Wondering if your toddler will play along at your newborn photoshoot? You aren’t alone. It’s the first thing parents of toddlers mention when we are in the scheduling process. “I’m not sure our little one is going to be in the photos.” Toddlers are mysterious creatures. Sometimes just as much or more than the newborn baby. I have photographed dozens and dozens of these toddlers with their new little siblings and I’m going to give you my best tips below. I saved the best one for last.
The first thing to manage is your own expectations. The picture perfect picture just might not happen. Your toddler has been through some serious changes. It started with your pregnancy and now with your new baby. It’s a lot to take in when you’re only 2,3,4. There’s only so much you can do to prepare. If you add a bunch of pressure, like a photoshoot, things might now go so well.
The next thing you can do is prepare your toddler. Have they met me before? I think I’m pretty good with the toddler crowd. If they’ve met me before then this definitely helps the shoot to go well. All the more reason to schedule some maternity photos to document your growing changing family before your new baby hits the scene.
Has your toddler held the new baby yet? A little practice, if they are willing, can help them to know that it won’t be scary. Use the corner of the couch or a boppy for support. If that seems like too much just touching babies toes and tummy is a good start.
Make sure your toddler is well fed before I arrive. Have some favorite snacks on hand that I can share with your kiddo.
Don’t be afraid to break out some extra media. A favorite tv show, iPad game and some favorite music. Now is not the time for moderation. You can rein that in later. You know how to get your toddler how to cooperate. Break out the big guns.
Above is one of my favorite kids, Theo. This is him slamming some blueberries in his mouth before his photo.
Get your toddler dressed for the shoot just a few moments before we start taking photos. I’ll give you plenty of notice so you can get him/her ready. Getting them dressed too early often leaves too much opportunity for stains and wrinkles (if you care about wrinkles).
I’ll do my part. I’ll bring the fun and help you get photos that you are going to cherish for a lifetime. The ones that you and your kids will later be so happy about. It might not go perfectly according to a plan, but it’s going to be fun! When I leave your home you’ll feel even more confident about your toddlers ability to connect with your newborn.
Lastly, and most importantly, you are your toddler’s guide. Your newborn needs to call the shots in a lot of areas right now, but your toddler needs you to mentor them. They need you to assure them that while things feel chaotic right now, you are leading them in the best, safest way. Reassure your toddler knowing that they are going to make it through this fourth trimester and come out with more character and more life skills that will help them for a lifetime. You are their coach and comforter. It’s okay for them (and you) to have a hard time with these changes, but just keep letting them know that things are going to get better and easier every day that you keep moving forward. You’ve just given your family the best gift they’ve ever been given, a new baby. I think you’re doing great.
Contact me to start scheduling your session. Send me all your questions. I’m happy to help answer them.