Capture Sweet

Celebrating Love and First Birthdays | United States Naval Academy | Annapolis, Maryland

Capturing memories and moments with families is something I just truly love to do, and when Jessica told me that she went through several websites and that she loves my style and had determined that she really wanted me for her family photos, I truly couldn’t wait to get this family of four in front of my camera.

Benjamin, her littlest one, was turning one and she wanted to make sure that they had photos and memories to mark the occasion, as well as family photos to document this time in their lives, as a family of four. She was hoping for Saturday, December 4th, and as luck would have it, that was the only Saturday that I had left on my calendar that I was able to book. Jessica and I talked about what she wanted from the session and brainstormed location ideas, and we finally settled on the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, where her husband, Jameson, currently teaches.

Decorated with an abundance of holiday and Christmas decorations but also still holding onto the colorful fall foliage, the Academy was the perfect setting for family photos in Annapolis, Maryland. We started our session in Dahlgren Hall, where the light was streaming perfectly through the windows to light the exquisitely decorated Christmas tree. (Look closely and see if you can spy who is flying the airplane above this beautiful family!) Olivia, who is almost 3 years old, really wanted to examine all of those ornaments on the tree, so we gave her a little time and space to do that and then she brought a couple over to show mommy and share with Benjamin.

We wandered out to a walkway to take advantage of the architecture and then came back to the stairway inside Dahlgren Hall to capture the lovely decor from a different perspective. There were so many options in just a short walk!

We were blessed with moderate weather, and we took a short walk over to the gazebo where another beautifully decorated tree awaited us. At this point, Olivia declared me her friend and we were playing a game of blastoff between me and Daddy. Olivia would come running over to me, and I would countdown from ten for her to run back to Daddy who would then blast her off up into the air. We were having so much fun, and smiles and giggles were all around.

Olivia had no shortage of energy, and the quiet moments were only when she was taking the time to examine the details in the Christmas decorations. Benjamin found fascination in the decorations on the tree as well, and it was all so well done, I could not blame them!

We headed over to Bancroft Hall, as the steps out front are a perfect setting for family photos and the steps inside very nicely feature Memorial Hall in the background. And the open space in front is a beautiful canvas that I love to create family moments on.

As the sun sinks lower in the sky, giving a golden glow to the United States Naval Academy grounds, finding open space for the kids to run and play and just be kids makes for amazing memories and photos. Watching handsome Benjamin soak up the attention as we documented the milestone of his first birthday, watching Olivia declare the leaf at the end of a twig a birthday candle, it all brought such joy to watch and to capture in photos.

Giving Jessica and Jameson a few moments to get lost in one another’s arms, to remember that their love is where this all started, it was a wonderful thing to witness. Jameson clearly admires Jessica’s beauty both inside and out, and his love of his family was clear to see as he beheld his two princesses and his sweet handsome son.

Benjamin and Olivia were content to explore the world around them from their own perspectives, while mom and dad enjoyed a moment of quiet in the chaos.

And an Annapolis family photo session out on the town is not complete without the promise of ice cream at one of Annapolis’s famous ice cream shops, so we headed off of the Academy grounds and stopped by Storm Brothers for a couple scoops of a sweet treat.

It was a beautiful evening to end waterfront at the dock in downtown Annapolis, enjoying such a treat.

Thank you, Jessica, Jameson, Olivia and Benjamin for giving me the honor of documenting this time in your lives, for allowing me to celebrate and capture moments that mark Benjamin’s first birthday, and for inviting me to spend the evening with you and help you create and capture holiday memories. It was truly a joy to spend time with you all, and I hope that these memories stay with you for years to come and that glancing at these photos can take you right back to this time and place.

Thank you for being the perfect holiday family session to wrap up this season and for giving me the memory of a beautiful evening at the United States Naval Academy and in downtown Annapolis.

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