Meet the Priebe’s … Matt — husband, dad, and Youth Pastor for First Baptist Church; Andrea, his sweet and gorgeous wife with many responsibilities managing the household and helping Matt; oldest daughter Madelyn, son Brennan, and the youngest, Autumn. Matt has been a youth Pastor for 12 years this coming January and has served FBC for the last 4 1/2 years. They feel that “coming to FBC was the most incredible gift from God…..the youth here have really stolen our hearts.” By the size of the youth group, I think the feeling is mutual! Thank you Matt and Andrea for all you do!
From what I understand the kids run circles around these two fine parents because when I set up this next shot, Andrea said “welcome to our life” or something of the sort. 🙂 I’ll just set the record straight that they’re fibbin’ because it was obvious to me that they had great parenting skills. The kids were allowed to be kids but they were also being taught manners and respect.
Below is their oldest, Madelyn at 7-1/2 and in Second Grade. This was the first picture I took of the evening and I knew instantly it was going to be a fun photo shoot. Madelyn was the first one ready and raring to go, a model-in-the-making in you ask me and I had so much fun with her cute posing. She has an adventurous spirit, is ready to try anything, and she proved her tree climbing skills to me as well. She told me “you know how you can remember my name?” “No, how?” I asked. “Just spell “made” and add an L-Y-N.” So since I just recently read The Help and saw the movie, of course I asked “as in M-A-I-D?” “No, as in M-A-D-E.” OK, I got it now.
Ready and willing next was Brennan, a 5-year old blondie in his final year of pre-school. I think he looks like his dad, no maybe his mom, no wait — his dad, yes, definitely his dad but with a mixture of his dad’s blue and his mom’s round greenish eyes. Actually everyone in the family had eyes to envy (if I did that sort of thing – ahem). You’ll see he is the expressionist of the family.
The caboose of the family is shy Autumn who turns four in December. She had just woken up from a nap when I got there, and she needed a few minutes to wake up, but when she did she had the sweetest smile that went perfectly with those big eyes of hers. I think she must get her way a lot. How could you resist her?
For the next series of shots we were naughty. We went to the neighborhood water fountain and climbed the rocks … right next to the sign that said “Don’t climb the rocks.” Andrea said they don’t break rules often, but this occasion seemed an appropriate time to break one rule. Matt wasn’t so sure. The kids were thrilled.
So if you break one rule, you might as well break two, right? Wrong. But we did it anyway. The neighbor’s yard was calling me for this next series of shots, and when we were done the neighbor came out so we asked her if we could take the pictures, to which she happily said yes (thankfully). (I could just see Matt and Andrea at home that night explaining to their kids why it was okay to break a rule this time. Oops, sorry guys.) Normal edits after a photo session can take many hours on the computer, but this session really brought me real joy spending so much time on them. It was so fun seeing a family that loves each other unconditionally, that has fun together, and that respects one another. It’s something every child wants — and deserves.
This session was actually requested by Andrea’s parents who have been missionaries in Kenya for 33 years. They are stateside stationed in Missouri and asked for family pictures for Christmas. Andrea says “mom loves to deck her little home with pictures of her grand babies. I think it makes us seem a little closer than we really are.” As a photographer, nothing makes me happier.
Thank you Matt and Andrea, and if you would like to post any of these pictures to Facebook or another site, please use the perma-link below. With appreciation, Mary