Hi, I'm Valerie, and these are my boys

The days are long, but the years are short.

You're right in the thick of parenting your kids, with days that are often long and far too busy. Still, you can't help but notice that they're growing up way too fast, and you want so badly to remember those precious moments of their childhood that sometimes get forgotten in the busyness of day-to-day life. Your 4 year old's sassy smirk...your 7 year old's gap-toothed smile...the way the toddler curls into a ball and sucks his thumb--you don't want to forget any of that. But every time you think about having family photos done, you think about your kiddos being their usual, slightly feral selves, and wonder if it's even possible to have authentic, memorable, gorgeous photos that reflect your family's personality and love with all the unpredictability that kids bring.

I get it.

I'm here in the parenting trenches too. I started taking pictures of my own kids in the midst of a really difficult season where I had four little ones and one more on the way. Every day seemed endlessly long and difficult, and I wanted desperately to focus on those small sweet moments that so easily got lost and forgotten in the craziness and chaos of raising a houseful of children. I'm a mom of six now, five of them boys...rowdy, adventurous, slightly feral boys. No matter what your kids do, mine have likely done it too. Probably multiple times, with a few twists and "improvements" thrown in. So I won't bat an eye at any kid antics, and I have a few tricks up my sleeve to get some great pictures of your family even if your kids are being, well, kids.

Five boys

One girl

A little about me...

Hi! I'm Valerie.

I've always been a bit of a non-conformist. So I have six kids (five of them boys), homeschool some of them, and will choose reading a good book over watching a movie any day.

Creative problem-solving is one of my superpowers (and believe me, I need it with all these boys!)

Watching Tim Hawkin's comedy videos on Youtube is my go-to when I'm feeling extra stressed.

If I get a chance to leave the kids with a sitter for the afternoon, I love to go for a long walk, play "Canon in D" on the piano, and then curl up with a good book and some popcorn. Can you tell I'm an introvert??

One of my biggest weaknesses is a tendency to slip into negative self-talk. (Raising a bunch of boys is hard on the self-confidence.) That's why I make a point to encourage moms during their photo sessions and let them know that their kids' behavior is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about.

They love each other so much. for a minute anyway!

My boys can be the best of friends, or the worst of enemies (all in the same five minute time span). They play with each other, laugh, fight, argue, and tattle-tale on their siblings--just like your kids do.