Tag Archives: maryland maternity photographer

Yes, another year has flown by! Last year at this time, I was juggling life with a newborn. This year, I’m chasing an opinionated toddler around… And it’s been so long since my last blog post that I almost didn’t remember my login. Seriously. Without further ado, the annual Photo of the Year contest for 2017 starts today. I can’t think of a better way to dust off the old blog. Cast your vote with the images below from participating families. 

maternity fresh 48 newborn photographer dc | compilation of family photos from maternity through newborn days

View the FULL-SIZED images here

Here’s how it works:

Round 1. First, select the top 4 finalists to move on to Round 2 by voting in the poll below. You can vote for more than 1 image, but you can only vote once. The finalists will be the top 3 of the popular vote from the poll on this site and 1 selected by me. Voting for Round 1 is through February 26. Lastly, images are listed in no particular order. 

Each finalist will move on to Round 2. A new poll will be posted on the blog to vote for the photo(s) of the year. Votes on Instragram @stefanieharrington for Round 2 will also count toward the total votes. Keep an eye on that account so that you don’t miss the chance to vote in the next round.

There will be 2 winners! Each winner will receive a FREE documentary session with me this year! (some restrictions apply)

Stefanie Harrington is a maternity Fresh 48 newborn photographer based in DC. If you’re expecting or simply want your family’s memories documented, get in touch here!

I never take it for granted when a family chooses me to document their memories, moments or milestones. It really is always an honor. And it’s especially wonderful when they ask me to document another Fresh 48 hospital session like this one. There’s a feeling of familiarity, trust and pure joy in our relationship when I join families on their continued parenting journey. I love to share in their excitement and happiness over their newest bundle of love!  

This sleepy little squish was pure baby chub perfection!! 10.6 pounds of pure perfection to be exact! I just want to squeeze him. How lucky am I to have photographed both him and his older sister during their first few hours of life? And Shady Grove Hospital holds a special place in my heart, because that’s where we welcomed all three of our children into the world. I always love to see those duck swaddle blankets again. 

newborn baby is sleeping in the hospital bassinetnewborn baby is crying in the hospital bassinetmother is lovingly reaching for newborn baby in the hospital bassinetyoung mother is cradling her newborn babynewborn baby is sleeping and then wide awake during his hospital staymothera young mother is soothing her sweet baby boynew parents are lovingly looking down at their newborn babyyoung parents are lovingly admiring their newborn babya young dad is holding his newborn baby in the hospitalyoung dad is holding his sleeping newborn boynewborn baby is sleeping against his dadnewborn baby feet are kicking with the hospital braceletsnewborn baby is being swaddled in the hospital bednewborn baby is laying on the hospital bednewborn baby is sleeping in the hospital bednewborn baby boy is swaddled with an adorable blanket and hat

Cheeks for days! And that sweet baby hair! It’s almost hard for me to leave the cozy and intimate space of their hospital room. It always takes me back to those special first hours with my own babies. Stay tuned for his newborn session at home with his older sister! She’s equally adorable with crazy beautiful blue eyes and the softest blonde hair.

Fresh 48 sessions are some of my favorite moments to document for families. If you’re expecting, don’t forget to reach out! It’s a time that will feel like a blur to you but has so many wonderful details you’ll want to remember and treasure. Your baby will probably change by the time you go home. And it’s the perfect time to just sit in bed and snuggle with your baby for those first family photos. Is there anything better than that?

One of the most asked questions before any photo session is about what to wear. This depends on the type of session and the season, but I have general guidelines that I give to with my families. Since Fall is a busy time for photographers as families gather for Holiday card photos, I am sharing some Fall inspiration and tips. 

gorgeous family is cuddling and smiling at their baby boy

First off, everyone has their own unique style and taste so try not to dress exactly alike. I think it’s important that whatever you choose to wear, you feel like you’re you. If you wear jeans every day, wear them to your session! Be sure to dress everyone comfortably, because you’ll be walking, moving and playing during your session.

little girl is smiling as she holds her parents

Most of my family sessions are documentary where you’ll be doing things that you enjoy together as a family. Even for lifestyle sessions, you’ll want to be sure that your outfit works well for cuddling, tossing a toddler in the air or giving out snacks. I, personally, don’t like to adjust or tuck in my clothes every time I pick up the baby or bend down.

toddler girl in an adorable shirt dress is splashing in the water

Complementary colors and patterns are nice so they don’t clash. I usually reserve patterns for one or two family members and use those colors to coordinate the other outfits. Don’t forget accessories like jewelry, belts or shoes to show off your style. For guys, layers are nice.

a little boy is laughing as he wear dark sunglasses

Finally, some fights are just not worth it. If your child has their heart set on their favorite outfit, just accept it for that season in life. I promise you that you’ll look back on the photos and smile at the ridiculous thing that your child wore. My boys practically live in gym shorts… And they both dislike nothing more than collared shirts. They also like to wear one color for top and bottom. Awesome.  

We can discuss your outfits at length before your session if you’d like. I really want to shoot a documentary session with the whole family in pajamas so hit me up if that describes your family!

All babies are tiny miracles. And sometimes a tiny baby is so many miracles combined that you can’t even get your head around it. I teared up a lot during this newborn session. You’ll have to read on to find out the many layers of miracles for this sweet baby boy.

I first met this amazing family when their older son turned one. (Not to steal the show from his tiny but mighty brother, the older brother is also a miracle with a severe congenital heart defect. He will be facing heart surgery in the coming months.) We met up over the years for photo sessions. I was so, so happy and excited for them when they hired me to photograph their second baby’s birth after three miscarriages. 

Here are mom’s words to tell her family’s story: 

After the third miscarriage, I went through every diagnostic procedure imaginable, but there was no clinical explanation why I continued to miscarry.  If by all measures of science, we should be the pinnacle of fertility, why did I still feel so inherently broken?  The emotional strain took its toll on me. I needed a break. We decided I should go back on birth control and focus on other things.  But before I made it back to the doctor, we were staring at that little plus sign once again.  

At the first ultrasound, we saw a beautiful, strong, 8-week heartbeat.  We left with our congratulatory bag of samples, pregnancy pamphlets, and a photo of our baby resembling a race car that we dubbed Hot Wheels

At 12 weeks, Hot Wheels looked great.  Thanks to a simple blood test and modern science, the doctors told us that our risk of chromosome abnormalities was very low and that we were having another boy!  Our excitement came spilling out.  We had made it past the first trimester!  Jameson was getting a little brother!! 

At 19 weeks, the doctors told us Hot Wheels was measuring two weeks behind.  The blood flow to the baby was absent and restricted.  He was diagnosed with Intrauterine Growth Restriction (IUGR) and given little to no chance of survival.  We had two choices.  To continue with the pregnancy and hope for the Hail Mary pass.  Or to abort the pregnancy.  We had only one option, because something told us Hot Wheels was a fighter.

The next three months were full of ups and downs.  At the lowest point, around 24 weeks, his umbilical artery had reversed flow.  At 260 grams, he was not big enough to be resuscitated.  We went home, broken and preparing for a stillbirth.  A few weeks later, after a first round of steroids, Sebastian was still fighting.  We made it past Thanksgiving and got to spend Christmas at home.  The morning after Christmas, I had a nervous feeling that something wasn’t right as I hadn’t felt him move all morning.  So I went to the hospital, and his blood flow showed reversed flow again.  I was admitted for monitoring and for my second round of steroids.  By Friday, at 32 weeks+3 days, all three major arteries had reversed flow.  We needed to deliver as soon as possible.

Sebastian was delivered via C-section on December 30, 2016, at 8:13pm, weighing only 440grams (15.5) ounces.  The NICU staff stood by to support.  I remember hearing him cry and thinking it was the most beautiful sound I have ever heard.  He suffered a brief cardiac arrest shortly after birth.  It was agonizing listening to the doctors do chest compressions on our fragile baby as I lay helpless, not knowing if that brief moment was all we would see of our baby boy alive.  Within a few minutes that seemed like a lifetime, he was stabilized and on his way to the NICU.

In true miracle form, Sebastian went home after 90 days in the NICU. With many ups and downs during that time, he now weighed close to 4 pounds and did not need any respiratory support. I loved meeting him at his newborn session and was so thrilled to see him home with his family. He is a true tiny miracle.

big brother is holding dadmom and dad are smiling at each other with their sons in their armsParents and little boy are admiring the newest family additionMama is snuggling her older son while holding her baby son in her armsLittle boy is laughing as he sits between his parents with his younger brother in mommom is admiring her tiny baby sonBig brother is snuggling with his tiny but mighty baby brotherdad is holding his two boys in his armsgorgeous family photo of a young family sitting on the parentsa young family of four is snuggling on the bed with their two sonsbig brother is smiling at the camera and patting his brothermama is snuggling with both of her sonsmom and big brother are smiling at the baby boy in her armsbeautiful mother is smiling sweetly at her tiny sonmama is holding her baby son in his gorgeous nurserydad is holding his baby son in his arms in the nurserydad is smiling at his tiny sona tiny baby is being cradled in his dadmodern art pieces decorate a nursery wallmom is holding her baby son in her arms in his modern nurserybaby boy is getting a bottle feeding from his mamaa young mother is sitting with her newborn son in his nursery mom and newborn son are sitting in his nurserybaby boy is wearing a tiny but mighty newborn onesienewborn baby boy is looking at the camera with a very cute worried looknewborn son is swaddled and happytiny newborn feet in the baby crib

A few months after his newborn session, I was in tears again when Sebby was re-admitted to the hospital. You can read more here, but I am happy and relieved to tell you that he is back home and growing! Sebby is beyond lucky to be born into such a wonderful family. I absolutely love his parents and older brother and only hope that their roller coaster rides in life become fewer and less eventful!

Thank you for allowing me to take part in and to share your story! Much love to you.

I always love to catch up with my families after their newborn photo session, especially when it’s for a relaxed and joyful family session in their home. The last time I saw this adorable family, I was hugely pregnant and just a few weeks away from welcoming my own baby into the world. I only realized today that I didn’t blog their newborn session… 

This time, we played in their backyard for a relaxed morning to document their family time together. This is the best way to capture summer fun with young children!

children popping huge soap bubbles in their backyardbaby brother is surprised by a soap bubble bursting in front of his facebeautiful curly hair on a little girl as she twirls and playsbig sister is making big soap bubbles for her little brothers

The baby’s face is absolutely hilarious! The bubbles confused him so much, because they disappeared right in front of him.

baby boy is fascinated by a large soap bubble in front of his face

It was beyond adorable when big sister and big brother tried to help the baby pop bubbles. I think this confused him even more – and also got soapy bubbles all over him.

big sister and big brother helping baby brother pop soap bubbles

Once they tired of the bubbles, it was time to play with their water toys. Children can play with water for hours! I’d forgotten the joys of the water table since my boys outgrew theirs so long ago.

little girl is pouring water into her water tablebaby boy is trying to play with his water table

Getting water poured over your head… One of the many joys of being the youngest and having older siblings.

baby brother is having water poured on his head by his older brother

And then the jumping started! They do this all the time and have clearly mastered their form and squeals of delight. They were SO MUCH fun to watch! I think all of my summer sessions should include water and splashing.

little boy is jumping into his baby poollittle boy is wiping water from his face after jumping into the baby poolbrother and sister are running to jump into their baby poollots of water is splashing out of the baby poolbrother and sister are smiling as they sit in a baby poolbrother and sister are playing in their backyard baby poolbig sister is jumping for joy in the baby pool as her brothers play

Time for popsicles. Even the baby got to try one! The older two thought this was hilarious, of course, but the baby wasn’t sold on the cold treat.

brother and sister are comparing their orange popsiclesbrother and sister are sharing popsicles with the baby baby brother is trying a popsicle for the first timebaby brother makes a frowny face after trying a popsiclebrother and sister are eating popsicles in their playhouse

This was such a great session to document, full of laughter and personality. Documentary sessions at home always make me happy. I bet next summer the baby will be jumping into the water with his brother and sister, which means even more giggles and squealing!

Another bonus of documentary sessions at home? There’s no rushing around! Getting out the door for anything always seems like a marathon event with young children. So by staying at home, you have one less opportunity for toddler tantrums or forgetting important things at home.