we almost didn’t have enough time. danielle originally wanted to schedule something for august when her baby would be six months. then i got word that they had received orders and would be leaving by the end of june. we had to work fast, but we made it happen. i only spent three hours with them, but i am already feeling homesick for my new friends, and am looking forward to their return to sunny california. i loved them immediately and found myself wanting to hear all their stories, know their interests, and be their friend…for life. danielle, mac, and little mac are really, really good people.
i knew i was going to like danielle from our first email. she has a name stamp that says, “Love, Danielle, Babes, D, Tallulah, Squirt, whatever you want to call me”. She has a lot of nicknames. i LOVE nicknames too. in true kamee form i got the story behind all of them:
danielle: well, that’s her name.
babes: that’s what mac calls her
d: short for danielle
tallulah: the name of a famous old hollywood actress; danielle reminds her mom of the actress
squirt: term of endearment from her dad, because she isn’t on the taller side of things
whatever you want to call me.
this is what i call danielle:
warm-hearted, peaceful, calm, gracious, thoughtful, interesting, and totally and undeniably beautiful. i would call her, lady, because she is one, in every sense of the word.
i wasn’t surprised when the baby was introduced by a nickname: bean. of course i asked for the story. they gave him that early on when they went for the first ultrasound because he looked… like a little bean.
and what a delicious bean he is.
i called him every version of bean i could think of:
and beanie baby.
he is such a gorgeous baby. seriously. so, so, cute!!
i hope the nickname sticks. i think it is perfect for him!!
(great drool in this one… i kept it in just for the memory and the laugh at where it landed…)
in the arena of baby, he is mellow, as mellow as they come.
he is loved so profoundly, and is a gift to his already exceptional parents.
mac is a navy man; he went to the academy and has spent the last several years of his life serving our country. i grew up in the air force; my dad was an air force chaplain for 25 years; i have an affinity for any branch of service and i feel especially patriotic and grateful for all that these men and women do for us and our country, mostly because i was surrounded by it my whole life and saw their sacrifices first hand. mac understands freedom deeply; i appreciate his willingness to serve and protect our country and our rights.
don’t let the navy “tough guy” stereotype fool you though. he is one of the friendliest people i have met in a long time. i really enjoyed the conversations we were having about life, choices, raising children, and service. he is a good man.
and he has nothing but love and respect for babes. the pair met in 3rd grade folks, and have been together since. that’s a love story for you. the two have already been together an eternity.
when mac received the call that he was being transfer, he and danielle considered him making the tour of duty alone. then she would have stayed alone in their home with the baby while he went ahead. that would have been seven months of bean’s life he missed out on, and time with babes that he didn’t want to sacrifice. so they decided to pack up their home, rent it out, and move on a seven month adventure. I don’t think they will regret the choice in the long run. this family was meant to be together.
when danielle told me there would be boxes in their home, i felt inspired. why not include them in their photographs since it is a part of their life. if i had a dollar for all the boxes i have seen in my life due to all of our moves i could bail america out of this huge financial crisis we are in. alright, i am hyperbolizing, but when you are in the service and you move a lot you do see a lot of boxes. they kind of become members of the family…
i loved this image. i love all of these actually but i really like the composition here. before they had bean this guy was the baby. i forgot the puppy’s name, so i will just give him/her a nickname for now…casino. i have always wanted to name a dog casino. i guess i just did.
i loved this family shot even though we were losing the beaner. they are all just so handsome and so pretty:
danielle, mac, and bean, may you always have peace in your home and in your hearts; thank you for protecting ours. may you enjoy watching your baby grow; thank you for protecting that right too. may you come home soon; i miss you guys… thanks again for the time and the chance to meet such inspiring, down-to-earth, good and nice people. be safe in your travels and in your service. xoxo kamee