Graves Family + Maternity Session: Ft. Monroe Beach

WOOOOHOOOO, baby #2 is comin so soon for these wonderful friends!!!! We recently met at Ft. Monroe Beach in Hampton to snag some photos as they prepare to welcome their second son this summer. It truly feels like yesterday I was taking maternity photos featuring little Matthias himself!!! How quickly life goes. That is one of the many reasons I LOVE being a wedding and portrait photographer… the images you capture for families help them look back and remember life as the days speed on. I love providing ways for friends like Brandon & Krystal to recall when Matthias was their only baby, trying to grab Momma’s earrings and loving Daddy’s shoulders!

Enjoy these snapshots and soak up your loved ones today, friends!!!

“I solemnly swear I am up to no good…”
SUCH a little ham!!!
My favorite shot from the whole session. Momma and her babies!
Aaaand that’s a wrap!!

Smith Family: Ft. Story Beach, Family Session

The beach, these beauties, and braving boisterously cold temps… These are who shower the blog today! I loved my time on Ft. Story military base with the Smiths, and they were such troopers in the 40 degree wind chill! Their images leave me smiling and thankful for the beautiful people I get to capture!

Hoping to snag some family photos like theirs? I still have spots left for my May Minis on Saturday, May 1st at Ft. Monroe in Hampton VA! Twenty minutes, $89 ($50 to reserve your spot). Sign up here!

Day Family: Hampton Homestead

As we hit the one year anniversary this week of covid descending on our nation and changing all our lives in various ways, I have been thankful as I reflect on the people God knit around me in my life as a single lady, so that even in the changes and ebb and flow of covid isolation, I have not felt alone! The Days fill me up and hold a special place in my heart as wonderful, dear friends from my church who have the most crazily wonderful growing herd. Their family has been built through foster and adoption, with eight kids and counting, ranging from 1.5 to 22 years old. Katie & Steve are people I want to be like, embracing dreams and pressing into the hard by God’s strength, going after good works that display His beauty and love to others. I have loved watching how covid has brought GOOD on their homestead, as they’ve done immense work to their property and their familial relationships, and also brought others of us in, throughout covid, in safe ways, to be blessed by their land and animals and food. Enjoy some of my favorite images of their wonderful crew, including some extended family as well!

Baby Nae had just turned one at the time of our session last November… isn’t she the cutest???
A total Momma’s girl!!!
… And sassy as ever!
The Day crew: Steve & Katie with 7 of their 8 kiddos!
Sister sister…!
Look at these handsome dudes!
Brothers!
I just adore these two so much!

Missick Family: City Center, Newport News VA

Last night, I got to meet and hold the little newborn man who is one of the stars in today’s photoshoot… how fast time goes!! (Though for preggo Mamas, I know things can often seen slooowwww… that was Sen during this session, just eager and waiting for baby Judah to get outta her belly!) This family is one that makes me thankful for life, laughter, rawness, and being real a humans and Christians. They teach me so much about the power of prayer and the power of a good meal (preferably Puerto Rican cuisine!!). I loved capturing their growing crew last month and am so thankful that I don’t only call them clients but dear friends. 🙂 Enjoy a few of my favorite images from our holiday-y shoot in Newport News, VA!

Milstead Family: Hermitage Garden & Museum

Have you ever gotten to a location near where you live and wondered how in the world you had never ventured there before??? That’s how I felt pulling into Hermitage Museum & Garden last weekend. I could have shot there for HOURS!!!!! Next year, I will definitely be scheduling a day of mini-sessions around the gardens!!!

The Milstead posse was a fun bunch to capture. Our time together held the normal 5-year-old boy rebellion and one-year-old escaping shoes, but that’s real life, is it not??? And we still got some wonderful photos of Heather, Ryan, and their three beauties. See some of my favorites below!!! And let me know if you want to schedule a session at Hermitage — my time with the Milsteads couldn’t even capture all the venue had to offer!!

Cummings Family: Ft. Monroe Beach Session

Don’t leave us yet, summer!!!! I love sessions like this one with Marcell, Hillary, and Max at Ft Monroe in Hampton. You might recognize this crew from last November. We had such a fun time keeping Max out of the fields of Cullipher Farm in Chesapeake, we wanted the other challenge of keeping him from plunging in the water and slipping on the rocks around Ft. Monroe! 😉 I was so pleased with the images we captured, and I hope you enjoy them too!!

A Swing Through 2019

Hello, friends! Happy 2020! Having time this month to slow down, regroup, and pray & plan for 2020 has been so refreshing. (Aside from the week I spent nursing my sick younger sister (a freshman at CNU) back to health from a virus, only to catch some kind of the bug myself and be out of commission for a week. Ah well, tis the season.)

As I look back over 2019, I am so humbled by the faces that fill folder after folder on my harddrive, from engagements, families, expecting parents, and more. As I posted on Instagram recently, 2019 was a year where love for the camera and really truly learning people, serving people, and enjoying people with photography came back to life for me. Selecting a slew of photos to share in this post was so hard because I wanted to use them all!!!! My smile kept growing as I put this selection together. Y’all have been such a joy to work with. I am beyond thankful!!!! I want this business to be a vehicle where people feel the love of God and know the value they hold as His creatures. While I have dreams and goals for Debbie Dean Photography in 2020, I pray that stays primary in all the work I do. Y’all are beautiful, unique, and emulate joy in your own ways. I love the gift it is to capture y’all. Instead of planning today, I’ll just continue scrolling through highlights of 2019, thankful to God for you all and humbled that I get to work with so many different image bearers of our great God!!!

Cloud Family: The Historic Cavalier Hotel

For years I have driven past the Cavalier in Virginia Beach and marveled at its beauty. When Beth (a CNU alumni friend) suggested it as their location for our family session last month, I was thrilled to get to see the grounds and enjoy some of the historic hotel’s grandeur! We gallivanted around (Baby Shark stuffed animal in hand to keep their little Jack’s attention!!) and I loved the images we captured! Enjoy some of my favorites!!!

A Note on Thanksgiving + Cummings Family: Cullipher Farm

Thanksgiving is tomorrow and tonight I am sitting on the couch with some of my sisters, at home in Northern VA, bouncing between Hallmark movies and Say Yes To The Dress while I edit photoshoots. I know we all say this annually, but the holidays definitely snuck up on me this year. Life is so full, so fun, and so go go go… I feel like I blinked and I’m home now, smelling my Mom’s Thanksgiving Eve cooking and wondering why I keep deciding it’s a good idea to kick off Thanksgiving with an early morning Turkey Trot run (tomorrow’s race route I’m doing this year is SO HILLY, and I’m hoping the wings on the turkey onesie I’m wearing will give me umph to soar up and over all the inclines!!!).

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, a brother at Fellowship Group (my church‘s version of small groups) prayed last night that God would help us recall the many things this past year that we have ignored or forgotten to thank Him for, and that He would help us to remember and praise Him. I was so humbled by that prayer because I often plow through life without spending much time reflecting specifically on God’s past grace to me, not often being still and thinking across the span of months/years with thanksgiving. In light of this, I am looking over 2019, and tonight I’m particularly humbled by God’s provision of business for Debbie Dean Photography.

A few months ago, I had no idea I could have this life, making a living doing childcare and photography (while learning and studying biblical counseling on the side in the process). Yet, God has opened door after door and I find myself floored at what each day holds! Strangers and friends alike have blessed me to serve them with photo sessions this fall. Reflecting on all the couples and families I’ve captured is stirring great thankfulness to God for the gift and experiences with photography He’s given over the years to bring me to this place. I pray He continues to grow me and show me His purposes for Debbie Dean Photography, and look forward to how I can keep serving others with photo experiences down the road!

In light of all this… enjoy a fun autumn family session I did recently, featuring Marcell, the brother in my Fellowship Group who’s prayer I referenced above! I have loved getting to know him and Hillary and their little guy, Max, since coming to HRF last year, and I hope you enjoy their session from Cullipher Farm in Chesapeake, Virginia!

Baby Grace is here!

Kai & Yesenia are dear fellow church members and friends here in Hampton I have loved getting closer to this past year. I met Sen initially at a biblical counseling conference that I went to with a group from HRF in February 2018, even while I still lived in MD, before I had decided to relocate to Hampton Roads!! (Let’s just say that conference and my time with those HRF members was instrumental in God moving me here!)

Watching God work in the lives of Kai & Sen has been such a gift. Through the beginning days of little Grace being found in Sen’s belly to her arrival on Christmas Eve 2018, I have watched this couple trust and worship Jesus Christ and His plan for their blended family. I love you guys and am so thankful for how your example of clinging to God’s Word and God’s people in daily life encourages me continually!

Kai deploys to South Korea in just a few short weeks, so doing this newborn+family photoshoot for them last weekend was so sweet to me, knowing these images will be held tightly in the months to come. I love you guys so much and am excited for how your beautiful family of FIVE will continuing growing and showing me and others how to follow Christ daily in the grace He gives!

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