Happy Gotcha Day – Brock Family Adoption – Cleveland, TN Photographer


THIS. Moments like this are the beat to my heart. The reason I love this gift so so very much. Capturing legacies to freeze them in time for the future simply keep me going.

I don’t know how long I’ve known Jason and Tiffany, can’t really even remember how we met other than somehow through mutual friends a long time ago.

They’ve been married for 12 years this coming Fall, and for as long as I’ve known them being parents has always been their heart’s deepest burning desire. They’d found each other, and they were ready to have babies!

But God. He had a better plan. A more painful and constantly heartbreaking plan, but nonetheless a more beautiful plan than they’d ever have dreamed to dream. A plan that inevitably made them so much stronger together than most.

Jeremiah 29:11 is framed in their living room. An ever present reminder than He hadn’t forgotten them. They wouldn’t have to live in this dark place forever. “For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper you, not harm you, to give you hope and a future…”

Many have walked the walk with them over the years.  We’ve had the discussions with our friends who would get pregnant seemingly so easily while they were still waiting. I’ve seen the pain and heard the cries from both sides of the fence…tears of guilt from some because they could when their precious friends could not, tears of sorrow and grief from the other wondering “Why not me?”. Tears and sometimes anger myself FOR their pain.

But God…

A year ago, the first of March, I walked into their home to meet and photograph this tiny 6 week old baby boy whom God had placed under their loving care through Foster Care. It wasn’t a certainty he’d get to be theirs, but as we’d all discover yesterday God knew this baby was always meant to be theirs.

You see my faith in God’s divine plan and timing tells me this…that before they were husband and wife, before they even knew the other existed, God had it planned all along that one day THEY would be the ones to love this child. None of us just knew it quite yet.

Today He reminded even me that He hasn’t forgotten me in my struggle. No. He concreted what He’s been speaking to me the last few months, YEARS even. What He’d been rounding out the hole readying the concrete for…so it could be poured today.

His will IS PERFECT. His timing is impeccable. His love immeasurable. He is faithful, always!

Whatever you’re waiting on, whatever you’re beating back doubts and thoughts of, with defeat encircling your every thought, know this…He sees you!  He loves you!  And He’s making a way in the wilderness to give you “exceedingly abundantly” more than you know to even ask for!

He saw Jason and Tiffany all along, and in a crowded Judge’s Chambers filled with family and friends who’ve walked alongside them all the way I captured THE moment they FINALLY became PARENTS! The very moment that legally they became a FAMILY!

Now officially a mother and a father to a precious little boy. A little boy who stole their hearts over a year ago, and who this day joined the Brock clan as not only a son, but the first grandson too!

The kisses and hugs from his new grandparents, aunt, and loving friends were plentiful as he laughed and giggled his enormously infectious smile.  If you’re around him at all, and he doesn’t make you laugh then you must be defective!

In the midst of usually dreaded circumstances which bring people to a courthouse, there was a bright, giggly, baby chuckle filled, JOYOUS moment where a family was solidified…after 11 years of waiting, and 495 days with him it all perfectly became concrete.

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11 Years of waiting in their own desert. Years of wandering, tears, doubts, and questions….all of it ceased today with one glorious word…

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I teared up behind the camera, and then sobbed back in my car. My dream for my precious friends had finally come true, and I was reminded once again that HE.IS.GOOD ya’ll! So SO immeasurably good!

Foster Care and Adoption are simply perfect representations of God’s love for us! We’ve been adopted into His family forever once we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior…given forever love even before He knit us together, and all we have to do to claim it is say “YES, LORD!”.

I’ve had my own burning desire to foster and adopt for as long as I can remember, and stories like my sweet friends’ only serve to drive the nail in deeper that He never forgets us nor leaves us, there is absolutely a purpose, a GLORIOUS purpose, to our pain.  No matter how impatiently patient we may get as we walk out the waiting.

Sometimes He leaves us in the desert just long enough for us to see the other way He wants us to go. Just long enough for us to realize His way really is the only way…

Isaiah 48: “Look, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.”

Last Sunday in Memphis I visited another friend’s Church, friends who are waiting for their child via adoption, and the Preacher broke down Moses’ encounter with God in the rocks when he asked God to show Himself Moses face to face. “God did not grant Moses’ request as he asked for it… The problem we have ISN’T with God’s promises, but rather His ways of fulfilling those promises.”

I love that God said “You shall see my back, but you cannot see my face…you would perish because my glory is too great for any man to take.” so instead He places him in a rock to have a peek AFTER He’d walked by. He granted his request, but it had to be modified for Moses’ sake.

It gutted me that night that many times we can only see exactly how and why God was moving as He did until after He’s already passed by us…after the waiting ends.

Sometimes He shows us with a tiny glimpse from a small crack in a rock, and sometimes just blindly, because if we got to see it coming at us head on it’d be too much for us to take either from fear, doubt, or just being ill-equipped at that moment so we’d run the opposite way of that which He wants us to go.

Rylan is proof of that glory.

They didn’t get to see him coming into their lives, it wasn’t how they’d initially planned it, but ohhhh how mighty the glorious ripples are that he’s been making since God placed him in their care those 495 days ago.

Thank you Jason and Tiffany for being wonderful friends, sharing your hearts always, and for loving the Lord with all of your beings. I love you both, and am forever grateful for your friendship, and willingness to just go, be, and do. Rylan is one BLESSED baby boy, and I cannot wait to watch your family continue to grow!

Welcome to the Brock Family Mr. Rylan! You’ve been loved, anticipated, and prayed for so much even before you were born!

XOXO, “Aunt B”

The first time ever I saw his sweet face…6 weeks old:Brock Family Adoption - Cleveland, TN Family Photographer - BraskaJennea Photography_0048.jpg

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This police onesie they’d been waiting for over 5 years to have a bundle to fill lay on their kitchen table…waiting for this handsome fella! Brock Family Adoption - Cleveland, TN Family Photographer - BraskaJennea Photography_0049.jpg

Halloween 2014 when he moused his way to my studio for some Halloween portraits:
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The Courthouse waiting game where he didn’t care about the seriousness of the place…he was just having a good time making everyone smile and laugh:
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Inside the Judge’s Chambers as they were sworn in, and legally made Mom and Dad:Brock Family Adoption - Cleveland, TN Family Photographer - BraskaJennea Photography_0011.jpg

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Part of the afterparty and Rylan welcoming commitee 😉 Brock Family Adoption - Cleveland, TN Family Photographer - BraskaJennea Photography_0020.jpg

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Their FIRST Official portraits as a family! Brock Family Adoption - Cleveland, TN Family Photographer - BraskaJennea Photography_0023.jpg

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And a little Splish Splash fun with his hope to be someday soon lil sis 😉 to round out the day:
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Jenny + Maddy – Spring Time Mommy & Me – Athens, TN Photographer –


There’s something special about that mother daughter bond. It’s a special kind of love, and capturing it in it’s most pure form is a unique kind of beautiful.

This Spring the flowers and dogwoods were blooming so spledidly amid all of the April showers. Forget bringing May flowers, it brough April flowers!

Jenny and Maddy met up at the studio one weekday evening earlier this month where they got dolled up, and then we started their shoot out at E.G. Fisher Library’s wetland park.

The rains had filled the pond there, and the blooming redbuds and dogwoods were the perfect backdrop for their session.

We ended with a stroll down one of our beautiful Athens’ streets where a yard edged with gorgeous tulips caught Maddy’s (and our!) attention. A marvelous end to a marvelous session with two beautiful souls!

Happy early Mother’s Day to all the moms out there! You all are worthy of celebration all year long!

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Why Digitals and Discs are FINALLY Dying – The Resurrection of Professional Prints


If you’re a client of mine you’ve seen the image below in my BraskaJennea Magazines.  If we’ve met in person you’ve seen the “Oompah Loompah” Wal-Mart and Shutterfly prints, and the “Vampire Grey” Walgreen’s prints alongside their professional lab counterparts. You’ve felt the paper quality differences as well from my Kodak Endura Professional as opposed to “Photo Paper”.

I’m so thankful to finally see the rise again back to full service Professional Photography…helping clients have beautiful, tangible, prints showcasing our works of heart to hang in their homes…instead of just on social media!

There’s a big cry right now for “Give me digitals, or I’m gone!”, but walk into a traditional Portrait Studio that’s been around awhile, and that “disc” you walk out with winds up only being for your own personal computer use.  Most don’t include a print release, and they’re sized so small they look strange on social media, and for good reason.

They, like me, don’t want their beautiful works of art butchered by retail printers and cheap retail ink that’s only going to fade or yellow like those prints your parents have of you in that box in the closet.  Keeping them low res is a necessity because sadly enough if people can jack your work with a shoddy screen grab or download from Facebook that looks distorted from stretching to print a 4×6 then by jolly they will.

Thankfully though people are finally coming back to the realization that those “old school” Portrait Shops have hung onto all along….digital media changes, the technology we had 5 years ago is hard enough to navigate, much less finding readers or software to load discs and programs from 20 years ago.

Computers even now are rumored to start rolling out sans a CD drive at.all.  Children today have no idea what a land line phone or Walkman is!

Who’s to say that in 10 years, much less 100, people will even know what a .JPG file is…or how to view it?

I think my First thru 3rd grade years were made perfect simply by a “Computer Game” on an ooooold, HUGE, Macintosh computer.  The one, the only, OREGON TRAIL!

Up there with programming exploding fireworks later in 7th and 8th grade in DOS Command Prompt those were the highlights of my Elementary School career.

I still remember when that box of O.T. GIANT floppy discs came out of the cabinet!  It was GAME TIME!  I was about to cross some rivers, kill some food, and catch some illness that could take me or my family out all while battling thieves, weather, and busted wagon problems.

They seemed like they were 10×10 back then, but now I know they were really only 5.25″ squares.  Later in school we learned we could save our work to those floppy discs….they were multipurpose!

A few years after that we got those 3.5″ Hard floppy discs. A lot smaller, could hold “a lot” more, and were much more durable than their large counterparts.

I still have a box of my first ever digital camera pictures, and work from high-school and college, saved to those discs.  Ahhhh the memories they must hold.

But…there’s one *TIIIIIINY* problem….

There’s no way to access them!  I tried plugging in an old Floppy Reader a couple of years ago to my laptop….nothing happened.  I made sure they were unlocked so I could read them, and nada.

So, while I get it, we’re a digital society, I must ask you this important question…What would you do if your parent’s or grandparent’s wedding images were solely stored on one of these bad boys?  BJP Weddings Investment Website image4

What if that CD breaks, gets lost in a move, or your child scratches it?  What if your external and/or computer hard drives crash, at the same time, (ask me all about that one!)?

Someone recently said “But we have the Cloud so we don’t have to worry about that!”

Really?  You’re 100% comfortable, and certain, that some unseen super computer server somewhere in the universe won’t evvvver fail?

You’re positive that with all of the recent data breaches stealing credit card info, and leaking images stolen from celeb’s phones and cloud storage systems that your photos are ALWAYS going to be safe and stored?

You have a lot more faith in that system than I do.

I pay my WONDERFUL Online Gallery people at Shootproof.com archival fees each month to back-up my client’s images for at least three-years (after that I think it just gets a little expensive storing hundreds of thousands of images), but if their site, or the Cloud, or Pixieset, or Pass, etc… were to be hacked, or fail, or what.ev.er, how would you view your memories?

My liability is gone after I deliver your products, storing for as long as I do is merely a courtesy.

If your Facebook account got deactivated how would you get those images back that were on that phone you had 5 years ago and never saved?

If your phone got water damaged and refuses to boot up any longer how would you view those images of your child’s birth and life that you had stored no place else?

Yes, if Heaven forbid you had a fire, a flood, a natural disaster, etc… that ruined your prints, digitals might save you…that is if the media format you had them saved on somehow survived, but chances are that disc is gone too.

So, don’t ask me for “Just a CD”.  That’s not the BJP way.  It used to be, but I turned a corner 3 years ago, and I want my clients to have tangible parts of their legacy to pass down.

I wan them to have tangible heirlooms they can flip through at Christmas in a giant box that’s so worn it’s about to fall apart from all the family memories tucked away inside,a nd all of the times it’s been passed around after stuffing ourselves with turkey and pie.

There really isn’t a comparison for professional archival quality prints that you know will look just as vibrant and transcendent long after you’re gone.

Once you see a Bride looking like a sunburned orange fictional character out of Willy Wonka accusing you of tampering with her images, or an image you edited of a beautiful pink, warm, newborn looking grey and lifeless hanging on a client’s wall, that’s it.  You educate, educate, educate, and become a “hybrid” print and select few digitals photography business.

Plus hanging a disc on your wall just looks silly 😉

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Print your client’s memories.  Show them the comparisons in your studio, or online like this one. And if you can find one show them an old school Floppy Disc.  We owe it to them to help them pass these memories on, and stand the test of time!

Happy Printing!

xoxo,  B

Panama City Beach Family Photographer – August 17-22nd


Panama City Beach, Florida! BraskaJennea is coming for you! BraskaJennea-Photography-Steckley-Family-Panama-City-Beach-Photographer_0019.jpgIn the Panama City or Destin Florida Beach area? Want to have professional Family, Senior, Engagement, Bridals, or Anniversary portraits made on those pristine, sugary, white sandy beaches backed up by those clear, emerald ocean waters?  Contact us to get your pick of appointments (only 2 prime Sunset sessions available), or schedule a mini-session.

Collections will start at only $250 and include: 20 minute Mini or 45 minute Full Session for up to 10 subjects (additional subjects addable), clothing consult, 3 weeks Online Gallery storage for viewing and ordering, Signature BJP Collage Design AND professional 10×10 Collage print, Professional Print Credit to purchase your desired pro prints, and choice of 10 Hi-Res Digital Files with print release OR all finished, fully edited images with print release.

You don’t want to miss this fantastic opportunity to save some $$$, and have KILLER Family Beach Portraits…or another session that strikes your fancy.

Check out some highlights from last year’s PCB adventures, and if you’d like to purchase an Oceanic Scene for your home check out the Beach Gallery in the BJP Fine Art Gallery Here. BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0012 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0013 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0014 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0015 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0016 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0017 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0018 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0019 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0020 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0021 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0022 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0023 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0024 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0025 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0026 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0027 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0028 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0029 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0030 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0031 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0032 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0033 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0034 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0035 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0036 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0037 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0038 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0039 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0040 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0041 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0042 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0001 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0002 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0003 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0004 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0005 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0006 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0007 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0008 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0009 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0010 BraskaJennea Photography - Panama City 2013 - Florida Beach Photographer_0011

 

 

Jenna is THREE! – A Third Birthday Portrait Session – Athens, TN Photographer


It doesn’t seem like it was three years ago when I photographed this little beauty as a teeny, tiny, newborn. Now she’s a Doc McStuffins, “Dabloons” loving, ball of energy! *”Dabloons” is her word for balloons 😉

I went to highschool with both of her parents, Erin and Jason, and while Jason was at work we glammed this beautiful momma up for some “mommy and me” images as part of the session at the studio. Last year they celebrated her second birthday at Panama City Beach, and as luck would have it I was there too so we scheduled a Beach Family Session in honor of that milestone birthday.

We headed out around downtown Athens for some “dabloons” time, and Jenna was fond of them to say the least! I’ve found sessions with children and baloons can be unpredictable so nowadays I tie fishing line to the baloons to make sure the parents have control at all times. It’s a wonderful trick becasue there’s NOTHING sadder than a toddler crying watching their “dabloons” float away.

She ran around the whole time, only pausing to tell us things about her balloons…or take off her skirt and run around. I called her “the streak” for all you Ray Stephens fans out there 😉

We ended their session just before a storm blew thru so it was perfect weather and perfect timing!

Thank you Erin and Jason for letting me document your sweet princesses life. She’s such a precious blessing, and her parents are great blessings and friends too!

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