You all know the parent, family member or friend that swears the little in their life is "really smart. like, smarter than any other (insert child's age here) they've ever met." i'm going to be one of those people and tell you that my niece poppy is quite possibly the smartest toddler i've ever known.

that's a bold statement considering that my nieces and nephew are incredibly bright kids. my niece, quinn has been teaching herself french for over a year now (she is 9). but, poppy is on a level that never fails to shock me. 

poppy "met" georgia peach at just over a year old. she's spent time with peach maybe 3-4 times. also, like i said, she's 2. when she arrived in syracuse with her mom and dad she said "georgia peach? benny? (my mom's dog is benny) where are they?" not to mention you can say almost any word to her and she recites it back to you, almost always with perfect diction. she takes her mom's face in her hands and says things like "mom, i am so proud of you", she can pick back up on a conversation you had with her over an hour later and fully remember what you said. she also knows (and i mean properly knows) at LEAST three words in italian. 

but, not only is she bright, she's absolutely adorable. one of the cutest. cuddly, sweet as pie yet sassy. 



if there was ever such a thing as perfection, she was born saturday, january 27, 2017 at 7 pounds, 21 inches. 

her name? francesca lee iannicello

the anticipation leading up to her birth was palpable. i cannot remember the last time i felt such joy and excitement filling the air at family get togethers. there were guesses made (one guess we were collectively wrong about? that little baby francesca would be a big bottomed baby - she is not!) and tons of belly rubs (sorry amanda). 


i met my brother-in-law alex when he was 17 years old. on the way up to the hospital i asked my husband "is it really weird for you to know your baby brother is now a dad?" truth be told, it's weird for ME that he is a dad!

not that i'm the least bit worried.

alex is going to be the most amazing father. he's tender, caring, goofy, funny and charming and if he loves francesca even half as much as he loves his wife, she will grow up enveloped by the most intense and immense love.

and anything alex can't handle? well, amanda is the ying to his yang.

she's goofy, funny, charming, too but... she is also one of the brightest, most organized type A's i've ever met. she had francesca's clothes washed and organized in drawers months before she was born (yes, really). she's the perfect mix of soft and hard, sweet but tough. with amanda as a mom, i know francesca will become a strong-willed, brilliant, hard working woman.


as always, i feel deeply honored to be able to capture such amazing moments in the lives of my family and friends. take a look at the photos below and be prepared to swoon over this sweet hairy nugget.