617.501.4008 cara@carasoulia.com
Saachi, You’re a Big Sister!

Saachi, You’re a Big Sister!

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I was so thrilled to hear from Saachi’s parents that they were welcoming another baby. The family had relocated to Needham from San Francisco just over a year ago when I met them for our first photo session. Saachi was just about a year old when we first met for our family photography session. And she was simply gorgeous.

Needham Newborn Photography

A year later and she’s grown — and Niam has arrived! Returning to see this family for a Needham newborn photography session was the highlight of my day. Take the time to scroll through this entire session. You’ll see Saachi is just as gorgeous as ever, even when she’s not feeling 100% like her lovely self.

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Six days old.

No words really can describe the emotions that come along with simply just being in the presence of a baby that small. So new. So tiny. So precious.

It really is just the beginning.

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Niam is adored already, of course. It was fantastic weaving in and out of the home snapping images of him as his family showered him with love.

Saachi was really hesitant during our session. Not even two years old herself, she was under the weather and likely overwhelmed with all the changes that were taking place in her home. Mom and Dad took it in stride, however. Having worked with me before, they knew they could trust that I’m in no rush. Our session is not formal. It is not posed. No one needs to be perfect and perky.

You’re empowered to Just Be.

And so she was. Isn’t it fantastic to have captured a series of images showing the connection between Saachi and her father? She needed some one-on-one attention. Some peace and calm. I am so glad I trailed them very quietly. Aren’t these images real?

From there, the family came together. And the keepsake images happened. Mom emailed me to tell me they are thrilled with the images, which pleases me so much.

I love this session, not only because the family is so kind, but because it validates my belief that it’s always worth investing in a photographer you trust. I understand how to stay back and be a fly on the wall while capturing your moments without stressing everyone out. I have three children, too, so I understand the personalities and nuances that come in any family situation.

It is always worth the investment.

Welcome, Niam. You lucky, lucky boy.


Cara Soulia is a Needham newborn photographer who specializes in creating beautiful, emotional images of your family’s story. Click here to see more at home newborn sessions or get in touch to find out more about scheduling a one.

 

A Mother’s Work:  Stacy Madison | Founder, Stacy’s Pita Chips, Stacy’s Juice Bar, and BeBOLD Foods

A Mother’s Work:  Stacy Madison | Founder, Stacy’s Pita Chips, Stacy’s Juice Bar, and BeBOLD Foods

Meet Stacy Madison. She is the Co-Founder of Stacy’s Pita Chips and Stacy’s Juice Bar in Needham, Massachusetts.  Stacy is also the founder of a new venture: BeBOLD energy bars.

Photos by Boston photographer Cara Soulia.

Boston photographer Portrait of Stacy Madison

A Mother’s Work:  Stacy Madison | Founder of Stacy’s Pita Chips, Stacy’s Juice Bar and BeBold Foods

Website |Instagram

One of my very pasttimes is to listen to business podcasts while I’m editing photos. One of my very favorite podcast is How I Built This podcast with Guy Raz on NPR. I was so thrilled when I realized Guy interviewed Needham’s very own Stacy Madison last May.  I always knew the founder of Stacy’s Juice Bar was also the founder of Stacy’s Pita Chips, but I never knew all that transpired in between those two business ventures. And now she’s adding in #3: BeBold Foods.

I was so inspired by Stacy’s story: her candor about divorce, raising twin girls as a single mom, her battle with breast cancer, and the struggles of being a working mom.  I knew she was a perfect candidate for my A Mother’s Work portrait series and was thrilled that she agreed to participate.

I met up with Stacy at the juice bar in October and she was just as down to earth as I expected. Read on to learn more.

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Where did you grow up and what was your childhood like?

I grew up in Upstate New York but moved to Sharon, Massachusetts when I was 13 years old. Growing up we didn’t have cell phones or the internet so we made our own fun. We played outside, rode bikes, pulled wagons with the lawnmower and played with fire in the woods. All the things you do as a kid when you don’t have a phone! I moved to Sharon in my freshman year of high school, so that was difficult. I didn’t know anybody and everyone had their friends from junior high.

Was there something that influenced your path to becoming an entrepreneur? When did that turning point happen?

I think two people influenced my path to becoming an entrepreneur. One my father who a psychologist but he always had entrepreneurial ventures on the side. I think he wanted to be an entrepreneur but he was a psychologist with a family to support so entrepreneurial ventures were too risky. Second my sister, I saw her running other businesses and starting her own so I saw firsthand that it was achievable. The turning point for me was when I was living in Hawaii and working for a startup operation. I learned how to run a business and the amount of work that went into it. Unfortunately, I was called into a meeting where I thought I was getting a promotion and I unexpectedly got fired. So at that point, I took what I learned from that company both what to do and what not to do, and began my journey.

You’re literally a brand in many homes, but you’re more than famous pita chips. You’re a mom, a friend, boss, community member. If you could give yourself an attribute as a brand, what would you want it to be? 

If I could give my brand an attribute I would want it to be inclusion, humanist, realist but ultimately BOLD. BOLD to me is something that inspires you and others to be the best versions of yourselves you can be. I teach my kids to take a second before anything they do and reflect if they are being a leader or a follower. I’ve taken that parenting motto and turned it into a brand.

What was it like raising two babies/ young children while running your business? What were the hardest things? What was the gift? 

And, what’s it like with teenagers?

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I would describe raising two babies while running my business as a run-away train. There is no slowing down. The hardest thing was that I had to make a lot of scarifies to have the future we have today. I missed out on the first few years of their lives but I had to do what I needed to do. On the bright side, I was able to be flexible and make my own schedule, and if I needed to I would just bring the girls to work with me. Now that they are teenagers it is much easier. I still worry but I worry about them differently. It is so rewarding to watch them grow and become women. I’ve watched them become leaders and stand up for others who may not feel like they have a voice. All the things that make you proud as a parent because you are no longer only meeting their needs but seeing them grow into the people you wanted them to become.  

How would you describe each of your children? What are some of your children’s favorite foods/juices?

I would describe one as an overachiever and the other as a free spirit. Their favorite foods are steak and pasta. They love acai bowls from the juice bar because they first had them in Brazil when they were younger and they still love them today.

Why Needham for the Juice Bar? 

I chose Needham for the Juice Bar because I live the Westwood but Needham had a better town center. With it only being 5 minutes away it’s been a great place to run my passion project.

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Do you have a favorite item at the Juice Bar?

I eat at the Juice Bar every day so I rotate what I get, but my current favorite is the toasted salmon avocado sandwich with a cashew spread. My favorite juice is the detox lemonade and my favorite smoothie is the acai bowl or grasshopper smoothie.

Community clearly matters to you — why?

The Juice Bar has made an unexpected difference in the community. Being there for people if they want to make a healthy choice has changed lives.

What is one of the best pieces of business advice (or life advice?) that someone has given you?

Listen more than you speak. I have not only used this with my kids but also with employees and people who are upset. When I listen I avoid sticking my foot in my mouth. I also like to look at each day as a new page in a book. We have the opportunity to write it ourselves and control what our future looks like.

What advice would you give someone asking: I’d love to start my own small business but don’t know where to start.

You’re lucky because you have more resources than I had back when I started my company. Immerse yourself into the industry. If it happens to be the food industry read books, attend trade shows, walk around grocery stores, start living and breathing it first. Then turn to local organizations. For food, there is a specialty food association that will have great advice for new ventures and entrepreneurs.

Is there a promotion I can share with my local audience for Stacy’s Juice Bar? Or for the BeBold Bars?

Between 2/5 – 2/14  anyone who mentions “Cara” (That’s Me!) or this blog post gets a free BeBOLD bar with a $10 purchase. 
 

Website |Instagram Read more features from the A Mother’s Work series here!


Cara Soulia is a Boston Photographer who specializes in creating beautiful, natural images in a unique and artistic way. See more of Cara’s work here or get in touch to find out more about scheduling a photo session. 

Twin Siblings (and their parents) Welcome Baby Frankie

Twin Siblings (and their parents) Welcome Baby Frankie

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Boston Newborn Photographers always love to get an email with a subject line like this:  I’m expecting again!

I was simply thrilled to hear from one of my West Roxbury clients a few months ago that she was due with Baby Number 3!

Boston Newborn Photographers

You know how when you meet someone on a professional basis and you just instantly like them? You enjoy your work, of course, and (in the case of being a newborn photographer anyway) you spend even more time creating and refining the product that you’re delivering to them?

That’s this family for me. These images are true keepsakes and I know this family will treasure them forever.

I love this couple so much, and I am amazed at how far they have come since we met just over three years ago. Read on to find out why.

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Frankie (Frances), joined twin siblings Charlotte & Jack in November. She was just about five weeks old when I visited for our photo session. She was alert for much of the session which was great because there was a lot of love being showered upon her by her parents, brother and sister.Boston Newborn Photographers

Five week old babies still tire easily though, which means we were able to get a nice mix of images, both awake and asleep.

Isn’t she beautiful, all swaddled and sleeping soundly?

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Seeing Frankie’s parents handle the birth of their third child in stride was no surprise to me because they are such down to earth, relaxed people.

I was so impressed with them during our first session together, when Charlotte and Jack were newborns. You wouldn’t have known from looking at them, but the twins were born very premature at just 27 weeks. The path from birth to home was long the first time around, but mom and dad made it through with smiles on their faces.

This time, things went a lot more smoothly.

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I love working with this family because they really value the role that authentic photography plays in creating their family memories. Mom and Dad committed to my special Birth to Birthday package, which includes three sessions (view their 6 month session and 12 month session) as well as a gorgeous coffee table album of highlights from their first year.

I can’t help but think that Frankie is creating yet another new chapter for this fun and loving crew. Check out some candid moments that happened during this session.

I love how they feel very natural and true to life with three little kids!

 


Cara Soulia is a Boston newborn photographer who specializes in creating beautiful, emotional images of your family’s story. Click here to see more at home newborn sessions or get in touch to find out more about scheduling a one.

Make Room for the Fur Babies

Make Room for the Fur Babies

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If you follow this blog regularly, you’re well-aware that I spend a significant amount of my professional time photographing newborns and families in the Boston area. I strive to be a fun family Boston photographer, and sometimes, thanks to an extra family member tagging along, it’s pretty hard for me to fail.

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Oh yes, I’m talking about that baby no one really thinks about when they’re planning a family photo session, but who, of course, everyone wants to include when the day comes. The Fur Baby!

Family pets are simply adorable (in photos). I love the top image of this post so much. The pup is bigger than the toddler! Look at how she daintily holds his big leash. What a sweetie pie the pup is….sitting and posing for my camera.

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For sure, typical pets like dogs and cats find their way into my sessions, but these young ladies offered me a surprise: chickens! We couldn’t resist bringing a handful of feed over to them. I love the little burst of red in this image.

As usual with my sessions, less can be more. I want to photograph your family in your real life. While we’ll always snag some fantastic posed images, my goal is to capture your family being themselves. So if your toddler drops food to the family dog during snack time, so be it. Now we know why he’s lingering nearby. Turns out it’s not because he dreams of being on film.

This kitty isn’t totally convinced that he wants to participate in my session, but his preschool owner is making sure he stays. So there you go.

Capturing an image of a young boy expressing his true love for the family pet is so heartwarming to me. This pup definitely had something else besides the hug on this mind though, right?

But indeed, I’m here for all of you. Your whole family. Adults, children, and more. I do think this little guy appreciated being center stage in one of the images.

Whether you’re planning a newborn session, family session or an extended family session, trust that I’m there to ensure you get the images that cement memories of that very day. This very moment in your life. If your fur baby (or babies!) are part of the picture (no pun intended!), bring them along. I promise they’ll smile.


Cara Soulia is a Fun Family Boston Photographer who specializes in capturing the relationships between ALL family members.  Get in touch to schedule your family session for 2020!

And Baby Makes Six (!) | Boston Baby Photographer

And Baby Makes Six (!) | Boston Baby Photographer

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You’d think that being about-to-pop pregnant with your fourth child would make a mother frantic and scattered, but that wasn’t the case with the mom in this newborn session. As a Boston Baby Photographer, I was knee-deep into my busy fall season of photo sessions when we connected, and her baby’s due date was quickly approaching – right before the holidays! But, she had a plan, and if all went well, mom and baby would be home before she knew it.

Could we schedule a session within the first week? Of course!

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Is there anything better than receiving a new sibling as a holiday gift? I think not!

Evelyn, entered the world in mid-December, joining three older siblings. With four children under age 7, the house is bustling more than ever. Aren’t they gorgeous?

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Evelyn didn’t seem fazed to have mom, dad, three siblings, and her grandmother scurrying around. She was calm throughout the entire session, just taking it all in.

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It was so fantastic to have Evelyn’s grandmother in town (lending extra hands, arms, and more, I am sure!) for the photo session. Organizing extended family photo sessions can take a lot of planning and they rarely happen with a newborn. Capturing images of baby Evelyn, so young, with her grandmother is something that this family will treasure forever.

I’m thrilled that the family loved their images, as Mom noted in her follow up to me:

“Thank you so much! I’m so happy to have so many pictures of our family, especially shots with me in them! I know we will love looking back at this moment in time and appreciate the chaos and the sweetness.”

The pleasure was mine!


Cara Soulia is a Boston area newborn photographer who specializes in capturing beautiful and natural images of those amazing first early weeks with your baby.  Get in touch to schedule your newborn session for 2020!