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We try to do professional family pictures each year. I’ve done professional newborn pictures for each girl, one year portraits for Big Nugget and some other mini sessions throughout the years as the opportunities pop up. I’ve made a point to get them done for each holiday season though. I love having these portraits done to capture our family and all the changes each year and they make for great Christmas cards.
It’s easy to get stuck in the beach rut of pictures living in Carlsbad. It’s so beautiful down by the water and is such a big part of our lives that it makes sense but San Diego is full of amazing locations. I’ve tried to vary where we take the pictures based on locations available with our photographer. We’ve done Leo Carrillo Historic Ranch, a woodsy trail, the beach and now this year, La Costa Resort.
Styling each of the shoots really depends on where our pictures are being taken. Last year, I was REALLY pregnant and we did it down at the Oceanside Pier so we were in more casual outfits and barefoot. This year, since it was at a local resort, I wanted it to be a little fancier. Plus, with Little Nugget turning one in just two months, this was going to serve as her one year old portrait.
I fell in love with a dress from Mini Boden for Big Nugget and styled around that.
This dress is gorgeous in person and has just the right amount of twirl for my little ballerina. One thing I’ve learned in shopping for the toddler set is to make sure that it’s soft. The likely hood of a protest is far less if that is taken off the table. Having purchased other clothes from Boden, I know that it’s durable and washable so it will last for more than just one photoshoot. It also provided a lot of color choices to pull from for the rest of the family that would compliment without being too matchy.
Her sparkly shoes are from Cat and Jack and run a little big.
Little Nugget’s dress also had another purpose, with her first birthday coming up I plan to use some of the same decorations that I made for Big Nugget’s first birthday party.
Those colors were navy, pink and gold. Target had a lot of great options and I liked being able to go to the store and size them up. This Mia and Mimi dress was perfect. She’s growing so fast and is just on the cusp of walking so I wanted something she would be comfortable in. I’m not so confident she’ll even fit in this dress by the time her birthday party rolls around in January so I’m glad I can go pick up the next size up if needed.
Those gold slippers are from Old Navy and so stinking cute.
My dress is from Old Navy. I knew I wanted something that looked current but wasn’t too revealing. This shift dress was perfect.
I found this dress online and went in store to try it on and I’m thankful that I did. I ended up having to size down (YAY Fit Mill!) from what I would have ordered. Plus, they were having a great sale. I also talked about my favorite not so secret ways to save at Old Navy (and Gap) in my Christmas Gift Guide – it added an additional 15% off. Score. Especially for something that might be worn a handful of times cause let’s get real, as a stay at home mom, I’m not wearing a dress that often.
Hiring a Professional
Our amazing photographer, Sarah Zimmer, has done our family pictures for years. She really captured our girls and made sure that she took the time and got pictures we’d be happy with, even with a somewhat grumpy baby. So while it’s an added expense during an expensive time of the year, having someone capture these moments is worth every penny.