My Maternity Photos at the Kaweah Oaks Preserve in Visalia, California

At 34 weeks pregnant, I finally got around to taking maternity photos just yesterday… not cutting it close or anything, yeah? haha..
With Tessa, I took maternity photos REALLY early… like 23 weeks-ish, because my husband was joining the United States Navy and leaving for boot camp. We wanted to make sure we took the maternity photos before he left, since we had no idea what life would send our way with a huge career change like that. (We also wanted to make sure we took photos before the Navy cut off his hair!)
For Tessa’s maternity photos, we chose to take them in the Sequoias, since that is where Jonathan and I fell in love! It just seemed fitting to choose as a backdrop the location that started it all. You can CLICK HERE to see my maternity photos with Tessa in Sequoia National Park in California.
For Thyme’s maternity photos, deciding on a location was a bit trickier. We thought about using the same location but decided against it for a number of reasons. One, we want each daughter’s photos to be unique, and limit the hand-me-down habit that inevitably happens with older / younger siblings. Second, it’s really cold in the Sequoias right now, so photos would be a little frosty. Three, our car isn’t doing too hot (engine light keeps coming on, then off, on then off..) so we didn’t want to make the drive. And lastly, we wanted to find another meaningful spot!
After going back and forth (go to the coast? the zoo? the foothills?) we settled on the Kaweah Oaks Preserve in Visalia, California, just down the street from our house.
We chose this location because it offers a panorama of what the Central Valley – our home – is like: a mixture of valley, country, rolling plains and scattered oak forests. If the Sequoias represent the budding of our relationship, the Central Valley Oaks represent the growth and maturity of our relationship. We became a couple in the mountains, but we became a family in the valley!
I enlisted my sister to take these pictures, and we had a fun evening playing in the open fields till sundown. I’m so very excited for our second daughter, little baby Thyme to join our family!! God has blessed me with a beautiful family! You’ve no idea how happy I am. ^_^


























Thank you to my sister for taking these beautiful pictures! <3

Gingi Freeman

Gingi is a photographer, cosplayer, amateur chef, crazy cat lady, anime otaku, bookworm, generic geek, world traveler, conservative Christian, homeschooler, devoted military wife and stay at home new mother of two little girls. Gingi blogs about anything and everything that is relevant to being a supermom, stay at home wife, homeschooler and geek girl! You can contact her at or via the contact form on her website at

90 thoughts on “My Maternity Photos at the Kaweah Oaks Preserve in Visalia, California

  • 3 February, 2015 at 1:15 am

    These are so beautiful Gingi! They literally brought tears to my eyes. You are glowing and you and you’re family are beautiful. And I absolutely love the name Thyme. I can’t wait to see pictures of her! Please thank your handsome husband for his service to our country. I certainly appreciate it. 🙂

    • 3 February, 2015 at 1:21 am

      Awww, thank you so much Linda! Your comment just made my day!! <3

    • 3 February, 2015 at 2:13 am

      Lol, awww, you should! hehe!

  • 3 February, 2015 at 2:33 am

    Cute pictures!!!
    I didn’t realize you were fixing to have another baby – congratulations!!!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:12 am

      Yup!! And in just SIX WEEKS!! (That’s the craziest part for me, haha!)

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:14 am

      Thank you!!

  • 3 February, 2015 at 2:51 am

    These turned out so pretty! I love them! I’m sure you are thrilled with how they turned out!!!
    Melanie @

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:15 am

      I am!! I like that we got some family photos too, we haven’t done family photos in AGES!

  • 3 February, 2015 at 4:03 am

    These did turn out beautifully! Did you get any of Tessa kissing your belly? She was being a little goof ball. She was much more involved in picking grass and snapping twigs than posing for pix. heh. What a little doll. I can’t believe you are giving us another lovely granddaughter in just 6 weeks. I am so blessed.

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:56 pm

      I did, but my boob was kind of hanging out in the picture, haha! And yeah, toddlers are really hard to take family pix with! 😉

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:57 pm

      Thank you so much! Yeah, I am really happy with the location! And all the pretty lens flares, hehe!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 3:59 pm

      Awww, thank you! <3

  • 3 February, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    Gingi… I wish I had pictures like this when I had my daughters… hardly anybody took pictures like that back then… does that tell you how old I am… lol

    My youngest is 11 and that was before Facebook was popular and digital cameras were just starting to become the rage… no smart phones either…

    I love the pictures, they are really fabulous xox

    • 3 February, 2015 at 4:03 pm

      I remember when I was a teenager digital was quite rare, and I shot with film… it seems so inconvenient now, though at the time it was just the norm! (I’m 29, so I’m talking about 15 years ago, haha..)

      Yeah, smart phones and digital have revolutionized photography, thats for sure!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 4:10 pm

      Thank you! <3

  • 3 February, 2015 at 1:21 pm

    These are such beautiful photos. You look amazing!
    I can’t wait to get pregnant and have photos like this to keep as a great memory.

    • 3 February, 2015 at 4:13 pm

      Yeah, the first maternity photos I took with Tessa mean SO MUCH to me that I knew I had to do them again with Thyme! I know I’ll treasure these forever!

  • 3 February, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    aww, the pictures are fantastic! you are such an adorable family! thank you so much for sharing!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 4:34 pm

      Aww, thank you for your kind comment! <3

  • 3 February, 2015 at 2:46 pm

    What a beautiful family you have! The photos will a cherished memory… I especially like the one with Daddy kissing your belly, and the one with your daughter stretched out on you as well. Wishing you many blessings as you finish this pregnancy:)

    • 3 February, 2015 at 4:38 pm

      Yeah, Tessa was being so hyper, I am VERY lucky we got the photos of her we did! And I love the one of her stretched out on me too! <3

  • 3 February, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    Beautiful family, beautiful photo’s Gingi! Love it. Your sister did an absolutely fabulous job. I totally regret not getting any photo’s of me pregnant. And the second time around, I just felt like, hmmmm, was I this big the first time? Let’s dig out the photo’s to see. Oh wait, there are no pics. Opps! The name Thyme is delightful. God has certainly blessed you my friend!!!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 7:08 pm

      Thank you so much Laura! Your comment means so much to me! <3 I am very very happy we got pictures of both pregnancies now.. I almost didn't do these with Thyme, but then I thought of how much I treasure the pictures with Tessa in my belly.. and OMG, I feel WAY BIGGER this time around..

  • 3 February, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    Gorgeous photos! They really take me back …and I adore the name Thyme, so pretty!

    • 3 February, 2015 at 7:09 pm

      Yes, I’ve had this name picked out since I was a kid!! <3

  • 3 February, 2015 at 11:32 pm

    Nice sister!
    My favorite was the one of Tessa on your belly. I just love that. What wonderful colors. I’m always California dreamin’, especially because I got stuck in my driveway today after 14 inches of snow. And it was 0 degrees at school dropoff today. Help me.

    • 4 February, 2015 at 4:54 pm

      Yeah, that is one of my favs too.. that and the whole family! We haven’t had a good family photo since Tessa was two months old!! lol!

    • 4 February, 2015 at 5:00 pm

      Thank you! <3

    • 4 February, 2015 at 5:03 pm

      Awww, thank you so much for your kind words! <3

    • 4 February, 2015 at 5:05 pm

      I am so happy with the pretty dreamy lens flare we got! Thank you for the kind words! ^_^

    • 4 February, 2015 at 5:20 pm

      Thank you! <3

    • 4 February, 2015 at 6:05 pm

      Thank you! <3

  • 4 February, 2015 at 6:07 pm

    Beautiful photos! You all look lovely.

    • 4 February, 2015 at 6:17 pm

      Thank you! <3

  • 5 February, 2015 at 1:36 am

    Wow, these are simply beautiful! Your sister did a great job here!

    • 5 February, 2015 at 3:15 am

      Thanks! <3

  • 5 February, 2015 at 3:47 am

    Oh my goodness these are so gorgeous!! You have such a beautiful family! I am sure you are so excited to add one more! 🙂

    <3 Shannon
    Upbeat Soles

    • 5 February, 2015 at 4:21 am

      We really are! And thanks! ^_^

  • 5 February, 2015 at 4:14 am

    These are so beautiful! What treasures to have. Wishing you the best of everything!

    • 5 February, 2015 at 4:23 am

      Thank you Sue! <3

  • 5 February, 2015 at 9:11 am

    this is what family photography is all about! preserving that moment with loved ones…compliments to your sister, the photographs are absolutely beautiful. I especially like the ones where the whole family is together.

    • 5 February, 2015 at 3:52 pm

      Yeah, those are my favorite!! We haven’t had a good family photo (that isn’t a selfie!) in a loooong time!

  • 5 February, 2015 at 4:48 pm

    Absolutely breathtaking! I love how “misty” some of the photos turned out 🙂 You are a gorgeous woman and your family looks lovely!

    • 5 February, 2015 at 5:13 pm

      Aww, thank you! The sun was setting so we got a LOT of lens flare!

  • 5 February, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    They came out great! I mean of course they did, I’m awesome. Hehe my new little buddy is almost here!

    • 5 February, 2015 at 8:54 pm

      Hehe, and she’s not conceited in the LEAST! 😉

    • 5 February, 2015 at 8:56 pm

      Thanks!!! ^_^

  • 5 February, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    I LOVE THE PHOTOS!!!! And yes the place is so captivating. I really wish I did a photoshoot back when I was pregnant.

    • 5 February, 2015 at 9:00 pm

      Yeah, I would have been really bummed if I didn’t do the shoot this pregnancy.. so happy to finally have these done! Even though I’m huge, haha..

  • 6 February, 2015 at 12:05 am

    Very sweet pics……. Its really touching…. We really missed these kind of maternal pics when I was pregnant…. Thanking u for posting these wonderful pics 🙂

    • 6 February, 2015 at 12:07 am

      Awwww, thank you for your kind words!! <3

  • 6 February, 2015 at 1:25 am

    Wow these are gorgeous photos! You look great!

    • 6 February, 2015 at 1:36 am

      Thank you! And thank you for stopping by my blog! <3

  • 6 February, 2015 at 3:53 am

    These photos are absolutely gorgeous and I love how you described the location and the story of why you chose this location. You have a beautiful family and I’m looking forward to meeting Thyme.

    • 6 February, 2015 at 4:00 am

      Thank you so much for your kind words Megan!! <3

  • 6 February, 2015 at 6:06 pm

    These are amazing! Your sister did a great job and the location is perfect. My favorite is your daughter laying on you listening for her new little sister :). I never even thought to do pictures like this when I was pregnant. What a mistake!

    • 6 February, 2015 at 6:38 pm

      Aww, thank you so much! I appreciate your kind words! <3

  • 6 February, 2015 at 9:31 pm

    What adorable photos! How exciting a new sibling and baby is coming to your family! Thanks for linking up your pictures at this Mommy Reality challenge!

    • 7 February, 2015 at 3:44 am

      Of course!! Thank you for hosting it, you have such a FUN blog!!! <3

  • 6 February, 2015 at 11:36 pm

    I never got maternity photos taken and I regret it soo much. I have plenty of selfies but nothing framable. I want to do it this pregnancy but I don’t want my other kids to get jealous. Quite the pickle.

    • 7 February, 2015 at 3:55 am

      I always get so caught up doing photos for other that I forget to actually take photos of myself! (Aside from selfies that is!) So I’m really happy I had these done.. I almost didn’t!

    • 7 February, 2015 at 4:14 am

      Yeah, she’s my little nut!

    • 8 February, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      Thank you! <3

  • 9 February, 2015 at 2:56 am

    Awww these photos are so precious! Absolutely beautiful and so sweet!

    • 9 February, 2015 at 4:51 am

      Thank you!!! <3

  • 10 February, 2015 at 1:14 am

    Oh my, these photos are just so beautiful.
    You are radiant and have such a beautiful family.
    Handsome hubby

    • 10 February, 2015 at 1:21 am

      Awwww, thank you! <3

    • 11 February, 2015 at 3:33 am

      Thanks!!! <3

  • 11 February, 2015 at 8:00 am

    Awww, these pictures are so beautiful! I love the light too. 🙂

    • 11 February, 2015 at 1:29 pm

      Thanks!! <3

  • 11 February, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    I feel like I missed out on a LOT since I last visited here. Maybe it slipped my mind but I had no idea you were pregnant! Aah Tessa will have a sister! Congrats (even if this is late now).. and you.. look very very lovely, stunning! (I’m a bit apathetic towards babies but I’m starting to have a sweet spot for your children — I hope that’s not creepy lol! If it is.. I apologize 🙁 )

    Love each and every one of the photos here 🙂

    • 11 February, 2015 at 2:11 pm

      LOL, everyone seems so surprised.. it’s funny, I talked SO MUCH about my first pregnancy on my blog.. with this one, I haven’t been as talkative on the subject… I don’t know why, I really am every bit as excited! I guess now I just have more projects! Awww, thank you so much for your kind words my friend! They made my day!

  • 15 February, 2015 at 4:02 pm

    I waited to read this because I’m a sicker for stories about life and living and the beauty and creation of it all. Plus, I wanted to give it some time and soace, not be a rushed reading and viewing.

    I’m glad I did! This is really wonderful and the whole backdrop and special family meaning of it…breathtaking! Gingi, I didn’t even realize you were pregnant. Nonetheless, I’m quite happy to hear it. You are a great mom and you’ll continue to be so once this little one is born!! And what a beautiful name! Happy and rested rest of the pregnancy. Good vibes and we’ll wishes for the labor/birth time/experience! :mama hugs: 🙂

    • 16 February, 2015 at 1:13 am

      LOL, I know what you mean.. especially being pregnant, if a post looks like it’s going to be touchy feely or emotional, I tend to shy away, otherwise I’m liable to get emotional! haha! A lot of people say they are surprised to learn I’m pregnant! I didn’t realize I don’t post about it all that much.. I’m not trying to hide it! hehehe, it just doesn’t get brought up much I guess.. Thank you so much for your kind words.. you are a dear! <3

  • 15 February, 2015 at 11:05 pm

    These photos are beautiful! Your sister did a great job! I wish my sister could do this good! I have asked her to take photos for me a couple of times with my camera and she does things like cut off the top of our heads, or center the photo horribly so even trying to crop it doesn’t make it look positioned right, etc… Lol! I also checked out the maternity photos from your first child and they were just as beautiful! I LOVED both locations and LOVE that there is a meaning behind each one! Very special! 🙂

    • 16 February, 2015 at 1:24 am

      Thank you! I am usually REALLY picky with pictures, there’s not too many people who will let me boss them around with framing and such, haha. I will sometimes frame a photo, run the camera over and then say, “Take it JUST LIKE THIS!” hahaha.. so yeah, my sister was really sweet putting up with my being picky and bossy, and she did a GREAT job! ^_^

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