Photographer Juliet Cannici couldn’t wait to snap pictures of her two sets of twins: 2-year-olds Nico and Siena and newborns Gia and Gemma, born January 26, 2017. But Cannici’s original vision — which involved fancy outfits — didn’t go according to plan. “I was so set on capturing Nico and Siena holding the babies in the clothes I had rented for them, but they were so bored with me and the photos looked terrible,” the Holyoke, Massachusetts–based mom tells Us Weekly. “I was so disappointed.”
But moments later a little light bulb went on and Cannici, 35, scrapped the designer ensembles — and got her perfect, now-viral shot. “They immediately held hands and wrapped the other arm around their baby sisters,” she tells Us of Nico and Siena. “I got their smiles by asking them to ‘act goofy,’ which they recently decided is just hilarious.”
Cannici and her wife of nearly 11 years, Nikki, were in total shock when they learned they were expecting a double delivery. “It took us four rounds of IVF to get pregnant. On our fourth round, just one embryo was transferred into Nikki,” says Cannici. That single embryo divided and at Nikki’s first sonogram they learned they were having identical twins. “Our ultrasound tech asked Nikki how she was feeling. Nikki said, ‘Very symptomatic,’ and she replied, ‘That makes perfect sense based on what I’m seeing!’” recalls Cannici. “We all started laughing hysterically to the point of tears. We were excited, yet horrified.”
Much to Cannici’s surprise, the transition has been seamless. “Things haven’t been hard yet, I’m sure due to the fact that the newborns are sleeping 90 percent of the day and we’ve had my parents in town to keep Nico and Siena a bit occupied,” she says. “The best part about having two sets of twins is just seeing the way the older interact with the younger … experiencing that love and connection. “
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