The Kahan's Birth Story

The Kahan's Birth Story

Birth is raw and powerful. Join me to witness a mom that powered through her pain and fears and had a natural birth in the comfortable of her home. Enjoy her husbands reaction when baby arrived. Hope you find this inspiring as much as I did!  

Snow Storm Offers-Boston MA

Snow Storm Offers-Boston MA

I am passionate about Motherhood and Births. For a limited time I have the following offers available for photography services, take advantage of them as I have limited availability per month :(! Send me a message to shirley@shirleyannephotography.com with any questions.

Can't wait to capture some special moments for you!

VALID UNTIL MARCH 15th 2017

Maternity - Milk Bath Photoshoot - Boston MA Photographer 

Maternity - Milk Bath Photoshoot - Boston MA Photographer 

I am in love with Milk Baths and I am hoping to be able to do some newborn and baby milk baths. They look amazing. This momma looked radiant while pregnant in a Milk Bath. We had fun and enjoyed the session. 

Hope you like it!

Outdoor Maternity Session-Puerto Rico

This maternity session took place in my beautiful island Puerto Rico. The weather was amazing and mom was looking great. This family looked gorgeous and the location was to die for. 

Maternity and Birth Services Guide

I don't know about you but when I learned that I was expecting my second child I started to google all of these services in the area where I lived. It turned out to be difficult (and exhausting) because I would need to google each service separately. I decided that I would have a Maternity and Birth Services guide in order for expecting moms and new moms to learn about the agency's that are available.

It is still a work in progress. My hope is that different agencies continue to ask me to add their information. The more the merrier.

If you are interested in adding your information to this guide or see any errors in the information provided, please send a message to info@shirleyannephotography.com.

To view the Resource Guide click here.

Family Session - Puerto Rico

Family Session - Puerto Rico

Family Session of friends that are close to my heart. We were both Marine Corps families and spent lots of time together while I lived in North Carolina.  

 

Hope you like these images!

Siblings Session-Puerto Rico

Siblings Session-Puerto Rico

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"Sometimes being a brother is better than being a SUPERHEROE!" Sibling sessions, especially boys, are dear to my heart as I have two boys of my own!

I've known Ivelisse and Rocky since I was a teenager as we were part of a Christian Organization that made amazing events for the youth in Puerto Rico. I also know Ivelisse as she has an amazing voice and she used to sing at these events.

Surprisingly Ivelisse's oldest son is of a similar age as my oldest, as well as her youngest is of a similar age to my youngest. So funny how things happen. Another cute thing was that her oldest used to look very similar to mine when they were toddlers. It was exciting to see them meet each other for the first time during this visit to PR.

When Ivelisse, Rocky and the boys arrived to the location we talked for a few minutes as I had not seen Ivelisse or Rocky for a few (probably like 10) years. The youngest one was so interested in everything around him and was walking everywhere to learn about his surroundings. I was happy to capture those moments!

These two boys clearly love each other. I hope they grow to be best friends and enjoy each other as much as they can.

Hope you enjoy!

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Family Session - Central Park - Puerto Rico

Family Session - Central Park - Puerto Rico

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I visited Puerto Rico (where my heart is) from December 31st until January 11. During this time I had the privilege of doing sessions for a few friends and their families. So be prepared as I'll be bombarding you with sessions in the next couple of weeks. Sharon and I were classmates from Middle School until High School. Now she is living out of our hometown (as am I) and has a beautiful family with two active toddlers. We had decided to do a session at Luis Munoz Marin Park in San Juan, but when I arrived to the park it was closed as it was a Holiday in Puerto Rico. We then decided to go to Central Park in San Juan.

I arrived to the park and scouted the area for possible options. It had some nice paths that were beautiful for the shoot.

We started with a few family shots, but a few minutes later the little guy decided he was going to run off and do his own thing haha. I LOVED IT. He and his older sister made us run this day, 4 adults and they still were more than us haha. Thank God Sharon's sister was there to help.

I had so much fun and the best part was at the end of the shoot when the little guy (1 year old) decided he was going to run down a hill and fell and rolled over. His big sister (2 years old) laughed so hard and didn't even think to help him, IT WAS HILARIOUS!

Hope you enjoy!

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Newborn Baby Lifestyle Home Session

Newborn Baby Lifestyle Home Session

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As I get ready to say goodbye to 2016 and welcome the amazing things that 2017 will bring, I couldn't finish the year before I wrote about my last session. Now, to make things more interesting, one of the bests things about a Pregnancy and Labor is that you have little to no control over how and when things will happen right? It's part of the fun!

Joy and I were in communication for a few weeks and we had scheduled a possible Newborn session in their Boston home for the middle of January 2017. To mommy's and daddy's surprise baby boy decided to arrive a few weeks before his due date, confirming that we indeed have no control over a birth (hehe).

Joy reached out to me and gave me the wonderful news of their new addition. We then decided to schedule the session before I left the state to visit my beautiful island Puerto Rico.

I arrived to their home and her husband welcomed me, right after a little 3 year old beauty welcomed me to their home as well. "What's your name" she asked, I told her, and surprisingly she never forgot it during the almost 3 hour photography session.

She made this session SO FUN, she was very funny, verbal and new how she wanted things. Such a character, I loved it so much. We even had our little conversation in Spanish, how AWESOME is that?

Baby boy was also as handsome as can be, with a full head of hair (OMG and so so dark - LOVE) and his skin looking pinkish, just fresh out of the oven! I was swoon. At just 5 days old he slept like a champ and even gave us a few smirks!

Hope you enjoy this beautiful family's session and check out his hair! Oh my! SWOON!

Joy and Aaron, you are blessed!

Sara + Michael - Maternity - Boston MA

Sara + Michael - Maternity - Boston MA

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I just love Maternity Photography Sessions, they show that women can be beautiful (and beyond stunning) at any stage in their lives. Sara and Michael scheduled a Maternity session with me for the middle of December. The goal was to take their pictures with the Sunset sky in a beautiful beach in Winthrop MA.  Sadly the weather in Boston didn't agree with us for that day, but I think it was for the best. It was going to be SOOOOO cold that day. We then decided to reschedule it for after Christmas Day. After checking the weather once again, I noticed that the Friday before Christmas would have a better temperature.

When I arrived to the location, I saw a beautiful lady with her baby bump in a beautiful green dress walking near the beach. I knew it was Sara. This couple radiated love and I think their images show how much love is between them. Pregnancy definitely suits her.

I can't stop looking at this beautiful family. I know little baby will come to a home filled with LOVE and WARMTH.

I can't wait to meet this tiny for his Lifestyle Newborn Session in their home.

Enjoy!

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They were so natural in front of the camera and you can indeed see the love they have for each other and their addition!

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Michael's (or how I called him: "Daddy" hehe) look says a lot! Wow!

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My (and my son's) Home Birth Story

My (and my son's) Home Birth Story

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Disclaimer: I am a huge advocate for Natural/Unmedicated Births, Home Births and anything related to a natural way of living. That said, it doesn't mean I am against momma's that decide to do a Hospital Birth, or Medicated Birth, etc. I support women on their decisions as long as these are educated and empowered decisions. This here is the Story of the Birth of my second child who turned 1 year today. You might wonder why I chose to have a Home Birth, but this would be a separate Blog Post by itself. Just know that after having my first child at a Hospital, I decided I would never birth in a hospital unless there was an emergency.

Hope you enjoy and please be aware there are a lot of details in this post so it might be long.

12/21/2015

Water broke while going up the stairs arriving at Midwife’s office. I felt my underwear and pants get wet and for a second I thought I had peed myself. I told the Midwife and her assistant and she immediately sent me to the bathroom to get the pad tested. It came out positive for amniotic fluid. I was sent home to see if the labor would start on its own. Midwife advised to call her if contractions started to be regular with 5 minutes in between. She advised she would visit us the following day at around 12:00pm to see how everything was going. Contractions were very irregular the whole time. We decided to go to Walmart and do some grocery shopping, yup, grocery shopping, I didn’t feel any pain so it was totally ok.

12/22/2015

Labor never kicked in, although I did feel some strong contractions during the night, but nothing regular. Contractions were minimal unless I used the breast pump as suggested by the midwife.

12pm: Midwife arrived and since the labor had not kicked in on its own we decided to start the process of a holistic induction in order to avoid a chemical induction.

4pm: Contractions were still irregular and the midwife educated us on using acupressure on the cervix to stimulate contractions, after discussing the pro's and con's we decided to try it. At that time she checked my cervix and I was still at 3cm and 75% effaced. Not much had changed from the last cervix check about 2 weeks before that. She mentioned that as she had suspected she could feel a bulge of the sack which would mean that the amniotic fluid that escaped was only from the fore sack and the area were baby was, was still intact.

6pm: Carlos, myself and our midwife spoke about our options since the labor was not progessing and decided to wait until 8pm to decide what we would do. During this time the induction process continued with different methods including tincture, breast pump, prenatal bouncing ball, castor oil, among others.

8pm: We sat down in the kitchen and the midwife talked to us about our options if we still wanted a home birth. Our main concern was that my water had broken and it could be a possible cause for infections which we wanted to avoid. The midwife educated us in the options available and the consequences of all options. She also mentioned the possibility of calling On-Call Midwife at the closest hospital and have them check by amniotic fluid and do a non-stress test on baby and then let labor happen when it wants to happen if everything was ok. We agreed with the idea of going to the Hospital and get everything checked as it would keep us at ease.

9:30pm to 11:00pm: Carlos and I left the house with a maternity bag in case we would need to stay and headed to the hospital. The midwife followed us in her car. As soon as I got in the car the contractions started stronger. I could feel them every 5 minutes. I was talking on the phone with my mother in law and would have to stop talking while I had a contraction. I was worried, but still happy and laughing at the whole situation and how baby Cookie did not want to arrive. On the way to the Hospital I had about 4 strong contractions but I was comfortable. We arrived at the hospital and they asked me if I was in labor, I said I wasn't. Olivia was with us at all times. We had to register and while at the office I was having heavier contractions but I was able to manage them, I was laughing between them as some of them didn’t let me talk. I was taken to labor and delivery on a wheelchair, which I found odd as I was able to walk. They didn’t allow me to walk as it was their policy’s (smh).

From the labor and delivery area they sent me to get an ultrasound to check my amniotic fluid. When I arrived to the ultrasound area I was asked to sit on the table, which I complied. The technician was also expecting a child and very calmed. She asked me to lay flat in my back in order to do the ultrasound. At this point my contractions were much stronger and I was losing “my cool”. I told held that I wasn’t able to lay on my back (most of my contractions were on the back and regardless I WAS ALMOST 40 WEEKS PREGNANT!). To add to the stronger contractions, since I had used castor oil to help with the contractions, I had a major case of “liquefied stools” lol, which had me running to the bathroom every 10 minutes. I told the technician that I needed to go to the bathroom or I would have an accident on her table. She allowed me to go. When I got out of the bathroom the midwife discussed with me that they wanted to do a full ultrasound and it would take about 40 minutes. I was already having steady contractions and my first reaction was "hell no". The midwife recommended checking amniotic fluid and that would be enough. I agreed. The ultrasound tech complied and informed that levels of amniotic fluid were 8, which meant baby was secured in amniotic fluid and what the midwife was correct in thinking that my amniotic sac was intact.

Contractions were getting strong, I was in a lot of back pain. I was taken to the labor room and was monitored for blood pressure and newborn stress. Blood pressure was a bit high but seemed like it was not concerning for staff or the midwife. The nurses were nice to me and Carlos. I wasn’t able to stay sitting down as the pain was worse when sitting down and I was running to the bathroom a lot. Olivia asked me at one point how would you rate your pain FROM 1-10, and I was like TEEEENNNNNN! The midwife said: “really” and my face told her that “YES REALLY!” haha. A while later the midwife advised that the best thing was to return home if I still wanted to have a home birth. Between contractions and with monitors on I said: “yes, I want a home birth”. Olivia spoke with the nurse on staff, who contacted the on call hospital midwife and I was discharged from hospital at around 10:45pm.

11:00pm: We arrived home at 11:25pm and I immediately stripped down to a bra. Contractions were coming on strong. I had a yoga ball on top of the bed which I used as support on each contraction. One of the doulas showed my husband a few techniques to alleviate the back pain. While I was working through the contractions the other doula arrived and both started to work on the birthing pool. I’m not sure of the exact time of all of this but it all happened very quickly. I remember at one point my midwife said I was at 9cm. My husband was not concentrating as he had noticed the doulas were having a difficult time with setting up the birthing pool (or that’s how I saw it haha). I told him (between contractions… so basically in a very rude tone), to focus on me and let them do the pool.

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12/23/2015

After a few contractions, me in pain, me thinking I would not be able to do this, me with EXCRUCIATING back pain, I remember saying, I want to push. The midwife and both doulas said, not yet. I told them about 2 times… I can’t hold it. The midwife got close to me and told me we had to wait a little for baby to come down and showed me a breathing technique so I wouldn’t push. It helped so much.

My brother was in the room, my son and mom were sleeping. My brother went to get my mom (this I learned after giving birth because I didn’t even notice him), who said she did not want to be in the birth. She came a few minutes after the baby was born.

I had my husband in my back, my midwife on his side, and the two doulas on the left of me. One of the doulas noting everything that was happening and the other one checking the baby’s vitals. At some point I squatted down as this was the way my body felt more comfortable. I was given the OK by the midwife to push. The midwife was on my left side to the back with hands underneath me. I still do not know how she was able to do this with so little space. She was awesome! She had oils in her hands to help mommy stretch nicely for baby to come out. One push, head was out, second push, body was out. Baby was born at 1:00am (can’t recall exact time) on 12/23/2016 next to my bed in the comfort of my own home, with no unnecessary interventions or medications. I did not tear and there was no need of stitching.

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Midwife grabbed the baby and told me, “grab your baby” while I was still kneeling. Everything happened so quickly. My legs started to tremble, I lost all control over them and couldn’t stand up. First thing I did was check if Cookie was a boy or a girl and I shouted: “It’s a BOY!!!”. My husband and midwife helped me stand up. I was placed in our bed and automatically started skin to skin. Midwife placed a heating blanket on top of baby to keep baby warm. A few minutes later we started to breastfeed and he latched like a champ with the help of the midwife. The placenta was delivered about 15 minutes after or so I recall lol.

Our room was filled with people we wanted there, my husband, my mom, my brother, my midwife and her two assistants/doulas.

This was the best decision I made and I thank my husband for agreeing with me. During the whole pregnancy lots of people criticized me, judged me, and questioned me, oh so many would look at me like I was some kind of crazy. I would either ignore them, educate them or simply tell them “this is my decision”. My husband can testify that this experience was amazing and empowering. I hear so many people saying, what if there is an emergency, what if something happens. Emergencies and complications are due to happen at home or at the hospital, and most of the time these are just scare tactics used against us as women/mothers.

I only say and ask of you, educate yourself, research, look for a provider that is aligned with your needs, expectations and desires, and if you can, hire a DOULA.

This was my birth experience at home and I wouldn’t change any minute of it.

Happy Birthday Kai!

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**Birth Images taken by my brother.**

 

Lifestyle in Home Sessions

Lifestyle in Home Sessions

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HAPPY SHOP SMALL SATURDAY :)... Please read until the end for a special offer. I am all about documenting a child's life since before they are born. I think is so important, not only for mom, but for the unborn child, to be able to see images of mommy while she was pregnant, when mommy gave birth and those first few hours/days of the newborn at home.

I am focused on creating lifestyle sessions for newborns or infants in the comfort of their own home. Documenting a child in their home with their parents or extended family is one of the best keepsakes you could treasure from your child.

This family reached out to me to document their beautiful's 3 month old princess. Mommy wanted a session in their home with possibilities of an outdoor session, weather permitting. This Saturday the weather decided to behave amazingly great to us and we were able to do a session at Dorchester Heights in South Boston.

Dorchester Heights had a mix or fall foliage with some amazing yellow and orange colors, as well as some beautiful houses in the background. Just an amazing "backdrop" for some amazing pictures.

Enjoy this beautiful session and this cuteness overload!

Shirley Anne

*Offer: 50% discount on all Mini-Sessions scheduled from now until 3/31/2017. I also have a 20% discount on Maternity, Breastfeeding and Mother and Me Full Sessions booked in January and February 2017. Mention this post and you will get and extra 5% off. We also have Gift Certificates available. Contact us to schedule a session. 

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Cousins Session-Holidays Mini-Session

Cousins Session-Holidays Mini-Session

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I love the Holidays, I love how happy it makes the children (and sometimes the adults haha), it is just a time to be together with family and have good times .

I wanted to do a session of my boys and their two cousins. These came out even more beautiful than I expected. I know our family will enjoy these and love them as much as I do.

These four are my inspiration and the loves of my life.

Hope you enjoy the images.

I have a Shop Small/Black Friday/Cyber Monday Offer. I am offering 50% on all mini-sessions scheduled before 3/31/2017, for more details feel free to message me. 

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Baby Boy Lifestyle Session

Baby Boy Lifestyle Session

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While I wait for my first birth momma to go into labor, I decided I would give a Sneak Peek of the beautiful baby and parents I had the privilege of shooting last weekend. Cynthia reached out to be for a photography session of her newborn and I was delighted to do this for her. We agreed to do the session in the comfort of her home as the weather was a bit chilly for a little squish.

I arrived to their home and sweet baby boy was comfy, cozy and asleep in his swing. We decided to start the session in the living room and work around the home depending on baby's needs. Baby woke up as soon as his blanket was taken away to start the session and was beautifully alert during the whole session.

Baby boy was 7 weeks and was looking at everything around him, especially my CAMERA. It was impressive to see a newborn looking straight at the camera 75% of the time.

The family also had a Schnauzer mix breed that wasn't very happy about my arrival, but she got to agree with me a bit after a while. I was even able to capture an image with her included. We couldn't leave her out.

Thanks to Cynthia and Matt for allowing me to their home! It was a pleasure.

Hope you enjoy!

Shirley Anne

*If you are interested in a session feel free to message me here.*

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