Beach Family Session- Santa Rosa Family Photographer Angelika Mitchell

Do you know what my favorite part of photography is? Seeing children and families grow over the years. There is a special place in my heart for the families who come back year after year, and share their journey with me. One family that blessed my lens this fall is our Masto Wyatt Warrior family. I have had the pleasure of working with the kiddos several times, but this fall I put Mom and Dad in front of the camera too.

Mom has always been someone who I greatly admire. She is the best fundraiser I have ever seen, rallying for research into Wyatt's rare skin disorder.  I have never seen such grace under pressure, with an enduring attitude of gratitude and hope. Wyatt is a treasure, that's for sure. The big kids are SO much fun to photograph, they are naturals in front of the camera. 

Rodeo Beach Family Photo Session- Angelika Mitchell Photography

While we may live hours apart from one another, we found a beautiful beach in the middle to meet at. Rodeo Beach in Sausalito, Marin County, provided the most picturesque backdrop to our family photo beach adventure. The family was impeccably styled, as usual, with no coaching from me at all. We tested our luck with the fall coastal weather; hello fall rainy season-which came out of nowhere! We ended up with the perfect day. 

Rodeo Beach Family Photo Session- Angelika Mitchell Photography

I really love beach photos. The Sonoma and Marin coastline can be tricky, so we don't attempt these sessions as often as my heart would like. The summers tend towards foggy sunsets, and the fall and spring are pretty cold and windy. It's really such a glorious synchronistic moment when you get a beautiful family, a beautiful beach, and nice weather all at the same time. God smiled on us that day, for sure. 

Mommy and Me Session- Santa Rosa Family Photographer Angelika Mitchell

On Mother's Day this year we had a contest. To enter, Moms commented on a favorite thing about Motherhood. Reading the comments was one of my personal favorite Mother's Day treats. It was so heartwarming to see all the different ways women cherished their role as Mom. This gorgeous Mom was the winner of the contest, and I am so excited to share her photos with you. I know her daughters will cherish these memories forever. 

Often, as Moms, we get a little lost in the shuffle. We are the ones with a phone full of photos of the kids, and probably our kids and every other member of the family, from Dad to grandparents. What we don't have, is enough photos of ourselves with our kids. (awkward selfies with the kids aside) We either don't love the way we look, don't think we are photo ready, or don't even think about it. The thing is, these kids of ours, who we cherish so much, need to see us loving on them in their lives. One of the comments during the contest was a young woman who had just lost her own mother, and she was so sad that she had so few photos of her Mom and her together. It's heartbreaking.

So ladies, please be in the picture! Even with no make up and a messy bun. Wear those yoga pants and tank top, which you might even have slept in, and take that photo. Because the truth is, that is a version of you the kids want to remember too! Once in a while, get dressed up in whatever makes you feel awesome, and have some photos done with the little people you love most. By doing so, you show them how much you love them, and how much you love yourself too.

In my bedroom I have 3 framed photos hanging on my wall. One with each of my children when they were around 2. I LOVE looking at them every night before bed! Even though I can see myself aging over the 7 years, I can also see how I have grown as a woman, how I have really started to get the hang of being a Mom, and how much I love my children.