Oh. I’m so excited! I get to share June’s Birth Announcement with you today. It was illustrated by the tremendously talented Apryl Stott and continues the birth announcement series we started with baby Ralph. I love that it shows June in a mountain-y Colorado backdrop. And the fox and bunny? We’ve actually seen them both in our backyard here. What do you think? Adorable, right?
Apryl sent the finished artwork in a mat, ready to be framed. I can’t wait to frame it and add it to our collection in the nursery. We adore having all the original artwork in our home! Apryl also included a disk with a high-resolution scan so we can easily print these announcements at a smaller size and mail them to friends and family.
June is clearly delighted with how it turned out:
If you’re curious what the process is like working with an illustrator, here’s a brief description. 1) I contacted Apryl and asked her to illustrate the birth announcement. We discussed a few ideas, but really, I knew Apryl would come up with something wonderful. 2) Apryl sent back a sketch in black and white:
3) I loved it! I showed the sketch to the kids and we decided to switch out the stuffed animals for a fox and rabbit. We sent our feedback to Apryl and she sent us an updated sketch. 4) We gave the updated sketch two thumbs up, at which point, Apryl made the final drawing and mailed it to us. Yay!
Apryl is the best kind of person to work with. If you’re interested in something like this for your birth announcements, I can’t recommend her enough.
Two weeks ago, between photoshoots in New York and Australia, Wendy from Blue Lily flew in from California for a photoshoot with June.
Wendy is all about color. And I’m a color addict too. So it was a good fit.
Wendy came in with armloads of props and equipment, assessed the light in the house and got right to work. She picked up June and rocked her to sleep. She kept a white-noise app at the ready in case the baby woke. She was super speedy. And clearly a master.
We have never had newborn portraits taken before so I was fascinated with the process. Plus Wendy herself is super-interesting so I kept chatting her up. Finally, I had to hole-up in the office because I was afraid of distracting her while she worked.
While I was keeping busy in the office, Wendy finished up the backdrop shots and tried snapping June in various colorful places around the house. She kept these shots a surprise and it was so fun to see them when she sent the finished photos. This bookshelf shot is terrific.
What do you think about this image? June is so embryo-like. And that bowl was a gift from Ben Blair. It’s my favorite bowl.
Just as Wendy finished clearing up all the photo-shoot-accessories-and-equipment, the rest of my kids came home from their various schools. Although it was really just a Baby June shoot, Wendy graciously snapped some photos of all the kids together at my request. The all-kid shots are so full of energy. Ben Blair and I can’t stop grinning at them.
This last one is perfection — I think it totally captures the craziness-but-happiness that is our household:
What do you think? Will June survive this big family? Have you ever had a newborn photoshoot?
P.S. — If you’re hoping to have a newborn photo session, try to get it scheduled before the baby actually arrives. I hear the shots are best if taken within the first two weeks of the birth. And don’t worry if it seems too overwhelming to have a photographer at your house when the baby is so young. I was totally in my pjs during the whole shoot. Wendy didn’t mind at all.
Did I tell you we had a photographer arranged for June’s birth? And did I tell you that the first time we met in real life was in the hospital room while I was mostly naked? And I did I further tell you that the birth was so speedy that the baby arrived before the photographer?
It’s true. It’s all true.
The photographer’s name is Michelle. She’s one-half of the talented husband-wife duo that makes up Revert Photo. Michelle sent the birth photos yesterday (I guess technically they are the after-the-birth photos). I think they turned out wonderfully and I’m so glad we have a record of that night. I’m including a few of my favorites here.
Glistening eyes after receiving eyedrops.
Why am I still in agony? Because those after-birth contractions hurt like the devil. Like. The. Devil.
We’ve never had a photographer at a birth before, and thought it was great to have someone there recording everything so that Ben Blair and I could love on the baby and experience what was happening. What about you? Did you have a photographer at your child’s birth? Would you if you could do it again?
Have I told you about Flora June’s homecoming? It was joyous. I think it was my favorite part of her birth.
June was born a little after 9:00 on a Friday night. Ben Blair and I woke up Saturday morning, feeling good and ready to get home, so we checked out of the hospital right away, about 12 hours after the birth. When we arrived home the house was peaceful and welcoming. Full of pretty Spring light, with a kid-made welcome banner in the window. The five older siblings were playing at the Lattin’s house (our dear friends), and the house was still clean and shiny thanks to a housekeeper visit the day before. We settled Baby June, unpacked the hospital bags and took a very content nap.
An hour later the kids arrived home and it was like Christmas morning — all smiles and discovery. The siblings couldn’t get enough of their new sister. Everyone took lots of turns holding her. Voices would start quiet and hushed, taking in this new little creature, and then get loud and boisterous because it was just so exciting.
I wish I could bottle the happy that was in the room that day. It was very clear to me that June will be as loved and adored as any human being ever has been.
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