Sunday, April 10, 2016

The Family Portrait

Looking at the portrait above you would think that I have an amazing family that doesn't have any problems whatsoever.  I am here to tell you that although I DO have an AMAZING family, we have our fair share of problems.  For example, getting family pictures.

I have a very bad habit of getting family pictures done each year.  This is so I can mark the passage of time with at least one picture of everyone each year.  We can see who had hair and who didn't, who gained weight or lost weight, who grew 10 inches or who shrunk.  Any way you look at it, a picture is a great time marker.  It is also a great way to discover things about yourself that you never would have known before.  For example, I turn into a psycho mamma and expect the impossible.

Every year I schedule with a photographer the ideal location for an amazing family picture.  Every year I carefully coordinate clothes that will match (no plaids and stripes here - no siree!)  Every year I beg and plead with my children to just "smile for the camera".  Every year I tell myself this is the year that I will have happy smiling children that will not fight.  Every year I tell myself that the pictures will be over in less than 1 hour (instead of the 3 hours it took the previous year!)

I have found that every year I have been lying to myself and expecting the impossible!  I have also realized the photographers I have hired, not only do they do an amazing job, but they also see me as a psycho mamma who gets so frustrated with her children for NOT smiling that I resort to begging, pleading, and bribery for just ONE smile to be in the 192 pictures that will be taken that day.  (I have also noticed that these photographers don't hold bad feelings against me.  I guess as a photographer they have "seen it all".)

So, for all you mammas who want to get an amazing shot of your crew, here is the true breakdown of the above amazing family picture:  Before the picture happens expect, crying, poking, teasing, running, complaining, snacking, confusion, whining, and eye-rolling (this is just from the mamma!  Like I said, I turn into psycho mamma).

When I was getting these current pictures taken, I asked "WHY?!? Why do I do this same thing year after year?"

My photographer said "Because you are a great mom and you care."  Like I said, I have amazing photographers!

That was great encouragement to continue to go through the hassle to mark the passage of time.  It also made me think of the many other things we do day in and day out.  We sometimes bang our head against a wall wondering "WHY" do we continue to do the things we do.  The answer is simple, we do these things out of love and because we care.

So, I will again schedule another family picture this year.  But I will be sure to not put too much pressure on the family so maybe I won't see an appearance of psycho mamma!


  1. I smiled reading this. But then I thought of my own strategy. I've forgotten the perfect smiling family shot. We alternate between funny faces & a good smile for mom. The funny part is my favorite usually end up being the one that everyone is laughing or has their tongue out or everyone isn't even looking at the camera because we are distracted by the butterfly.

    I liked the parallel between your effort for one happy perfect family shot and all the many other things we do. We love and we care. That's what makes the world such an amazing place. Those around you seem to mirror what you want and where you are headed. A positive person attracts positive people.

    1. Thanks for the tip alternating between goofy and perfect. I will definitely have to put that into practice this year!