This family… where to begin?
Love and joy just poured out of them from the first moment we stepped foot onto the parched fields around Orangevale.
I knew it was a special session for them. Mom is pregnant with their second child and Dad is off for his third tour of duty in the Army – I think he’s already left for as I write this. Tough realization: he may very well well be gone for the birth. Despite this impending farewell, there was so much playfulness and honest laughter during our session. Dad is a real joker, barely able to keep a straight face for the entire session and continually adding witty repartee throughout.
What struck me about this family, however, was the amount of deeply felt respect they all had for one another. They adore each other and it shows. It was a privilege to share in that for a couple of hours.
We started out playing some games to loosen everyone up (although in the end I guess we didn’t need it) and then moved on to sharing stories. How did the Brandt family begin?
Tell me about the time the Brandt family went to space. Everyone gets one sentence each in the story. Take turns and — GO!
(Somewhere along the line we managed to acquire a Space Cow and space milk. Essential for calcium and vitamin D.)
Tell me about the day you met. What did you think of one another?
“He took me for a ride in his plane. But he intimidated me. He was so much older.”
“She intimidated me because she was younger!”
After all these years, what do you still love about one another?
“He takes care of us. In every sense of the word.”
“She has such a big heart. The most giving and caring person I know.”
Do you realize how cool it is that your parents are so in love?
“Yes. I’m lucky.”
Your baby sister can hear you. What do you want to say to her?
“I’m going to love you and hug you and kiss you and dress you up as a little penguin, or maybe baby alligator.”
“I’ve been proud of you since the day you were born.”
If you’re unable to make it home before the birth what do you want to say to your wife?
“Get plenty of rest. Ask for help. Please, ask for help.”
A kiss that will last until the day he gets home…
She sleeps with her baby sister’s onesie. So eager to meet her.
Safe travels to Mr. Brandt and thank you for the sacrifices you and your family make to keep our country safe. I hope you make it home for your second child’s birth. But if not, I know there is plenty of love to go around in your family to provide comfort to your wife in the delivery room. (I think I also know of a little girl who’s REALLY EAGER to help!)
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Michelle McDaid is a writer and an authentic documentary family photographer in Sacramento, focused on telling the authentic, emotional and joyful stories of families and children. If you would love to tell the stories of the special little moments in your life in words and artistic images, please email Michelle to learn more about sessions and availability: firstname.lastname@example.org or click here.