Maya Laurent Photography
simple is beautiful
Veda: 1+2 Months



You are such a bundle of joy! Have I said that enough to you already? Each day you rise with a smile and it reminds us to take the day on with your kind of positive attitude.


You are changing by the minute right now! You are becoming more independent and love playing on your own in your kitchen. (You share it with your brother. He always reminds you of this). You scoot around the whole house looking for the next thing you can explore. Of course this involves many things you shouldn’t be into like computer cords, taking the door stops off and the bathroom trashcans. You love playing with anything that makes noise, including a box of mac n’ cheese. It’s really the simple things with you!


The past few months have brought about you finding your voice. This involves lots of high-pitched screams. They are happy screams but goodness they are screechy! Jude has picked up on it too now and the two of you will scream back and forth with one another. There is a ton of baby babbling going on but you’ve also said DaDa, PaPa, GaGa, you whisper shhh shhh whenever we see/talk about a shark and you continue to say dog. You love to look at pictures and talk to them as we show you the photos. Every morning we have to stop and look at the photo wall in our house before getting ready for the day. You even let out little giggles when we point out which photos are “baby Veda.”


Thank you for the way you make all of us stop and look at the world with your eyes. We’d probably walk right by the bug flying in the air or sometimes don’t notice the airplane. You watch intently as the leaves blow in the wind and you manage to even find an ant to try to pick up and explore. We love how you show affection and lean your head into us. You have started giving hugs which I will ask for all the time now!


You thrive off of a schedule. It doesn’t mean we can’t tweak it here and there or skip a nap every once and awhile, but your body tells you when it’s time to sleep. You come crawling to me all whiny and looking for your Ellie to grab and snuggle. You used to sleep only one way but now you are all over the crib sleeping on your side with Ellie close, spread out on your back or, our favorite, curled up into a ball with your butt sticking straight up. I love going in and checking on you sleeping every night.


You are still a tiny little thing! You love to eat so it always surprises us when you haven’t gained a ton of weight. You normally are the last one eating and have grabbed your brothers’ leftovers numerous times after you’ve finished your meal. You’ve been able to try a bunch of new foods and finally had some of Momma’s cookies, which you devoured and made a mess!


Your brothers adore you and make sure you know that everyday. They shower you with kisses and crown you queen/princess daily. You have thrones made for you and forts to keep the bad guys away. I remember being a little worried about the age difference and how you would fit into your brothers’ imaginary play. It has been so wonderful to see how they include you, but we have to watch out when they start the sword fighting.



I am amazed at how you are picking up on “girl” things without any direction from us. You love to carry around a piece of your clothing and try over and over again to put it on. This normally involves having it wrapped around your neck. You have teething beads that you have figured out how to put on as a necklace. How did you figure that out?! The other day you put your beads on, grabbed a tea cup and were scooting around with a huge smile. It is so different than your brothers! Of course you still love to play with their dinosaurs and cars.

Last night you finally started to try to pull yourself up in your crib. Zane was trying to get you to grab Ellie and would hold her up super high for you to reach. We started cheering really loud when you got up on your feet and scared you! Take your time sister, there’s no rush and you do it on your own time! It’s just so fun to see you figure things out and see a look on your face as you accomplish something new.

We love you so dearly! We are so thankful for your joy and ability to share so much love already.

Love you,

Momma & Daddy

Jude: 4 Years + 8 Months



Hello my little creative man! It has been such a delight to be with you this summer and explore with you!

You have taken after Daddy in all aspects of creativity. You get up in the morning before your brother and sister. We hear your little feet across the floor and then the sound of a chair at the kitchen table. We know you’re sitting down to draw or color before everyone is ready to start the day. Your drawings have turned into books, which you then request us to write out as you narrate the story. You draw a photo and then come running to tell us all about the details. It’s wonderful!


Daddy and I are realizing how good you are at picking up on others’ cues. We’ve had several people tell us how well you play with their child and that some kids find it hard to play with their kid. You don’t care about any of that and walk right through any barriers to play with someone. It’s such a beautiful trait. You also are so resilient. You can fall and have blood dripping down your leg and while tears initially come, you quickly wipe it off and want to continue to play. It cracks us up because it is so vastly different than your brother!


We love watching you play with Veda. You two don’t always get along as she realizes she can start to cry when you get close and she gets attention. We’re watching out for that, so stick with us as we figure out her cues and know when she’s being “truthful.” Even though you have moments like this, the two of you really do enjoy each other. You squeal with this high pitched tone at each other and then just laugh as you do it. She loves when you show her books. You watch out for her and constantly telling us when she gets too close to a small LEGO. Thank you for being a protector for her already.


Your personality draws people in. You relax others and then can get them laughing quickly. You’re at that age that you still swing off the handle often. And I use the word swing because it involves you hitting at times, but we know we will work through it and get beyond it as you learn a different way to express your anger. It’s all part of getting older and we constantly try to keep that in mind as parents.


One of the most common phrases you say is “I don’t understand. I’m confused!” You get this way when you’re trying to figure out when in the week we are doing something…what does tomorrow or today mean, is today tomorrow?, what do we mean by yesterday, and why is that not today? This is a common everyday occurrence as you try to grasp the concept of time. It makes us laugh but we know it’s frustrating to you so we try to help. I actually think we’ll miss it when you stop asking these questions.

You are so excited to be an owl at school soon and talk about it all the time. We can’t wait to see how you grow as you jump into a new year. You are so uniquely yourself and we hope that never changes. We love you so much!!!

Momma and Daddy

Life True to Myself


“The most common regret of the dying was this: they wish they’d had the courage to live a life true to themselves and not the life others expected of them.” – Donald Miller, Scary Close

I’ve been pretty silent on this blog since having Veda, with the exception of letters to our kids. There’s a number of factors that go into it…like having three kids takes up a lot of time, then throw in two entrepreneur parents and there’s even less time. However, I also think I’ve been hiding a bit. I watch everyone else on their blogs or their social media and think to myself, I’m not good enough. I don’t have anything important to say. I want to inspire women to rise up and step into things they feel led to, yet I have felt hidden in my own skin, trying to figure out what God’s doing within in me. But isn’t that what matters, that I am trying to figure it out? It will never be completely “figured out” but I do believe I can find peace for the stage I’m at and ask God to continue to reveal where he wants me. I need to be open to change.

I have hid the past year behind what I thought others expected of me. I have a super fun photography business and I thought others expected me to be featured on a popular blog, awarded in a popular magazine and continue to push myself to be more like the successful senior photographers out there. And then one high school senior said, “Maya, I don’t care about all that junk. I just love the way you made me feel at my session.” I was focusing on the wrong thing. I now have slowly stopped following other senior photographers, stopped comparing myself and doing things I thought others expected of me. And what swooped in…freedom, peace, openness for other things.

Then we decided to tackle something that always seemed to be nagging, our debt. We fell into the thinking that is so common…”we’ll just always have debt.” We realized always having debt held us back from being able to give or serve in ways God might call us to. So we both brainstormed ways to make extra money and Younique dropped in my lap after multiple friends held online parties. I signed up as a Presenter but then something kept saying to me, “You can’t sell makeup, you barely do your makeup now.” And then I heard, “You can’t inspire other women to change their life financially and empower them into more confidence.” And I believed it. A friend would ask what I was doing and I would laugh it off. I closed down again.

But this weird thing has happened as time has gone on. I now see how God is using Younique to help me continue on how strongly I want women to believe deep in their hearts that they are a beautiful, unique masterpiece God created. And they can do anything they put their mind to…and use it to change the world in their unique way.

I’ve hid behind the no-makeup thing for awhile, or the just a little bit of makeup routine. I’m not over the top now but I have no fear of putting on some fun eye shadow and bold lip color. It took me a bit as I asked my husband, is this too much makeup? His response was always positive telling me how much he loved it and I still sat in that stage of what others expected of me. I felt like they expected me to be more of a plain Maya, than a bold Maya.

And then I allowed in openness again. Somehow making videos showing ladies how to use makeup and taking selfies to show how much fun I’m having wearing red lips, has made me realize how God has created me. I have imperfections that he loves and sees them as perfect, because that’s the way he created me. He enjoys if I take delight in rocking a fun lip stick or trying something new. I’m sure he smiles as I encourage other women and help them see their beauty.

Then the other day as I took a selfie trying to show how long the lip stain lasted, I was holding my daughter who saw herself in the camera and immediately started smiling. Her nose gets all scrunched up and her big eyes get squinty as she shows her precious dimples. But then I noticed something. She wasn’t looking at herself, she was looking at me in the camera. She was watching her mom be more confident to do something fun and sharing that with other women. I want her to continue to see that.

Can we all be kinder to ourselves? Can we wake up each day and say to God, “I have the courage to do today the way you want, not the way others expect.” There is power in being open and approaching the world in this way. The world needs this of us…needs this of me.

Veda: 1 Year


15 pounds, 9 ounces / 27 inches long


It has been a whole YEAR since you entered our family. I have no clue where the time has gone! I know everyone says that for every birthday, but it’s so true…it has flown by. I feel like just yesterday I was praying in a hospital room that your heartbeat would even out so you could enter this world healthy. Now you are taking the world on with that smile!


This past month has been one filled with a world of changes. You still aren’t crawling but you are scooting everywhere and fast. This brought about some new problems with having older brothers. You are way too interested in their LEGOs and there are some small pieces! We had to get out the baby gate and put it up in front of your brothers’ room to keep you out. The LEGOs are required to stay in so you can’t immediately put them in your mouth. You see, you are fast! The second you see something, you butt scoot laser fast to the object, and always test everything out first by putting it in your mouth. So for now, you’ll have to watch your brothers play with little-piece things from the view of the baby gate.


Mornings are so fun with you! Every morning we are greeted with a smile. You can go from crying to smiling the second the door opens and you see one of us. The boys still love running into your room each morning to say hello and give you kisses. This past month held the last moments of breastfeeding you. I have been so thankful for that time with you even though it was hard to commit to the time to stick with it. I loved the way you’d look at me and stop and smile when I’d smile at you. I wasn’t a fan of you pulling my hair, slapping me or biting me! But it was worth it and I’ll miss it.



I love this onesie you have that says, “And though she be little, she is fierce.” You are still such a little peanut but it is not holding you back from anything! You eat like crazy, actually better than your brothers at most meals! You can make a mess with a kitchen drawer like no one else and squeal with joy when we dance with you in our arms. No matter what size you are now, or end up later, remember you are fierce in a way that only God could have made you – completely, uniquely you.



I think we just flat out scared you at your small first birthday get together. You gave all of us looks as we sang to you and were not sure what to think at all! You at least enjoyed the cake! And of course when it came to opening gifts, you wanted to play with the wrapping paper more than anything. It was so fun to celebrate in a way that you got to hang out with all the family who loves you so much.



You are a happy summer baby for sure! You LOVE the water and could splash around all day long. I have to admit that it took me several tries before I got your swimsuit on right (apparently I am too used to just slipping on boys’ shorts). It is such a joy to watch you talk and giggle in the baby pool. We hope you like the lake water soon too!


We are amazed at how you are starting to talk! This was not the case with your brothers at this age so at first we just chalked it up as you repeating the sounds we were making. Then you dropped several items in a row and kept saying “Uh Oh!” after each one. You know what you’re saying! Then you’d crawl up to Luna, touch her and say “dog.” I thought it was cute and we heard you say it a lot but thought you were just saying sounds. We figured out you knew what you were saying when we were outside and a dog barked and you said “dog, dog, dog.” Just today we were in the doctor’s office and there was a poster with a bunch of dogs. As the nurse was talking to me you kept pointing and saying “dog, dog.” The nurse stopped when she realized what you were doing and cheered for you, which you then clapped your hands together with a huge proud smile! So, dog is your first word!!!


Our hearts grow each “yeah!” we say and you clap your hands together in excitement. We smile each time we say your name as you scoot across the floor and you stop just to look at us and smile. And we laugh quietly when we say “no, no, Veda” to you getting into something and you turn to flash us that dimple smile as if you weren’t doing anything wrong, while shaking your head no. (This won’t be funny later I’m sure). You are in an ever-changing state and we want to soak it all in. We love you beyond words sister.

Love you,

Momma & Daddy

Three Kids

tk-1 tk-2

We’re almost a year into this three kids thing and I continue to catch myself saying “We’re still getting used to three kids.” But I speak the complete truth when I make this statement. For anyone who has more than one child, you can probably relate to the fact that no child is alike. We figured out what disciple worked for Zane and then Jude came along and rocked us with his strong-will nature. Hello new disciple and ways to deal with him! And then there’s Veda, who right now goes with the flow but we can already see some of that stubborn personality shining through, and you know what, she’ll probably deal with getting in trouble in a completely different way than both the boys.


I’m thinking I am going to just keep saying we’re getting used to three kids because just when you think you have it “figured out,” you’re in a new stage. We have three kids at completely different life stages which involves a mixed bag and totally different emotions, new things to shock us that they know, learning cursive while the other is figuring out his letters and the other is scooting across the floor trying to get to the tiny, itsy bitsy LEGO pieces her brothers have left behind.


Some days can be filled with frustration as we click on and off our mind to which child we’re dealing with as we encourage them, celebrate with them and figure out their embarrassment levels when we joke. Jude plays imaginary things all day but don’t dare call him anything but Jude…he gets extremely upset at this as he screams, “I’m just JUDE!” Joke with Zane that you let him sleep in too long and he’s missed the bus, and he starts to cry, saying how mean it is to joke about that. There’s our emotional guy. Let Veda sit in her seat for just seconds without food for her to start grabbing immediately, and you will hear complaints. Someone is already showing her lack of patience!

But then there are other days where each of them shines with the parts of their personality we can already see God is using. Jude grabs the sweeper out of my hands saying  ” I help you Mommy.” There’s our kiddo with a servant’s heart. Zane comes home from school with a sad face because someone at school was upset and he’s worried about them. There’s our caring, relationship based child. Veda smiles with her dimples and lights up the room…we’ll see as she develops if her ability to bring joy to others comes out even more.


Each day I realize it’s a new day. Each day different, and thank heavens, because the same day always would be boring! Some days send me to bed being done as a Momma. Other days I go to bed with a knot in my throat because I just want to capture this stage and not let it go.

So I’m still getting used to three kids and I’ll make the claim now that I’ll always be adjusting. They are constantly changing, evolving and embracing who God has made them to be and we’re here to walk them through it…hard days and fun days.

© Maya Laurent