My third San Diego session (from the weekend before last) was for a truly inspirational family. I "met" Roger and Nicole on Facebook early last year, but unfortunately our "meeting" didn't come from something good... I belong to a CHD community on Facebook, and in February 2011 some people started asking for prayers for Travis, a beautiful little boy with Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome, a type of Congenital Heart Defect (same defect that Dylan has). Essentially, Travis only had half a heart. And on February 17, 2011 beautiful little Travis went in for his 4th open-heart surgery. Unfortunately complications arose and Travis went to be with Jesus just two days later.... I remember reading on my screen that Travis had earned his Angel Wings and just staring in disbelief. Just a few days before this Roger and Nicole had posted pictures on FB of Travis and Addison (Travis' little sister) playing on the bed, cuddling, giving kisses.... and now Travis was gone. At only 16 months old, Travis was gone...
Then, just recently I found out about Sisters by Heart, where Nicole is the Director at Large. SBH is an organization where heart moms have come together. All the women involved here have children with some form of CHD, and while they aren't sisters by blood, they are sisters by HEART. It was here that I read this inspirational piece from Nicole...
"Although the loss of our sweet hero has been life altering and extremely difficult, the 16 months that we were given with him were filled with the most amazing memories and a whole lot of LOVE and HAPPINESS! On a daily basis, he proved to us how his little life was of value and worth. He exuded happiness and love and never once let his medical issues slow him down. Life outside of the hospital was as normal as any other toddler’s and he experienced a lot in his short little life. After his death, I made a promise to do what I could in the heart community and help to support funding for research that could lead to a cure for HLHS. I am here to help you in anyway I can as you travel along this admittedly difficult yet, worthwhile and joyful road."
Wow... what an inspirational mother. It goes without saying that it was truly an HONOR to meet Nicole and Roger, and of course, their gorgeous little girl Addison Sue. And they also told me that they're expecting Baby #3! And.... not only is Baby #3 another little girl, but she is HEART-HEALTHY!! At their last appointment they were able to see all 4 chambers of their little one's heart (Travis only had 2) and she looks totally healthy. Congratulation! You guys deserve this and more.
So, if you're crying after reading about this incredible family, dry up your tears and enjoy this family's beautiful pictures! :-)
Meet stunning Addison Sue.
Or, as her Mommy calls her, "Addison Sue Magoo Montgomery" (After the beautiful Addison Montgomery from Grey's Anatomy/Private Practice :-) The only difference is that this little Addie Sue is WAY prettier!
Look at that strawberry-blond hair and red eyelashes!
And those eyes... those eyes!! SO pretty!
Love this portrait of Addie and her beautiful Mommy.
And this portrait/candid of Addison and her Daddy is adorable.
And the first family picture. Hands down one of my favorite family pictures EVER. I absolutely love that they incorporated Travis' picture into their family picture. Absolutely priceless. (And, notice what a beautiful boy Travis was....)
This is also one of my favorite images. Daddy with his two born children. Addie pointing at her BroBro. Daddy looking at his little girl. Perfection.
After we'd gotten the portrait out of the way, we played!
Daddy got "down and dirty" with Addie, playing with her and letting her climb all over him :-)
Then we got Addie Sue up on Daddy's shoulders and she had a blast!
Daddy? Not so much! Another favorite of the session :-)
And then it was time for Addie Sue to fly :-)
She was all smiles!
And I was all smiles as I got these silhouette shots.
And then it was time for Mommy to play with Addie Sue! Addie went upside down...
And right back up into the air!
Another favorite semi-silhouette (notice how most of these are favorites?? :-)
Then we tried for a family silhouette. I mean, we'd already gotten awesome Daddy-Addie and Mommy-Addie silhouettes, so why not try a family silhouette? This was the result. Perfect!! I love a silhouette where you can see the smile/laughter impression on the faces - and here you can see all three laughing. That's what I consider a perfect family silhouette :-)
After all that fun it was time for Addie Sue to recharge with some snacks.
And then off to see the ducks we went. Love this family picture.
And this one! What a beautiful candid moment.
Roger and Nicole - it was truly an honor to have met you guys in person, and even more of an honor to have done these pictures for your amazing family. You truly are inspirational people and SO beautiful - both inside and out. Addie is an absolutely doll, and I'm sure Baby #3 will be just a beautiful! Hugs! -Brenda