Meeting Noah

It was an absolute pleasure to meet this sweet new mama and daddy. We got to talk about parenting philosophies, infant sleep patterns (and techniques for getting them to sleep!), living close to the water, surfing and teaching, and everything in between. I have dearly loved not only photographing these new little bundles of joy for the past 7+ years, but also to be welcomed into their "first homes". To be able to get to know the wonderful people who have the privilege to guide their little hearts through their journeys in this life. 

Tampa newborn photos, Stacey Woods
Stacey Woods newborn photography
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Lifestyle Newborn Photography by Stacey Woods
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The Good Stuff | Tampa Bay Lifestyle Photography

I just delivered prints to this family, and then I realized that I hadn't shared them here on the blog. :)

I absolutely LOVE this type of session... in a client's home, relaxed, with plenty of time for snacks and snuggles. Cuddled up in bed with blankies for soothing, thumbs for sucking, and goldfish for nibbling. A newborn baby in Mama's arms, and toddler tickles and funny faces with Daddy.  These are the days, aren't they?

I hope these two darling brothers will always know how much they are adored. 

Clearwater Lifestyle Photographer Stacey Woods
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Lifestyle Photographer Stacey Woods
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Our Greatest Treasure | What I Love About Being a Mama

One of my favorite mamas EVER is on the blog today.  Meet Ruth… and Olivia and Maryn.Stacey Woods, lifestyle newborn photographer "Everything has changed. What used to be important seems just silliness now. My every waking moment is focused on these two precious girls and our family."

Stacey Woods newborn lifestyle photography

Stacey Woods lifestyle family photographer"My mom loves to play the piano; she encouraged all of us (6 siblings) to play an instrument.  Since we have grown up, she has continued to expand her talent through lessons and daily practice and is an amazing pianist.  When she visits, I know I can count on daily serenades and even her own compositions."

Stacey Woods, Lifestyle Photographer

I asked Ruth about her favorite characteristic of each of her girls...  

"Olivia: her beautifully kind spirit. I used to pray when she was still in utero that God would allow her to bring joy to everyone she meets--and she does!"

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Stacey Woods lifestyle photography

"Maryn: her scream! She is not afraid to let her presence be known. She will need this characteristic as she gets older. :-)"

Stacey Woods, newborn photography

Stacey Woods, baby photographer

"I love seeing moms that are calm in the midst of chaos that children naturally create. They give me hope that I too can not worry or not stress about the little things."

Stacey Woods, lifestyle photography of newborns and siblings

I also asked Ruth to tell me about the most important lesson her own mother ever taught her…. and Ruth's answer made me tear up.  And I dare say that it will make her mama proud to read her words….

"To honor your father and mother. She was an only child (after her twin sister passed away from Leukemia at the age of 5) and she remained a supportive daughter to her mother until my Grannie's recent passing in 2011. Her daily emphasis on the importance of family and the sacrifice that daughters/children can and should make to honor their parents has made a life-long impact on me. Family is our greatest treasure."

Our greatest treasure, indeed.

xoxo, Stacey

Introducing... Charlotte Marin Woods

She's here.  And positively adored.

Welcome to the world,

~ Charlotte Marin ~ 

Our baby girl arrived into this world at 2:35am on Monday, August 22, 2011.  She weighed 7 pounds and 2 ounces, and is 19 inches long.  She surprised us by being almost two weeks early (my guess date was September 3, which has been a running joke throughout this pregnancy... since that's "Labor Day" weekend.)  ;)

newborn and sibling photographbig sister Lila, three years old //  baby Charlotte, one day old

Her name is very special because, to us, it represents where Chris and I began, and where we are now.  He and I met in Charlotte, North Carolina in 1998.  We fell in love and began our life together there.  Marin (pronounced "Mare uhn") literally means "from the sea", which represents our life here now.  One of our favorite things about living in Florida is how close we are to the Gulf, and how much our kids love the beach (especially Parker right now).  Chris and I also were married on the beach a little over twelve years ago, and it's just weaved itself into our lives.

I promise to post Charlotte's wonderful birth story soon (and lots more photos).  Her birth was absolutely amazing for us.  And true to her name, she was actually born in water.  For now, let me just say that the amazing ladies at Breath of Life Birth Center in Largo are the most caring, attentive and supportive midwives and birthing team I've ever seen and known.  They have been so sweet to our family, so welcoming of our other children, and so prayerful and supportive of our entire journey toward Charlotte's arrival.  I can't recommend them highly enough, Mamas.  And a less-than-five-hour labor?  What a blessing.

Thank you so much to everyone for the well wishes, emails, Facebook greetings and sweet phone calls we've received.  We are really enjoying our first week at home together with Charlotte, finding our routine and getting to know each other.  We're all completely smitten with this sweet darling girl, so everything else has been put on hold for a short while.  I know a few clients are waiting on a print here and there, and those will go out soon (thanks to my fabulous husband and his help with matting and packaging!).  I go back to shooting in late October, so if you'd like us to put you down for a fall/winter session, please just send an email to stacey {at} staceywoodsphoto {dot} com, and we'll contact you back at our earliest convenience.  We greatly appreciate your love and patience during this precious time for our family, and I promise to keep you updated during my maternity leave with lots of photographs of this little one and her big brother and big sister!



Welcoming Ryder | St. Petersburg Maternity and Newborn Photography

When I first met Amy, I was amazed at her strength.  She and her husband were expecting a child in a few weeks, and they were in the middle of a move to a new house as well.  So many changes happening at once, but she handled them all beautifully. We had a wonderful time at her maternity session, held at her home and then at one of the gorgeous local beaches close by.

And just a few short weeks later... I got to visit her again.  Only this time, Amy had a beautiful baby boy in her arms.

lifestyle newborn portraits by Stacey Woods

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Ahh.  Sweet boy.  Don't I have the greatest job in the entire world?


The Newborn I've Never Held

When I first met my nephew, this is what he looked like. NICU Baby Photography

Tiny and sweet in my sister's arms.  Barely five pounds.  Couldn't eat on his own, couldn't stabilize his heart rate (due to bradychardia).  He was born at 34 weeks gestation... coincidentally, the same progression I'm currently at with this pregnancy.

I flew to Kentucky just after he was born and visited him in the NICU.  I took this photo through the thick paned glass because I was not allowed to go inside and visit him.  I held my own two babies up to the window and introduced them to their newest little friend.  Parker was thrilled to have another boy cousin on my side...finally!

I left a lot of kisses, smudges, and salty tears on that slab of window glass.  I wished desperately to hold him, to smell his sweet little head, to touch his soft skin and trace his hairline with my finger.  To welcome this new little boy to our family.  But we were separated by the window.  He had to stay in the NICU for several more weeks, long after I had to return home to Florida.  I didn't get to hold him.


The last time I saw him (last night), it was just past midnight and he had just turned ONE.  Alas, we were again separated by a window.  He was wearing my son's shark pajamas, and he was smiling again in his mama's arms.  Only he was a lot bigger.  He has come such a long way in a year!

Although I'm thankful for these "windows" through which I get to see him smile, hear him laugh, and watch him snuggle his mama... I can't wait for the day when no screen separates us.  I want to grab him up and give him all these hugs and kisses that I've been saving just for him, for the past year.

Happy 1st Birthday, "Baby Finn".  We love you to the moon and back, little man.  XOXO (and even more smudgy kisses through the window).