this family has a beautiful story. the mama here is my friend, jayme, and we met when she attended my workshop in asheville, NC last year about this same time. she had just found out that she was expecting baby number two, and we all giggled and talked about that wee babe, even searching an antique store the last day of the workshop for the perfect item for her to photograph, as part of a pregnancy photo series she would do, that would represent the size of her babe at each week of growth inside her belly. well, time passed, and she soon learned that her baby, who would be named hudson, had a congenital heart defect and would need to have open heart surgery within his first few days of life, followed by more surgeries as he grew. we all watched and prayed from a distance as jayme gave birth to her sweet boy, and at fourteen days new, he underwent his first of three surgeries. jayme wrote, “many people never get to meet their heroes, but i gave birth to mine.” she is as inspirational as they come. many people would crumble in such a time, but her and her husband, lucas, they made a choice to live. to live beautifully, without bitterness or fear. to turn their faces towards the sun and breathe in the good with their little family, no matter how few or many moments they had with this tiny little miracle in their arms. hudson healed and they were able to take him home, after a long stretch of hospital stays. and in the brief time between that first surgery and his second (which he already had and did so wonderfully!), the ford family traveled down from canada to meet me in whitefish, montana for a photo session to celebrate life! to breathe in the mountain air. to enjoy being outdoors as a family after being in a hospital for months on end. to just throw up their hands, release the pain, embrace the bliss and truly just capture this time of being grateful for every single second of life. i am so honored to have been picked to document a chapter of their incredible story. the time our families spent together there in montana was very short, but a snippet that i will treasure for the rest of my life. it is so obvious to anyone around them how they take nothing for granted. they have peace. their love for one another is true and strong and contagious. and that wee babe, sweet hudson, though he is little, his eyes are deep and soulful, and you can feel he has a story all his own to tell one day. i will be waiting patiently to hear it. if you are interested in learning more about little hudson and the ford’s story, i highly encourage you to watch this beautiful video made by photographer, vanessa brown, who documented the first few weeks of hudson’s little life up in canada. it is heartbreaking and spectacular.