Are you welcoming baby number 2 into the family this year? Those first few weeks can feel like uncharted territory with juggling the attention of a newborn and a toddler. You’re tackling a lot between late nights and long days. But don’t let nerves or (let’s be honest) dread about a newborn session with a toddler stop you from capturing those early days with your new little one. I have a lot of experience working with kids of all ages and a newborn session with a toddler can be smooth and fun for everyone with a few of my go-to tricks.
First, I am all about making our newborn session easy, breezy, and beautiful. During our session, I have little tricks to encourage engagement from even the shyest or most stubborn toddler. I often ask big brother or sister to smell their new sibling’s ear/nose/cheeks and tell me what they smell like. This usually leads to sweet snuggling moments and facial expressions as they talk and squeeze in close to the baby.
Next, remember to relax and just let your toddler be. I know that seems a little counterintuitive but stay with me. If you’re constantly trying to handle them or correct them, you’re definitely not going to feel relaxed and if mom and dad aren’t relaxed, then everyone is going to feel that. Take deep breaths and let it be. Your toddler will feel your relaxed energy and they’ll relax. This helps everyone enjoy the session.
Toddlers need photo session breaks. It’s just how it is and that’s okay. Let me tell you, there is nothing better than a well-timed snack break while the baby is taking a milk break or diaper change.
I invite older brother or sister to participate in photos but never make it mandatory. It should be fun for them to come in and out of shots when they feel like it. This helps them have a positive experience and have genuine smiles when they decide to jump in a shot. A positive experience for a toddler means better photos.
The most important thing to remember is that I’m not looking for the “picture perfect moment” during your newborn session. Let’s take some of the pressure off of your newborn family photoshoot and recognize that I want to capture the natural interactions of your family as they are at this moment. Those are the photos you’re going to love and want to put up all over your house.