I wasn't in a rush to take Cricket's 2-year-old portraits, seeing as she'll be 2 for an entire year. In fact, Jeff had almost convinced me we already had plenty of photos of her from various occasions within a few months of her birthday. (He just wanted to get out of his job as photo assistant/toddler wrangler, but he was right. Here are a few favorites: Holiday card outtakes, Thanksgiving, birthday, Christmas tree search, Christmas and Valle Crucis.)
Then one late afternoon last week, we strolled down to our beloved neighborhood playground. Cricket was dashing all over the place, chattering, laughing, observing and pointing out interesting things—being quintessential Cricket. Finally she sat down at a table to pretend we were having a picnic of sandwiches and fruit salad. She was wearing her "Cricket in winter" uniform—the one I want to remember her in when I think of her as a 2-year-old: a red fleece jacket, jeans, boots and bows hidden somewhere in her (always) wild hair.
I just couldn't help myself. Before I knew it, we were in the middle of an impromptu photo session. Somehow she sat at that table, smiling and jabbering away at Nora, long enough for me to get a few more images for my collection.
Initiating a game of peek-a-boo with Nora from behind the tree.
And it wouldn't be right to end without a sisterly hug. (Yes, hugging often morphs into smothering, but it always starts out looking so sweet.)
I'm Julia Soplop, writer and photographer. I believe there is something profound in bearing witness to moments of joy and pain in others’ lives. My husband, three girls and I live outside of Chapel Hill, NC. You can read more about me here.