Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Girls at the Garden

On Coco's birthday, I decided to take the girls to the botanical gardens and try to take some cute photos of the birthday girl (and her sister).

I had family photos taken around Caroline's first birthday, but since I knew we'd have a bunch of pictures at Brandon and Jo's wedding, I decided to postpone this year's family photos to the fall.

In retrospect, I probably should have just gone ahead with an annual summer family photo session since the girls were somewhat less than cooperative after the wedding, but live and learn, right?

Of course Coco was not really cooperating today, either. Every expression I captured appeared to be shock, focused intensity, or irritation. My smiley, happy baby was not smiley, and was frequently annoyed that my desire to photograph her conflicted with her desire to eat pebbles and mulch and climb over benches. I had one set of outfits in mind, but Zuzu wanted to wear a "princess dress," so then I just found one in Coco's closet that coordinated well enough. (Zuzu's dress is a Janie and Jack hand-me-down from her cousin Taylyn, size 3. Coco's dress is a hand-me-down from Zuzu, a Ralph Lauren purchased from Macy's on super sale.)

I keep making new year's resolutions to improve my photography skills, and I keep not doing it. These pictures illustrate the lucky moments and the not so lucky ones. You'll see that I didn't really know how to deal with the dappled light.

Overall, though, I was determined to keep it easy and fun. We avoided the children's garden and just wandered through the shady sections, stopping here and there to get out of the stroller and then I'd try to take pictures of them doing their things.

At the very end, I wanted to snap a quick posed shot of the two of them on a bench. You can see for yourself how well that went... But at least I knew enough to call it a day! We headed home for lunch and naps and I still ended up with photos that may not be professional quality and may not be the smiling, perfectly lit portraits I could imagine, but certainly capture the personalities of these girls.

Oh, hai! This was possibly my favorite photo of the day. Makes me laugh!
Cautiously standing. She started taking her first steps the night of her birthday, but she crawls much faster than she walks, so that remains her preferred mode of cocomotion (haha, you see what I did there?).
Sweet girl. No smile though.

I wish I'd gotten the lighting better here--those elephant ears are ridiculous, right? Zuzu genuinely put her hands up on her face and exclaimed, "OH MY GOODNESS!"

I actually love this photo too--it might be a framer. Always keeping up with sister.

Thoughtful Coco.

Acting like a princess by the fountain.
I'm not sure what I said that was so shocking.

Getting a good photo of the two of them is comparable to capturing a photo of Bigfoot.

My little daredevil

Wild child

She loved exploring these paths in the English woodland garden.

So did Coco--most of my photos here were blurry because I kept getting scared she was going to crawl right off the rock into the little stream.

Skipping across the stones

Sweet Zuzu girl
Sweet Coco babe


Things kind of went downhill from here--including my camera angle.
 And this begins a saga not unlike The Rape of the Lock.

I call it: The Theft of the Hairbow: a Story in Pictures.

Things don't turn out so well for the thief, do they?

It was clearly time to go home.


  1. Aw!! I actually think they turned out really well (most of them anyway)!! They are so cute! And COCOMOTION!? Seriously, killing me.

  2. My kids are about 3 yrs apart.. lots of 'hugging headlock" photos, too. I was a portrait studio photog for about 10 yrs--- It's tough to get two of them together in a pic at those ages, so you did very well!