A Test in Big-Brothering: Family Photos

Hunter has been a big brother for a whole 11 days now, although this doesn’t really mean much to him.  Dylan has his days and nights mixed up so he sleeps most of the day, maybe waking up three times total.  While this has been pretty rough on Jon and I as far as sleeping goes, it has made the transition with Hunter much smoother.  The sleeping baby really doesn’t interrupt Hunter’s playtime or mommy-time, so there is not a lot of jealousy….yet.

Yesterday, we decided to get newborn photos taken with all of the coupons we had accumulated from JCPenney’s.  I LOVE having family photos taken, although the experience is always stressful with children.  The past 3 sessions we have done with Hunter have gone just miserably (but I always get a few pictures out of him!).  I spent all of Saturday evening prepping everything for our Sunday-morning session: extra clothes, diapers, hairbrush, toys, candy, coffee, etc.  I researched techniques for getting a child to sit for pictures.  And I established a game plan with Jon; we would get all of Hunter’s pictures done first so he could get messy or go on an adventure with dad ASAP.

Of course, everything went wrong on Sunday morning.  Although I had given myself plenty of time to get ready, both children decided they needed my undivided attention instead.  The result: dad, Hunter, and Dylan were ready on time while mom was stuck rushing around, eating cold breakfast, and doing hair and makeup in the car.

We arrived just a smidgen late to our appointment and I became immediately frustrated with our photographer.  She kept trying to do everything her way, like having our newborn photographed first because that’s what she had set up already.  I assumed Hunter wouldn’t make it and made her stick to our plan.


Newborns are easy to photograph, compared to a toddler anyway.

Much to my surprise, Hunter LISTENED to her instructions and SMILED for the camera.  I was absolutely beaming with pride.  He was a complete angel and we got some great photos of him.  I was so excited that this was working out and I was prepared to hand over a lot of money for all of these photos.


“Mom, why am I listening to this lady again?”

“All done.” the photographer announced.  What? We didn’t get any of the shots we had come for.  And Dylan was awake for every. single. picture. which really doesn’t make for great newborn shots. We had never had a photographer there tell us we were done, they always asked 100 times if we had what we wanted.  I asked that she take at least one more photo of Dylan and was told that although it was against their rules, she would make an exception.

I did purchase all of the pictures but only because it was only going to be $15 after my coupons. I would have spent way more had the photographer done her job.  NOTE: All of the professional pictures I used in this post are actually from our Target shoot because I purchased the digital copies there but not from Penney’s.

I left the studio in tears (I still have a lot of pregnancy hormones that are 90% to blame for this).  I worked so hard to get us all dressed and there. Hunter was being an angel (as was Dylan).  This was one of the few days we could do photos, and I was terrified that if we waited any longer my Dylan would not look like a newborn anymore.  My amazing husband delayed our trip to the zoo and got us in right away at the Target studio across the street.  I again geared up for the boys to struggle.

Once again Dylan was awake for every picture.  But also Hunter did a really fantastic job setting an example for little bro.  He listened better than I knew he could.  We barely had to use the candy stash.  And when Jon offered to take him shopping while Dylan and I finished up, he preferred to be in the company of his little brother.



My loves.


Showing little bro what to do. 

The photos we got at Target aren’t quite as good in quality, but we did get the photos we wanted in the end.  It was such a long ordeal and I am so proud of my boys for sticking through.  It was Hunter’s first demonstration as a big brother and he passed with flying colors.

As I type this, Hunter is napping in his big boy bed for the first time.  It is hard to gauge what parts of this “big brother” thing he finds exciting and what is scary for him.  I am so so proud of him and am excited to see the big brother he becomes.

Oh, and like a typical baby, Dylan came home and slept in my arms making ALL of the poses I wanted from him at the studio.


He couldn’t have done this at the studio. *eye roll*


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