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Pinkle Toes Photography has been around long enough to where I am starting to see many of my session come full-circle. I first met Marianne almost five years ago when we got together in downtown Austin one morning to photograph her daughter’s senior portraits. It’s hard to believe she’s MARRIED now! A few years later it was her son’s turn (the pupster is prominently featured in the images below) and then next thing you know, her youngest son was also graduating high school.

And here we are…it’s 2015…the kids are grown and going in all new directions and Marianne wanted one last chance to capture them together, at home, being a family before even more momentous changes take place in their lives. I was so looking forward to get this incredible opportunity to finally work with them all together and honored to be invited into their home.
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Oh…these flowers. There’s a story about them. I won’t get into details (well, maybe you can learn some below), but I can only hope that everyone will have a little giggle each time they see this pic and remember what their dad went through to get these gorgeous flowers “planted.” ūüėČ just for the session.

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A house full of love. And animals!

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The treehouse they built together.

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The look this cat gave him when he picked her up? Oh, my, word!

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Love.

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Love. And LOVE.

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And then Marianne retreated into the kitchen to make a giant breakfast while the kids and animals ūüėČ visited in the living room. It was comfortable. It was natural. It was so relaxed.

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Three words come to mind when I see/think of Marianne = radiance, grace, strength.

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And I have to say, Marianne has a true knack for decorating! I adored the way she dressed the breakfast table! And there’s all kinds of sweet, tasteful touches throughout the home.

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Priceless! I’m afraid we encouraged some bad habits that morning. Ooops!

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The whole crew!

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In Marianne’s words:

Tell us a little bit about your family…

We’re a ragamuffin crew that love each other immensely. We’re so far from perfect but we stick together through whatever life throws at us…it’s better together. We are blessed with mercy and grace.

What made you decide this was the time to do a photo session? Were you marking any special occasion, etc?

We are all launching out in new directions…boys in college, Annie and Ben beginning a new marriage and new careers…and Rick and I entering our 25th year of marriage as empty nesters…. I wanted some photos to memorialize how much we love being a family but also how “okay” it is that we are moving into individual spaces in life. It’s kind of a way of leaving breadcrumbs along the trail…or a big landmark on the path behind us.

Where was your session held and why?

As a military family we have lived in 10 different homes in 7 different locations including 3 different countries. We’ve lived in this house the longest (6 years) and wanted to have the shoot here to remember the last (and longest) place we’ve lived together. It seems that this house holds the most special of memories…proms, graduations, weddings, and even tough times – and it is chalk full of life and love. As empty nesters, Rick and I will most likely move in the not too distant future. Somehow having pics of the last place we all lived together under one roof makes it all them much more special.

What did you like about your session location?

We loved having Michele in our home. She is so easy to be with and we have considered her a dear friend for so long…it only seemed natural to have her here. It was fun to have her “eye” spy the beauty in our home and I knew she would memorialize it perfectly.

What was your favorite part of your session?

Though none of us are particularly “morning people” it was so fun to have everyone “up and atem” at 7am and even smiling. I loved that the session was more like a family event – “remember that time Michele came to our house super early and we got all dressed up and took pix…”

Was there anything you were nervous or worried about before the session?

I was worried that no one would smile at 7am!

Any funny stories or interesting happenings during your session?

Well…I’m not sure we should mention the flowers for our mailbox that Rick took from the neighbors bush at 6:15am the day of the shoot…but fyi – they were dead by the next day! It was funny to see our Cat diva-it up. He never comes around but just had to be part of the action.

Any advice to other families before their photo sessions?

Do what seems natural…whatever you do as a family that brings pleasure (for us…well, we eat breakfast!) haha.

What made you choose Pinkle Toes Photography?

We love Michele!

What do you hope your kids/family will say years down the road when looking at these images?

Remember that day we got all dressed up early in the morning and Michele came and took pix? That was so fun!!

Aug 27, 2015

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Last month, my mommy (AKA MeeMaw) turned 60 years old! I am so proud of her and the things she has done in her life and I am incredibly thankful that I have her IN my life. I wanted so badly to be able to capture our family which seems to have grown exponentially over the years, but I knew I couldn’t do it myself and still be IN the photos and enjoy the process. When I asked our very close and talented friend Minnette Demafiles Photography in Houston, TX if she would be willing, I was beyond thrilled to get to see our family through her eyes. And she met this challenge expertly, capturing genuine love, real emotions and interactions, and bringing out the best in all of us! I.Treasure.These. And I know the rest of the smiling faces here do and will for years and years to come!
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I mean, seriously perfect. My mom is quite blessed.

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Heart. Melted.

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Heart melted 3 more times.

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Us.

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OMG, I am a giant among these two, lol! Where did I come from????

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This is SO my sister and I. We laugh. So. Much. All the time.

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Sweet boy, working on a giant birthday card for MeeMaw.

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Adorable!

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Finally…a picture of me with my nieces that isn’t an iPhone selfie! Truly, thank you for that, Minnette!

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Of course, my number one girl.
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My kids look so OLD to me now.

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LOVED this image of the two of them snuggled up.

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ALL the girls. Three generations. Wish we could have shown four, but¬†Grandma Rosie was certainly there in our hearts and well-represented by Avery Rose’s namesake and Grandma’s pearls around her neck.

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OMG. There are no cuter babies on the planet, I am certain!

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I mean.

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Yaaaaassssss!

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Angel.

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Two angels.

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My sister and I trying so hard to get both girls in the same frame at the same time. Minnette sure had her work cut out for her!

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Ham face.

There are so many things I want to do with these images…an album is definitely at the top of the list. So very, very grateful Minnette took on this huge task and did it so well. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts, my friend!

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All along, we had been planning to take her high school senior portraits in downtown Austin. However, after getting a glimpse of their BEAUTIFUL home, we decided it might be a better idea to try photographing her there, instead. Throw in the underwater pictures that we took at the end and I think we created some gorgeous, very personalized, unique senior photos to capture her…in her element…to commemorate¬†her senior year before “leaving the nest.”

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Also loved THIS underwater photo. And of course, THIS one, too! And a Behind-the-Scenes pic, too (thanks again, Jackson).

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In Lilly’s words:

Tell us a little bit about your family…

My family is awesome! It’s just me, my mom and dad, and my sister and we all get along really well. We are a little weird but that’s what makes us so close. My sister and I have always had a very close relationship and have always gotten along well. It is the same with my parents. I consider my sister my best friend and my parents my greatest role models and supporters.¬†[Pretty lucky bunch!¬†–M]

What made you decide this was the time to do a photo session? Were you marking any special occasion, etc?

I did this photo shoot for my senior pictures.

Where was your session held and why?

It was held at my house because I think there is something very personal about where someone lives and I thought it would be cool to capture me in my “natural habitat.”

What did you like about your session location? 

I didn’t realize how many cool places there were around my house to take pictures. I loved the thought of being in my own element and capturing kind of what my daily life looks like.

What was your favorite part of your session?

My favorite part of the session was probably the underwater pictures. I have never done anything like that before and it was really awesome to see how they ended up. It was also nice to cool off after a hot photo shoot!

Was there anything you were nervous or worried about before the session?

I have always been kind of an “awkward photo taker” so I guess I was nervous that I wouldn’t be able to pull off some of the things that may be asked of me. That fear went away quickly though because Michelle made me feel very comfortable.

Any funny stories or interesting happenings during your session?

The underwater photos were definitely an experiment! We weren’t sure how they were going to turn out but they came out beautiful and I am so happy for that. My dog also wanted to be in on all of the action. She followed us to every location and always wanted to be a part of the pictures. [True story!–M]

What made you choose Pinkle Toes Photography?

I have had friends that have used Pinkle Toes for their senior portraits and I loved them. I knew ink district after I saw my friend’s pictures that I wanted to use Pinkle Toes for my own portraits.

What do you hope your kids/family will say years down the road when looking at these images? 

I hope that they will just talk about how natural they look. I am big on being yourself and looking natural and so I hope that when we look at these photos down the road, it won’t necessarily look like I had a big photo shoot, but just that I was spending time in my house and decided to take some photos.¬†[Love this, Lilly! I hope so, too!¬†–M]

Aug 15, 2015

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A mommy. A wife. A daughter. A role model. A friend. A volunteer. A community servant. A fighter. A light. An inspiration.

What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson

These images were taken along the banks of the flood-ravaged Blanco River in Wimberley. This was the site of the very first time I photographed her family as well as¬†the very last time I visited them before her¬†diagnosis and the flood. She said she thought it would be fitting…her bald head with the bald trees. I found it to be incredibly breathtaking, in equally good and bad ways: the flood damage is shocking, but so is the fact that she can still be so beautiful with no hair,¬†while¬†fighting cancer. ¬†She has an immeasurable amount of strength and an energetic soul that shines throughout and I have not a single doubt that she is going to heal and move forward. Her courage and bravery inspires more people than her humility allows her to see.

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Every now and then, I get a chance to really flex my creative muscles and do something out-of-the-norm for me. I am so very grateful that I was able to do this VERY different photo session with a perfect little model. And you’ll be able to tell how much I loved doing this by the major over sharing that is about to follow ;-). But you’re just going to have to put up with it because you love me and because this sweetie pie fit into her role completely! Thank you so much to her mommy for coming up with the idea to begin with and for finding us the perfect retro swimming pool in which to stage our vintage swimsuit photo shoot AND for introducing me to an amazing set stylist with whom I hope to work again in the future!

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I mean for real. She was slaying it! Loved THIS one, too!

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Note: I was pretty excited when mom told me she had secured a swan float for our session…especially since I had *just* seen one¬†via Taylor Swift’s Instagram. Turns out that mom was *really* lucky to snag one thanks to the float’s new-found popularity! It’s okay, Taylor. We forgive you because you’re awesome. ūüėČ

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Next, it was time for ice cream ;-).

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AND a flamingo float, too?!?!?!

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And after everything was finished on dry land, we both got in the water. This proved to be challenging for me because the pool was a bit deep and I was having a tough time trying to swim and hold my camera at the same time. Fortunately, baby girl is a very skilled swimmer so she had no problems.

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This one above looks like a vision of a mermaid one might see mysteriously appear in the ocean.

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Bokeh sparkles!!!

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Told you I was going to overshare. Look how GRACEFUL she is under water! Wow, wow, wow! My fav of her jumping in HERE!

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I so enjoy getting to work with families with older children, especially repeat families because I really get to see little glimpses into my future before while watching these kids grow up before my eyes. First of all, let me tell you that the weather for their family photo session in Zilker Park could not have been any more perfect for a summer’s day. There was just the right amount of cloud cover that let us play with the city of Austin as our backdrop for a good hour AFTER sunrise, which is pretty much unheard of. While I’ve been to Zilker many times before, this was the first time I had ever climbed the rocks and I quite enjoyed the new perspective it gave us. I also liked hearing the boys reminisce about their memories climbing the rocks at the park as we explored.

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At our last session, we played some football, and it was so cool to revisit that moment this time. But I kinda dug this take on it! #boymom
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Brothers. Love.

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Then we got to move on to the rowing docks. This is a HUGE pastime for this family and nothing is better than getting to capture something meaningful and memorable at a family photo session. And I loved the beautiful, bright colors this location gifted to us!

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These two…SO cute together!!

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I’m not sure if these boys realize just how lucky they are to have a mom and dad as cool as theirs ;-).

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Side note: it was surprisingly difficult to get all three boats together in the same frame…here’s an outtake, turned image from our efforts.

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Yaaaaaaasssssss! And then they all literally jumped into the lake! Repeatedly. You would be surprised at how many takes it required to get just the perfect shots. Though I don’t think anyone minded the chance to cool off and refresh one bit ;-). Another jumping fav HERE!

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So, if you follow me on Instagram, you may  have seen this:

Tangled. #summercomesonceayear

A video posted by Michele Anderson (@pinkletoesoriginal) on

 

Followed shortly by this:

Big. Day. Thank you @modernmusekatie for taking such great care of my Rapunzel! #summercomesonceayear

A video posted by Michele Anderson (@pinkletoesoriginal) on

So, yeah, I’ll say today was a pretty big day for my little girl! She has been growing her hair long all of her life, but I think the heat of this summer finally got the best of her when she asked me yesterday if I¬†would¬†make an appointment with Miss Katie (Modern Muse Beauty). I have to say, it took a LOT for me to let her do this as her gorgeous¬†hair has been treasured by me all her life, too. Katie told me to bring tissues, but you know what? I did okay. I was actually very happy for her and the beautiful grin on her face when the 10″ ponytails were cut off made it totally worth it! Katie did a phenomenal job with this first major haircut and this little lady left Lighten Up Salon lighter, more grown up, maybe a little taller?, and definitely much more sassy ;-).

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Surely you remember when this stunning family was featured on the Pinkle Toes Photography blog during their maternity portraits? Well, this little apple did not fall far from the tree as I was completely blown away to find that she is pretty much a carbon copy of her mommy. Face shape, jawline, and delicate lashes. It’s too early to tell on eye color, I know (by the way, mom’s eyes were green at the maternity shoot, but proved to be a gorgeous ice blue during the newborn photo session ;-)), but she even looks like her mommy in the eyes, too!

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I love that baby girl spent equal time passed out and beautifully alert during her photos.

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It wasn’t terribly hot yet outside that day, so we got to spend a little bit of time outdoors and I think this little one quite enjoyed it!

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Amazing eye contact, don’t you think? This is one thing I do love about working with newborns in the 4-6 week age range.

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This face!!! But my favorite shot outdoors was THIS one!

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She is also lucky enough to have TWO big sisters. I’m so sad we missed them at the newborn photo session, but I can’t wait to get to see them all together soon!

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Random snap, but I loved that it captures this time when she still looks so small in this chair.

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I mean, really? Gorgeous.

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Sooooooo sweet!

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And then at the end of our photo session, I wanted to capture how mommy expertly carries her around in the wrap. There’s something so beautiful and intimate about baby-wearing and it’s obvious that baby girl is completely comfortable here:

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Okay, you *may* need some shades to get through all of the images in this family session. Truly, one of the most VIVID and colorful and URBAN photo sessions I’ve done in Austin! I’ve driven by the Austin Graffiti Park many times and I’ve always wanted to check it out, so I was pretty excited when my chance finally came with one of the most Austin families you’ll ever meet. Now, I will say, it was a bit of a challenge to avoid #1 the mud, #2 me falling off a wall, and especially #3 the not-so-appropriate “art,” but we did our best and these guys were positively AMAZING! I cannot think of a better group of cool, hip, awesome people to try to pull this off with! My absolute FAVORITE image (which will also be going in my portfolio whenever I get around to updating it ūüėČ is HERE!

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¬†You don’t say?

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 THE COLORS!!!!!!

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 Hello!

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¬†We were *trying* to have a serious moment here, but it just wasn’t happening. By this point, we were all pretty delirious with the heat and all nice and sweaty, lol!

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¬†You know I can’t pass up a cool¬†reflection!

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¬†A bit like a game of Where’s Waldo…see if you can find all five people ;-).

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 Some of the randomness we spotted.

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And, I want to give a shout-out to photographer Christie Goss who flew all the way in from Jackson, Wyoming (in a TROPICAL STORM, no less) to come hang with me for a few days and talk all things photography and business-related (rescheduled her Pinkle Toes Photography Workshop). She is SO wonderful, SO talented, and we had a fantastic time tooling around Austin. Thank you so much, Christie. I really enjoyed my time with you and I look forward to getting to visit with you again!

And now, from mom:

Tell us a little bit about your family…

Chris and I met in 5th grade, went to prom together our senior year and celebrated our 11th anniversary just two days after this photo shoot. We created three pretty awesome small people, Paxton (8), Evan (5) and Hamilton (2.5) that we are just trying really hard not to mess up too bad.

What made you decide this was the time to do a photo session? Were you marking any special occasion, etc?

Michele came to our house right after we were fortunate enough to move back to Austin in 2011 and she’s been a staple for our family every year since. This year I was in a panic trying to figure out when we could fit our annual session into our crazy 2015 schedule….needless to say, the stars aligned and she contacted me!

Where was your session held and why?

We went to HOPE Outdoor Gallery aka Graffiti Park at Castle Hills aka the Baylor Street Art Wall. Our kids had been dying to explore the park and I just love the ever changing art work and colors. Michele needed us to go somewhere urban and super Austin-y. I really couldn’t wait to see what she could do there.

What did you like about your session location?

Oh, Ha! See above??? I think it’s a place that screams Austin. It was started as an educational art project and is one of the largest outdoor galleries in the USA. There are little gems hidden everywhere within the artwork (and some not so hidden gems we tried to avoid, ha!).

What was your favorite part of your session?

That it stopped raining just long enough to squeeze the session in at all??? That, and just exploring all around the gallery…and that funky detergent baby hanging on the post…keep Austin weird, y’all.

Was there anything you were nervous or worried about before the session?

No way. At this point in our relationship, a session with Michele is like a little family reunion. [I feel the same, my sista!]

Any funny stories or interesting happenings during your session?

The fact that my oldest always finds a way to pass gas towards the end of our shoots with Michele and this year the baby was old enough to get it and then proceeded to run around and tell us all over and over that, “Paxton tooooooot!!!” and crack himself up.

Any advice to other families before their photo sessions?

Relax and trust Michele. She sees things that you absolutely had no idea she was photographing at the time. She handled the fact that my daughter went through a phase where I had to be holding her at all times and that my boys are wild and crazy. She has photographed us everywhere from our house at sunset, to the Broken Spoke at the crack of dawn, to little pockets of west Austin, the hospital, her studio and now a giant graffiti wall. She’s photographed us dressed to the nines, casual, super pregnant and pushing out a baby. Every single image she has captured of us we have loved. Every. Single. One. Every time we see her I am anxious to see what she comes up with because I just know she’s going to produce something that takes my breath away once again. [Aw…wow…thank you, W!]

What made you choose Pinkle Toes Photography?

We spent a little time in Lubbock as a family and I had the privilege of doing some work for a neighbor that was a photographer. Having seen the behind the scenes action there, I scoured the internet when we moved back to Austin searching for the right “feel” for our family. I stumbled upon Pinkle Toes Photography, googlestalked her, and there was no turning back. Her website, her blog and most importantly, her images just spoke to me.

What do you hope your kids/family will say years down the road when looking at these images?

I am really glad Mom made us wear those goofy age shirts every year….when’s our next session with Michele?

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There’s been a whole bunch of new little babies born this summer, so here’s another treat! This little cutie did soooooooo great during her newborn photo session…LOVE her sweet little poses that she did all on her own. I think she knew she was being photographed ;-). My favorite moment was between her and her big sister HERE.

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austin-round-rock-family-newborn-baby-lifestyle-photography-13From mom:

Tell us a little bit about your family…

Our family balances each other out. We are different from one another but complement one another at the same time.

What made you decide this was the time to do a photo session? Were you marking any special occasion, etc?

We wanted to do a newborn session since we recently had our second child.

Where was your session held and why?

At home.

What did you like about your session location?

Everyone could be comfortable. With a new baby, there is more chaos and being at home made most sense.

What was your favorite part of your session?

Sibling pictures- big sister Amara is super excited about her new role and adores her baby sister. Amara is very loving and loves helping her mom out however she can.

Was there anything you were nervous or worried about before the session?

Getting everyone ready and hoping for cooperative kiddos!

Any funny stories or interesting happenings during your session?

Amara wanted to spend the session holding or being close to her new baby sister and could not get enough!

Any advice to other families before their photo sessions?

Michele is great to work with and she is very laid back and makes everyone feel comfortable- easy to be yourself. Try to relax and have fun!

What made you choose Pinkle Toes Photography?

As above, plus Michele’s pictures are so unique and she is so creative. When we were looking for a photographer, she stood out from the others with her vibrant and fun picture.

What do you hope your kids/family will say years down the road when looking at these images?

That it was so worth taking the time to do them.

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And, how about a short trip down memory lane with a look at some of their maternity portraits we took in downtown Austin. Side note: this was the only time I had to call a session early because of LIGHTNING!!! Whew…it was crazy! Made for beautiful clouds, but eventually it got to the point where it just wasn’t worth being outside anymore ;-(. Fortunately, we had gotten plenty of images beforehand and everyone did so great working so quickly!

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