Family of Four and the Family Dog at Sarah Benson Park

Family Photos in Thompson Station Tennessee with Family Dog

Oh my goodness, there is so much sweetness in this family portrait session. These girls were so much fun to photograph. And as a bonus, they brought along their family dog. I am always game for families to include their pooches in family photos sessions, but it’s especially fun now that I’ve added my own puppy to my family. Our pets are so important to us and are part of the family, so it makes sense to include them in family pictures.

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you considered following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Family of 3 Portrait Session at Sarah Benson Park

Family Portraits at Sarah Benson Park

This family portrait session at Sarah Benson Park turned out so great that it makes me want to schedule more morning sessions. I schedule most of my portrait sessions for magic hour. The hour before sunset is my favorite light for photographing portraits. But sometimes those magic hour sessions are too late for little ones, especially in the summer. While I do love evening light, the MOST important thing is that my little clients are happy.

For clients who can’t manage a magic hour photo session, I am happy to schedule a morning session. The only caveat about booking during the day is that we need a location where there is plenty of shade. Harsh sunlight is not great for photos, so location is particularly important for daytime sessions. Sarah Benson Park (formerly known as Thompson Station Park) is a great spot.

It’s kind of funny because Sarah Benson Park is not one of my favorite spots for evening sessions. There is just one reason. It’s the sunset – the sun sets right behind the recycling station. As someone who likes to shoot into the sun, the recycling station is not my idea of a great backdrop. But in the mornings, the sun is coming through the trees on the other side of the park. That’s why it’s a great spot for morning photos.

I’m so glad it worked out well. Little Easton is the absolute cutest, and it was a great day hanging with this new family of three.

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or to book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you would consider following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Santa Photos Mini Sessions- FAQ

Santa Photos in Thompson Station, TN Covid safe

Nashville Santa and I still have a few spots open for Santa Photos this Friday, December 4. Williamson County kids are having an asynchronous day, so it’s a great chance to take a quick break from schooling and see Santa. The sessions are 15 minutes long and are $175. They include all the full-size digital images from your session, with a print release.

You can book a session at this link.

I’ve had a few questions about the sessions, so I thought I’d answer them now. We actually did one session yesterday, and it provides a good sample for you.

How many photos will I get?

I don’t know, but I’m a notorious over-shooter and have never been able to limit myself to x number of photos. 15 minutes is a pretty long time. If you’ve been to my indoor Santa sessions before at the schools, as a comparison, the average time for those was about 2 minutes.

How long before I get the photos back?

I know people want these for Christmas cards, so I’m going to try my absolute best to get them edited within a week or so.

Can we get a family photo?

Sure. Whatever you want for the 15 minutes. Just keep in mind what your priorities are and let me know. We don’t want to spend too much time on a family pic if what you really want are the kids interacting with Santa.

Can you make it snow on Friday?

OK, full disclosure here. It actually WAS SNOWING yesterday when I took these. But I did help it along a bit with my editing. I can do the same on Friday, even if Santa doesn’t bring me real snow twice in one week.

What will we wear?

Well this is totally up to you, but my biggest suggestion is to dress warm. The easiest thing for a last-minute, cute Santa session would be to have kids in cute coats (peacoats, maybe?) and cute hats and scarves. I LOVE Fallon’s hat below…adorable. You can often get hats and scarves overnight from Amazon if you don’t already have something you love.

Where are the photo sessions?

The Mini Sessions are at Sarah Benson Park (formerly known as Thompson Station Park.)

What are your COVID precautions?

The biggest coronavirus safety precaution is our decision to have this outside. There is no indoor backup plan so let’s hope it doesn’t rain. Also, the 15 minute time slots ensure there are not lots of families waiting together. We ask that you wait in your car until it’s your turn.

For Santa’s safety, the children will not be sitting on his lap. As you can see below, I have some stools they can sit on. If you’d like them to sit farther away from Santa than shown below, just let us know. Whatever you are comfortable with is fine. I will have Clorox wipes to wipe the stools down between each family.

You can’t see me in the photos obviously, but please know that I always wear a mask to work (and I’m currently only working outdoors, as is Santa). Santa is happy to wear a mask if you prefer it. He also changes gloves between each family.

If you have a high-risk person in your family and don’t feel comfortable doing photos, Nashville Santa is doing Zoom calls. I got one for my niece in North Carolina and it was stinking adorable. Just message him on his Facebook page to set it up.

What if I can’t do this Friday?

We can possibly do another time, but that will require a higher price, and the scheduling might be difficult.

Let them Be Wild – Nashville Family Photographer

One of the biggest compliments for me to hear, is that a family had fun at their portrait session with me. I feel strongly that good memories need to be associated with the pretty pictures. I want kids to be themselves, and that means running, jumping, playing and exploring their surroundings.

It’s not just that I feel like I HAVE to let them do those things to get through the session. It’s that I believe doing those things actually makes the session better. Capturing a big genuine smile on a child’s face as he races down the slide, means more to me than a formal posed image.

I love photographing Hadley and Harper so much. They are so active and FULL of personality. I first met them at Harper’s newborn session, and love seeing them each year. How can you not smile when you look at those faces?

They also come to see me when I take Santa photos each year, and seeing Harper talk to Santa was one of my favorite moments from last year. If you haven’t signed up yet, spots are going quickly for my Santa photos at the Spring Station Middle School Holiday Marketplace on December 7. All the ticket sales from the Santa Pictures go directly to support the Spring Station Middle School Band. Book your slot today!

My Memory Card Failed During this Family Portrait Session

About 20 minutes into this outdoor family portrait session, my camera suddenly refused to take a photo. I looked down at my camera screen, and saw a warning that said I had a memory card error, and to remove the defective card. The card was somehow damaged, and could not be accessed at all. All of the photos I had taken of these beautiful girls so far, were not on the card.

That might have been a moment of panic. For an hour long session, 20 minutes of shooting is a significant number of photos. And the girls had done such an amazing job. We had sang and danced and giggled in the gorgeous light of the most beautiful yellow tree at Thompson Station Park.

But instead of panicking and mourning the loss of those pictures, I simply popped out that memory card and replaced it with another one. You see, I wasn’t worried about losing images, because my camera holds two memory cards. When I take photos, the images are copied to both cards, so that even during a session, I always have a backup. One card was damaged, but the other one was just fine, and had all the photos from the first part of the session. So I just continued shooting without issue, with a new card from my bag as a second backup.

In fact, I always have two copies of your portrait session images. Once I get home from a session, I immediately copy one of the memory cards onto my computer. The other memory card from the session is then stored in a case, not be erased until I have uploaded the session to my online gallery, at which point I’ll have a copy online and a copy on my hard drive.

And I am so glad there are, because I wouldn’t have wanted to miss one photo of these amazing girls. This is the third year now that I’ve been blessed to photograph this wonderful family. Last year, I wrote about how much I love to see repeat clients each year, and that’s still true today. Seeing how these young ladies grow and change each year is one of the best parts of my job. ❤️

Share the Love Instagram Contest Family Portrait Session Part 2

Spring Hill, TN Family Photographer

Tuesday, I shared with you the first short portrait session from my Share the Love Instagram contest, and today I am excited to share a preview of the second session with you. 

I photographed Katie and her family about a year and a half ago when Maria was only four months old. They are just the sweetest, so I was so excited when she won the contest to be able to see them again. Maria is just the sweetest little girl and she was SOOOO easy to photograph. 

In case you missed yesterday’s post: in February, I hosted my very first contest on Instagram in celebration of Valentine’s Day. For my “Share the Love” contest, I asked people in or around Spring Hill to nominate a friend and tell me why that friend was terrific, and they both had to follow my Instagram page.  Then I randomly chose a nomination to win a free portrait session for both the person nominated and the nominator to share.  I loved reading all the comments people made saying sweet words about their friends, so I wanted to share them with you. 

I shared some of the comments yesterday, but here are the rest. I just love hearing about all the amazing women we have in our community. 


@katiebramcamargoshe’s such a sweet friend and awesome mama! She deserves this!


I’m nominating @ginamolsen! She is such a beautiful person inside and out, a fantastic mother, and an amazing friend. ❤️


I’ll nominate @rlcard– she was a great boss, a lovely lady, and Mom to 2 almost grown girls.


I would like to nominate @summerssweetshoppe . She is the wife of a high school friend and has built her own business here in Spring Hill.


I would like to nominate @mommamadorin. She is SUPERMOM, in every sense of the word. She is an amazing mom to three beautiful girls and an incredible friend.


I would like to nominate @mirrayray8 as she deserves beautiful photos with her previous daughter Savannah. Miranda is the most caring, selfless, outgoing, beautiful inside and out mom there is❤️


I would like to also nominate @ginamolsen ! A mom of 5 whose kids are always smiling and having a blast! she is a true hero. Gina is a busy mom but always takes the time to care for me, check on me during my lows, love on my daughter, celebrate my achievements and nurture my faith


I would like to nominate my SIL, @joannaheck_4 When she and my brother got married almost 22 years ago, I was excited to finally have a sister! I remember forcing her to go get her nails done with me so we could bond. ❤️ Over the years, she has listened to my stories enthusiastically, offered me advice, and taken care of me and my family. Joanna is a fantastic mother of 4 awesome children and someone I go to when I need parenting advice. She has the best laugh, and she laughs a lot! There were many times when she and I stayed up late, laughing until we cried, on the back porch of their old house. I am so lucky that she said “yes” to my brother and joined our family. I know she would love family photos with her children since they have grown up too fast!


@acbrinker826 as if being a mom to a three-year-old isn’t exhausting, she has a six-month-old baby girl with special needs. She had to wait 6 long weeks for her to come home. She breastfeeds her round the clock, manages to care for her big brother, works two part-time jobs, one of which is getting up at 4 am to teach English as a second language. She takes her new baby to multiple therapies and doctors visits with very little sleep. I’m not sure how she’s managing it all but somehow she does. She deserves to win this 🥰