It goes without saying that life goes by in a blink of an eye. This especially holds true when you have children. One minute you’re nibbling on their little toes and the next you’re holding back the tears as you’re dropping them off at their first day of school.

Your baby’s first year if full of can’t miss moments that must be captured, saved, printed, stored, shared, and cherished!

I have been a photographer for 13 years and here are my personal suggestions for capturing the exciting first year!

Maternity: The journey begins!

I’m going to suggest a maternity photo shoot here because this is where the journey starts. Hearing the heartbeat for the first time, the moving, the kicking, and seeing them for the first time during your first ultrasound (sonogram) appointment.

Some don’t feel comfortable taking photos during their pregnancy but trust the photographer. They will make you feel great and look beautiful! You’ll look great! After all, you’re glowing!

Take photos when you feel the most comfortable, most like their photos around 32 weeks or 7 month.

Newborn: So sleepy and tiny!

The best time to capture newborn photos would be before 2 weeks. At this stage they are so little and so sleepy! You can do newborn photos at 4 weeks but they are more prone to waking up when posing them and they are also a little bigger.

Before the 2-week mark, since they are very sleepy, you can pose them in a variety of ways without disrupting their sleep too much. They can be on their belly, back, side and they could be put into anything like a basket, toy chest, and little wagon!

At this stage they might be a little scratched up (keep gloves on them to protect their face), maybe a little jaundiced and have a few pimples. Don’t worry! The photographer should correct these blemishes.

Newborn photos are a must have to remember this small stage that goes by very quickly!

3 or 4 months: Tummy time and head balance!

This is, perhaps, where you will see the most changes during the first year.

They have grown a lot since the newborn photos.They smile more often, maybe have a little bit of hair, and they probably look like of you by now. But, they don’t do much besides be on their back and a few seconds of tummy time. The head balance should be a full strength too!

Photos at this point show a big contrast in the physical changes of your baby. You will hold your baby a lot at this stage, since they can’t sit on their own yet. They will lay on their back and maybe a few photos with them holding their head high!

6 or 7 months: Sitting up laughing and smiling!

This is my FAVORITE STAGE! At this point, they interact and smile a little bit more. They sit up, they grab things, they bite things, and have the sweetest laugh!

I love to capture the 6-7 month pictures while the baby is on a big bed or a cushy blanket outside. They sit up well, but sometimes that head is too big and they tiiiiiimber over. So cute!

At this point, tummy time is no longer torture for them so they can last a little longer. Oh! And don’t forget to capture a few pictures of they nibbling on their toes while on their back.

Enjoy the cuteness overload during this stage.

1 year: Standing, moving, and cake smashing!

Here we are! That first year flew by! This is a the movement stage where they developed a way to get from point A to point B. Whether it be by crawling, scooting, rolling, or walking.

Dress them up in their Sunday best, give them lots of hugs and kisses, maybe a little cake, and enjoy the memories of their first birthday!

I hope this helps you out when planning photos during your baby’s first year!