After my Grandpap passed away, my dad inherited a big box of pictures my grandparents had accumulated over their 70+ years. Among the pictures of porches being built and their beloved bulldog, Lady, were professional pictures of members of our (or someone else’s—I didn’t know a lot of the people) family. The subjects, my brother and I included, were all cleaned up, dressed up, and shiny. You can almost calculate the preparation that went into the sitting to achieve the perfect memento of that time in their lives:
‘number of subjects’ X (‘articles of clothing’ + ‘60 for all infants wearing tights’ + ‘60 for all pre-adolescence boys wearing non-clip-on ties’) + ’60 for most-definitely-gonna-happen delays’ + ’30 just in case’ = total minutes of preparation before loading everyone into the car and praying they don’t wrinkle themselves too badly.
I love those kinds of pictures, though. I imagine they hang nicely framed on giant walls with all the others to be admired and smiled at each day.
Last year’s photo session with Lincoln was great! We got him some fancy “I’m one year old!” pictures, and I lovingly and proudly packaged them up for friends and family (so they could accumulate in their box o’ pictures). This year, I was excited to do the same and throw some holiday poses in the mix as well. Oh, how cute it’ll be!
It was not cute.
I smarty scheduled the picture appointment at Linc’s optimal awake-and-happy time of 6 p.m. (to which the photographer questioned me about later—THE NERVE!), but couldn’t get him to take a nap at all that day. He fell asleep in the car on the way there and had to be woken up. Yep, you know what’s coming, don’t you?
Morning kid! I know you only slept for 20 minutes, but get up and perform!
Nope. Not having it.
He clung on to me like I was trying to feed him to the reindeer in the backdrop. After 10 minutes of attempted coaxing, bribing, and frustration, I calmly said “Stop! It’s not happening today. Thank you anyway.” We left.
And, we’re not going back. We might not go next year either.
Why the pressure? Why the drama? For what? A picture someone may or may not keep; a picture we’ll look at and think back to the drama instead of cherishing our almost-two-year-old frozen in time; a picture to add to the bunch we take ourselves. That’s it. Nope, not doing it.
Do you do holiday pictures? Are you successful?
Erin Hill is a first-time mom to Lincoln, who was born in January 2010. She's learning as she goes and is experiencing everything a new mom goes through while seeing the humor, irony, and enjoyment in her adventures.
Erin is a full-time technical writer and features freelance writer in her "spare time." She lives in Plum with Lincoln, her husband, Adam, their dog, Roxie, and five (yes, five) cats, Nirvana, Gary Roberts, Elvis, Talbot and Forrest.