happy birthday Jolie + Parker | 5 years

the day is finally here! you’re five. FIVE! we’re not welcoming your teens with 13. or celebrating your sweet 16.. or even a milestone like 21. but five.. just seems so BIG!  your 5th birthday means the official end of our full days spent together. running free at the park or riding your bike (almost) around and around the cul-de-sac not looking back to see me, unless of course, you want to impress me with something by shouting at the top of your lungs “mama! watch!”

you dress yourself, and often times differently. you brush your own teeth. you help yourself to your own drink from the fridge or snack from the pantry. you two feel less like my babies and more like my big girls!

parker jane

my Parker Jane. there is just something special and different, unpredictable, and a little bit wild about your personality that I’ve never quite been able to put my finger on. you are such an active, restless, adventurous soul.

I love that about you.

your contagious laughter, your dramatic tears, your absolutely amazing personality fill this house with our every day- although there are three others babes to share space with, you are by far a dominant soul.  you are my artist with a love for puzzles and coloring, you simply love being outside, riding your bike, hanging out with dad in the garage, catching bugs, and coming home with muddy feet or wood chips in your shoes. in those same moments you are asking for help buttoning your princess dress, applying your glitter eyeshadow and perfecting your lipgloss. you’re the best of both worlds, Parks.

I love that about you, too.

you have the biggest, kindest, and most generous heart in the world and how lucky we are to get a portion of your love- you love SO BIG, Parker and I’ve never seen anything like it.  never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined my girl to be capable of so much love, which in turn has allowed you to become the best big sister ever. Baker and Brady are lucky to have you.

I love that about you, most.

Parker, you are fiercely independent and still a total mama’s girl. I love it when you snuggle up to me on the couch, lay your head in my lap or play with my hair while we watch your favorite shows. I love the spontaneous “I love you mommy”s that occur at random moments throughout the day- you have no idea the amount of encouragement that offers, especially on those hard days when I feel like I have failed for the one millionth time. its like you somehow know and can sense that I, or anyone for that matter, is feeling a little down and you do everything you can to build them back up.  every day I think I learn as much from you as you do from me, sweet girl. there is so much about you I wish would never change. I would love to somehow bottle you up and hold on tight forever.  I never want to forget these moments we have had together- and yet change is inevitable because that’s just how life goes.

thinking about your future might be the best thing of all. I am so excited for all the milestones. the changes. the experiences you and your sister will have, both individually and together. I get to guide you through these times as your mom, and I hope you know that it is the greatest gift you could ever give me.

jolie grace

Jolie, you have grown so much and made your daddy and I very proud. we have been through a lot this last year and even when I was in tears, sitting in the hospital waiting for answers to the questions spinning in my head, you would lay your hand on mine and the peace and calm would overtake me. through it all, you are the strongest and most resilient girl I know.

Jolie- you are brave, graceful, independent, oh-so-stubborn, strong-willed, loving, warm, bossy, difficult, easy, and tough as nails all in one. I see so much of your dad in your looks, but when it comes to the attitude we both agree that you are all mama.  you and Parker have a very special bond, but I have seen lately that you and Baker have become little buddies. you love to play mama’s and babies with your littlest sister and rarely leave her out. I often find you two cuddling on the couch, stacking blocks together, pulling one another in the wagon, or taking turns pushing on the swing.  what an awesome big sister you are.

barbies. shopkins. lalaloopsies. baby dolls. coloring. puzzles. imaginary + independent play.

you are my collector but also my hoarder. you love to gather the tiniest toys and figurines and treat them like your most prized possessions. you are my accessories girl.  lipgloss, purses + bags, shoes, sunglasses, and hair bows are an absolute MUST for any occasion.

five is a funny age. sometimes it feels like you are five going on twenty five with your sassy attitude and awareness of the world around you.  the things you understand and say to me occasionally knock my socks off, little girl!  and then, when I am not expecting it, your back to being my little shadow. following me around the house as I straighten up in the evenings or sitting quietly in the bathroom with your little trinkets and things while I blow dry my hair.  you love to crawl into my lap just before bed to fall asleep so I’ll carry you to your room to tuck you in.

JoJo, your 5-year-old world is unique, wonderfully beautiful, and so much fun- I never want to leave. I just want time to stop this very second to I can soak in your preciousness and insane beauty for all its worth. pausing just long enough to remember everything tiny thing you say and do because, girlfriend, you are sweet as pie. I remain in awe of you, my perfect girls. you’ve shown me the world through a different lens and I’ve never seen a brighter picture than the ones you paint in this life. Parker, you have shown me that dresses + sneakers are a perfect match, and Jolie, that it is totally appropriate to eat potato chips for breakfast.

I cannot wait to see what the next year holds for you two :: a bright yellow school bus, kindergarten homework, tooth fairy visits, field trips, new friends and experiences to walk through.  either way, I know you’ll approach it with the same spirit, the same joy, and the same silly sense of humor that you’ve excelled in over the last five years.

december 6th, 2012. 5 years ago today you, my sweet Jolie and Parker, entered into this world.  making me a mom. rocking our world with your tiny presence and really showing me what true love is all about. I love being your mom so much and I am so very proud of the little girls you have become.

happiest birthday, Jolie and Parker!


photography by:: averie claire photography

flower crowns+horse garland :: jordan dunaway

horse unicorn horn:: baby birdie boutique

ruffle leotard :: golden hill design

white tutus :: trevi ave co 

unicorn birthday crowns :: little blue olive

giant balloons + balloon tail :: genwoo handmade

December 6, 2017

  1. CC says:

    Happy 5th birthday to Jolie and Parker!

  2. Lauren says:

    THESE PICTURES. Um. Would it be weird if I copied this photoshoot for my next birthday? 33? I mean that’s a milestone?

    Seriously, gorgeous! Happy birthday girls!

  3. Karissa says:

    gorgeous pictures!! wow.

  4. Heather B. says:

    Amazing pictures! Gorgeous girls – happy 5th birthday to them! I can’t wait to see their party pictures!

  5. Stephanie Allen says:

    This is every little girls dream photo shoot….so magical, fun and special.

    All I can say is #killingit

  6. Jodi says:

    Wonderful pictures of beautiful little girls! Happy Birthday Jolie and Parker

  7. Hillary says:

    Such sweet words to your precious girls! My babe is only nine months old, but already, time is slipping through my fingers, and your beautiful words to your growing daughters brought tears to my eyes! What a beautiful treasure for them to look back on one day!

  8. Kelly says:

    Your girls are gorgeous! I love the photos!
    Bless you for handling 4 kids! It’s amazing what us women are capable of!

  9. Brittany H. says:

    In tears over here! Your girls’ qualities + interests sound so similar to my girls in their own ways & your words are just perfect. I wish I could write to mine as perfectly as you do to yours. The days go too quickly & I can barely tear myself away from their rooms after prayers and goodnight.
    You’re doing an Awesome job.