Memories on the Beach
Her chubby pink feet tested the sand. It was more compact here, near the water’s edge and she was able to stand solidly. Her mom beckoned feverishly a few feet in front of her and without thinking her feet were moving quickly and awkwardly away from dad’s hands and into a massive hug. They were her very first steps.
Now, some 16 years later she was walking on another beach with her family. With college looming the following fall, she was on the precipice of another big change, and the family was making an effort to enjoy and be grateful for their final months together. So when the grandparents proposed a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Hawaii for the whole family to celebrate their 50th anniversary, they jumped at the chance.
Their family photo session was a gift to their parents. True, they had family portraits very recently in a field of bluebonnets (a Texas tradition), but it was rare for them all to be together. And in Hawaii.
Not a Morning Person
Scheduling was tricky with five teenagers in the group. Teenagers are not typically at their best at sunrise so we wisely planned for an evening session. However, the weather had other plans. Their multi-island cruise only left them with a few days on Oahu and those days called for rain in the evening.
It was just before sunrise when the 15 passenger van pulled up alongside me at Sherwood Beach in Waimanalo. As I organized my photo gear, kids slowly emerged from the van one by one emitting a series of lengthy yawns. They weren’t fully awake.
The mood immediately became energized as the beach path opened into wide views of Waimanalo Bay. They ran down to the water’s edge and let the wind lift their hair. The Makapuu lighthouse blinked lazily in the distance and seabirds soared overhead.
We took it easy with some traditional portraits and games to get everyone laughing. At the end of the session, the kids jumped in the water to play in the waves and then they buried themselves to warm up.
Are You Planning a Hawaii Family Reunion?
Find out more about my easy family reunion photo sessions that even teenagers can get on board with.