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guest family || lexington, ky family photography

This family is a special one to me. Ashley was actually my very first friend when I moved to Kentucky in the eighth grade. We had gym together and we were paired up often because our last names (before married!) both began with ‘b’. We were the most unathletic people in the class. It sparked a pretty immediate friendship because we knew we could laugh and not take ourselves too seriously – because there is about zero athletic ability in each of us! We pretty instantly became best friends and were almost inseparable throughout high school.

We roomed together in college and were neighbors in the same apartment when we were both newlyweds. We had movie nights and game nights and shared dinner almost every night in that season of life before kids. I know realize what a treasure that time was! She and her husband are missionaries and moved to Honduras years ago. Ashley remains one of my closest friends… they type that you can go months without speaking and when you do you realize not a beat has been missed. I so cherish this girl and her family! They come back to the states every few years and it is such a treat when we get to catch up! We had to squeeze in a little family session while they were here most recently and I am so glad we did – these are some of my favorite images of some of my favorite people!

 

a little about the photographer.

Hello there! I just wanted to take a second and sort of re-introduce myself over here on this blog. I’m Melissa. Wife to Michael, mama to four, lover of Jesus. I’m an introvert, I prefer to listen more than share but being married to the man I am and having as many kids as I do it forces me into social situations that I will wholly admit I love more and more every day. I love it when walls are broken down and people share their hearts and their lives with me. Photography has been such a gift in that aspect. The Lord has given me a talent for capturing moments, noticing things sometimes missed. The beauty in the ordinary, in the messy moments. We can miss the beauty when we are in the mess but that’s where I come in; that’s where I thrive. It is my passion to help people see their families as unique and beautiful. Even when (especially when) we feel that is far from true.

I handed my camera over to Michael one afternoon when I was feeling confident. I loved my outfit, I loved my hair, and I had done my makeup for the day. I knew I needed some headshot photos to start using this blog again and just get more intentional about my social media platforms. I am so glad that I did. I can 100% say, feeling confident in your skin makes for some great images. I think it’s great practice to be on the other side of the camera and remember how strange it can feel to have a camera in your face wanting to capture your genuine self. I’ll totally admit it – it feels weird! But it’s short lived and then you are on the other side. And you realize it wasn’t so bad… if not even a little fun.

I realized I loved capturing moments on a trip my then boyfriend, now husband, and I took to Zambia, Africa. I couldn’t seem to put my camera down. I captured the flowers, the food, the kids we had a chance to love on, the signs, everything, everywhere. And my heart soared. I will always treasure those images. They are a dream realized for me. My husband and I got engaged after our Africa trip and got married the following summer. Shortly after our wedding we had the surprise of our lives. We were having a baby! We still had wedding money and I had been dreaming of getting a nice camera. I knew I would want great photos of this baby that was on his way so we bought a beginner DSLR. I read that manual cover to cover. It was the first thing I actually loved learning about that was a real challenge. But I didn’t put it down when I was overwhelmed. I kept at it and I am so grateful for that time invested in that camera. And grateful for the timing of it all – if I hadn’t been expecting I don’t think I would’ve felt the pressure or desire to learn like I did.

The baby was born… and over the years we’ve added three more babies to our crew. You’ve heard it before and it’s true. Kids grow up too darn fast. They don’t come with a pause button! And now with four I cherish looking back on my photos of them. The days are long (so long) but the years seem to by flying by in a blur. I can remember so many details with the photos that I could never remember on my own. And I’m passionate about helping other families have the same types of images of their children and families to look back on and remember their own stories. I love lifestyle photography. The genuine, un-staged, sometimes messy, always memorable moments. The candid moments, and the moments just after the staged ones. That is where the magic will always be to me.

My first few years as a photographer I didn’t feel like I was worthy of that title. I had a photographer friend I so admire tell me, “You ARE a photographer.” And every time I call myself a photographer it still puts the biggest grin on my face. It’s a special title to have and it isn’t one that I take lightly. I am so grateful to carry it. Thanks for being here and all of your support in this adventure of mine.

linville family || georgetown, ky family photographer

Oh my heart is so happy it is finally SPRING! Things are blooming, the birds are chirping and it is so good to be back outside after a long and crazy Kentucky winter. The arrival of spring also means things are picking back up around here and for that I am so grateful. I met Stacey at our session and throughout conversations we learned we both attend the same church and live in the same neighborhood! I love it when connections are made and the world feels a little smaller.

Stacey and Tim are such fun parents to watch. William is just the cutest, isn’t he? I couldn’t stop smiling at him through our whole session! A few fun details about this family session… Stacey is wearing the same dress that her mother wore on her wedding day… I just love how special and meaningful that is. Tim is a marine and has served five tours… This family was so much fun to chat with and hear about their lives! This was also their first family session ever. Oh I love helping people change that and give them heirloom photos that they can pass down their family line in the future.

Linville family, I can’t thank you enough for allowing me to capture your sweet family and for being so FUN to work with!

 

library day || closer look

Oh we love to read around here. Once a week we hit up our local library and check out a healthy amount of books. Walking back to the car is usually a struggle – I bet it’s humorous watching me wrangle my two sons and a giant bag filled with books back to my van! BUT that trek is totally worth it. It’s one of my favorite days because when we get home all of my kids sit and gobble up these books for at least an hour. It’s the funnest thing to watch! My daughter is reading now and she feels so proud of herself with each new book that she reads unassisted. I love watching her read and giggle at the different stories. I pick out special ones with each kiddo in mind and she always asks, “which ones are for me!” My oldest is now into fiction books and completely absorbs facts about plants and animals – he teaches me new amazing things all the time because of how often he reads! And my little boys? Pick any book with a construction vehicle – or any vehicle! – and they will almost always sit on my lap and listen to the story again and again (and again!)

This is such a normal activity for our family and I realized I haven’t photographed it! It gave me so much joy to open up the windows, get out my camera and capture my kids reading to each other and just enjoying all our fun new library books for the week. Plus, this is something I definitely never want to forget. Our family at this stage is so very fun and I am so grateful!

 

abney family || georgetown, ky lifestyle photographer

I pulled up to their home for our session and they were already outside swinging on the porch swing. Oh how excited for this session that made me! I chatted with Jen about the flow of our session and we got right to it! Daddy and the kiddos worked together to make lemonade and how sweet is it to watch little ones help in the kitchen and see older siblings help the younger siblings, it’s a perfect design! I loved watching them in their space that they were so comfortable in. Then the boys played with mommy and snuggled and looked at books and there was so much laughing and tickles! It was such a fun afternoon getting a glimpse into the Abney household. I’m so excited for them to have these images to look back on and remember pieces of this season of their life. What a beautiful thing!

 

Lifestyle sessions can be filled with absolutely anything that your family loves to do together – that’s the beauty of it! The options are endless. We can work together to come up with ideas and a flow for the session. Contact me at melissanrossini@gmail.com with any questions or to schedule your own!