Today, Tim and I drove to Owasso, Oklahoma, to the Bailey Educational Center for this NILMDTS workshop. Professional Photographers, Nurses, Hospital administrators, and Mothers who had lost children recently from Lousiana, Arkansas, Texas, Missouri, Oklahoma, and one from Germany, it was a full house with standing room only. Also, CBS News Channel 6 sent a news crew up from Tulsa to document our workshop and the healing value to families who have suffered an early infant loss due to critically ill or stillborn babies. Watch it here.
Our part in NILMDTS is to offer bereavement photography to parents suffering the loss of their baby to and help them in their healing journey. Every time we do a session, our goal is to create sensitive images set to music and provided them on a complimentary DVD or CD (that the family can be used to print portraits) so that these memories will not fade with the passing of time. Again, there are absolutely no fees for this service.
Due to the sensitivity of this, Tim and I were looking forward to attending this workshop and receiving additional training on this, and we had barely gotten through the opening introductions when the deep feeling of these sincere, wonderful volunteers began to be manifest in the tears and sniffles, Tim and I included. It is beautiful to see such human compassion for others and we consider it a privilege to be associated with NILMDTS.
One mother during our session today, who had lost her last two children, (most recently just two months ago – which is when she first heard of NILMDTS) shared with us that “this is the most wonderful service, it meant so much to me and my husband. We have all these pictures hanging up in our house and they touch our heart everyday. We are so grateful, NILMDTS provides an unbelievable gift, thank you!“
The training workshop was extensive. Our NILMDTS Certified Trainer, Loy Payne, covered code of ethics, actual shooting techniques, use of lighting, recommendations on mobile equipment , certification, templates and even copyrighted music (some of the most moving music you will ever hear), and much more. We were shown how to create beautiful, cherished, heirloom portraits of these children! A very thorough, and compassionate, training session, I highly recommend it.
“THE BEST AND MOST BEAUTIFUL THINGS IN THE WORLD CANNOT BE SEEN OR EVEN TOUCHED. THEY MUST BE FELT WITH THE HEART.” – Helen Keller
This service provided is an entirely non-profit organization, all are volunteers, and it is supported by your voluntary donations. If you have any questions or would like to know more about this, feel free to contact Tim or I. We are happy to share with you what we know so you can make a decision for yourself as to whether you would like to join.
“YOU MAKE A LIVING BY WHAT YOU GET, YOU MAKE A LIFE BY WHAT YOU GIVE.” - Sir Winston Churchill
With every good wish for you and yours,
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Tim reminded me that it’s been a while since we’ve had some family portraits posted here on our blog, so I thought I’d share recent photos we took of a sweet family at the stunningly beautiful Overland Park Arboretum & Botanical Gardens. They have walking trails all through out the garden, Tim and I even found some great locations for future weddings that we are doing.
I hope you enjoy these photo’s of Shawn and Julene, along with their children Lauren and Attie Rose. Spring and Summer are the best times for family portraits because the weather is good and we can capture you and your family outside doing the things you enjoy doing together, making memories that will last a lifetime…
Pregnancy and birth are miraculous journeys. This amazing time of life is full of mystery, anticipation, joy and wonder. But there is another aspect of pregnancy and birth, an unexpected place in this journey where some families may find themselves. When a baby dies, a world is turned upside down. There is sorrow where there should have been joy.
The Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation (www.nowilaymedowntosleep.org), founded by WPPI member Sandy Puc, provides a helping hand and a healing heart for families overcome by grief and pain. Offering gentle and beautiful photography services in a compassionate and sensitive manner is the heart of this organization. The soft, gentle heirloom photographs of these beautiful babies are an important part of the healing process that allows families to honor and cherish their babies.
This special network of nearly 3000 volunteer professional photographers in the United States and eight international countries make it happen. At a family’s request, a NILMDTS affiliated photographer will come to a hospital or hospice location and conduct a private portrait session. The portraits are then professionally retouched and presented to the families on an archival DVD or CD that can be used to make prints.
What made this special to us, was that the entire network of affiliated professional photographers graciously donates their time and talents to families, and all are proud to offer their services at no cost. Donations are greatly appreciated.
The Today Show ran an extraordinary piece on the Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation on March 5, 2008. Here is the segment…
This should remind us all of the importance giving of ourselves and to care for our loved ones who are with us now. We never know what tomorrow will bring upon each one of us or our dear friends and family.
Gaven was in this week to the studio for portaits. What an outgoing little boy. Tim and I had so much fun with him, he was like a little Jerry Lewis, just so full of life and not one ounce of shyness in him. It was such a delight to have he and his mother in. I just had to share.