Loving Family Looks Back on First Year with Adopted Baby Boy

Happy Birthday, little Sam! Photographer Kate T. Parker just sent word that, two days ago, her nephew Sam had just turned the ripe old age of one. We introduced you to this adorable baby boy, who was adopted by Kate's sister and brother-in-law, last July. In her series Blended, Kate shows us intimate moments between Sam and his new family, including playing or cuddling with his cousins or Kate's own beautiful daughters Ella and Alice. Though at first it may seem that Sam is the lucky one for having been adopted into such a loving home, the whole family feels as though they're the ones who have been truly blessed.

As Sam's grandfather, Frank Anthony, tells us, “Being a very family-centric group, it is extra special to see the reaction everyone has to Sam — and his reaction to everyone. In his first year he has brought so much joy to our family, which already had a ton of joy. His smile lights up the room. Of course he has grown and is demonstrating the normal things such as crawling, standing, clapping hands, etc. But what is different and very special about Sam is how when you hold him he will gently pat your back or chest – demonstrating an old soul who is telling you ‘hey, everything is good and I really like you.' And then he will lean in to give you a kiss — without being asked. I notice how he will make eye contact with you from across the room — making sure he knows you are still there.”

Sam's grandmother, Kathleen Taylor, states, “Everyone tells us how lucky Sam is to be adopted. They've got it wrong. We are the luckiest family ever. Sam wakes up every day happy and ready to rock. Everything about Sam has far exceeded our dreams. He is beautiful and happy and smart and loving. He thinks his big immediate family is the best. His immediate family is wiser, happier and beyond grateful for the gift that he is. His mother says he is just everything good.”

Sam's mother, Megan Stone, says, “He's everything. He's sweet, funny, silly, cuddly, nutsy, and most of all happy. I'm his mom, so of course to me, he's everything. It just gets better and better. That boy is my heart. He's growing everyday, funnier, smarter, more curious. I'm such a mom cliche.”

And, finally, Sam's dad, Jamie Stone, states, “Sam is all that is good in the world, he is laughter and smiles, optimism and hope, sweet and kind, whimsical and silly, hugs and kisses, he is powerful and he is gentle. When Sam smiles he lights up the world.”

Kate T. Parker's website and Facebook page

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