September 14, 2011...my original due date. I'd been thinking about this day for the past nine months, and now instead of being in labor all day, I got to hold my baby girl all day! We had plans to take her newborn pictures with a local photographer. I still wasn't released to drive yet so my friend Ashley was spending a few days with us and agreed to drive us there and help out. We picked up Hallie from Mrs. Kathy's and headed downtown with a car full of clothes and props. I couldn't wait to get Hallie and Avery Kate's pictures together! But I was even more excited to use some of Hallie's old hats and bows and see how much they looked alike. When Avery Kate wore that purple hat with the huge flower on it...she looked identical to Hallie. The only difference in the two was that Avery Kate had beautiful blue eyes, where Hallie's were brown. I love those eyes! Anyways, It was the longest photo shoot ever, or so it seemed that way to me! I wasn't supposed to be lifting Hallie, but she had to potty, she wanted candy, she wanted gum, she didn't want to smile... and the list goes on! The photographer also keeps it warmer in her studio when she does newborn shots so the babies can be all cute and naked and not get cold. So I was sweating! Avery Kate did pretty well, cried every now and then. I'd feed her and then we'd keep on going. Thank goodness I had Ashley there to help me, because it was so overwhelming with a newborn and a two year old.
So I get my picture proofs a few days later and for some reason I was not impressed...at all. I literally cried all day long and demanded we re-take the pictures. Well the photographer was not willing to re-do them for free and I was just devastated! I kept looking at all of the pictures and crying! I even set up some baskets and blankets around the house and tried to re-do them myself, but they were horrible. I kept crying and crying about these newborn pictures. Even Brandon was like, "Brandi? Why are you so upset about pictures?" I didn't know, but I just couldn't stop crying.
I went back online and looked at the picture proofs. Then it hit me. There was a picture of Avery Kate sleeping in a suitcase. To me, what did it look like? A coffin! Yes, a coffin! I just thought no mother should ever have to see her child in a coffin and realized those pictures were the ones that upset me so much. I immediately texted a friend and asked her to take more pictures for us. She took Hallie's pictures and we loved them. I knew I had to retake these pictures of Avery Kate or I would regret it forever.
I went to Kasha's house one Thursday. Her camera lens was broken so she just used my camera. I have a really nice camera so I knew they'd come out great. It once again felt like the longest day ever! Hallie was not cooperating once again. She was eating blue fun dip, chewing gum, playing with my phone, and just being a little turkey! I had a bad feeling about these pictures just because of how terrible Hallie was acting and of course, Avery Kate would get newborn acne just in time for the close ups! Poor baby girl! We spent a couple of hours taking pictures at Kasha's house and then went out to the salt water barrier to get some good outdoor shots. Kasha made me get in some of the pictures with the girls, and I just thought, "My hair is horrible, I'm tired, my body isn't like I want it to be yet, and she wants me to take a picture!" I honestly figured I'd take them and then delete them because I knew I'd look terrible.
Kasha sent me the link to the pictures two days later and I fell in love with every single one of them! I even liked the pictures with me in them...ha! I was visiting with Maw Maw and Paw Paw when I saw them for the first time and they were oohing and aahing over them just as much as I was. Maw Maw wanted one of each! She just kept saying, "Oh that's my favorite. No that's my favorite!" I was so happy to have the pictures I wanted. And now, those pictures with my girls and me are worth more than gold.