This week I had the great pleasure of photographing a family that has been very close to my family for a very long time. Members of the Goodwin family, over the years, have been involved with my own family in a number of roles: friends, neighbors, babysitter, hunting/fishing buddy, and even a bridesmaid in my wedding. It was a great honor to have all the Goodwin siblings approach me to take a portrait of them, along with their spouses and children, as a surprise gift for their parents to hang on their wall. It was a sticky, hot day at Bee Tree Park in St. Louis, but we found a nice spot with some shade and everyone was a trooper in the heat- even the little ones! I took some smaller family shots of the Vestal 4 before the rest of the group showed up. They are a beautiful family and were thoughtful in planning out their clothing choices- so that made my job easy! That said, this was one of the largest family groups I have photographed to date; so of course the tricky part was getting everyone (even those adorable little ones!) looking at the camera and looking happy at the same time! It was a team effort to get cute little Bradley (age 2) to sit still for long, but in the end, we got some great shots. Before Bradley lost all patience with us, I managed to get a few family pictures of the Goodwin 5. Then, I led the kids in an attack on their Aunt Nehley (she is SUCH an awesomely involved aunt, and those kids love her!). After a huge Aunt Nehley tackle/pile, I got them to all sit with her for a few minutes before the kids had to run off and get some energy out. We grabbed a few shots of just the Goodwin siblings (the first time they’d posed together since 1990-something, they said!), and then we just had some fun getting more casual shots of the kids running around and hanging out (until an aunt or a mom grabbed one of them up in a hug, that is. :) Here are just a few of my favorites, with little editing done. Cheers to new memories with old friends!