fresh 48

Welcome to the World Mr. R | Birth Photography

I think she is caught between who she is

and who she wants to be.

This is how I see birth.

While we know baby will come no matter what is going on in our lives; I truly believe the safer you feel the easier it is both emotionally and physically to welcome your baby into the world. This doesn't mean pile your partner up with the honey-do list. Tempting I know.Rather I challenge you to sit and appreciate all of those aches and pains, the trouble breathing, the heartburn, and the loss of sleep. You are not fat, you are not a whale. You are beautiful and strong. You have created and grown a human being!

That last trimester is when you settle and nest to prepare your home and heart for all of the changes to come. Then, the actual laboring is the mental and physical fitness test to get you to that finish line. This process is the most obvious to me with first time parents. There is a level of letting go that has to happen, because you really have no idea what motherhood is going to present you. It is exciting, terrifying, wondrous, painful, and so very worth it. The beautiful surrender to primal need is incredible. I feel so honored to be asked into such a sacred place: the creation of family.

This is everything I am thinking as I observe and process a birth. It is emotional for me every time, but never as emotional as for the parents. The relief of meeting this precious tiny human, scouring every inch, counting fingers and toes over and over again, and waking to every noise they make in those first few hours and weeks. It is all magic!

This family embodied the awe and pure appreciation for the surrender. Mama was a powerhouse through her natural labor. Mom and dad worked together, cried together, and celebrated together. Here is a snippet of their birth story.

McDowell family, party of 3.

be inspired. live boldly.

Nicole

Welcome to the World Baby S | INOVA Loudoun | Birth Photography

my

mother

was

my first country,

the first place i ever lived.

-lands

Each birth I attend and witness humbles me so greatly. This birth was no different. Even more so because we didn't know baby's gender! The connection between mama and baby is so incredible. The womb is their first home, where they grow their organs and hear your voice and heart beat! It's like magic. I truly believe a birth gender reveal is one of the last ways we can surprise ourselves in life. What better motivation to get through the surges, too!

Mama was so cool and collected, joking even when she first arrived at the hospital. Poking at her husband and being goofy with the medical staff and doula. As things intensified, I was honestly mesmerized by her primal unravel while she listened and moved to accommodate her soon to arrive tiny human. From tub, to birth ball, shower to the bed, mom and dad communicated by sharing quiet glances and small touches between surges. The support and love was seriously amazing!

After an abrupt relocation baby was placed on mama's chest, dad cut the cord, and whispered "it's a little sister" to his wife. These three were so sweet and were already talking about how much their oldest daughter (not quite 2) was going to react to having a SISTER!

If you are interested in having your birth story documented, send me an email through the contact form! I'm now booking into 2016, so lock in 2015 rates!!

be inspired. live boldly.

Nicole

Mama Hawk | Maternity | Parenthood

The more I photograph parents about to begin their parenthood journey, the more I fall in love with my job. Erin and J are seriously beautiful, inside and out. This was a styled shoot put together by Kate Juliet Photography at 48Fields earlier this month, and these two seriously rocked the lens. They are both avid runners, mama had even run 3 miles the morning of the session. So awesome! From runners grace to many giggles, Erin and J are so in love with each other and are excited to welcome their little earth-side next month.

This session was so much fun and the light was amazing!! There is nothing like working with the setting sun to achieve some amazing colors, silhouettes, and wonderful grain. I hope you enjoy and I, of course, included a couple behind the scenes images.

be inspired. love authentically. live boldly.

Nicole

Aggarwal Party of 4 | Leesburg, Va | Lifestyle Newborn

Sometimes you make the best connections when you put yourself out into the world. This family seriously rocks. The amount of love, patience and grace each member has is inspiring. I love how sweet both mom and dad are with their children. From their language to how they use there voices to the calm way they move about their house. It makes my heart so happy to see this in real life. They are a wonderful example of how I want to be with my daughter and husband.

I'm the type of person that thoroughly likes to continue learning and changing with each season of life. What make this journey even better, is meeting people who make me think about how I can be better for myself, my family, and the world. The A family gives as much as they take from the world! Dad is an amazing gardener who has even built a pond in their back yard, seriously beautiful. Their home is as open and warm as their hearts, which is filled with so much light.

Mom, I'm not sure I have adequate words for everything I have learned from talking to and observing her, that sounds creepy, but I've been behind the lens a lot with her over the past couple of months. We met while advocating for our rights to nurse our children when and where ever we want. We are both strong advocates of normalizing breastfeeding and she has such a loving husband by her side for support as well. Not only did she nurse her first throughout her pregnancy, but she was so excited to share the experience with both of her daughters. And let me tell you, little L was ready with pointers and guidance on how best to latch and get comfortable.

It was a true joy to watch a mom, and dad, settle into bringing a new life into their home.

love authentically. be inspired.

Nicole

Welcome to the World Miss I | INOVA Loudoun | Birth Photography

"We want you to be happy

Come step outside your room"

Phish

Sweet Isha entered the world as a true power house. Momma labored at home for a good 24 hours when her amazingly calm doula made the call to head to the hospital. I got the text I had been waiting for and left the house in a rush to greet them when they walked in. Miss Isha had other plans. Don't worry, she just wanted to meet  her family earth-side as quickly as possible.

Momma was so strong and faithful in her body to really trust the process, and her husbands driving ;). Her water broke as she was walking downstairs to get into the car. From there it was a rush to the hospital, in early morning commuter traffic! A mere 14 minutes after the arrival to the hospital the lively Isha made her appearance and quickly snuggled in with mom and dad. There is nothing better than watching how a tiny human takes in their surroundings after being placed on mom's chest and hearing dad's voice "out in the world" for the first time.

Isha has made this wonderful and caring family a party of 4. I can't wait to share their newborn story!

"that little girl dancer eventually grows She grows"

Phish

Doula: Peaceful Doula Services : Tiffany Shank

love authentically.

Nicole