Not only does the 27-year-old singer and songwriter have a number one single with his hit “Craving You” on Billboard’s country charts, but he and his wife adopted their first child this past May, and expecting their first biological child next month.
In honor of Lauren’s pregnancy, the growing family of three posed for a gorgeous set of ethereal photographs taken by Nashville photographer, Julie Paisley who wrote on her blog that the couple and their young daughter made for a very special shoot.
Taken on the grounds of their Tennessee home, the former high school sweethearts posed alongside their 20-month-old daughter, Willa Gray, who they adopted from Uganda and delivered what might be some of the most inspired maternity shots in recent years from a renowned country couple.
Paisley, who photographed Lauren’s sister Macy’s wedding last October, said the shoot was scheduled weeks ago and was one she was most humbled by.
“I have loved following [Rhett and Akins’] story and was especially partial to their recent adoption of Miss Willa Gray,” she wrote on her blog. “I was so excited to meet her and y’all, she is precious!”
But the sweet photographs almost didn’t happen as Paisley shares the weather has been quite a factor when it comes to scheduling photo shoots in Nashville.
“If you haven’t heard, we have had so much rain in Nashville lately and we had to reschedule this session 3 times!” she wrote. “I was worried the baby was going to join us before we had the chance to do maternity pictures, but so thankful that when I met up with them last week, it was a beautiful and dry Nashville afternoon and baby was still in Lauren’s belly!”
Lauren, 27, is due to give birth in August, after struggling to fall pregnant. She told PEOPLE this past February, “We tried to get pregnant for a little bit before. It was a good chunk of time and our family is extremely fertile, so I was expecting it to happen easily. I was like, ‘Maybe this is the Lord’s way of telling me adoption is what He wants me to do.’ And I was okay with that.”
Paisley writes on her blog that she absolutely loved to photograph the “sweet family,” saying they are a truly the “real deal” as their “souls just shine.”
“Thomas Rhett is crazy talented,” she wrote. “But what stands out to me the most is what’s on the inside and you know what, it shows on the outside too.”
Paisley goes on to share how “Lauren is truly one of the kindest, sweetest people you will ever meet,” writing, “Her beauty is so much deeper than the outside and these two deserve all that life has given them. What a blessed little baby this little one is and I can’t wait to meet her.
During Rhett’s trip to Tanzania with Lauren, his wife tells PEOPLE she took a pregnancy test and got the good news.
“It’s funny to me how we tried so hard and then we didn't try at all and it happened!" Lauren said at the time. “We feel like it’s all part of the plan.”
Named after Rhett’s grandfather, Willard and Lauren’s younger brother, Grayson, Willa’s name is an inspired one that has deep meaning for the family.
“One day I said the name ‘Willa Grace’ and one of my friends thought I said something about Will & Grace, the show!” Lauren said. “I love that show but I was like, ‘I don’t want to think of it every time I think of my daughter.’ So we kept it in the family.”
When the couple adopted Willa Gray from Uganda in May, Lauren tells PEOPLE that it “felt like a dream.”
“I’ve dreamed of us all being on the same continent for so long. It finally feels like everyone is where they’re supposed to be,” she said.
While preparing for their next, Rhett says the couple has been “tag-teaming,” between the dogs, cooking and cleaning and as he says, showing Willa more of her new world.0comments
“It’s the craziest thing we’ve ever experienced!” he said.
Photo credit: Julie Paisley Photographyprev