Can I show you something?
Those are my babies.
I mean, those are my middle schoolers.
Yeah, that’s a (dusty) scanned print from back in the film days — Christmas 2002. She’s three, and he’s two. Normally, it’s hanging in a frame on the wall in our sunroom with the other eleven Christmas card photos we’ve taken and sent out since we became parents. (I’m running out of wall space. After this year, I may need to begin negotiations with my husband on removal of the framed Rolling Stones album cover that’s taking up precious space in there. But that’s a problem for 2012, I guess. Wish me luck).
Why am I showing you this? I’m not exactly sure, really. Mostly, because it makes me happy. Look at their tiny little teeth, and their chubby little hands. Also, their expressions. Can’t you just hear the giggles? I can. I almost feel like I’m there in the kitchen of our first house right now, as I look at this picture. The moment captured here was so real that the photo carries the emotion with it.
The thing about this photo is that it’s not a super traditional portrait. Their eyes are closed! They’re totally not looking at the camera! Most grandmas would not approve of this as a choice for a holiday card photo. If I’m honest, I’ll tell you that I actually printed an alternate pose from this roll and sent that one to anyone whom I thought would want to see their eyes. I wouldn’t do that now, though. This one’s waaay better in my eyes because it says something about who they they were in 2002, and what their relationship with each other was. It was just the two of them! They were practically ‘only children’! (Well, you know what I mean). That’s what I’d want to show all those people on my Christmas card list.
A lot has changed since then. Their relationship is different now, just as their appearances are different. But looking at this picture on my sunroom wall zaps me right back into that moment.
I’m totally excited to get started on the quest for my 2011 Christmas card photo. It’s going to happen soon. I want to show you one more thing in this post. Some of you may have seen this when I posted it last year. Things have changed in the last 9 years — when you add two more kids to the mix and your goal is to get a ‘real’ photo of all four of them, a tough job gets tougher. And, in case you don’t know this already, it’s waaaay harder to take good pictures of your own children. But it’s still fun — for me, anyway. I’ve always been a little weird that way. This video from about this time last year is really funny, I think — and it puts me in just the right mood …