There were five kids under the age of nine.
The dropping temperature was hugging 20° F amid a blanket of fresh snow.
Vicious geese near the pond threatened to attack us for any crumbs in our pockets resembling a carbohydrate.
Josh and Lacey, officially combining their broods into a happy bunch in summer 2014, invited us to Rye, Colorado, for their family style winter engagement photo shoot. It happened to be scheduled for one of the chilliest days of the season.
We arrived early, hoping to find a dilapidated urban backdrop with amazing texture. The barista at a local coffee shop confirmed that “town” was indeed the four-way stop we’d just missed when we blinked.
Instead, we followed Lacey and Josh’s advice, and emptied two SUVs full of color-coordinated kiddos at Lake Beckwith, where the web-footed water birds are not shy about begging for food. It’s easy, as an adult, to forget the temptation that stares a child in the face after a snow storm. Multiply that temptation by the inherent desire of a boy to dampen his younger sister’s new, clean clothes and perfectly curled hair.
In spite of nature’s instinct, these children were well-behaved under the slightly distracted eyes of their parents. You haven’t seen such an amazing feat until watching a newly engaged couple manage five kids. During their own e-session. In 20° weather.
Just as we were nearing the finale of the shoot in a tunnel of towering, frosted trees at beautiful Rye Park, the temptation became unbearable for the children. Between capturing each personality through our lens, Xaden, Emma, Axton, Gracie, and Taci, were compensated for braving the bitter frigidity in the form of candy and hot lukewarm chocolate with marshmallows. Valuable lesson learned in fulfilling our customer service promise: always bring baby wipes. Oops.
Josh and Lacey are right up our alley: genuinely madly in love with one another and with their children. We dig a photography match made in small town heaven.