The Hysick Family | Syracuse Family Photographer

As a mother the horrible events of December 14, 2012 shook me to my core.

I, like all of you, was left feeling helpless. I then discovered The Olivia Act. Started by a photographer who had a beautiful idea.

“Dec. 14, 2012, is a date that will be etched in my memory forever. On that day, 26 people lost their lives at Sandy Hook Elementary School, including 20 children, in what was one of our nations deadliest shootings. The images will haunt me for a long time. I cried and cried all weekend long, and I felt I should really do something. I had seen images of Olivia Engel and her family from a professional shoot they had done not that long before little Olivia was killed. I know how much that family must cherish these photos now; so, I thought it was so important to give back using my skill as a photographer. It started out with me just offering a free 30 min. family shoot to a family that might not otherwise have images made, but a lot of other photographers wanted to do the same. So, I created The Olivia Act. I challenge every photographer to do this for a family! You do NOT need to mention my name, just do this out of the goodness of your heart, no matter what city, state, or country you live in. It’s 30 min out of your life and can mean so much to a family.”

The Olivia Act on Facebook

I had the incredible honor to meet and photograph a beautiful and brave family a few weeks ago. I am going to let Melissa tell you their story.

 “November 16.2012, a date that has been burned into my brain, my family’s life was changed forever.  We received news that my 8 year old son had ALL (Leukemia). We were told we could go directly to the hospital that evening or wait until first thing in the morning, so we did not “scare” my son.  The next morning, one of my worst fears have become a reality…his pediatrician’s original diagnosis was confirmed.
It was the longest weekend of our lives…waiting for the test results was excruciating. I’ll never forget him looking at me, standing in a hunched over position, with a needle in his chest, hooked up to a medication pole, when he said “mommy, why are you letting them do this to me?” I told him, tears in my eyes, “sweetie, If I could…I would take you away and hide you from this cancer!!!”
We are fortunate in that we have the amazing Golisano Children’s Hospital so close. The staff and doctors have become part of our family. My son has received weekly chemotherapy treatments, since that initial diagnosis; he asks his doctor (Dr. Andy) and nurse (Yvonne) EVERY question he can possible think of (lol), and they are always so wonderful to him!   He has shown us what it really is to be a “tough kid”. He’s our inspiration!
Through it all, we have been embraced with the love and support of our family, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and new friends we have made along the way.  The outpour of support has been truly overwhelming and we will NEVER be able to return all the kindness that has been shown to us.
One amazing family, who was about six months ahead of us in treatment, came to our room that first weekend and spoke to us about what was ahead. I asked the mom “how do you do this?” and she responded “you’ll learn to develop a “new normal ”.  That’s exactly what we have done; we have carried this philosophy with us on our journey.  Things are definitely different for our family, but my son is currently in remission and even though we still have a very long road ahead of us…we enjoy every moment we have together…I have a little sculpture of the saying, Every Day Matters, and we try to always remember that because in reality, none of us are promised tomorrow, so embrace your today……we do.
Thank you Heather for the “gift” of allowing us to make some memories of our “present”!
The Hysick Family”


I asked Parker to kiss his sister. ha! They did not like that idea.


We got a little silly. Silly is my favorite.

We got a little silly. Silly is my favorite.



It was a real pleasure spending time with the Hysick family xoxo

Every December I will be accepting nominations for a new family to receive a session, please feel free to “like’ Heather Rodriguez Photography on Facebook to stay up to date on news and session giveaways


Little Miss W

Baby oh baby!

Little Miss W is so sweet and squishy. She is also the most alert and aware newborn I have ever met! Mom and Dad will not be able to get anything past this little lady.

Before she was born her daddy had an idea of a picture he wanted of his girls. A before and after of sorts.



then we just had some fun and followed the little ladies lead.


        love a baby sneeze

love a baby sneeze


Can’t forget her handsome big brothers



I have good news, I saw a peek of that amazing dimple her brothers have.

to be continued……


Kiddos, horses and chickens..oh my!

I was so excited when I got my first message from this sweet mom. She was gifted a photo session and picked me. This is such an honor.

This lovely family lives on a beautiful farm. I was excited.

I pulled up and a chicken greeted me. Best greeting ever.

Then one by one five gorgeous children made their way out to decide if I was ok (always my favorite part of a session with kids) Thankfully I passed the test and we had a wonderful time!

those feet had me at hello.

those feet had me at hello.


Thank you for a wonderful time. I look forward to coming back when all those fall colors light your hills up with beautiful color.


P.S. you can see and purchase this talented ladies goodies at

Cherished Style LLC

I Heart Faces August Photo Challenge..JUMP!

I was thinking I was going to pass on this months challenge, I had some jump stuff but nothing that really grabbed me. So I was looking forward to all the great inspiration I would get from seeing everyone’s entries at I Heart Faces…….THEN…..

last night happened.

So if you shoot family sessions you know 90% of the time dad is not really into the whole thing. Mom has probably promised a week of back rubs to get him there ;)

Well this dad was a DREAM! Totally into it, giving ideas and input. Really the entire family was amazing (more on them soon)

We ended our session with some fun silly stuff and got some great jump shots.

White men can jump! Indeed!


Be sure to stop in at

Photo Challenge Submission
to see all the fun and beautiful JUMP entries this month.


Chris & Beth



I have met some amazing people this past year through GiGi’s Playhouse, I have been so thankful for each new friend. Let me introduce you to Marty, Chris and Beth. Our friend Chris is getting ready to move across the country so Marty (being the smart and sweet lady she is) decided we must get some pictures done. We had to keep it a secret since these images would be a gift for Chris’s mom. We pulled it off and the gift was given this past week! So now I can finally share with you all this session that has made me smile for weeks now.

Chris and Beth are the best kind of friends, I have watched them encourage each other, cheer each other on and just make each other laugh. One moment that sticks out to me is when we where having a goodbye party for Chris and it was time for cake, the guest of honor made sure his best friend got the first piece. We all need these kinds of friendship.

I will stop rambling on now and let you enjoy some of our time together. CMB

swingChris&Beth-13wChris&Beth-15wChris&Beth-40wChris&Beth-41wBethchrisbestiesChris&Beth-16wbestiesChris&Beth-25wChris&Beth-59wChris&Beth-57wChris&Beth-70wRock and Roll my friend, the people in your new home have no idea how blessed they are about to be! You will be so missed here


Family, love, giggles…..and a little grass

I know I am going to have a great evening when I am welcomed into a home the way I was with this precious family.

Big sister was keeping me up to date on weather conditions, middle sister was sharing all her big ideas and little brother was excited to show me a project he had been working on.

We where off to a fantastic start, once we headed to the amazing back yard it just got better.

See for yourself.

FischiFamily-61WswingFischiFamily-24wsilliesSillies are my favorite


FischiFamily-36wFischiFamily-12wFischiFamily-18wFischiFamily-19wSomeone was always close by, making sure I treated her people well.


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I left this family covered in grass and with a full happy heart.