the Aquarium in Houston. Their living room featured a gorgeous wall of windows that provided perfect lighting for this sweet newborn session!
Don’t miss this beautiful sneak peek video from Mia’s newborn session!
As a mama of three kids myself, I know that the day of photos can feel hectic and stressful, especially if the session is in your home. On top of getting yourself and multiple little people ready for pictures, you also have the added job of making sure your house is ready too.
That’s why I provide my clients with a super simple checklist of how to prep their homes before a session! It’s much faster and easier than you think to have a photo-ready space.
A neutral palette of colors
Sonya did a wonderful job selecting outfits for her family. I advise mamas to go with neutral colors so that your children are the stars of every photo. When there are no distractions like bright colors, big logos or busy patterns, all of the focus is on faces!
I think it’s easiest to plan outfits if you select your wardrobe first, and ensure everyone else is wearing something that compliments you. As mamas, sometimes we get in the habit of taking care of everyone else first. But it’s a recipe for stress and disaster if you spend so much time planning outfits for your family, only to realize the day before your session that you have nothing to wear!
Sweet smiles from Mia’s siblings!
Sonya’s big kids were so sweet and a little shy when we started their photo session. At four and two, they’re just a little younger than my own girls. With mama’s permission, I surprised them with lollipops in exchange for smiles during family photos. It’s one of many tricks I keep up my sleeve when working with little people!
The entire newborn session lasted about 45 minutes – it’s pretty easy to tell when toddlers and kids get sick of photos and sitting still. Fortunately I was able to work quickly, and Sonya had a gallery full of precious memories of her family of five.
Family sessions with a newborn: how to make it work
Listen, if you’ve already got young kiddos, you might be thinking that scheduling a photo session after adding a newborn to the chaos sounds crazy.
The truth is, you’ll never regret having beautiful photos of your family. There are a couple things you can do to guarantee a session that is as stress-free as possible when you have littles + a newborn:
- schedule photos first thing in the morning or after naptime
- have little snacks ready to go that won’t stain – a quick five minute break from photos can do wonders for young children
- tell yourself you’re going to go with the flow, no matter what!
- dress your kids in nice clothes they can easily move around in; this helps prevent meltdowns
Photographs will always be the most meaningful art you own, and these moments – even the crazy ones! – are over before we know it! I’m just a little further ahead with my girls than where Sonya is, and her spending the morning with her sweet kiddos made me miss the little years! I’m so glad she’ll always have these memories of her children to cherish.