And their Daddy's too.  I was out of town last weekend, the first time I'd ever left my babies for more than a single night.  I can't tell you how wonderful it was to see their sweet (funny) faces again when I returned!! I could just kiss his cheeks off.  :)

Tampa Child Photographer

I missed this sweet face too. . .  cowboy disguise and all.  Shh, don't tell her that you can still recognize that pouty face as hers.  Let's not spoil it for her, okay?  ;)

clearwater childrens photography

I'll have details of my trip shortly.  Don't go too far away. . . hope you all had a fantastic Mother's Day!!

This and That... More or Less.

I have started many a blog entry recently, only to save it to drafts and never finish it... then I'd come back and restart a new post... save that one to draft, etc.  And guess how many I've actually published?  ;)  I think I've gotten a little bogged down with various projects and different things, birthday parties and company, Spring Break (oh my word that one crept up on me while I wasn't looking!).  And as is the case with most of us creative-types, it becomes hard to focus sometimes.  Do you ever feel that way?  The last few weeks have seemed to transform from all-the-time-in-the-world to not-a-minute-left-for-this-or-that instead.  And that has left me a little wispy I think. So tonight's blog post is going to be a mish-mash of things until I can properly put my head on straight and write from the heart the way I like to.  Which I hope will be before the end of this week!  Whew.


April is almost over, and I've only got a few more dates in May left open for sessions.  Most of the weekends are booked up already, but I do have some weekday sessions available if you'd like to go that route.  With the days beginning earlier (or rather, with the sun coming up earlier in the mornings), I typically start my sessions around 8am or so if we're going to be outdoors, to take advantage of the soft, pleasing "golden hour" of course.  This longer day also means that I am able to shoot later in the evening and catch this beautiful light softly glowing around you.  I realize that this might not work so well for a few toddlers, but it should be perfect for seniors and most family sessions ~ yes, those of you whose children do not melt down between the "witching hours" of 4pm and 6pm like my own kiddos do.  ;)  Some days, there isn't enough Starbucks in the world to help get me through those two hours with the miniature drama queen in my house.



I will be out of the office beginning Wednesday, May 5, and returning Monday, May 10.  I'll be attending An Extraordinary Workshop, because I firmly believe in constantly furthering one's education, no matter what career path you've chosen.  There is always, always, something to be learned in a creative field (and in any business, I feel).  To be honest, I am going to love spending some time with a few fellow photographers and especially my sweet friend Joyce!

Attending the workshop also means that I'm leaving my children (overnight!) for two nights in a row.  *Gasp.*  I've left Parker with Chris, for a couple of nights, just once.  But I was pregnant with Lila then so it really wasn't all that hard for him to handle.  I do feel a bit sorry for Chris now though, since has to watch Parker AND Lila this time, and for two nights and three days...  School drop off.  School pickup.  Daycare dropoff.  Daycare pickup.  Breakfasts, lunches, dinners.  Bedtimes.  Potty-trips.  Boo-boos.  Tantrums.  Morning rush.  Bless his heart...  I'm sure he'd appreciate it greatly if you sent up a prayer or two for him, and maybe moreso if you actually dropped off a cold beverage (or four) by the house while I'm gone.  ;)


This little fella turned six last week, as you know.  My heart is reeling, but so proud of the big boy he's becoming.  We got some AMAZINGLY EXCITING NEWS this afternoon in the mail that made us want to jump up and down and call every family member we have.  Which we practically did!  He's been evaluated twice now for the Gifted Program, and so far has blown through the tests, and we're beyond impressed and amazed at his IQ and his level altogether.  It was such a blessing for me to sit and talk to the district's psychologist this evening, about Parker's intelligence and his learning methods, and to actually think "Wow, my kid really IS as smart as I think he is."  Of course, we, as parents, tend to think that our children are the smartest, the best, the prettiest, the sweetest, the funniest, the best in sports, etc.  But to actually hear some of the same phrases you've said to yourself over the years, come from the mouth of a "Professional"... well, it's just an honor to be given the privilege of raising an exceptional child like this.  Parker got to choose the restaurant this afternoon (ahem, Skyline Chili of course), because he "passed his test" or so he put it.  I told him that he had gotten some pretty great scores on a test, and that it meant that he could be anything he dreamed of being when he grew up.  An astronaut, a doctor, a scientist, a surgeon....  He asked me what exactly a surgeon was, and I told him that it was a kind of doctor who could open up a heart, for example, and put it back together the right way, so that the person would be healed, and be healthy again.  And do you have any idea what he said?  "So, I can fix Momaw."  (My grandma has congestive heart failure, among numerous other health issues, and Parker always remembers her being on oxygen when we visit her in Kentucky.  My other grandma had breast cancer a few years ago, and although she's thankfully cancer-free now, Parker told me that he wanted to "fix her too".)

I thought I was proud of Parker for his gift of intelligence, but truly, the gift that I'm proudest of is his kind, caring heart.  I could not have been more proud of him at that moment. My heart nearly burst.


And finally, a quick share from a recent session with the always-delightful Lena and her amazing parents.  I promise to devote a full post to this family a bit later, but I know that her parents are just dying to see a preview of our playdate together!





That's it for now!  I'm off to bed, before the sun comes up and catches me.  ;)

counting to six | clearwater child photographer

I'd shopped and ran errands all day.  The backache nagged me.  Went home, made a pot of vegetable beef soup (Chris's favorite), still with the backache.  Swollen feet, tired legs.  So much to do.  Too tired to finish any more of it.  I made Chris and myself bowls of soup and I followed him to living room.  I took my spot on the floor, legs tucked under the coffee table, back leaning against the couch, and we settled in to watch the Reds play the Braves.  That was almost 9:30pm on April 20, 2004.  My due date was April 22, 2004, just two days away.  I felt the baby kick once, and then again.  Hard. By 8am the next morning, this is what I looked like:

parker's birthday

Yep, ready for our baby boy to enter the world!  Notice the makeup?  The brushed hair?  Yeah.  That didn't last long.  Soon the makeup melted off from sweat and exhaustion from trying to deliver a baby for two hours.  The freshly-applied lipstick disappeared due to the obsessive consumption of of ice chips, which I begged Chris to spoonfeed me nonstop between contractions.

Finally, at 10:11 am on April 21, 2004, our little baby boy took his first breath.  He let out his first wail.  And seconds later, sobbing, I held 7 pounds and 14 ounces of my heart right there in my hands.  Parker made me a Mama.  He made Chris a Daddy.  We were officially a Family.


SORRY PEOPLE, BUT YOU WILL NOT SEE THE AFTER PHOTO OF ME!!!  :)  I must retain a little bit of my dignity, thankyouverymuch.  I was so unbelievably swollen that my own mother nearly cried when she walked into the recovery room and saw me.  Thank goodness I had no idea how horrific I looked at the time.  I was just glad the pushing was over and that he was here and healthy!  (Yes, actually this is the best I looked, from the very-pregnant moment you saw above until Parker was several days old.  I know.  Still scary.)


A year passed in what seemed like mere days.  At least I'm not swollen anymore in this next picture though!  This photo was taken on Parker's first birthday.  The crib bedding behind him is now on Lila's bed (yep, same crib) and I still love it to pieces.  If you hadn't noticed, we're a wee bit sentimental around here.  ;)



He was just about to turn two in the above image.  And this is likely the shortest you'll ever see Parker's hair on this blog.  We started letting his "surfer hair" grow when he was about 18 months old.  I'm so thankful he still likes it.

And this one?  Well I'm just kicking myself for not having found it sooner.....  he was three and a half.  His hair was light golden, it was long, and it was glorious.  I loved it.  And his squinty laugh still makes me smile!


He had just woken up from a nap in the below-right image, and he was snuggling with his "Best Buddy" in the whole world.  His Daddy.  I didn't dare edit out the sweet sleep marks on his right cheek.  Precious.


Four. I think this is when he started looking incredibly more grown up to me.  (Maybe it's just that I had another tiny person to compare him to at this point!)  After all that loud crying from this itty bitty baby who was just minutes old, Parker still decided that she was okay and that we could indeed take her home with us.  Today, he is the one who sings, "You Are My Sunshine" to his fussy sister in the car, and substitutes, "please don't take my Lila away," in the chorus.  The sweet innocence of his voice.  Lila stops crying two notes (two notes!) into his song, every time.  But he keeps singing anyway.  I love that.


Five. Now a preschooler.  Ohhh how I adore this boy who calls me "Mah-muh" in that sweet, lispy voice that belongs to none other in this world.


And finally, six.  Oh be still my heart.  He's just grown up faster than I ever could have dreamed.


Dear Parker Scott, I hope that someday you read your Mama's blog and that you can see how much I loved simply being your Mama.  You are an amazing little person and your Daddy and I are honored to have been given this wonderful gift of raising you, Son.  You make us happy beyond our wildest dreams, and we are so proud of you and the big boy you're growing up to be.  We love everything that makes you uniquely YOU ~ the way you still crumple your blankie to sleep at night, the way you roll your eyes and curl your lip when you are thinking of something funny to say, the delight you take in going to "Guy's Lunch" with your Daddy, your contented smile when I'm scratching your back at bedtime.  How every occasion calls for a light-saber in tow.  Your funny bedhead each morning, and how you always come to our room every single morning when you wake up.  How you'd rather read a comic book than eat when you're hungry.  Your honest, can't-contain-it giggle when you're tickled.  How you call Daddy your Best Buddy, and how you charged everyone $1 to join the Best Buddies Club (including Papa Donnie and Popaw Pat) when you were three.  That perfect freckle on your cheek.  How you still go along with Mama's photography projects and ideas, even when you could be watching SuperHero Squad or building something amazing with your Legos.  How you were my most gorgeous and available subject during the very long time that I was learning photography ~ I hope you know how thankful I am that you don't despise me after all of the constant modeling I asked of you.  ;)  We love how sweet you are to your sister, even though she dumps out all your toys and takes your Bakugans without asking.  How snuggly and affectionate you still are, and how much you value simply our "being happy with you".  Parker, your Daddy and I are very, very happy with you.  With your kind heart and your creative mind for building and inventing, you will certainly make a difference in this world someday, Son.  We believe in you.  And we hope you have the most amazing birthday ever today!  We love you so. ~Love, Mama and Daddy 4/21/10

waiting for anna | tampa maternity photography

I always love turning my lens on these gorgeous girls.  Jill's maternity shoot was not just directed toward herself and her beautiful tummy, but it was also very much about Ella, who is going to make for one fine big sister.  This is the third time I've photographed this family, and I can't wait to meet baby Anna in a few weeks. jill005bw







Oh, and did I mention that there is also a supercute and hilarious terrier snuggled up in that tickle fight?  I am pretty certain that right beside his "girls" is exactly where he wanted to be.  :)


Well, maybe except for that moment....  or this one...  ;)


But they are an adorable bunch, no?


Told ya...  he was snuggled up to his girls the entire shoot.


Jill, I can't wait to meet your new baby girl!  Thank you for having me over to play once more.  I had such a great time, as always.  See you soon!


holiday schedule, and a few more images too!

Just wanted to give you a little update now that we're fully into December and the holidays are almost HERE!!!  :)  This is my absolute favorite time of year, but WOW at the busy-ness!  My labs are working overtime and crazy hours to get all the prints, canvases, albums and image boxes back in time for Christmas delivery, and I'm pulling lots of late nights getting everyone's orders in and put together, shipped out, blogged HA!, and delivered!  I even have a few new sessions to share before we close up for 2009 and await the New Year! That said, my holiday schedule will continue through December 17.  Stacey Woods Photography will be closed from Friday, December 18 until Monday, January 11.  (Excepting newborn and maternity clients, which must be photographed during all-important, fleeting, very specific timeframes to ensure the best images possible!).  If you're already on my books for the first week of January, have no fear.  You're still in!  :)  I am starting to book up January now so definitely place a call or send over an email if you'd like to get on the schedule for January or February.  And if you have an order outstanding, please wait just a little longer!  It's coming shortly, I promise!

Now, to share a few images from some recent sessions.  I've been almost afraid to post some of these for fear that I'm spoiling someone's Christmas card or present!  ;)  But I think I'm safe to share these, so here we go!


This is a lovely family that I met at the last Baby Loves Disco event in Tampa.  They looked me up again this year for a Christmas session, and I'm so glad they did!  Little A was so funny and so spirited the entire shoot!  He made me work for it!  :)

Preschoolers go their own way, that's for certain... right into Daddy's arms.  Ahhh, sweetness.


And how I love this sweet still moment with Mama.  He had the most gorgeous lashes, really.



And I know you can't see it in this black and white photo above, but Mom had on some KILLER red pumps.  :)  Loved them, and loved the energy of this family.  Can't wait until next time, sweet S family!  Hope you have a wonderful holiday.

my blackberry has been stolen and my imac has been taken over...

...by a 17-month-old babygirl with blonde pigtails.  She was last seen wearing, um, no shirt... and a Huggies size 3.  My apologies to the random person she accidentally dialed today.  I have since put the keypad on LOCK.  ;) blog1web

She certainly was a feisty one today.  My little blond sweetheart ate 2 crayons, threw a brand new roll of toilet paper into the toilet (yes, while still on the little cardboard roll), dumped an entire container of Yoplait Light on the hardwoods in the living room and then proceeded to spread it around like it was finger paint.  (This is the last time I leave food on her highchair tray after she's down on the floor... she can reach the tray by herself now and is quite the sneaky little bandit!)  Little Miss here stood up twice in the Target shopping cart seat (while STILL BELTED IN, mind you).  She pulled the cat's tail and rubbed the leftovers of a biscuit into his fur.  She tried to flush four wooden counting beads (obsessed with the toilet, you see), scratched poor Parker's arm, and dumped numerous containers of EVERYTHING onto any surface she could find.  She did finally doze off for a whole five minutes, only to wake up as soon as I tried to put her down in her bed.  God forbid she actually miss creating another mini-disaster by napping the day away.


_dsc3735webIt's a good thing she's so darn cute.  And squeezable.  And funny.  And soft.  And smiley.  And chattery.  And incredibly affectionate.  And says "Mah-muh?" in the most darling little voice you've ever heard in your life.  Although Chris and I had quite the time out of her today, and neither one of us accomplished a whole heck of a lot workwise, aaaand besides the fact that we had many a mess to clean up this evening, you can certainly bet that I spent an extra few minutes snuggling her in the rocking chair before bedtime.  (Which she didn't fuss a peep over.  Imagine being so worn out from trouble-making discovering and exploring that you actually want to sleep?!)  I stopped and smiled and breathed in the smell of her wispy hair, and was so very grateful for my healthy, happy, rambunctious, sweet baby girl.  This tiny thing that I could never imagine life without.  Mess and all.


a little change of plans

...sometimes turns out to be a blessing.  I photographed the adorable T. family on a rainy Saturday evening at their beautiful home.  I just loved this session, and this family, weather and all!  And since I'm so behind on the sneak peeks over here, I'm going to do a big share on the blog, just for Alison.  Thanks for your patience!!  :) blog31





t011 Loved this moment with Daddy and his little girl.  I am realizing more and more each day how very much Daddies adore their baby girls.  Although I know it well with my own father (who is still so loving and affectionate, and would do anything for his three "little girls" to this very day), it's something else entirely when you actually have your own husband and your own daughter who share the same bond.  Makes me smile ~ and tear up a bit too ~ when I see it in my clients' eyes.  :)


t003Little man.  :)  He was so good to me and my camera, despite it being almost dinner and night-night time.  What a darling trooper he was!  Just look at that sweet smile.  (And that new tooth about to make its debut!!)

t014And his gorgeous Mama.  I was so drawn to the next image... little thing had gotten hurt and Mama was holding her, consoling her, and making it all better.  Hey, that's what we're known for, right?  "Disappearing" all the hurts away.  Her tears didn't last long, I assure you.  :)

t006_1Thank you for a wonderful evening with your family, Alison.  Thank you for opening up your home to me and allowing me to record these moments for you.  I hope to do it again soon!

oh the cuteness. i can't stand it.

This is undeniably my very favorite image at the moment.  This tiny, darling girl was so dainty and feminine, and such a pleasure to photograph.  I'll share more from her session in a bit... I just had to quickly share her gorgeous little face with you! v006Can you get over that little turned-in toe??  Oh my word.  Her adorable-ness is just too much.


What a sweet little love he was.  And I truly mean little.  This guy was just 5 lbs 8 oz when he was born!  So tiny and sweet.  And SUCH a good sleeper at 7 days old.  We got some great variety in their session... some images on the beanbag, sleeping in a basket or two, a few in his Mama and Daddy's arms, and even with his big fur brother, Haven.  It was a perfect session!  I can't wait to design their album. beckam1



He was 3 weeks early, and still covered with lanugo hair.  Are you melting yet??  :)


Cannot resist teeny-tiny baby toes!  It was all I could do NOT to kiss them at the session.  LOL!



Makes me so happy to see this much love for these tiny miracles.  And isn't Mom just beautiful?  This is exactly one week after giving birth, too.  Amazing.


Loved, absolutely loved, this moment with Daddy.  Those tiny dark eyes, that dramatic light, and the little creases under Beckham's eyes (trait of a fresh newborn!) that will all-too-soon fill out with baby-chub.


Last but not least (and this could be my most FAVORITE image from the morning)... is this not the sweetest doggie face you've ever seen??  Love that.


Thank you, Ryan and Lacy, for sharing your morning with me.  I can't wait to watch your sweet boy grow this year!

Daddy's girl

On my last trip home to Kentucky, I photographed my baby sister and her little family.  We kept these images under wraps for Chad for Father's Day, so I think it's safe to share them now.  :)  (I actually gave you a little sneak peek here!)  Now, finally, here are a few of my favorites from my afternoon in the country with Trish, Chad, and little Macy.  :) sweet pea

"Little Sweet Pea" is her Daddy's nickname for her.  So I grabbed this book off my son's shelf before I boarded the plane.  ;)  Perfect.  And nothing like a little game of peek-a-boo behind the bed curtains, right?  She's had this little stuffed boxer puppy since she was born, so of course we incorporated him into the session.  Love how she kept putting him behind the curtain and then pulling him out again.  I swear, her giggle was cracking ME up!


blog2Loved her onesie!

perfect just like my dad


With my sister, her pretty Mommy.  :)




Miss you, sweet girl!  Be good to your Mommy today.  ;)  xoxo

~Aunt Stace

*If you're looking for a giggle (or three, or four) make sure you visit Trish's blog.  She's got a great sense of humor and the most hilarious way of dealing with the challenges that parenthood brings.  And the cutest little "Kentucky-isms" and phrases you've ever heard.  LOL!  Go leave her some blog love.  :)