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Outer Banks NC

We have big news!

If we are Facebook friends or you follow me on Instagram, you may already know this, but my husband and I have a little news to share. We are expecting our first child, arriving February 2017. We waited a little longer than average to tell everyone because I wanted to create our announcement while visiting one of our favorite places on Earth. During our Annual visit to the Outer Banks, North Carolina we set up the tripod and my camera and shot these images in less than 30 minutes. As most of you know I'm a perfectionist, and usually take much longer than 30 minutes to shoot anything, but this was our second attempt at these pictures. The day before we had gotten all dressed and ready, as we were about to walk down to the beach we ran into his parents, who were retreating from the beach because of the flies. I will tell you the weekend before we arrived, the Outer Banks was hit with Tropical Storm Hermine so this was the first sunny day and we jumped on it to do the announcement. Apparently the flies also thought it would be a great day at the beach, I had never experienced flies on the beach while in the Outer Banks before, I assume that was a result of the Tropical Storm as well as the rough ocean. So, we changed out of our picture clothes and stayed in for the night vowing to try again the next day, if the fly situation was better. Outer Banks NC Beach Pregnancy Announcement WonderlandPortrait.com

Thankfully, after dinner the next day we still had light and the weather was lovely. We got changed into our picture clothes and headed to the beach. As I set up the shot and made my husband stand in as my focus point we quickly realized the flies were not done with their time at the beach. He kept swatting them from his feet and legs as they bit him and I kept telling him to stand still so I could focus. We made quick work of posing and smiling, I then had Ray take a few of just me by myself showing off my new baby bump. For years my husband has refused to touch my work camera for fear of breaking it. I was very impressed with how he framed and even focused the shot of me. These images are something I will now have forever and I will treasure as our child grows. I'm so thankful that he's more willing to use my "big Camera" as he calls it.

Outer Banks NC Beach Baby Announcment Maternity Photos WonderlandPortrait.com

We headed back to the house and I quickly edited and posted our favorite couple images. We then headed out for Shave Ice to celebrate as our phones continually went off with notifications, phone calls and texts. The excitement was overwhelming. A secret I had kept for what seemed like forever was finally out. Everyone knew, I no longer had to hide my belly under big shirts, I could be comfy in my normal tshirts and tank tops. It was both liberating and so strange. I was actually pregnant, and it was finally starting to feel real.

The Wednesday after we returned home we had our Anatomy ultrasound scheduled. We had decided it would be fun to find out what we were having surrounded by our families, including a few who had to skype in. We didn't look at the Ultrasound photos and put them directly into an envelope. We took at envelope to the baker I use for my cake smash cakes. He was the only one who really knew what we were having until this past Sunday when we cut open the awesome cake he made.

Mickey or Minnie Disney Gender Reveal WonderlandPortrait.com

Since we are Disney Nerds I decided that our theme would be "Are you a Mickey or a Minnie?" and I created a few cute cake toppers with my Cricut machine. The Family arrived and we had dinner, all while the folks who were skyping in were chomping at the bit to get their phone calls.  Finally it was time.

cakecollage

We cut out a slice of cake, as we made the second cut and pulled the knife out I spotted it, the tiny little smudge of the interior icing on the knife and I couldn't believe I was right. I was the only one who saw that smudge and as I lifted the slice out of the cake, the cheers erupted that we are having a little BOY!

Gender Reveal Cake Wonderlandportrait.com

My gut and every other "guess the gender of your baby" old wives tale said I was having a girl. If I've ever attempted to guess what you were having you know that I'm wrong 99% of the time. So, I decided early on that If my gut thinks it's a girl I must actually be having a boy. Low and behold my logic was right and my gut was totally wrong. We made our little announcement on Facebook and Instagram and once again for the second time in 2 weeks our phones went crazy. I still can't believe how many people are so incredibly excited for us, and I'm so thankful to be surrounded by so many loving incredible folks.

gender-reveal-916-15

As far as how I'm doing, I can't really complain. I was a little nauseous in the beginning but no morning sickness. I did get hit with a wall of exhaustion from the start and I've been functioning at 50% the last few months. I'm finally starting to feel a bit better with that, I'm no longer knocked out at 2pm everyday like I had been everyday for the first trimester. I'm still not 100% myself but I'm getting closer everyday. I had never felt exhaustion like that before in my life, I was falling asleep sitting up, like someone had slipped me a sleeping pill.   I also really hope this little guys arrives with a full head of hair or all this heartburn really isn't fair. Haha. All in all we're doing really well and we can't wait to meet our little man.

Obviously I will be taking the month of February off this coming year, January will be a very limited calendar as well, which surprisingly is almost booked up. I will be shooting Christmas Portraits from November 1st-Novemeber 30th only. December I will be able to accommodate Birthdays, Newborns, Maternity, Families and Milestone sessions on a limited basis.

I will continue to post updates on both the studio schedule and our little man, so stay tuned!

Outer Banks NC Pregnancy Announcement WonderlandPortait.com

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The Outer Banks | Personal

Last week was our first week back after a fabulous week in the Outer Banks of North Carolina. It was a bit of a rough start to our vacation week, it was cloudy for our whole ride down and as we crossed the Wright Memorial Bridge, the rain began. Rain on your beach vacation is never a welcoming you want, but it stopped long enough for us to take a quick run to the beach just to check it out. The rain continued on and off for the rest of the evening and into the following days. Finally on the third day of vacation we got a real beach day and it was glorious, even though both the Mister and I got some annoying sunburn. It's so much easier to read and enjoy a book guilt free, when you know your work is at home 375 miles away, so I sat and read my little heart out.   We ended up with 3 good beach days in all, Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday. OBX Photography Vacation

On one of the decent beach days, Ray even tried his hand at surf fishing. In the past he's just never been into it, but this time his mom coaxed him into sending out a few casts. (I don't even know if that is proper fishing lingo, I sat on my beach chair and read my book while they fished). I was very surprised that on his fourth or fifth cast out he actually had a bite and was reeling something in. He caught a nice size Blue fish on his first attempt at fishing, I was so unprepared I didn't even have my phone out to get any pictures of him reeling it in. So I made him stand and take a picture with his catch afterward.

OBX Photographer Fishing Vacation

Now you may be wondering why I started this by saying we had a fabulous week, after all it rained 4 out of our 7 days at the beach. In Truth, just being on the Outer Banks is fabulous for us. On the rainy and overcast days we went to the cute little towns, like Manteo, we also hit a number of awesome antique shops, drank fancy coffee, Played board games, spent some time at Jennette's Pier and just simply saw the sights.  Now I will be real the rain did put a damper on some of my plans. When I'm on vacation, especially to somewhere we have been before, I don't really take too many pictures. I don't like to lug my big heavy SLR around or worry about it at the beach. I do, however, love to exercise my night photography muscles when we visit the OBX. There just seems to be more stars down there then up here at home, and that is one thing I absolutely love about our vacations in the Outer Banks.

Now I am by no means a Landscape photographer, my heart lays in Portraiture and working with people, but it is a nice hobby for me to do now and then. I always feel like I should have a subject in my landscapes as well, which I suppose would make them not landscapes anymore. I really only had one chance to shoot at night, and that particular night there was an amazingly bright full moon. I kept trying to make the images look like night time but the moon was just so bright many of them look like surreal sunrise images. It was just a beautiful night to walk on the beach and we saw many others while we were down there. In fact there was a big group of folks waiting for sea turtle hatchlings to make their debut and way toward the water. I'm not sure if that night or one night that followed was the night, but a few days later the netting protecting the nest was gone. I wish I had the patience to sit in one spot for that long, sea turtles hatching would be a really awesome thing to witness.

Outer Banks North Carolina Photographer Vacation Jennette's Pier Sunsets

 

I've decided to share a few of our vacation snapshots from my phone as well as some of the moonscape images I photographed on the beach. I went back and forth on weather I should use the snapshots I took with my phone, but honestly even Professionals rely on their iPhones to capture everyday life sometimes. So Please understand that all the images in this post were taken with my phone with exception of the night photography, these I captured with my SLR.

OBX Night Photography VacationOBX Star PhotographyOuter Banks Night photography Outer Banks NC Full Moon Photography