Friday, April 12, 2013

Pretty in Pink

As I pulled up Amelia's gown to change her this afternoon, an unexpected surprise awaited me:

A belly button!

I was incredibly excited to see it, not only because it means no more worries about accidentally knocking the stump off (like I did her poor sister's after just one week), but because it now gives me license to give her real baths, instead of just wipe-downs, and opens up a whole new array of fashion possibilities.

We've been mainly limiting Amelia to gowns and loose-fitting sleepers up to this point, to avoid irritation of the healing stump. Somehow, we managed to loosen it up anyway a couple of days ago, which led to a bit of bleeding, but now that it has finally fallen off completely, everything looks good, and I no longer have to worry. I can fit her with pants and onesies galore now, and, as you can see above, I promptly put some on. We've had this cute little pink number set aside since just before Mia came home.

Once I had her all dressed up, I had to figure out how to pose her to get pictures. Abby volunteered to hold her, and I obliged.

Mia didn't look too excited to be put down, at first...


... but she soon settled in, despite both Abby's and Michael's frequent intrusions on her personal space.

A little later, I laid Mia down in her bouncy seat and got out the camera again, in the hope of getting a better shot of the outfit itself.

I was a little annoyed to see that the pretty pink shade was still getting washed out by the flash, so I started focusing on her face, instead.

I even brought out the big lens. However, once I got so up close and personal, I was perturbed by the harshness of the lighting on Mia's complexion.

So, for the first time in a long while, I went off auto and turned off the flash. Of course, it then became difficult to get a crystal-clear focus, since Mia was moving a bit and there wasn't a whole lot of natural light coming in at around 6:00 in the evening.

My options were limited, especially since I'm such an amateur when it comes to working with light, to begin with. This is what happened when I tried to increase the shutter speed, even after maxing out the ISO.

After that, I went back down to a shutter speed of around 13, and just tried to hold the camera very steady while timing my shots with brief moments of (approximate) stillness.

In the end, though I'm generally rather fussy about my issues with focus and sharpness, I wasn't totally unhappy with the results. After all, soft focus is not always a bad thing, especially when it provides me with much more natural coloring, and even allows me to capture the subtle newborn blue/grey tones in my littlest one's eyes (while they are still there to be captured- I'm sure those babies will turn out brown, just like her siblings').

And may the dress-up begin in earnest from this point forward...

Congratulations on your brand-new belly button, Mia! Contrary to what your sister believes, Mommy and Daddy did not "cut off your belly button." It was always there, just waiting to be revealed.