Rachael Houser Photography » Wedding Photographer based in Western Kentucky

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(ignore the computer cord – it was the only way he would lay down for his picture!)

Graeme, Your mom is such a slacker!

Stop it with the agin already, kid! You’re 10 months old already and I completely skipped your 9 month pictures and blog post altogether. So here goes a recap from the last two months…

December was such a fast month – Christmas has that effect on things – and I’d wished it hadn’t been. We had multiple family gatherings, at which you are an absolute thrill to be around! Seriously, everyone loved watching you play and playing with you. Your dad and I LOVE that everyone loved that! That’s a fairly new thing for you… Playing. By yourself, with dogs, with adults, with other children, even babies – you play so well! Right now your favorite thing to play is a game we haven’t really named but it’s essentially: dad holds you and runs around the house while I “chase” you. You giggle SO MUCH it’s hysterical! You have two favorite toys, both Christmas present: the VTech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker and the Little Tikes Discover Sounds Sports Center. You love to play in my tupperware cabinet and at the dog door in the laundry room. I swear, one day very soon you’ll realize you too can fit through the dog door and you’ll be out on the deck before I know it! Good thing I only let you play in there while I’m doing laundry!

You’re so mobile and very very fast – we have to keep a constant eye on you. We don’t have a pack’n’play at the house (it stays at Mimi’s for you to nap there) but I know that you wouldn’t like being “jailed” in it anyway. You are weeks away from walking and that exciting but it’s not? You’re into everything! We’ve baby proofed the house pretty well, I think, so we just shut the doors to rooms you don’t need to go in and let you have free range of everywhere else. We may also still have our Christmas tree box in the house to block you into the living room, where it’s safest, if I have to run to the back of the house for something.

Your vocabulary has increased so much in just a few short weeks. You say “mama” and you know what you’re saying! Da-da, ba-ba, whoa-whoa, na-na, ga-ga, and sometimes a combination… You’re a chatter box and we love to hear you “talk”! You’ve also started belly laughing and fake laughing, which is entertaining because you mostly do it to humor us! You’re also very vocal with the dogs. If they bark, you “bark”, which is more of a yell than anything.

Firsts: SNOW. It snowed twice in January and we got you out in it both times. The first time you hated it – or you hated your snow suit… we couldn’t tell. The second time you tolerated it until we sat you in down and walked away to take pictures. Each time you only allowed us about 5 minutes and then you were done. COLD. I gave you your first cold just a weeks ago but I’m so proud that you haven’t gotten sick before now! Seeing your runny nose, hearing how difficult is was for you to breathe, and knowing you weren’t sleeping well, though, did make me sad for you. You were pretty pitiful the first couple of days but recovered fast!

When I wrote your 8 month blog post, we had just started teaching you the skill of independent sleep. You were doing really well until Christmas, when everyone’s schedule and routine got all messed up. We pretty much had to start back at square one afterward, which we anticipated, but then you got sick so we’re still working on that. Nothing we can’t handle though and you’re still doing well. The other night you slept 10 hours before waking up for your one and only night feed. We’ve loved the journey so much that I’ve started training with the same sleep consultant firm to be a consultant for them!

You will be the first baby ever to walk before you cut your first tooth. I’m sure of it. Kid, you have ZERO teeth! It really limits what we can feed you but I’m trying to expand your diet every day by making homemade baby food for you. Of course, you’re still nursing 5 times a day though so I’m not too worried about it. Every morning you have baby yogurt (full fat) which either a banana (your favorite thing ever!) or mashed apple, pear, and kale (which I make for you). For lunch you eat your homemade food and for dinner, you eat whatever we’re eating if it can be mashed up enough. We skipped the sippy cup all together… Although we don’t let you hold it by yourself, you do really well drinking water from a real cup!

About 2 weeks ago you starting pointing. You point at everything. Every.Thing. And you look to us to tell you what it is. People, animals, objects, lights –  oh lights. They’re your favorite! We never get tired of this because we know you’re filing this away in your ever expanding brain… you learn something new everyday and everyday we are amazed at how fast! It’s weird to wish of completely opposite things. It’s exciting to see you learn and grow but bittersweet because soon, you’ll be 11 months old. Then 1 year old and no longer a baby. OH my poor mommy heart! Can’t you stay little forever???

To see more of Graeme’s monthly blog posts, click HERE.

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My first newborn session of the new year was such a blast! The sweetest little princess, Berkley, was such a great baby to photograph – she was a pro both for the lifestyle portraits with her mom and dad and for her posed portraits! New momma Nicole and new daddy Brian couldn’t get over how well she was reacting to all the different handling and I was very pleasantly surprised that she never once got fussy with us (read: me!)!

Welcome earth side, little Berkley!

Paducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Lifestyle Newborn Portrait Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGE

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Jan Shelton -

all i can say is perfect!

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Image from headshot session with Makenzie Lynn Photography in 2013. That’s it, I’m growing my hair out!

It’s Thursday… Let’s quit something!

In 2016, I’m saying NO to:
+ Having a combined personal and professional blog. I’ve been doing it for years and slowly but surely half of my blog has become all things Graeme, babies, and parenting. A project we’re working on this year will add a new personal dimension and all that together will start to clutter up my professional blog.
+ More than two weddings a month. For the same reason as last year: Graeme, but also new adventure! Yes, it’s secret… for now!
+ Feeling bad for saying NO. I am a people please, which means I give my all to my clients, but it also sometimes bites me in the butt. I’m learning to say NO to things that don’t line up with my faith, beliefs, morals, and goals but it doesn’t do much good if I put myself on a guilt trip because of it.

In 2016, I’m saying YES to:
+ Creating a NEW personal blog. I’m so so so very excited for our next adventure that I’ll need a whole new space for it!
+ More time for family and friends and…
+ New adventures! One in particular. How many times can I mention it without giving it away? We shall see! Haha!
+ Collaborating with local creatives. I have a few things already in the works and I’m excited to start planning more! What to collaborate this year? Email me!
+ Bringing Neil on as my full time second shooter. Neil has been second shooting with me off and on for years, as well as a couple other aspiring photographers, but this year he’ll be my one and only. This means so many awesome things for my 2016 (and beyond!) couples and the business! I’ll be sharing more about this enhancement soon!
+ More me time. As a wife, first time mom of a little one, and a full time photographer and business owner, that doesn’t leave much ME time. I need more bubble baths, more pedicures, more girl time, and more yoga.
+ Sleep consulting. Hey, did you know that I’m currently training to become a sleep consultant or sleep coach?? YUP! Bring your infant and baby and child sleep problems to me, starting April 2016!

What worked in 2015:
+ Only shooting weddings two Saturdays a month. At first, it was for my poor healing postpartum body, then it was for my deliciously adorable baby boy. Being a wedding photographer is HARD on the body, you guys. And, although I thought it would be difficult to be away from Graeme for 10-16 hours every Saturday, it became something I dreaded. I never want to feel that way towards something I love deep down in my heart just because I fail to say NO when I should. I am a wedding photographer so that I can stay home (work from home) with my little guy and still assist in financially supporting my family. The first reason should always be the main reason.
+ Hiring a nanny to watch Graeme in our home. This one single thing has been my saving grace in my business this past year. She took care of play time, naps, and meals (minus breastfeeding of course!) with Graeme while I worked from home. I didn’t miss any milestones or cuteness because I was just in the next room and I was able to nurse him – which is simply my favorite part of every day! She only comes 2-3 times a week but it’s so much better than the alternative options. We’re so thankful for all that she does and Graeme just loves her to pieces!

What didn’t work in 2015:
+ Having a jam packed blogging calendar. Before Graeme was sleeping better, I was going to sleep around 9pm every night because Graeme was sleeping with me. Emails and editing took up most of my days and blogging use to only happen at night. I’m still playing catch up!
+ Not having a dedicated work space. Before Graeme, we used our spare bedrooms as an office and a guest bedroom. Now, we have a nursery and a guest bedroom and my office is in the eat-in area of our kitchen. It worked fine until Graeme decided he wants mom and only mom and became mobile :/ Not sure what the solution will be but it’s something that needs remedied.
+ Not having a dedicated studio space. It didn’t work, so we changed it! More on that later!

Tomorrow I’m sharing my goals for the business, the blog, and the family for 2016. Stay tuned!

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I don’t book many weddings from Thumbtack – I think I can count the weddings on one hand since signing up with them 5 years ago – but I’m always pleasantly surprised the quality of couples who find me on there. Katie and Hunter are the most down to earth, sweetest couple you will ever meet! They are young but they have good heads on their shoulders and out of all the photographers in our area, I’m thrilled they chose me!

We waited to schedule their engagement session for mid January, hoping for snow, but it was still plenty chilly outside and obviously winter. We did their whole session at my parents’ property in Paducah because both Katie and Hunter wanted a more woodsy feel to their images, plus there’s so many options there was no need to go anywhere else!

Paducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGEPaducah Kentucky Winter Engagement Session, Rachael Houser PhotographyPINIMAGE

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I thoroughly enjoyed photographing newborns before the birth of my son Graeme – I mean, I got to spend time with little snuggly bundles of new sweet smelling wonderfulness! But after spending time and taking care of my own newborn, I have a newfound respect for the newborn photographer and the mother of a newborn. I’ve also switched styles from a posed newborn portrait to a more relaxed “lifestyle” newborn portrait and I think the quality of my work as shown that it was a good switch.

I think my clients agree because New Momma Courtney sought me out for my new style. It was exactly what she wanted and I was more than thrilled to be able to give her her dream newborn portraits! She and her husband Ryan welcomed Baby Hampton just days before Christmas – what a great Christmas present!! Enjoy some of my favorites from my session with this delightful new family!

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To view more newborn portrait sessions, click HERE.

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