the ness family | bismarck family photographer

This family means a lot to me.  Dr. Doug and Dr. Sara have been our family chiropractors for at least five years now and they have changed our lives.  In fact, if you’ve ever seen our family on a tv commercial for Active Life Chiropractic, you should understand just how much they have helped us because I won’t stutter on television for just anyone!  And everything I’ve ever said about them is true; when you walk into their office, they are so positive and they will do whatever it takes so that you can leave happy and healthy.  They’ve taken their personal time to adjust our kids when they’re extremely sick, even if that’s on a weekend or late at night.  They’ve spent extra time researching better ways to help us manage Cohen’s allergies.  Rory has gone from needing regular nebulizer treatments for asthma to not having any for more than four years.  They sent us a personal card when my father-in-law passed away.  I consider them our family doctors, but even more importantly, I consider them our friends.

I was very honored to have the opportunity to photograph them again at their home, and thrilled that I was able to give them something special in return for the dedication that they provide to our family.

family photo by the Missouri river in Bismarck

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sharmain ziegler - What a gorgeous family.these are amazing pics!

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allison & family | bismarck child photographer

I was very much looking forward to photographing this family.  I’ve known Allison’s daddy for many years and it was such a pleasure getting to spend some time with him and his family.  It was even more special because we shot the session at thier home, in their backyard.  I absolutely love it when clients want to have their session at their home or in a place that means a lot to them because they are instantly at ease.  It is quite obvious that Allison is the center of their world.  They knew exactly what she liked and what would make her laugh, and the smiles that she put on their faces were so worth capturing.  Some of my favorite family photos are not those where everyone is posed perfectly and smiling at the camera just right.  They are the ones where the parents are casually playing and snuggling up to their children.  The shots where you can just see how much the parent loves the child.  The love that this family has for one another is so apparent in these images, and I think it is one of my favorite family sessions this year.

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sharmain ziegler - Such a happy family and Allison has some gorgeous eyes!

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ava & charlie | bismarck, nd family photographer

You might recognize this adorable little boy who has been popping up on here every few months for almost a year now.  He has changed quite a bit in the last few months, and here he is at 9 months old!  And this time, I was able to spend extra time photographing his older sister, too!  These two are so incredibly sweet, just like their parents.  Neither of them were going to just give up the smiles, they made me work for them, but once we got rolling, it was all worth it!  Ava is an energetic little girl and we had fun playing peek-a-boo in the long branches of the willow tree.  I can say on the record that she makes and amazing flower girl, too!  Charlie is much more reserved and cautious, but that tiny-toothed smile and his dark curls melts my heart.  I am excited to see the final photo that will make up his first year collage, but also sad to know that the year is almost over and I won’t get to see him every three months anymore!

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sharmain ziegler - They are all so precious!

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maggie on day 8 | bismarck, nd newborn photographers

Another due date on my calendar that I was anticipating was that of Maggie!  I just love having those dates pop up on my phone the day of.  No matter how your day is going, you can’t help but smile at the thought of a new life entering into this world.  This was such a fun session because Maggie has two older siblings.  Her older brother was so well-spoken for a five year old and he was very curious about all of the neat things I set up in their dining room for the session.  He was also very protective of his new baby sister, and seemed to know just how to hold her and take care of her.  Maggie’s older sister was a spunky two year old with the biggest blue eyes, and it was obvious how much she loved Maggie, even though how she showed it was not in the most gentle of ways.  I love watching two year olds with newborn babies.  They love them so much and don’t even realize how tight they’re really squeezing them when they want to give them a little kiss!  At only eight days old, Maggie was already so loved by her brother and sister.

And look at this sweet little bracelet that her mom had for her!  Every girl needs the perfect accessory, and I’d say for someone so tiny, this was definitely just perfect.

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sharmain ziegler - The bracelet is so perfect for her pictures. I could get lost in those big blue eyes of her siblings.

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madison | bismarck senior photographer

This was one session that I was looking forward to all summer!  Way back in the year 2000, I attended my first year of college at Dickinson State University.  This family lived in Dickinson, and they were kind enough to take me under their wing for that first year that I spent away from home.  Jay helped me find my first job working for the Parks and Rec, where I started out coaching 5th grade flag football, which was probably one of my top 5 memorable moments from my college years.  I had the opportunity to babysit Madison and Zane on several occasions, but more often Madison while her mom and brother attended swimming lessons, and Sandra always repaid me with home baked cookies and an offer to stop over to their house anytime.  It was so comforting knowing that they were there if I needed anything, and I am not sure I even told them how appreciative I was of that, but I’m telling them now!  Thank you!  If my math is correct, Madison would have been about 4 years old at the time, and she always had a way of talking me into whatever she wanted!  It makes me laugh thinking about some of the things she talked me into, always ending her argument with, “my dad alllllways lets me do {fill in the blank}.”  Now that I have a 4 year old myself, well, I think I need to have a long talk with our babysitter the next time she’s over!  I have a really embarassing story I could tell about Zane, but I think I’ll save that for a few years down the road when he’s a senior!

So, it was very exciting for me to connect with this family again, and have the opportunity to photograph them before Madison started her senior  year.  She has turned out to be such a beautiful girl, inside and out.  I had a great time chatting with her about her interests, and it is obvious why her parents are so proud of her.  She loves spending time with little kids and she even spent part of her summer vacation on a mission trip.  I’d say she has a bright future ahead of her!

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sharmain ziegler - I look foward to reading your posts. It makes me feel as though I know the families. You seem to make a connection with your families you photograph.

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