Capture Sweet

New Life & Navy Love in 2021 | Downs Park Maternity Photos

Jen & Will are an incredibly sweet couple, dedicated to each other, to their work and to this new baby that they are bringing into this world. They met in Monterey, California, in Calculus class while attending Naval Postgraduate School, which they laugh about after being married for 8 years. But as anyone who has lived the military life can tell you, being married for 8 years does not mean being together for that long. There has been a lot of long distance, long drives home for the weekend while living in an RV in Norfolk (for Jen), and just generally making it work the Navy way.

After chatting with Jen over the phone, I was thrilled to document their maternity photo session at Downs Park in Pasadena, Maryland. Jen and Will have been in Maryland for a few years now and are slowly still discovering all that life from Annapolis to Baltimore has to offer and I was happy to make some location suggestions. Since they live right here in Pasadena, Downs Park was both close by and a new place to introduce them to that I am confident they will enjoy as a family after the new baby arrives.

We met at Downs Park and walked all of the paths, beneath the tangled branch archways, the stone benches, over bridges. We wandered into a large field and had a guest appearance by a bald eagle, a magnificent sight. And we eventually made our way down to the beach and took advantage of the gorgeous views of the Chesapeake Bay.

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For all of the challenges military life brings, just as steel is forged by fire, a relationship can simply become stronger and better able to withstand the tests of time and life. It is easy to see that this is true for Jen and Will. Watching their ease around each other, Will’s apparent admiration for the beautiful Jen and his ability to make Jen laugh, not just giggle, but full on bust out belly laughing, was a true joy to witness. Jen just glows, not just in the way that a glowing mama-to-be glows, but the way a person radiates confidence and joy and you just want to be in their presence and soak up the light that they emit.

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After having to delay their honeymoon for years due to military commitments, they finally planned to take that trip to Scotland last year. But, oh, 2020 had other plans, and due to a global pandemic, they have been delayed once again. Jen and Will embrace the present, though, and will name their sweet little girl Isla Marie, after the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides of Scotland, which they hope to visit when life allows. Islay is notable as being well known for their scotch (Will’s favorite scotch) and is also known as “The Queen of the Hebrides,” which I find incredibly appropriate as I am certain that Isla Marie will be a queen in her own right, a firecracker, just like her mama.

Jen and Will, thank you for trusting me to document your maternity photos, this time of transition from a family of two to a family of three. I know this is a significant milestone in your lives and I am honored that you asked me to capture it in photos. I cannot wait to meet sweet Isla Marie, watch her grow and document the many milestones that are still to come.

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