Princeton WV Children & Portrait Photography by Autumn Branscome Photography » Autumn Branscome is a childrens and family photographer based in Princeton WV serving Princeton, Beckley, Bluefield, Charleston and surrounding areas in WV.

As a photographer, there’s nothing better than clients who consistently have their photos done with you over the years. I first met this sweet family when I photographed their first little boy’s pregnancy announcement. Since then, I’ve had countless sessions with the Jennings family and have just loved watching their sweet family grow. Big brother Owen was one of the first fresh48s (click here to see) I ever photographed and his session made me fall in love with fresh48s. It was so special to capture Ethan’s fresh48 and I am so thankful Ashley and Zach trust me with documenting these precious times in their life. Welcome to the world Baby Ethan. I can’t wait to see you again soon!!

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Autumn Branscome is a Princeton WV Photographer specializing in family and children’s portraiture. She services southern WV and the surrounding areas.

 

 

 

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Each year I always do a “Top ____ of ______” yearly recap with my favorite photos. As I was going through all of my albums picking out my favorites, I realized I couldn’t just pick a Top 17 of 2017. I captured so many incredible families and moments this year, I knew I’d have more than just 17 to share. So here it is, my yearly recap. Thank you to each and every one of my amazing clients who made this year such a success. I am so thankful for you guys and cannot wait to see what 2018 holds!!

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One year.
Three Hundred Sixty Five Days.
Eight Thousand Seven Hundred Sixty Hours.
Five Hundred Twenty Five Thousand Six Hundred Minutes.

One year since my sweet baby boys entered this world and turned our lives upside down. I wish I could write about how incredible this past year has been, how it’s been all sunshine and roses… It hasn’t. It’s been really hard. And if you’re one of those people who will complain about me saying how tough the past year has been with two babies, please stop reading. 😉 Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t trade the past year for ANYTHING but it has been hard. There have been moments when I have cried out to God asking Him why He thought I could handle the twin mom life. But here we are a year later. We did it. Our family has done it. I have done it. I knew I wanted to blog about our past year. Not only to take a stroll down memory lane, but also to encourage any new twin moms out there that it does get better and you will make it to that one year mark. You were given these babies for a reason and you will never feel a love deeper than being loved by a set of twins.

I’m frequently asked if the boys were conceived via IVF, if they are identical, and if twins run in my family. The boys were not conceived via IVF and we were absolutely shocked to find out at our first ultrasound there were two. The boys are fraternal twins and yes, twins and triplets do run in my family. My grandmother had triplets and I have cousins have conceived twins and triplets. We knew it was always a possibility but never thought it would happen to us.

My pregnancy with the boys was relatively quiet and calm, especially for a twin pregnancy. We had no complications and besides terrible morning sickness + losing 40 lbs in the beginning it was a great pregnancy. Delivery was a breeze as well. The boys came at 34 weeks + 4 days on their own. Landon Blake was born first, head down, and Colton Brice was born second, pulled out by his feet, I fully blame his needy personality on this fact 😉 Despite Landon having some respiratory distress, both boys were born at over 5 lbs, were perfectly healthy and needed no NICU time. To say this was an answer to prayer is an understatement. We thank God on a daily basis for keeping His hand on our baby boys and give Him all the glory.
When we left the hospital and got home for that first night, Adam and I both looked at each other with a “What do we do now?” look. A lot of tears  were shed that first night… And in the months ahead. I don’t remember much of those first few months, I think my mind has blocked them out because they were so hard. A lot of people ask me how I did it, and I really don’t know. The babies ate every 2.5 – 3 hours. Because there were two of them feeding time usually lasted an hour and a half by the time we fed them, burped them, changed them and laid them back down… Leaving an hour before we were back up again. I had Adam with me for 2 weeks before he headed back to the fire department for 24 hour shifts, leaving me at home alone to care for 2 newborns and a 4 year old… And I went back to work full-time when the boys were 7 weeks old! Had it not been for my mom and my mother-in-law I don’t know if I would’ve survived. They brought us meals, came to watch the kids so I could get an hour of sleep… My mom even stayed with me for a week to help.
The next few months of the boys lives were incredibly lonely, despite going to work all day and being around people, I felt completely isolated. Friends who swore they’d be there disappeared. I couldn’t even go to the store without feeling guilty about leaving my babies. Guilt and worry consumed my every thought. At 8 weeks postpartum, I was put on medicine for postpartum anxiety and depression. My quality of life definitely improved after my medicine kicked in, but it didn’t make things any easier. Just helped me cope with my new life.

Colton had always been my tough baby. He suffered with silent reflux and would also projectile vomit. Every feeding was a fight to get him to eat. At  3 months old, he became very sick and was projectile vomiting with every feeding. I knew something wasn’t right and at 10 PM one evening, we loaded him up and took him to a children’s hospital an hour and a half away. What we thought was pyloric stenosis ended up being a form of e.Coli and he was severely dehydrated. After tons of IV fluids, we were able to go home and Colton’s feeding improved tremendously!
Thankfully, the next months with the boys were uneventful! Well, if anything major did happen, I don’t remember it haha! We settled into a routine and adjusted into our new life. The boys continued to reach all of their milestones and exceeded all expectations despite being 34 week preemies! They are two incredible little boys who are strong, healthy and smart.

After the problems I had with Hannah during her pregnancy, Adam and I didn’t know if we wanted more kids. We never dreamed we would have two little boys though. Adam always wanted a little boy and I am so thankful God decided to give us two!

My sweet Landon Blake,
You are the easiest baby and God knew I needed you. Your sweet smile and adorable dimples brighten the day of anyone you come into contact with. You have a sweet spirit and bring so much joy to our lives.  You are the calm to our crazy life, for the time being anyway. 😉

My crazy Colton Brice,
My wild and fearless one. You are so incredibly smart and have the silliest little personality. I know those gorgeous eyes will get you anything that you want! You are always making us laugh and love your momma like no one else.

I can’t believe it’s been a year. The toughest year of my life. Taking care of two babies is hard and there have been days I have seriously wondered if I was cut out to do this. The past year has sucked, you guys. But by the grace of God and help from family and friends, we survived. All 5 of us. And despite the tough times, I wouldn’t trade my boys for the world. They have made our lives so much fuller and bring us so much joy. Life with twins is a wild ride and we are so excited to see what is to come. One year down, forever to go! If time could slow down a little, that would be great!

Motherhood is a hard and lonely road. But it does get better. You learn that the small moments, like a smile in the middle of a 2 AM feeding or that first intentional giggle, get you through those long tough times. I truly believe God appoints those little moments exactly when we need them. No matter what stage you’re in, hang in there momma <3

A HUGE thank you to my amazing mom, dad, mother-in-law and father-in-law for helping us throughout the past year. They have sacrificed their time and energy to help us survive. Also to my amazing friends (Kelly, Stacey, Erin, Sam and Courtney) who have kept me sane and loved my kids like they were their own. And last but not least, to my incredible husband. I didn’t think I could love you more than the day we had Hannah but every single day you prove me wrong. You change dirty diapers, you got up with me for 3 AM feedings, you’ve cleaned up puke and work 80+ hour work weeks to provide for our family. You are our rock and we love you more than words can express.

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