I have been thinking a lot about how God is love...
One of the biggest struggles that has come with losing my dad this year, has been this thought that I have lost someone who loved me in a way that no one else ever could. No one will ever be able to love me like my dad loved his first child. I imagine he and my mom bringing me home from the hospital, sharing me with their parents, the firsts of everything, watching me struggle, watching me excel, watching me start a family.
No one will ever be able to share wisdom with me and parent me through my adulthood years. Through his 53 years of life, millions of hours farming, starting businesses, decades of friendship, losing his parents, going through divorce, remarriage…there is depth and wisdom there that no one but a father would take the time to share with his children.
No one will be able to provide the fun and opportunities to my children that I know my dad intended to do. Growing up, we spent weeks in Colorado skiing, every Sunday making the most stupid and dangerous games up with my dad and his friend, training and competing in marathons and triathlons, traveling to visit and explore new places. This winter, my dad was planning on taking Hudson to learn to ski.
I can go down this paths over and over again. This love is dead and it is never ever coming back. I think about standing over my dad’s lifeless body everyday and holding the hands who once showed me great care and love that were cold and unresponsive.
BUT GOD. The truth is that this love is not dead. The good news of God coming to Earth to save us is that He defeated the greatest enemy of death and said that it has NO power over those who believe and accept the right to become children of God.
This love that I miss in a way that my bones ache is not dead, but is alive. God gave me a father to give me just a taste of the love of the Father, who will never leave us and is longing to be reunited with us. This Father sent His son, who left us with His Spirit as a promise of the inheritance that is yet to come.
The enemy wants us to believe that love can be broken and that we can be separated from the love of God in Christ Jesus, but praise be to God who has broken down every wall for us and made us His children. Oh how rich is our inheritance.
Photos by Katie Beth Lamb.
Photography: Elle Boone Photography | Wedding Planner: Mccall Guinn Events | Floral Design: Native Bloom Floral | Venue: The Prospect House | Catering: Tempura Grill | Beauty: Erica Gray Beauty | DJ : DJ Prince | Furniture: Birch and Brass | Rentals: Premier Events and Texas Hill Country Events | Day of Signage: e.b. creative
Fall Mini Sessions were a whirlwind of adventure! We photographed over 45 families in the short span of September through November, but goodness were they full of sweet smiles and real laughter.
WHY BOOK A MINI SESSION?
If you want a quick family photo update or are looking ahead to holiday Christmas cards, but you don't want to invest the full price of a family session, a mini session is a great option. Especially with kids, everyone is changing so quickly and every season is different, so mini sessions are a great option to have a handful of photos from each season. It also lessens the stress of getting small children to focus for a long photo session.
If you want to select your location, time, and date and have more time for photographs, you can schedule a family session. Fill out the contact form if that sounds more like what you are interested in.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT FROM A MINI SESSION?
A quick, painless, fun, twenty minutes of wrangling all your kids and trying to get everyone to look at the camera at once. It is a hilarious blast! I am always smiling from ear to ear, because of the ridiculous things myself and parents will do to get kids to smile. At the end of almost every session, when I tell them we are finished, they look at me and say, "Really? That wasn't bad at all!"
WHEN ARE MINI SESSIONS OFFERED?
Only occasionally. There will always be mini sessions before Christmas for family Christmas cards and at other times throughout the year (signup up for Fort Worth April mini session here) we will do pop-up sessions for a family photo update. Sign up for the newsletter to make sure you don't miss out on mini session news and updates!
Enjoy some of my favorites below!
INTERESTED IN BOOKING A MINI SESSION?
Sign up for the Elle Boone Newsletter to stay up-to-date on upcoming mini session dates! To sign up for a mini session on either April 12th or 17th, click here.
Marriage is hard work, but it’s the best hard work you will ever do. What a sweet family session the Holdorff's were, enjoy! Elle Boone Photography's blog displays her latest work-including senior pictures, engagement sessions, weddings, newborn, and maternity pictures, as well as talks about the culture and happenings in Fort Worth, Texas and beyond.
Preparing a party? Look no further for your perfect check list to make sure your next event is a HIT! Elle Boone Photography's blog displays her latest work-including senior pictures, engagement sessions, weddings, newborn, and maternity pictures, as well as talks about the culture and happenings in Fort Worth, Texas and beyond.
It is the actions we take to reach out with a tender touch to affirm love and care to those around us. This is what brings about the magic and delight of the Christmas season. Show this magic and delight in your Christmas cards this holiday season! What a sweet family session the Holdorff's were, enjoy! Elle Boone Photography's blog displays her latest work-including senior pictures, engagement sessions, weddings, newborn, and maternity pictures, as well as talks about the culture and happenings in Fort Worth, Texas and beyond.
Welcome to the team Fall 2017 Interns, you are already so loved! Elle Boone Photography's blog displays her latest work-including senior pictures, engagement sessions, weddings, newborn, and maternity pictures, as well as talks about the culture and happenings in Fort Worth, Texas and beyond.
Sometimes the best gifts are the ones that you don't ask for. There are so many cute children's stores and so many fun products out there. These are difficult to register for, because they aren't sold at the typical Target, Buy Buy Baby, etc. They are unique and may be a super memorable, unique, and thoughtful gift for a friend's baby. Have fun shopping these cute and trendy sites.
blocks, cars, teethers, stacking toys made of wood
So.. I am trying something new. The amount I have been reading ever since entering motherhood has greatly decreased. I am sure many of you are young moms and have even forgotten about the concept of reading. I wanted to start a "book club" to hold myself accountable to getting outside of the box and being challenged and hope some of you will join me. I would also love to facilitate conversations about different, engaging topics with each of you.
I have selected three books from three genres- business, service, and faith. The books are titled...
- When Helping Hurts (I have been meaning to read this book for about five years).
- All Authority (The author is from our church in Austin and has an incredible testimony).
- Leaders Eat Last (I am trying to grow in business and leadership knowledge and this title really caught my attention).
*Click the links for descriptions and to order on Amazon.
Between August and the end of December, the goal is to finish all three books. I will be taking notes on my reflections and sharing with those of you who sign up (comment below with your email address or send me a direct message).
I would love for as many of you who are interested to join this little journey to READ! I know the process will be richer if I have the opportunity to have conversations with you about these books.
Book Club Credit goes to Nancy Ray, one of my favorite photographer/bloggers who has hosted a yearly virtual book club in the past.
We hoped to portray a natural, organic mood with this editorial. The detailed landscape of a local Texas pecan tree orchard was the perfect setting for natural ambiance. The model wore a soft, neutral-toned two-piece dress that complimented the warm tones of the landscape and the florals. The wildflower-inspired blooms reflected the relaxed atmosphere that's portrayed in the editorial. Nothing says summer like a Texas peach, so we incorporated them into the vignettes. The crisp, raw portrayal is a look that viewers can identify with, and is effortlessly beautiful.
Hair: Mauricio Gutierrez
Makeup: Kari Does Makeup
Model: Elizabeth Peterson
Photography: Elle Boone Photography
Stylist: Adri Smith of Moss Floral
The baby registry. oh my goodness, it can be so overwhelming. It is so difficult to make decisions of what you need and what you don't. It is hard to know what to spend big on and what doesn't matter at all. When I was pregnant with Hudson, I had great help from friends and family to make decisions about what to register for. I have also learned so much from experience this past year or two. I hope that this is a great resource for you to help put your registery together!
One thing to look at if the crib is convertible. This can be helpful when your little one grows out of their crib and you need a small bed for them. This is one of my favorites
Bassinet/Moses Basket- Tadpoles Twisted Basket and Bedding Set
When Hudson was a newborn, we had no clue what we were doing. He cried all the time and we tried everything. We started out with the Moses Basket, then tried the Rock 'n Play, then tried the 4MOMS Rockaroo. We had the best luck with the rockaroo (swing). Every baby is different! Some of my friends' babies slept like champions in a moses basket. They are visually more pleasing. We had all the options, so we tried them all. I don't think they are all necessary, but you just won't know what works for your baby.
My sweet brother actually built me a rocking chair for Hudson's room, but I would recommend making an investment in a great chair. This chair will get covered in spit-up and milk, so be sure that it has fabric that is easy to clean. The gliding and swivel aspects are awesome when you are reaching for something and holding the baby or trying to put the baby to sleep.
Storage space is necessary and helpful. Hudson's changing table serves the purpose more as a dresser, because he is too wiggly to sit on the top (so we use the floor). This is an aesthetic purchase in my opinion. We found one on Craigslist that we liked!
Crib mattress Safety 1sth Heavenly Dreams White Crib Mattress
I don't think it matters very much what type of crib mattress you have. Maybe Amazon Prime one to your house so you don't have to load it up and transfer it from a store!
Night light- Starry Globe Nightlight-Pillowfort
I would highly recommend a night light. In the first few months, you are awake all the time and need light to find the pacifier or to feed the baby. This night light is really cute and gave out a good amount of light that didn't keep Hudson awake.
Blankets-Luxe sherpa stroller blanket
At our showers, I think we received a total of about 30 blankets. It is nice to have a few for the stroller and the crib. I don't think it matters too much. Hudson loves soft, furry blankets (and stuffed animals). This RH baby stroller blankets is so cute and snuggly, it is my favorite.
This hamper (pictured above) is cute and durable. I lug around blankets and toys in it too.
Hangers- Pillowfort Gray Kids' Hangers
I only bought a few hangers, most of his clothes go in the drawers.
There are lots of cute mobiles out there. Chose one that matches the theme of the nursery. Land of Nod's mobiles are super cute too!
Sound machine- HOMEMEDICS SOUND SPA
Sound machines are serious business. You definitely want loud. I have bought three, and this one is my favorite.
Changing pad - Summer Infant Contoured Changing Pad
There isn't much to these, just make such it is waterproof.
Changing pad covers
Whatever look you want, waterproof is helpful, but not plastic. If it is plastic, it might be too cold for the babies to lay on. I would have 2-3 on hand.
Swaddles and wearable blankets- HALO SleepSack Swaddle
Swaddles with velcro are the best. It doesn't really matter what brand, but having velcro to tuck their arms in is so helpful. I think it is impossible to swaddle them in a way that they can't get out of.
There are all sorts of cute, sweet swaddle blanket, Aiden and Anaias makes really soft bamboo swaddles.
I would buy at least 3 fitted sheets in case they wet the bed a lot or have the stomach bug.
Hudson hasn't leaked through his sheets, except once, but I am glad that we have a waterproof cover to protect the mattress.
Infant car seat- Chicco Key Fit 30 Infant Car Seat
I honestly did not do too much research on car seats, but I appreciate how easy it is to take out the liner and shoulder pads and wash them on this car seat. It snaps in and out of the base easily.
Car seat base- Chicco Key Fit 30 Infant Car Seat Base
So I didn't realize until recently that you don't actually need a car seat base. You can buckle the car seat into the car using the adult seat belt. Who knew? Anyways we bought three of these- one for my car, Michael's and my moms. If you are looking to save money, you could definitely get away with just one for mom's car.
Stroller - Baby Jogger City Select Double Stroller
We bought the double stroller thinking ahead. I love this stroller. It is pretty big (which is a downside), but it folds up very flatly. It has an adjustable seat so you can lean it all the way back so they can sleep in the stroller (or when they are little it is more like a bassinet). It has roomy storage underneath. The seats also click in and out of the stroller really easily.
Jogging stroller - BOB Revolution PRO Stroller
The BOB is great. It definitely can handle rocks, etc. on the trail very gracefully. It folds up flatly. We use ours everyday and it has been a great stroller. I honestly wish we would have thought more seriously about buying a double BOB from the beginning too. If your kids are just a couple years (or less) apart, it seems to make sense to go ahead and buy the double, even though you might look goofy at first.
Bouncer - Baby Bjorn Balance Soft Cotton Bouncer
Hudson loved this bouncy chair. There isn't much to it, but we could never sit him down when he was little without him screaming. For some reason, he liked this chair and it provided us a little bit of relief. I would put him in it on the floor while I cooked dinner or worked at the computer.
Some moms love the Rock 'n Play, but we never used it. Hudson never let us sit him it without crying. I am glad that I have it as an option for other kids down the line, though. (They are all so different!!)
Swing- 4moms rockaRoo Infant Swing
This swing was a lifesaver when Hudson was an infant. We tried the moses basket and the Rock N' Play first, but the swing was the only way we could get him to sleep at all at night. One downside is that you can't swaddle them, because you have to buckle them in. (We did, but I am not going to recommend that haha). This swing was great too, it is pretty simple and you can play your music through the speakers? It is true.
My friend Bailey recommended this play mat to me, I didn't really understand the purpose when I registered for it, but I would highly recommend it as well. It is nice to have a bigger, padded blanket to lay your baby on when they are learning to roll over and sit up. It is also nice to be able to lay it on hardwood floors, or a carpeted area, that you aren't quite sure what is inside the carpet..ew.
High chair- IKEA ANTILOP with PYTIG support pillow and cover
This high chair is $20, with a $5 pillow to add support until your baby is a little bigger and sturdier. It is a little difficult to put the try on and take it off to clean. We broke ours in the first week trying to force it. This high chair is small and simple, which is nice so as to not crowd your kitchen. There are much more high quality and higher functioning high chairs out there, it just depends on what you are looking for.
people have a lot of opinions about which is best. We have two- one Solly baby wrap
Convertible car seat
Ours is a little different from this model, but this is what I would recommend. Call your insurance and typically they will send you one for free! Ours came in less than a week, but call early, I have heard it can take awhile.
These are great when you are pumping on the go and don't have access to soap and water. Stick them in your bag, so you don't get in a bind.
Breast milk storage- Lansinoh Milk Storage Bag 100 Count
These don't spill easily and they get the job done.
Nursing cover- Covered Goods Nursing Cover
You can order these online. They cover the front and back which is helpful when you have a kicking, flip/floppy nursing infant. They come in cute colors and designs that you can choose from.
Nipple cream- LANSInoh lanolin
I would recommend buying the cream and starting to use it in the first few days of nursing. You may have problems with chaffing and blisters and you may not, but you might as well get on top of it from the beginning.
Nipple pillow - Boppy Slipcovered Nursing Pillow
I returned my nursing pillow, because I never used it. Some people use them all the time, but for some reason, I never felt like I needed something.
Bra pads- Bamboobies Nusing Bra Pads
If you are the leaky type, which is common especially at the beginning, these are super helpful to keep your shirts dry!
Gel pads- Lansinoh Soothies Gel Pads
Don't ask, just buy.
This bag is perfect. I put pump equipment, no hands bra, milk storage bags, permanent marker (for labeling bags) and pump cleaning wipes in here and always had everything in one spot, ready to go!
We don't have one, but I want to get one for the next baby. I think it is helpful to watch them, especially when they start eating, sometimes I am wondering if he is choking.
Shopping cart cover- Covered Goods Nursing Cover
The Covered Goods nursing cover doubles as a shopping cart cover. It doesn't work very well actually in the shopping cart. I would bring Hudson into the grocery store in his car seat and put him in the basket when he was an infant. By the time he was big enough the sit in the shopping cart, you aren't as worried about germs. I would just wipe it down before he got in. We only used the cover a few times.
I really wanted a diaper bag that didn't look like a diaper bag. I found this bag and I love it. It is a backpack and can be a purse. I wish the backpack look wasn't necessary, but there are so many times, that I need the bag to be on my back with all I have to handle. These bags come in all different colors too!
Leather protector- Car Seat Protector Eddie Bauer
The car seat is heavy and puts little dents in your seat. This has helped the leather under the car seat be preserved.
Bottle brushes-OXO tot bottle brush
I like this brush, because it has a stand, so there is a sanitary place for it to sit. Bottle brushes are pretty necessary to get the nooks and crannies of the bottles.
Bottle drying rack- munchkin high capacity bottle drying rack
Whether you are nursing/pumping or formula feeding, you wash a lot of bottles and it is really nice to have a sanitary place to put them while they dry.
Burp cloths-burts bees burp cloths
These are so cute. It really doesn't matter very much, but I would recommend having about 10 of these. You will use them.
Bibs-Tommy tippee roll up bibs
These are great, they are plastic, so you can wash them really easily. They also have a catch-all feature, so less food falls to the ground, it works surprisingly well. All of our cloth/cotton bibs stained really quickly from food.
Bowls-munchkin stay put bowls
I like these, because you can stick them to their high chair tray and they stay suctioned really well. I also have some cheap small bowls that I bought in bulk with lids, because you always have cut up leftovers from their meals to store.
Sippy cup-nuby cup click it handle
I would buy three of four kinds originally and let your child try them. They seem to all have different preferences. Our favorite right now is linked above.
Utensils-Munchkin White Hot Spoons
I would recommend having 5-10 spoons for when you start introducing baby food. We haven't ever used baby forks or knives with him, he just uses adult utensils now.
Formula- kirklands infant formula
So Hudson was allergic to dairy and soy, so I had to use really expensive non-dairy formula with him. Around ten months or so, we were able to switch him to this formula that we bought in bulk from Costco. There are so many different kinds of formula, it is a little overwhelming. If your baby has an allergy, feel free to ask me more about what we did.
Health and Safety
Baby monitor- Motorola MBP33XL 3.5'' Video Baby Monitor
I have loved this baby monitor. It has a great screen that you can get a good view of the baby through. You can talk to your baby (not sure why you would do that?) You can see the temperature of his or her room. It is really easy to see them through the camera even when it is really dark in their room.
Pacifier- Philips Avent Soothie
I think most babies use the "soothie" pacifier for the first few months. All babies are different on pacifiers. Maybe buy a few different brands/sizes and let your baby try them out. Some like them all, some are picky. Once you find what your baby likes, buy a million and hide them everywhere.
Pacifier clips are awesome! Especially at the beginning when you are paranoid about germs, these help with your sanity. My advice is find one an extra strong clip, because most babies will try to pull them off their clothes.
Humidifier- ultrasonic pure mist humidifier
These are helpful to have on hand. During the first year, babies come down with lots of colds and a humidifier can help with stuffy noses.
Thermometer- iProven thermometer
Not positive, but from what I have learned, the best way to get an infants temperature is an anal reading, exciting! Buy the thermometer covers to keep your thermometer sterile.
We don't have stairs in our house, but this is something to think about registering for if there is an area of your house that you want to block off.
You will definitely want plug covers, cabinet locks, and maybe toilet locks.
This is helpful to have on hand. When your baby gets a fever or is teething, it is the last time that ou are going to want to get in the car and go to the store. Your pediatrician will give you more information about dosage allotments at every wellness visit.
this was our secret weapon for the first six months. Hudson had dairy and soy allergies and I am not sure if the gas relief elements were actually helping him or if it was the sweetness of the medicine. The instructions say infants can have something like 10 doses a day. We would dip Hudson's pacifier in the bottle and stick it in his mouth when he was crying. I can't tell you how many hundreds of times he calmed down or went to sleep, because of Mylicon. So yes, a must buy.
This is really helpful when your baby is teething. I put a dot of oracle on a kids toothbrush and Hudson would chew on it and stop crying immediately from the pain. Toothbrushes in general are helpful to give teething babies.
Bath tub or seat- Boon SOAK 3-Stage Bathtub
We have a Puj Tub, which is awesome, because it folds up to basically nothing. However, Hudson outgrew this tub so quickly. It worked out fine to go straight to the bath tub, but I think I would recommend getting more of a stable, plastic tub to supplement until your baby is big enough to handle the tub. (like the one above)
Anything works, even a cup and spoon. You don't need much.
I have become a little more hippy with having a baby and thinking about what I kind of products I am using on my baby. I don't mind splurging a little bit more for some of the more natural soaps.
Hooded bath towel Restoration Hardware Hooded Bath Towel
Oh my goodness, animal towels are the cutest. Obviously, it does not matter what kind of towel you have for your babies, but the ones above are too cute!
I honestly never use these, haha, I am just realizing this. Maybe you will?
Diaper pail- Playtex Genie Essentials Diaper Pail
It is simple and pretty much hides the smell. I hate changing the bag of diapers and almost throw up every time, but this pail is really easy to use.
Diaper pail liners- Playtex Genie Essentials Diaper Pail Liners
Diaper rash cream
We have tried two diaper rash creams- Boudreaux's Butt Paste and Honest Diaper Rash Cream. Hudson never had diaper rash until around ten months, it looked like oozing sores. For a couple months, he had a prescription from the doctor and we alternated between the two creams and we saw temporary victories, until it came back again. My friend Katherine gave me a mixture of coconut oil and tea tree oil and I think that has helped at times too.
Diapers- Pampers Swaddlers
They are a little bit more expensive than other brands, but every time I put Hudson in a different diaper, he always had a blow out. Now that he is older, I have bought the Costco Kirkland brand and I am going to try those.
Wipes- Pamper Swaddlers wipes
I don't think it matters very much. We use the Pampers Swaddlers wipe refills..
Photography: Elle Boone Photography | Floral Design: Moss Floral | Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas |Cake: Lauren William | Ceremony Venue: Christ Chapel | Reception Venue: Stonegate Mansion | Videographer: Tennison Visuals | DJ- Everlasting Sounds| Donut Wall: Funky Town Donuts | HMUA: Rebekah Robertson of J.B. Leigh | Catering: Magdalena's