Kaden’s Story

When Nicole contacted me she was pregnant with Kaden, and when she told me her story I knew I had to meet her family. The amount of strength and bravery this couple has is truly amazing and as the months went on I came to learn what a fighter Kaden is.  Although I was not able to photograph Kaden as a newborn I had the opportunity to meet and photograph the Cloutier family when Kaden was 10 months old. I asked his mom, Nicole to write a brief summary of Kaden’s story so that I can share their amazing journey with everyone on my blog, so without further adieu here is Kaden’s story…..

At my 20-week anatomy scan we found out we would be having a very special little boy. He has a condition called Heterotaxy. Heterotaxy is a very rare birth defect that affects placement of organs. He was going to have major heart defects caused by Heterotaxy and probably many other issues. After we found out our little boys’ diagnosis we knew he would have to fight to survive; so we decided to name him Kaden. Kaden means fighter. At 39 weeks gestation Kaden was born by emergency c-section because his heart rate dropped. He was wisked off to the cardiac ICU. After many tests we found out that although his heart was very unique, he would not need open heart surgery for a couple months. We would get to take him home and wait for him to get bigger and stronger for his surgery. His heart is on his right side and his stomach is on his left so they are flip-flopped. He also doesn’t have a spleen, which plays a big roll in helping fight infections. He would also need a surgery on his intestines because they were mal-rotated. At 6 weeks old we handed Kaden over for his first surgery on his intestines. We were told to expect a 5-7 day hospital stay. Kaden did so well and was discharged in 2 days. One of his doctors gave him the nickname “Rockstar”. Over the next couple months Kaden struggled more and more with his heart. We were trying to get him to 6 months old before surgery but it soon became apparent that he would need it sooner. He wasn’t gaining weight, was very uncomfortable, and was constantly sweating from his heart working so hard. It was extremely hard to watch him struggle. At 4 months old we handed Kaden over for surgery a 2nd time. This time we knew that his heart would be stopped and the cardiac thorasic surgeon would fix 2 holes in his heart called an ASD and VSD. We expected Kaden to be in the hospital about 2 weeks after surgery but in true Kaden fashion, he was released early; directly from the ICU in just 5 days! He is our little Rockstar! Although he has to be followed by many specialists, he is thriving today. We are getting ready to celebrate his 1st birthday and he is a true fighter!




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Baby Kaylee :: Charleston Newborn Session

I am always thrilled to capture this special time for new parents, there are so many emotions that come along with having a newborn and starting a new chapter as a family. And how fast the time flies by! That’s why my job is so important, to freeze that moment in time so you can look back at how small they once were. Little baby Kaylee was a dream to photograph, and you could just see how in love Mom and Dad are with her.

newborn portrait

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Downtown Family Session

I love photographing family portrait sessions, especially when small kids are in the shots. What a great way to preserve a moment in time for the parents that hire me. These sessions capture a special time together so that the parents can remember how small, energetic and unique their children were at that special age. For this family we visited one of my spots downtown, the Dock Street Theatre. What a beautiful place filled with history and architectural details! We also had fun exploring the streets of Charleston and I even let the kids pick the spots that they wanted to be photographed at. I love the big personalities, smiles, and love that we captured that day!


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A Cake Smashing Good Time

It isn’t a birthday without cake, is it!? Sawyer had so much fun diving into this cake, his mother and I couldn’t help but laugh at the silly expressions that he would make. He kept trying to throw food over the high chair for his puppy, even though his dog was not at the shoot. Silly boy! Thank you again Ashley & Raymond for allowing me to capture this very special time for you and Sawyer.


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Introducing baby Henry

I have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of baby Henry. His mother and father have been clients of mine for awhile now and I was thrilled when Michelle told me that she was pregnant. Oh, what a sweet baby Henry is! He never made a peep during our session and he allowed me to be as creative as I wanted. We stuck him in baskets, played with different hats and he even tolerated being placed on his toy plane…what a trooper this newborn was! A big thank you to Michelle and John for allowing me to photograph your sweet little boy, I can’t wait to watch him grow.


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Kristie and Chris Engaged!

Kristie and Chris contacted me to do their engagement portraits here in Charleston. They live out of state and wanted to capture the beauty that Charleston has to offer, so I knew downtown was the perfect place to meet. When Kristie and I were talking about the overall styling of their session she told me that they had to incorporate a sombrero into the pictures some how. The hat was centered around how the couple met and I thought it would be a perfect prop for the shoot!

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Natalie and Jeremy Engaged!

Natalie and Jeremy are the kind of people that you meet and instantly feel comfortable with. Their laid back, go with the flow personalities are a breath of fresh air and a photographer’s dream! Natalie and I clicked from our very first meeting at Starbucks to discuss her wedding details, we talked about the the kind of photography that she likes and my vision for the day.  I’m a true believer that a photographer and a bride need to have the same general thoughts and ideas to make everything run smoothly.  For Natalie and Jeremy’s engagement portraits we visited a couple of my favorite spots downtown. I had so much fun with these two, walking the streets and catching up along the way. I am so excited to photograph their wedding in September!

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Introducing Graham

This handsome little man was a perfect little model, he fell fast asleep all snuggled up in a blanket and let me snap away. For Graham’s newborn shoot we got to do something that I only get to do when the conditions are right….that is going outside! I love natural light and anytime I get the opportunity to use it I do. It was a beautiful morning and his parents were up for taking him outside to capture a different background. I am so happy with the outcome!

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Kellen is One!

To celebrate Kellen turning one we did a cake smash session. At first he wasn’t to sure about it all, he sat in the high chair and calmly waited for permission or a reaction out of his parents. After a little persuasion he decided that the cake was pretty good and it just might be fun to play in. This in return brought big smiles from Kellen and many laughs from his parents and myself. As you can tell in the images below Kellen is one handsome and expressive little guy.

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A Beautiful Bride

When Jessica contacted me to do her bridal portraits I was thrilled, I love photographing brides! She told me that her and her fiance were having a destination wedding and would like portraits before they left on their cruise the following week. We met at the gorgeous Cistren Gardens at the College of Charleston and then walked the streets of Charleston. Isn’t this couple just adorable!

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