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  • Writer's pictureLesly Salazar

Dunn Loring Fall Family Session | Fairfax County

Family sessions are one of my favorite kind of groups to photograph, especially when the session is multi-generational.

When May contacted me on Thumbtack and told me she wanted portraits taken with her kids, I was excited! The planning was a little last minute, so we didn’t get to talk much before the session.

It was only on the day of our shoot that I realized her mom would be included in the photoshoot.

May and her kids were visiting from Saudi Arabia. Her mother has breast cancer, and was getting ready to have surgery.

She told me about her mother’s upcoming mastectomy, and I understood the uncertainty and sadness she felt about the situation. My sister-in-law was, at the time, preparing for the same surgery.

May’s mother, Foziah is truly blessed to have a daughter like May who would travel so far to be with her during this difficult time. I admired their relationship and knew I wanted to make this session especially enjoyable for their family.


May’s kids were SO well-behaved. I usually spend quite a bit of time entertaining little ones, but Fahad and Rima were troopers. All I needed to do was countdown from 3, and they would smile really big!

May is such a great mom, and it only took 2 minutes into our shoot to realize it.

She made a wise decision and brought pizza with her to the shoot. I’ll admit, I was a bit worried the kids would get messy. But as the saying goes, “Mother knows best.”

If I brought pizza to a family session with my daughter Elena, she would almost certainly get dirty. May, however, obviously knew that her kids wouldn’t, and she was right!

They made sure only to eat when it wasn’t their turn to take photos. And they put the pizza down whenever it was their turn! That’s what I call self-control.

I complimented May on her parenting more than once. She was kind, gentle and thoughtful.

Dear May,

Thank you so much for trusting me to take your family portraits. I really enjoyed getting to know you, Foziah, Fahad, and Mira. You're kind spirit is a wonderful quality to have, and anyone who knows or meets you is blessed by it. I’ll be praying for your mom’s recovery!

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