Meet My Family!

Now that I’ve told you a little about myself I thought it would be fun to introduce you to the people who are my “why” – my family.

I was a late bloomer, you could say. Getting married for the first time at 35 years old. After years of infertility struggles I found myself divorced at 39 and figured the window for me being a momma had pretty much closed.

Then I met Dustin and we had a whirlwind romance. And I mean it when I say whirlwind!! We found out we were expecting our first child about a month after we met! Although this sounds crazy to some, it wasn’t to us! We knew the time we had for children was limited and we didn’t want to miss the opportunity.

Henry came 9 months later, give or take. He is now a whip smart, funny, very active 7 year old. He loves cars. LOVES cars. He knows more about cars than I will ever know. He is affectionate and sensitive. He loves cats and still loves cuddles from his momma which I will never take for granted.

Henry is also autistic. He was diagnosed around 2 years old. He goes to a regular First Grade class and he really excels in school. He has a few struggles with social interactions but more than anything he’s just a typical kid. Who knows a lot about cars.

When Henry was about 9 months old we were surprised with a second pregnancy. You might be thinking… ‘well, that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise’… but given my struggles with fertility in the past, and my age, we really didn’t count on being blessed with another precious babe. But here we were, and when I was about 12 weeks along I had an NIPT test and found out she would be born with Down syndrome. I could write an entire blog post on my feelings about that- and maybe I will sometime! But let’s just say we decided to embrace it- and her.

Lucie is now 5 years old and in kindergarten. I like to say that she is the best gift I never knew I needed. She has blessed my life in ways that are hard to even explain, and I wouldn’t change a thing about her. Not one chromosome.

She is sassy, funny, incredibly empathetic and smart. Lucie does Brand Rep Modeling so she is pretty used to being in front of my camera. That’s not to say that she is always cooperative… but she does ask for her pictures to be taken sometimes! She knows when she looks cute!

Dustin and I just celebrated 8 years of being together, and our 7 year wedding anniversary is coming up in a few weeks. I’m not going to pretend that we haven’t had a rocky road at times, but we’re still together, we’re still a family and we’re still fighting for each other. We make a pretty good team!

March 21st aka World Down Syndrome Day

March 21st is one of my favorite days of the year. This is the day we celebrate Down syndrome. My social media feeds are filled with beautiful faces with big, bright smiles and almond eyes. Mommas are out in numbers educating and advocating. It’s just a day to celebrate everything that makes my girl lovely and unique.

I never thought this was a club that I would be excited to be a part of. In fact I would have turned it down without a second thought. But sometimes life knows what you need more than you do. And I was given the best gift I didn’t know I really needed.

Having Lucie has given me a tight knit community of friends and warrior mommas. I will never be alone again. She has opened my eyes to acceptance of all kinds of differences- and the ability to see the beauty in all of it. She has helped me to slow down and enjoy the moment. True mindfulness, which we now know is a key component of a healthy and happy life. She has shown me grace, strength, patience and pure unadulterated joy.

I used to look at moms like me with pity. Now I feel sad for families that don’t get to experience the blessings that I have each and every day. Is it hard some days? YES. No doubt. But is it worth it? What do you think?

Let’s Get to Know ME…

Hi there! I’m sort of new to this whole blogging thing, and so far most of my posts have been for sharing my photography sessions, but I thought I could/should share a little bit about myself! A little getting to know your photographer kind of thing. So here are 10 facts about … me!!

1. I am a mom of 2, and both of my children are differently abled. Henry, 7 has Autism and Lucie has Down syndrome. This was not the life I had originally envisioned for myself, but I wouldn’t trade it for all the riches in the world.

2. I’m originally from California, and have moved back and forth between CA and Utah a lot, but I now consider Utah to be my home. I’ve even grown to love our snowy winters and to, well, tolerate the hot summers.

3. I never really considered myself an artist, but have come to realize I have always had a creative outlet of some form or another and I have been interested in photography since I was a little kid. I used to be a big scrapbooker and that segued into improving my photo skills and eventually doing photography predominately.

4. Speaking of scrapbooking, it was more than just a hobby for me. I had the opportunity to be featured in several publications and consumer and manufacturers’ websites. It was always the biggest honor to be chosen and still something I’m super proud of.

My first publication in Cricut Magazine

5. I love animals. Pretty much any and all animals but I do have my favorites.

6. I am a pen snob.

7. I am and have always been obsessed with all things girly. Collecting girly things like makeup, nails, hair accessories etc is something that just makes me happy. Even if I don’t use them often- just looking at them brings me joy.

8. I used to be a 100% summer, sun and warmth girl. Being from California I lived for that summer heat and all the fun that came with it. In recent years I have grown to really dislike the summer. Nothing sounds better to me than a cold, snowy day with me warm inside in a soft fuzzy blanket, holding a hot cup of coffee and a book while watching the snow fall.

9. I consider myself an introvert and a little bit (or a lot) socially awkward. Maybe not the best qualities for a family photographer but I think my strengths in capturing a beautiful photo even in adverse conditions more than makes up for it.

10. I met my husband in March of 2013. We had a very fast, very whirlwind romance! We were expecting Henry about a month after meeting! We got married when Henry was 4 months old, and were blessed with Lucie a little over a year later! We’re about to celebrate our 7th wedding anniversary!

So now that you know me a little better… why don’t you hit subscribe so you can get all of my blog posts?! I have some fun things planned in the coming weeks including some changes to Heather Holbrook Photography!!

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