There is something so incredibly special about seeing families year after year. I have been so honored to document this family’s biggest milestones over the years, including two of their babies’ births, newborn sessions, a bunch of family sessions, and everything in between. Thankfully even after my move to Dallas TX, we’re still close enough that I can continue being their family photographer!
I have actually known this sweet Mama for years- we originally connected in a motherhood group! I started photographing their growing family before I even offered a studio or a Client Wardrobe. My business has grown and evolved over time and I couldn’t love her more for sticking around.
With three kids of my own, I know it’s not always easy to get everyone out the door and to the session in a good mood. But I also think that’s what prepares me so well for sessions with three littles! Although, truth be told this family is a gem. We always have so much fun together. She’s also the mama behind all of my monograms! You can check her out here!
Tips to Prepare your Toddlers for a Family Session | Dallas TX Family Photographer
These tips are best for mamas booking outdoor family sessions, but some of them work for newborn portraits, also! Family sessions are always at Golden Hour which is the hour before sunset.
One of the things I hear most often is how sunset sessions interfere with bedtime. And let me just tell you- I totally get it! You’d be surprised how well kids do though! If you can push their naps back a little in the afternoon, that can often help offset a later bedtime.
Pre-Session Meal or Snacks
“Hangry” toddlers are not to be messed with, so I always suggest having a good meal before the session. At the very least, snacks during the car ride there are good too! (Though, be sure to read the next tip if you do that!)
Get kids dressed at the Studio or Outdoor Location
Most mamas use my wardrobe, but if you choose to bring your own clothes, it’s a good idea to wait to dress the family! This especially rings true for our littlest family members. I have seen one too many a diaper issue ruin an outfit, though thankfully I have lots of wardrobe options for kids at the studio! Also, if they have a snack in the car, you won’t be worried about their clothing if you dress them upon arrival! (Just be sure to arrive with enough time!)
Let Kids be Kids
Toddler Moms know as well as I do that forcing your littles to do what you ask doesn’t always work. I have some tricks up my sleeve, but sometimes we have to let kids be kids! Play with your kiddos- whether its tickling them, playing airplane or ring around the rosy- laughs will always get the best smiles! At the end of the day, the candid, playful shots are always my favorite!
A Bribe is Fair Game
What works for your child is going to be totally different for each family. However, if your kiddo will “work” for smarties or marshmallows, that’s my go-to choice! Both of them are white, won’t stain clothing, and are a quick treat between shots! I’ve had a few Sour Patch lovers in the studio as well! Some older kiddos are fine with an after session treat like ice cream or a toy. My oldest prefers a trip to Target, while the younger two are my sugar lovers.
No “Cheese” Coaching
I know it’s tempting before your session to practice the “cheese” face, but I’m focusing on genuine interactions most of the time! I always try to get that one looking at the camera shot, but for the most part, your kids will be too busy having fun with my games to say cheese! When all else fails, a good tickle gets a smile every time!
If you’re looking for a family photographer in the Dallas TX area, contact me here! I’d love to hear from you.
Mom’s Dress provided by the Client Wardrobe.
Aimee Hamilton Photography is a family photographer with a natural light studio in just north of Dallas, TX. Aimee specializes in newborn, maternity, motherhood, family, and baby sessions in the Dallas area. Service areas include Frisco, Highland Park, Celina, Prosper, McKinney, Uptown, Allen, Plano, Southlake, Grapevine, Fort Worth, and Little Elm.
I would love to chat more with you about booking your own portraits! I am currently booking newborn, maternity, baby, and motherhood sessions into 2021. If you would like more details about a session with me please feel free to get in touch with me here! I would love to serve you and your family.