the tale of 2 births – our son & an idea

by Mary Jane

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Mark and I welcomed our second child into the world on March 8th, 2012 at 4 p.m. Paxton Gabriel Strong was born at home and came in a whopping 7 lbs, 14 oz. It was a completely harmonious and speedy delivery. While it seemed like the little guy was incredibly late, he only missed his due date by a few days.

After a few weeks of random contractions, – stopping & starting – stopping & starting – I was wondering if this little one was going to be a practical joker. I thought I was going into labor at least 5 or 6 times before I actually did. That always makes things interesting and keeps all involved on the edge of their seat.

At around noon on March 8th, the contractions started again. We put Piper down for her nap at 1 p.m. and I called my midwife directly after. Let’s just say that a lot happened during that nap. Piper would go to sleep at 1 p.m. and wake up exactly 3 hours later with a little brother. It was almost as if they cried at the same time! Paxton taking his first breathe and Piper saying, “Come and get me – I want to meet him!”

I am in awe of the perfect unfolding of God’s plan. I am so grateful for patience, my mom my husband, my sleeping daughter – and for God’s grace. And for our son. Life feels more complete now.

So. As if this birth wasn’t enough – there is a birth of another sort in my life as well. It’s the birth of an idea and something that I have had in my heart for a long while.

I want to help. I want to teach. I want to inspire.

For so many years I’ve been asking myself, “Well, are you smart enough?” “Do you know enough?”, “What if they laugh at you?”… It’s been a little bit like going back to high school, accept all of these conversations have been with myself, so throw in a tiny bit of insanity for good measure.

It’s all good.

I’ve come to realize, we are all the same, really. We ALL have something to offer others. I’ve just now mustered up the courage to announce it to the world. YIKES! As if public speaking wasn’t frightening enough, I’ve gone and posted myself on video for all to see. But, you know what? I’m o.k. with it. Or at least trying to be…

Two years ago I decided I was going to make videos of me documenting my first born, Piper Jane, so I could help other mamas learn to document their own children. I mean, you can’t always have a professional photographer in your back pocket! And I didn’t want these videos to just be for mamas with really fancy cameras, but for everyone. So, for each shoot I made 3 different videos using 3 different cameras – my point & shoot camera, a consumer dSLR and my professional Canon camera.

I am releasing the first three videos in the series – the Newborn Shoot, the 3 Month Shoot and the 6 Month Shoot. You do have to sign up to see them, so that I can keep you posted on when the 9 Month Shoot and One Year Shoot will be available. I promise I won’t be bombarding your email inbox everyday. I’m now a mom of 2 – I don’t have time to spam you. Seriously people! Haha!

These videos are all professionally edited, with a combination of the live shoot, the photos I took and an interview I did afterward reviewing the shoot. These videos touch on posing, lighting, camera settings, f-stops, shutter speeds and all sorts of other good info. And they are FREE for YOU! You can click the pink box under my welcome video – or this link will take you there too – CLICK HERE! Be sure to watch the short welcome video as it will explain the process and when you can expect the videos in your inbox.

If these videos help just one mama pick up her camera and start documenting her babies then I’ll be happy. One picture at a time, moment by moment…

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