A bit of Before and After – Maternity

I thought it would be fun to show you the before and after edits.

After we have our session together I go through the images and put together a proof gallery so you can pick your favorites for the collection you want. The collection you choose will depend on if you’re into albums, wall art, gift prints or digital gallery.

These proof galleries are not edited except for the few I tend to convert to black and white. Other than that, they’re straight out of the camera, exactly how I captured it.

From your proof gallery you will choose your favorites and the amount will depend on the collection you choose. I will artistically edit those images you have chosen to keep from your gallery.

Once I’m all done and happy with how the images look, I will order the prints &/or products you have chosen and then I will deliver them to you after I have received and inspected them.

It’s important to have your images professionally printed because color calibration is different for each lab.

After I receive your prints, if I am not happy with how the color or finishing turned out, it will be re-ordered before it’s delivered to you.

So that is what happens after our session that goes with hiring me as your photographer when it comes to portrait sessions.

I want the whole process for you to be relaxing and enjoyable from start to finish and that includes looking at the final product hanging on your walls.

Contact us today to reserve your session!

(562) 400-2579
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Member of the International Association of Professional Birth Photographers

Are you well adjusted?

I started taking my family to Dr Cece at the beginning of last year. She is an awesome chiropractor in Seal Beach who specializes in women and children and follows the Webster techniques.

Initially I started with my oldest daughter and had her evaluated, then a couple more and then the other 3 and finally I figured, I need to practice what I preach and lead by example. So I started care myself.

I love the poster Dr Cece has up in her office where is show’s different parts of the spin correlating to various organs and then learning how when our bodies are not in alignment it can affect our emotions as well.

I’ll share with you a few things we saw a major change in when we started care.

My oldest has awful allergies. Literally blowing her nose all day long and even more when we would go on nature walks or when the weather changed. This also caused all day grumpiness because when you don’t feel good… I would have to say within the first 2 weeks of care under Dr Cece we saw a change in allergy issues. They was less nose blowing, more smiling and laughing again. It was amazing! My girl no longer has to carry a box of tissues with her everywhere she goes and I’m not constantly applying lavender essential oil on her numerous times a day.

Another had some major grounding troubles and now that one skips and jumps and runs down hills and even climbs up ladders without trembling in fear. So so thankful!

Asthma and breathing troubles minimized and if we had any stuffiness or post nasal drip going on she knew what type of adjustment to do to help our bodies heal.

One major thing for me was the range of motion in my neck. I could not fully turn to by left and it was super uncomfortable when I did. Now I can look over my shoulder without any pain.

I just so love how God provides for our every need and He brings some neat people into our lives.

We are not created to do life alone, we were created for community and to support one another with our gifts, knowledge, abilities and strengths.

Below is a video I put together while I was at Simply Well Chiropractic recently.

Karine is the smiling face that greets you when you walk through the doors.

My family is so thankful for Dr. Cece and Karine!

(562) 400-2579
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MaternityWise Intl Doula Training Online and Workshop Certification

Doula Certificate

My labor doula certificate arrived and so did some of my new cards!

A little over a year ago I started my journey in my doula education.

It involved reading, workshops and hands on experience over the whole 2021 year. Yes, I could have gotten everything done sooner, but I’m thankful for the extra time to learn, absorb and apply what I learned and already knew.

I sent in all of my paperwork in January which was perfect timing to be allowed to accompany one of my mamas into the hospital to support her as protocols had just changed to 1 support person and 1 certified doula with the birthing mother. God’s timing is always perfect right?

I have loved being able to support mamas with not only the images I’m capturing during the birth of their little love, but with words of encouragement, hands on help and an extra support for dad as well.

There is a reason it’s called a birth team and I am always so honored and thankful that I’m part of the team for so many mamas and families.

I just wanted to share my fun news with you.

And if you haven’t seen my resource list, I encourage you to take a look at it. There are so many great professionals and resources for the expecting and postpartum mom. I’m constantly updating and adding to the list as I learn more and meet more amazing professionals in the area.

So if you are an expecting mama or know an expecting mama looking for birth photography and/or birth doula I’d love to hear from you. Contact me through the form or feel free to email, info@alainanunez.com or call 562-400-2579.

(562) 400-2579
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You can also find us on Google and YELP!

MaternityWise Intl Doula Training Online and Workshop Certification

The Mess

Random thoughts while I take a break from cleaning…

Do you ever notice that the mess looks way worse than it did before you started cleaning?

Such is life right.

The mess is staring you in the face, the outcome looks bleak, the frustration, overwhelm and anxious feelings start creeping in.

Throw in the towel now or press on and make progress, even if it’s just in baby steps?

Really the choice is ours. The choice has always been. We were given this gift of free will yet a lot of times we resent this gift. Why? Is it because we don’t want to be responsible for our actions?

Just like this mess that I’m cleaning up. It didn’t just appear (though that’s how it feels), the items that are strewn about were intentionally opened, scattered and then left. Maybe this should be a habit we start working on with the kids. Putting stuff away when we’re done. Finishing what we start. Taking care of our things. Being good stewards of our time, space and things. Wow, I need to work on ALL of these myself!

Back to the mess.

I will carry on and complete the task even if I know I will have to do it again. There’s just something about organizing and throwing things away that is both overwhelming and yet so freeing.

Which makes me think, do I do this cleaning so that I can feel good about myself? I haven’t ever received a gold star for my efforts. Maybe it’s a form of self care? Or maybe mental care? I would definitely agree with mental care.

I have seen some pretty amazing miracles happening around me lately and it’s pretty awesome to witness. I hear of things happening that is just a mess. The outcome looks bleak. Yet in my heart and my mind I think, “But God.” He works in the darkest moments. When everyone else has given up except the prayer warrior who has worn out their knees. But God. The One who spoke life into nothing. The One who is not restricted by the laws of man. But God.

Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made. (John 1:3)

Do you believe in miracles? I’m sure you’ve seen some pretty amazing miracles in your life. Not coincidence. Not lucky. No, the universe was not on watch duty. The Maker of heaven and earth, that is Who causes miracles to happen.

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. (Phil 4:13)

Alright! Let’s do this!

Back to the messy mundane that I am so blessed to call my home and that I pray feels like a haven to any and all who enter, but especially to my family.

These are my random yet not so random thoughts for today.

The mess.

Miracles.

A blessing.

I hope I am always able to look at the mess as a blessing.

Blessings,

Alaina

(562) 400-2579
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What is home birth – La Mirada Birth Photographer

I met this lovely mama mid pregnancy over coffee one Saturday morning. She was expecting her 3rd baby blessing and was interested in having me document her first home birth experience. We literally talked for 2 hours about birth, kids, family, work, life, church… It was a bit of girl or mama time, that I think we both needed.

Debbie is a certified hypnobirth instructor and don’t worry if you’re not in the area because she offers classes virtually as well. Her business page Harmonious Childbirth is where you’ll find out all the things about her hypnobirthing course and offerings. I highly suggest you check that out because she’s going to be starting her next series of classes next month.

I always come to the team meeting and prenatal for my home birth mamas. It is typically around 36 weeks and the dad, mom, midwife, doula and anyone else who plans on being present at the birth should be there. That includes me, the birth photographer (and now certified labor doula!).

I met the lovely Celest who is the midwife at Ivy Midwifery Services. It is always fun to watch the hands of a midwife. They learn so much just by touch and the time and care they pour into each of their expecting mamas is just beautiful.

I never took a hypnobirthing course (I will be soon) but I have learned so much from the mamas that have invited me into their birthing space, into their sacred space. Debbie labored beautifully. I could see her body relax as she was breathing intentionally and calmly through each wave/contraction.

I also got to work with La Kiesha who was Debbie’s doula. Her business is Agape Birth & Wellness She did the counter pressure, helped get mama into different positions, brought a fan and some peppermint essential oil for the times of queasiness. So much support and love.

Here’s a fun video dad took and Debbie edited and shared on Instagram her thoughts on What she got out of Home Birth.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CYcCTJaBdlH/

This is the proud dad with the second midwife and student midwife behind him. I just love all the joy you can feel in this image!

This right here… Look at all the care that is being poured out onto this mama that just birth a beautiful soul! Mom’s being taken care of while baby is being checked on and she didn’t have to go anywhere to do this. Love it!

Proud dad and excited big sister and interested brother. Aren’t they so sweet!?

I would say, Debbie was glowing after birth but I think she was just radiant while she was laboring too.

You can watch their birth story film, I’m putting it right here for you. 🙂

If you’re expecting this year please feel free to Get in Touch or send me an email, info@alainanunez.com

Don’t miss out on documenting this beautiful soul’s birth story and the amazing journey and strength of you mama.

We were created for this and truly blessed to be able to experience the awe inspiring moment of child birth.

Blessings,

Alaina

(562) 400-2579
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You can also find us on Google and YELP!

Orange County Birth Photographer, Los Angeles County Birth Photographer, Ontario Birth Photographer, Long Beach Birth Photographer, Birth Stories, La Mirada Birth Photographer, Home Birth, Water Birth, Hypno Birth

Yellowstone in October

We took a quick road trip at the beginning of October and were able to see Yellowstone, The Grand Tetons and Zion National parks. I say quick because we left on Oct 2nd and got back home on October 9th. Not counting California, we drove through 6 states within a week.

So this first picture is actual in Utah at the Fillmore KOA which is where we spent our first night. The second night we spent with friends (more like family) in northern Utah.

On our first day exploring Yellowstone we entered through the Montana side, the northern entrance and soon after we entered the park there were some elk crossing the road. This one even waited for the car to stop before crossing. haha I took this through the windshield.

If you have a 4th grader you can get a nation park pass so you can get into any national park for free during the school year through the summer. Our 4th is in 4th this year.

This area is the Mammoth Hot Springs. Smells a bit funky (not that bad) but looks amazing!

Can you tell I really enjoyed taking pictures at this spot?

The one animal that we “had” to see was a Bison so we traveled along the northern road, passed the petrified tree and Tower-Roosevelt through the Lamar Valley. Once we hit Lamar Valley we saw 3 different herds of Bison.

My 14 year old had a zoom lens on and he got the picture below

Isn’t this adorable!?!

The next day we drove down passed a bunch of geysers but there’s just something about wood sidewalks and bridges that I have to stop for.

And these trees!!! Oh my gosh, they are my favorite!

You know, just a bison on the side of the road munchin’ on some grass.

My friend had visited Yellowstone in early July so we were comparing how different it looked between our trips. Her trip it was all lush and green with many beautiful wildflowers. Our trip had blue skies but chilly air and lovely yellows. God created some amazing things for us to enjoy didn’t He?

Our final Yellowstone stop was at Old Faithful. We got to see it erupt twice. This shot was when we were on the observation area and the 2nd time it erupted we were back in the parking lot and you could see it over the tall building. That really gave us more of a perspective of how high it really goes.

Thanks for reminiscing and traveling through Yellowstone with me! Have you ever been? Any other spots we should make sure to see next time we go? I’ll take all the tips!

Blessings,

Alaina

Alaina Nunez Photography
(562) 400-2579
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The San Diego Zoo in Black and White

Just the other month I was talking with my 3 year old about his favorite animals and what he thought his siblings favorite animals were and right then I realized… He had not been to the zoo yet! I felt this need to take my little guy to the zoo! I found out one of the moms in our homeschool group was planning the trip already so we were set to go, just had to wait for the date to come.

I was so excited to be able to take my kids to the San Diego Zoo this year. I even had my photography students meet us there for our field trip.

We were counting back and realized that it had been 5-6 years since we had been to the SD Zoo so it was a new and fun experience for most since the younger ones didn’t remember and the older ones had fresh eyes and a higher perspective. 😉

As I’m sure you already know, black and white photographs are what I love. The simplicity, the detail, the mystery…

We ended up by the gorillas at the perfect time… lunch time! That was fun to watch their personalities come out. This one had his back to everyone while he enjoyed his lettuce.

This one went a ways off to enjoy some alone time while he ate.

Hippos are so relaxing to watch

I think giraffes always have this relaxed, slightly annoyed look on their face.

One of my students letting my little guy take pictures. They’re a fun bunch to hang out with. 🙂

Since we were there during the month of October, toward the evening they were getting ready to start their Boo-Fest and there were bubbles floating up toward us as we were crossing over one of the bridges.

Did I meantion we left at 6 in the morning and got home at 9pm? Well… It was a Full. Fun. Day.

Blessings,

Alaina

Looking forward to meeting you and telling your beautiful story!

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Alaina Nunez Photography
(562) 400-2579
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A Day in Our Life on a Wednesday (La Mirada Documentary Family Photographer)

My eldest reminded me that I had not done a Day in our Life for quite some time and looking back at the last one, she is totally right. This Day in our Life was back in 2017. And I think it’s funny that it is also in the month of April.

So here it is, a typical Wednesday in our life, and I guess we can also say, a typical Wednesday in April.

What I saw when I opened the office door.

My office is also the spare room and play room
My work space
He likes to send “good morning” emails to his grandma and sometimes his friends
Wednesday is street sweeper day so both the dog and little guy were watching

We’ve been receiving care from Dr Cece at Simply Well Chiropractic in Long Beach so we that is part of our weekly routine for better health.

Everybody out!
It’s always a race to the front door
“we have to run mama!”

I know this next one’s focus is off but it was a no look shot while we were running.

This little guy is awesome!
After adjustments they always get to pick a sticker from Ms Karine
He’s showing Karine some tap dancing moves.

We have to discuss who gets to go first and in what order because everyone (yes everyone!) looks forward to their time with Dr. Cece.

I did not tell her to smile, she was laughing
When it’s mama’s turn the little guy wants to cuddle.
Now it’s a race back to the car!

Back at home…

games
school
I think it’s sweet that they’re the same height when he’s on his knee.
By request of the little guy, he asked “Nay Nay” to play Duck Hunt with him.

Our little dwarf apple tree has too many apples which made the top branch bend. We didn’t want it to break so we splinted it with a dowel and some tape. So far, so good.

Meet Whinny, Speedy and I think that one is Salt.

Some backyard chores.

Tossing out some treats for the chickens and the dog always tries to steal food from them.
I don’t remember what they were watching maybe Wild Kratts or something.

Ok so these next three photographs are actually from the next day but they are definitely a part of our daily activities so I wanted to include them.

playdough or painting is the usual at the table.
I didn’t tell him to look at me or to pose, that was all him. 🙂
Always on the move.

So there you have it, a typical Wednesday for us in the month of April.

What does your typical day include? Did you know I offer Day in the Life Sessions? Get in Touch if you’d like to know more.

Blessings,

Alaina

Looking forward to meeting you and telling your beautiful story!

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Alaina Nunez Photography
(562) 400-2579
Website / Instagram / Facebook / Pinterest

You can also find us on Google and YELP!

Coverage areas include: Los Angeles County, Orange County, Irvine, Newport, La Mirada, Whittier, Brea, Fullerton, Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Corona, Long Beach, Lakewood, Seal Beach, Huntington Beach, Tustin, Orange, La Habra, Downey, San Clemente, Mission Viejo, Laguna Hills

Why Birth Pictures {Orange County Birth Photographer}

I love that with photography it captures how a person actually feels.

It is raw and beautiful but also messy and uncertain.

I do not want to capture something pretty but something beautiful and breathtaking.

We are all human and we all experience the same emotions of love, joy, sorrow, despair, frustration, jubilee, relief, anxiety, anticipation and pure bliss.

Pictures are so important because they are moments that we can’t get back.

We are only here for a time, whether that be short or long and the time we have is precious, it is truly a gift.

I want you to feel special and loved on during your photography experience with me.

I also want you to know that we all have a Heavenly Father that cares for us and it is evident in the blessings we experience every day.

I am truly honored to document your family moments and memories with my photographs.

Blessings,

Alaina

Get in Touch

Looking forward to meeting you and telling your beautiful story!

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Alaina Nunez Photography
(562) 400-2579
Website / Instagram / Facebook / Pinterest

You can also find us on Google and YELP!

Coverage areas include: Serving Los Angeles County, Orange County, Irvine, Newport, La Mirada, Whittier, Brea, Fullerton, Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Corona, Long Beach, Lakewood, Seal Beach, Huntington Beach, Tustin, Orange, La Habra, Downey, San Clemente, Mission Viejo, Laguna

Mother Culture – Thoughts from this Mama’s Heart

I spent the morning with a friend the other week and she was asking me all things that pertained to mothering and homeschooling. I knew that’s what she wanted to talk about so I was prepared… Well, not really, but I at least expected to be questioned.

The one question that she asked that I found interesting was about “self care”, she wanted to know what I thought about it because she had mixed feelings. Her question was, “Is that biblical?” As Christian’s we have to be careful not to fall into the worldly thinking of “I need this, I deserve this, it’s my right to have it” that is such normal thinking today in our culture of modern moms. But is it biblical?

Self care… I do believe we need to take care of ourselves as women, wives and mothers or else we’ll eventually end up overwhelmed, dry and on the brink of a nervous breakdown and only end up becoming what we never wanted to become, a burden to others.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6 & 7

I told this young mama, that I adopted the idea of “mother culture” which just sounds less selfish (and fancier for that matter!) than self care, to me. But the difference is, in mother culture I am doing something that brings JOY into my life so that I can pour that joy and excitement back out onto my children, onto my husband and bring that spirit of HOPE back into my home. That is what appeals to me. It is a refresh.

What does that look like in real life. I incorporate into our daily routines (especially school time) what I find lovely, what brings me joy, what lights that fire of wanting to know more, how and why. Oh the deep questions that reading scripture together brings, even if I don’t get the opportunity to read just by myself. The opportunity for all to take that chance to pray and to give them that opportunity to pray specifically for those in need. I have one that does not forget specific people and their need for prayer. This precious little soul prayed for this need every day for at least 6 months, never missing a chance to throw in that request at the end of a prayer no matter who was praying. Another precious one gets choked up while praying sometimes and after one of those moments confided in me that they almost cried, I told them I do that sometimes too. Oh to see how sensitive to the Holy Spirit our children are is such an honor and privilege! It truly is! To keep it real there’s always a decent amount of me reminding them, “if you’re talking you’re not listening.” throughout our reading/discussion times.

“but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” – Isaiah 40:31

This mama job is not for the faint of heart. It is HARD work. It is HEART work. It is beautiful in the Lord’s eyes because you are being obedient to what God has called you to do, at this very moment. Because you woke up this morning and have answered the call of the Lord just as Samuel answered, Yes Lord, here I am.

“When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your unfailing love, LORD, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.” – Psalm 34:18 & 19

I do want to say, don’t focus on the “job” of schooling. Focus on the relationships. What lights that passion within you? I’m sure you know your children well enough to know what lights their hearts on fire and if you are not sure, ask! About once a year I interview my children and they actually really love it (obviously some more than others) and I find out some interesting things about them and then of course they interview me. Sometimes to start our morning time I’ll ask my children to recite just 1 Bible verse they’ve memorized (since I know we’ve worked on so many throughout the years) with the question, “what verse has God put on your heart today?” and we just go down the row and they recite and sometimes help each other along, and it’s not always the older ones helping the younger ones just so you know. Then I go back over and point to each one as I say something that pertains to that verse. “God is patient”, “God will fight for us”, “A body works best when each part is healthy and working together toward the same goal”, “Do not fear”, etc.

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10

Don’t forget to give yourself GRACE. There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ. He does not condemn you, there is no guilt or shame. You are the perfect mom for your children. God knew what your children needed and He put that ability within you. Your compassion, your stubbornness, your creativity, your desire to want to help others succeed and your willingness to serve. Because this morning you said, Yes, Lord, here I am, speak, your servant is listening.

Don’t rush the heart work even when it is painful (or you’re just so over it, I hear you), it will produce a beautiful, flourishing garden if we are faithful because He is faithful.

“I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.” – Psalm 34:4

So I guess Mother Culture (to me), becomes more of a Family Culture. One that incorporates prayer, blessings, beauty, laughter, music, dancing, working out, experimenting in the kitchen, working through anger and frustration, lending a helping hand, being more observant, asking for forgiveness, building things, making mistakes, celebrating accomplishments, being humble, thankful and giving and always working towards honoring God in all that we say and do.

Blessings,

Alaina

Looking forward to meeting you and telling your beautiful story!

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Alaina Nunez Photography
(562)400-2579
Website / Instagram / Facebook / Pinterest

You can also find us on Google and YELP!

Coverage areas include: Serving Los Angeles County, Orange County, Irvine, Newport, La Mirada, Whittier, Brea, Fullerton, Anaheim, Anaheim Hills, Corona, Long Beach, Lakewood, Seal Beach, Huntington Beach, Tustin, Orange, La Habra, Downey, San Clemente, Mission Viejo, Laguna