If you heard her laugh, you would fall for her straight away.
It’s that kind of naughty, giggly laugh that sends ripples out around the room. It’s catching. Your chuckle becomes a laugh out loud roar that goes rolling back to her and makes her laugh even more.
It’s a simple, wonderful circle. And Jessica is at the centre of it.
And always, at her side, her devoted Mum and Dad.
With little kids Jessica’s age, the energy is always up then down during a session. The trick is to go along with that, let things unfold naturally and capture those moments of connection as they appear in front of you.
It’s pretty clear that Jessica get’s her sense of humour from her Dad, Ben. She mirrors him. Screws up her face. Smiles broadly…
…then clonks him on the nose to show him who’s boss.
It was beautiful to watch this family together, enjoying a play tea party in the park. Finding everything funny. Even spoons.
An energy up moment. And I promise, Ben and Sam needed to move to catch up with her.
She would tear around the little park close to their home, enjoy the chase, then slump down next to Mum and Dad, looking intently at something that caught her eye.
Then a tickle would bring her round again – she would squeeze her eyes shut, fling open her mouth and let the laughter ring out.
I don’t care what age you are – playing peek-a-boo around a tree never gets old.
Back inside during a quiet moment, I get the chance to take in the heart of their family home. In Jessica’s room, by the window in the rocking chair, covered in a patchwork quilt, with her cuddly toys and storybooks lining the shelves, I think this is a pretty perfect place to grow up, get strong and laugh loudly.
I hope to see them all again soon. I’d love to hear that laugh another time. Bigger and stronger than ever.