ASWANLEY WEDDING - A SUMMER WEDDING AT ASWANLEY

J+C got married at the beautiful Aswanley estate in Glass, near Huntly, back in May and it was glorious - the sun shone, the food by Val Morrison was AMAZING, and there was happy, smiley people all around. I love all the weddings I shoot, but we really did have the best time with these guys! Here's just a little look at some of the moments from their day

Make up - Tiffany Dawson

Catering - Val Morrison

Dress - Midnight Elegance 

Hair - Isla Buckley

Venue - Aswanley 

Second Photographer - Sarah @ Fotomaki (group shot list caller ninja!) 

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NEWBORN PHOTOGRAPHY IN ABERDEEN - BABY E

Aberdeen has been experiencing a baby boom these past few months, and I have had an amazing time meeting so many gorgeous new families and getting to spend some time photographing them in their homes! Theanna and David were referred to me by a mutual photographer friend for their newborn session, and I caught up with them a few weeks after baby Ellie made her early arrival in to the world. Both sets of grandparents had flown over the Atlantic to meet her, and it was extra special to be able to capture some moments with them as well. Here's just a little sneak peek from their gallery - 

This was pretty much Ellie's first thought of me - B O R I N G! 

If you are looking for a newborn photographer in Aberdeen or Aberdeenshire, I'd love to hear from you. My sessions are relaxed, baby led and very natural - I capture you and your family, just as you are. Having worked with hundreds of families, your baby is in safe hands - find out more information here or email me here

FAMILY SESSION AT HOME - ROSE TURNS 1

You might remember the beautiful baby Rose as a teeny tiny newborn on the blog earlier this year. I had the pleasure of going back to visit the gorgeous Woodward family as they prepared for the very exciting occasion of Rose turning 1. We started at their home in Bridge of Don, before heading over to a chilly but beautiful Scotstown Moor for some outdoor shots, where Rose's grandparents (and their super cute dog) joined us! Here's just a few images from their session 

I shoot outdoor sessions all year round - you don't need to wait for 'good' weather to get your family portraits taken!  And if the weather is really against us, then an at home session, no matter how old your baby or child, can be the perfect solution. I'd love to chat - pop me a message! 

Sarah - Outdoor Family Session in Aberdeen

Even with 5 adults accompanying her, it was definitely young Miss Sarah who took us for a walk on this lovely family session last month! So full of mischief and quite literally a whirlwind of gorgeous curls and giggles, we had great fun running around in the woods on a lovely sunny afternoon. 

The seasons are changing and my most favourite (and busiest) time of year for family sessions is coming up!  Autumn is a wonderful time to capture you all together, with the beautiful gold and red colours of the trees providing the perfect backdrop. Pop me a line here and tell me what you'd love for your session!

 

Pre Wedding Session in Aberdeen

Amanda and Keil are becoming Mr and Mrs this Saturday, and their son Magnus and I just can't wait! We met up a couple of weeks ago to chat through the final details of their day, and do a pre wedding photo session. This is a great a chance for everyone to relax and feel comfortable in front of the camera before the big day....although I don't think young Magnus has any issues with feeling camera shy! SO handsome.

Looking forward to lots of laughs and dance floor action - it's going to be a fantastic day! 

Woman Behind The Business - Banchory Chiropractic Clinic

I have the great pleasure of calling Felicity, aka 'Magic Hands' a friend, and I was very happy when I managed to sufficiently twist her arm enough to take part in this series. Despite having a new baby and an active toddler, she has recently expanded her business, Banchory Chiropractic Clinic, in to new premises and is working hard to create a one stop wellbeing hub with massage practitioners, chiropractors and yoga classes all on site. I'll let Felicity tell you more!

Congratulations on the opening of your new clinic! What services are available at Banchory Chiropractic Clinic?

Thank you! We now offer a much wider range of services now we have our brand spanking new clinic. We still offer first class chiropractic treatment from our 3 superstar chiropractors, but in addition we now have 2 massage therapists and a kinetic chain release therapist. We also have a studio room where we host yoga, Pilates and a pelvic floor class, and these are classes that are available to anyone. We also have our very own Lower Back Repair class; a new concept which is exclusively available for our patients.

You do a lot of work with infants - how can chiropractic benefit them?

I do! Most of my patients these days are babies! I see babies for lots of different reasons, but the most common reasons are that parents might notice that their baby favours holding their head or body in a particular way, or they have a flattened or misshapen head, or they might be exhibiting some strange behaviours like excessive crying and showing general discomfort. I am also a breastfeeding counsellor so I see many mothers and babies who have problems feeding as well. Chiropractic care for infants can help to ease tension patterns that may have been created whilst baby was on the inside, during birth or from everyday habits in the babies early weeks. This release of tension generally results in a more contented baby!

And chiropractic treatment can be useful in pregnancy too?

Very much so. I often wonder how pregnant mummies get though it without chiropractic care. Pregnancy can cause some pretty significant postural and structural changes and some mothers find this painful and difficult to deal with. These changes may also affect the baby's positioning inside the mother as the walls of the uterus become strained and suffer torsion. We are trained to correct the mother's posture and pelvic positioning in the hope that will allow baby to organise itself into an optimal position. There are some small studies showing that chiropractic care during pregnancy can lead to a quicker and more "straightforward" labour. This is definitely the case in my clinic on an anecdotal basis - my associate Laura holds the record - one of her patients had a baby in 15 mins start to finish!

Tell me a bit more about your new infant drop in clinic?

The infant drop in clinic was a bit of a leap of faith for me. It has never been done before to my knowledge, and I had no idea whether it would be successful or not. As a mother myself I knew the feelings of dread at the thought of getting yourself and your baby out of the house on time so I thought I would try a format that was much more laid back. It has also allowed my clinic to participate in some important chiropractic research and helped me to teach my associate in a safe, structured way where I can oversee everything. Plus there's nothing worse than feeling as though you are alone when you are having difficulty with your baby. The drop in clinic is sort of like a baby group so there is a social aspect too! We have been going just over a month now and although it is somewhat shambolic it seems to be working! 

How do you manage juggling 2 young children and a successful business?

I will never say it's easy; there have been extremely difficult times. Being a working mother is definitely the most difficult thing I have ever done, but I find it manageable because I am very committed to my work. My clinic was my first baby! Having actual babies has also really given me extra focus to my work, I have learned so much from being a mother myself, which helps me to support other mums and babies. It is hard, but I am also very lucky to be my own boss, and the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. The short answer is I drink a lot of coffee and have a lot of help. There are also those days that I don't manage at all!

What do you do to relax? (If you find a spare moment!)

That is something that I struggle with nowadays. I enjoy a quiet coffee when I can and also love to keep fit, so like to go walking if possible. I recently completed a 5k obstacle course with friends which although not relaxing at all, really boosted my mood. I also love a bath in the evening if kiddies allow it!

Who is your greatest source of support?

It has to be my husband Neill. I would not have achieved anything without his practical and emotional support. We were friends long before we were a couple so we have a very strong foundation. He also makes me laugh out loud every day. I have a lot of practical help from my family; my son prefers being at my sisters house than at home! My tribe of mummy friends are also very special to me and I would not have made it this far through parenthood without them.  

What would your top tip be for new mums or mums to be?

Find your mummy friends! The loneliness of having a baby is real; things dramatically improve once you realise everyone else is struggling as much as you!

You can find out more about Banchory Chiropractic Clinic over on their Facebook page

The Woman Behind the Business - AB FiftyOne

I've known Pamela online for a long time, and my Woman Behind the Business series was the perfect excuse to get her in front of my camera so we could have a chat in person!

As well as being a successful lifestyle blogger, and mum to 2 beautiful girls, Pamela is the director and owner of a fabulous local marketing company, AB FiftyOne. I asked her a few questions about how she keeps everything ticking over smoothly, both at work and at home! 

 

Pamela Life With Munchers

What inspired you to set up your own marketing company? 

Marketing is a business area I have always studied and worked in. I'm very passionate about current marketing trends and developing strategies that will achieve business goals and objectives and deliver. There's nothing better than seeing a plan come together. So it was a natural progression when the oil crisis hit that I should set up AB Fiftyone and continue to work with a number of clients to achieve their aims.

How do you find juggling motherhood with running your own business? 

It can be stressful at times, but it works very well. I can fit my work around family life and get the best of both worlds. 

What tips or tricks do you have to finding the perfect life/work balance? 

First tip would have to be 'go with it'. I try to do things as soon  as they hit my to do list. Nine times out of ten, they are quick tasks. I guess we are all constantly 'on the go' spinning numerous plates. But I tend to find if I stay in the zone during sociable work hours, then I can benefit from the evenings and weekends better.

It's a constant battle of tweaking and what works best for you and your family routine. So if you find your groove...stick with it!

Who has been your greatest source of support? 

Without a doubt... my husband. Some of the projects I've had require very publicly unusual photo taking. I've had to run out in between passing cars to get the right shot for a blog post and even stood on the verge of 60 mth to get the right footage for videos. He now thinks nothing is too strange.

When you're not working hard, how do you like to unwind? 

I like to just switch off entirely. Because a lot of my job means I consume a huge amount of online content and spend so much time 'in the zone' without even intending too, I just need to put on a film and zone out. Even better if it's a family film and we can all snuggle together.

Do you have any advice to other women who may be considering taking the plunge in to starting up their own businesses? 

Try it! You never know if you are going to like it until to try. It might be for you, it might not. Always remember to walk before you can run.

Where can we find out a little bit more about you? 

http://www.facebook.com/abfiftyone

Http://www.abfiftyone.com 

Http://www.twitter.com/abfiftyone 

Http://www.instagram.com/abfiftyone

I just wanted to add in this cheeky little robin who made themselves quite at home on Pamela's handbag! 

Newborn Photographer Aberdeen - Olivia

I'd been really looking forward to this newborn session, and it was an extra lovely surprise when Olivia arrived a little early. This meant she was my first newborn of 2017 - the perfect way to kick off January! It was a scenic drive over to Portlethen on a cold and frosty morning, but we thankfully we were lovely and toasty inside, ready to capture some images of this beautiful growing family. Olivia's big brother kept a watchful eye on the proceedings, making sure I was on my best behaviour! 

A small selection of images are below. A typical lifestyle newborn session will create between 50 to 100 images, because there are just too many perfect little moments and details that I don't want to leave out! Here's what Olivia's mum, Jenna, thought about their newborn session

"Our newborn photoshoot with Vivienne was a very relaxed and enjoyable experience. She helped us get into poses that looked and felt very natural and got some absolutely stunning shots. She even managed to work around my very inquisitive toddler! A few of my favourite photos are ones where we were taking a 'break'. She worked around what Olivia wanted at that time, so it was also very much baby-led. We loved all the photos and moments she captured and it was very difficult to pick which ones we wanted!"

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The Woman Behind the Business - OmniMama Aberdeen

 

January has been a busy and exciting month, meeting lots of wonderful couples to talk about their wedding plans. 2017 is shaping up to be a super exciting year, and I can't wait to get stuck in.

I have had a little time to plan some personal projects, and this post is the start of one. I have the pleasure of knowing so many amazing women who juggle life, motherhood and running their own businesses, with grace, humour and the odd gin thrown in. I wanted to get them behind my camera, and provide the opportunity to celebrate them and their achievements. All too often, mums will shy away from the camera. because they don't feel confident in their bodies, or they are too busy trying to coax a smile from a reluctant toddler. But is so important that we give our children a tangible piece of us, images they can hold on to and treasure forever. When they look at the pictures, they won't see the little bit of baby weight, the sticky handprints on your jeans, or the post baby hair that sticks up in 5 different directions. They will just see their mum, who they love and adore, no matter what. So this is a reminder (to me as much as to all of you) that we need to get in to the picture, that we must be present in the photographic memories of our childrens lives, and that we deserve to be photographed as well

I've known Claire 'virtually' for a while now, and I was delighted that she agreed to be the first person to take part in this series. She was an absolute trooper on a cold January morning, and it was great to find out a little bit more about her

Hi Claire! Tell me about OmniMama - what is it, and what does it offer to mums in the area?

I set up OmniMama last year, a spin-off of my company Omnia Health (omnia-health.co.uk) that I have been running for 5years. While I offer Massage Therapies, Pilates and Stress Management through Omnia Health I was serving a lot of pregnant and post-natal women, many of whom were unaware or uninformed about the therapies, and exercises that they can and cannot do during their pregnancy.  This was a position that I had found myself in when I was pregnant my first son, so I wanted to create something that would help other people see what was available.  In my own clinics (in Westhill and Alford) I provide massage therapies for ladies during their pregnancy, right up to and during labour.  As well as offering relaxation for them, I also work closely with them ensure we address any issues that can be dealt with my remedial massage skills, so we really work together to suit their needs and ease pains and discomfort.  I also offer baby massage, which is amazing to help carers bond with their little ones, help babies brain development and can also address some of the issues that new-borns suffer, like colic and trapped wind.

I network with other health professionals; yoga instructors, hypno-birth experts, maternity reflexologists for instance, all of whom can fill in the blanks where I cannot.  I think this is so valuable to the pregnant client, to have a full client centric approach to their health.  I have a special interest in the recovery of clients too, helping them address the issues that often are seen as “normal” after pregnancy, frequently arising from a weak pelvic floor, muscle damage and so forth. In March I will be offering classes and 1 to 1 sessions that are designed to address these problem areas.  These Holistic Core Restore® classes will run in six week blocks and are based around the repair and strengthening of the body that will help mothers (however postnatal they are) to regain strength in the whole of the core.  I am very excited by this and I know that this is an area that will help many women regardless of how post-natal they are.

As well as running Omnia, you're a busy mum of 3! How do you juggle the demands of motherhood with work?

Something has to give, it always does. Some days I am super on the ball with work, and the kids and the school run, but the house is a tip.  Other days the children and the house are great but I have an inbox full of unread emails. It's swings and roundabouts. The guilt mothers feel, working or not, is a real thing and there is no straight answer to it.  I think we all wake up some days and feel that we should be doing better.  I guess I balance it by giving myself a break and am a little kinder to myself about it all.  I am fortunate that I get to dictate my work schedule, so I can be with my older sons at pick up from school and nursery, but that does mean that I have to work evenings to fit other clients in, so it’s a case of doing their dinner and baths before heading out again.  I know I am fortunate that I get to work like this and it is a small sacrifice I think. Motherhood is demanding, somedays it really is “ok, did we all get through the day?” but it really is for a short length of time and I know that in a couple of years my youngest son will be at school too and everything will change again. 

A little bird tells me you're quite a keen runner too? 

I began running marathons just before I fell pregnant with my first son in 2010, and have carried on ever since then.  I actually conceived each of my sons within a fortnight of each of my Spring marathons, to the point that my husband said I wasn’t allowed to book any more races at that time of year.  Last year I ran 12 marathons in 12 months for MND Scotland and this year as well as a few marathons and ultramarathons in the diary I am looking forward to raising more funds for my charity with 12 marathons in 1 month, which sometimes seems an incredibly daunting task and sometimes I wonder how I am going to fit everything in, but it is something that I really want to do and it’s been a step up enough from the 12in12 that it’s got people talking to me more about it and asking about the cause I am doing it for, which is very close to my heart.

As an aside, I should say that I have been diligent with my self-care, so thankfully I have been able to return to my sport within a relatively short space of time after each of my sons, and this is a big reason why I am so driven to help the postnatal clients with Holistic Core Restore® because I know that if we do our homework and take care of our bodies there is no reason why we cannot get back to doing whatever it is we love. 

Who has been your greatest source of support? 

I don’t think I can pin point one person.  My husband, my best friend and my parents are always there for me, and I don’t know what I would do if I lost any of them.  I think I a very fortunate to know these amazing people who I can rely on, and they have seen me at my worst and at my very best. My best friend of 13 years and I talk daily, and together we are hilarious (no one else needs to agree) and humour and tough love are a lot of what I think gets most of us through harder times.

My children are a daily inspiration, and really are a driving force behind so much of what I do.  I want them, more than anyone, to be proud of me and see me as a role model in what I do, and they think I am doing well, then that’s enough for me. 

What are your goals and aspirations for 2017?

I have a few, I want to compete the 12 marathons in 1 month and work towards the £12,000 fundraising goal for MND Scotland, and maybe after that I will never run again. We will see.

I have plans for a new studio, clinic and retail space, so I am hoping to get plans sorted out for that this will allow me to provide more to my clients.

I also want to read and write more and play more music, I recently started playing the saxophone again which has been a nice way to de-stress. 

And if I can find a way to balance life more in favour of family, then that would be amazing too, but that is a life long goal, not just for 2017.

If you could only give one piece of advice to a new mum, what would it be?

Give yourself a break!

It is hard to say just one thing, but I think this encompasses a lot.  You don’t need to rush, you don’t need to compete with other mums online, or in social medias groups or from your antenatal groups.  Feeding is hard, lack of sleep is hard, people giving you advice is hard.  There is no rush to lose weight, there is no rush to get back to “normal” (what is normal?).  Enjoy the time with your baby, and when it is rough know it won’t last.  It will pass, I promise it will pass. Take help and talk to people who understand, but give yourself a break. 

Enjoy the time with your baby, and when it is rough know it won’t last.  It will pass, I promise it will pass. Take help and talk to people who understand, but give yourself a break.

 

Thank you Claire for taking the time to brave the cold with me, and telling us about OmniMama. Claire can be emailed on claire@omnia-health.co.uk if you'd like to chat to her about her services!

Source: www.omnia-health.co.uk

Aberdeen Family Photography - Babywearing Session with Jemma

Jemma had been kindly gifted a babywearing session with me, to celebrate the arrival of her beautiful daughter. We took a wander along the Deeside Railway Line with baby E, who had promptly nodded off in the carrier! Babywearing is a great way for you to bond with your baby - you can't go wrong with hands free cuddles! 

Aberdeen Family Photography - Outdoor Family Session

Sometimes as a photographer, you strike really, really lucky, and this was the case for Sarah's family photography session in Aberdeen. The light was gorgeous, and her daughters were impeccably behaved, making my job of capturing beautiful images of them all, super easy. I had such a hard time whittling down their gallery, but here is a small selection from the time we spent together 

"Sometimes when you pick up your child you can feel the map of your own bones beneath your hands, or smell the scent of your skin in the nape of their neck. This is the most extraordinary thing about motherhood - finding a piece of yourself separate and apart that all the same you could not live without.”

Mrs Meldrum - Rebecca, Lee, Safiyah and Florence Meldrum

I had the absolute pleasure of photographing the gorgeous Meldrum family here in Peterculter, Aberdeen. Rebecca is the popular Youtube vlogger and blogger, Mrs Meldrum (you can find her channel here) based in Aberdeenshire, and she shares her life with her thousands of followers worldwide. She has recently added to her family with the arrival of Poppy Ophelia, who is doted upon by her two sisters Safiyah and Florence

These images were shot on a beautiful autumn day in 2015 - I love how the colours compliment their outfits! Beautiful family sessions can take place at any time of year, so don't delay booking your family photography session because you want to wait for 'better weather' (This is Aberdeen - it might never happen ;)) - grab the opportunity now and get in touch to book