Sunday, November 9, 2008

For Cryin' Out Loud! Just Smile And Say Cheese!

With the great color on our property, I decided to drag everyone (literally kicking and screaming) outside yesterday for family photos to use as our Christmas cards. For whatever reason, Edward dreads family picture time. I don't know if he doesn't like the fact that I pick coordinating clothes for everyone or the way some of the kids react to the whole process that makes him less than enthused about picture time. He tells me he doesn't know either. He just knows he detests having family portraits taken.
Here is what went down: I had in my mind since Monday that I wanted to take family pictures outside for two reasons. 1.) The beautiful trees in our yard and 2.) my favorite photo website, Winkflash, is having a sale on photo cards for the next few days, so I needed to get moving on torturing the family, er, taking the photos. I waited until Friday to break the news to Edward that we would be trekking outside on Saturday. I sent him an email telling him the great news. It was laced with sarcasm.
On Saturday we kept telling the kids we would be taking pictures after Elizabeth's basketball game. I laid everyone's clothing out for them to change into. Ross is hands down my best kid about clothes. He never, ever complains about what I pick out for him to wear, and I appreciate that SO much about him! When I thank him for his great attitude, he replies, "They're just clothes, Mom." Mallory doesn't have an opinion yet about the clothes she wears, so no worries there.
That leaves the other two (imagine the theme music to Jaws playing in the background). I knew a fierce battle was about to ensue when I picked the clothes out. Elizabeth fights me tooth and nail about her clothing on a very regular basis. I've learned to let a lot of it go. She usually gets to wear what she picks out herself to school, with my approval. She and I both cooperate (kind of) when it comes to her church clothes. But for pictures, I get to pick her outfit. This particular outfit I picked (khaki pants, a plain white t-shirt, and a brown sweater jacket) was WAY out of style and itchy according to her. There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth, and she eventually was threatened with many things if she didn't cooperate for a few minutes to take a picture.
The same scenario pretty much unfolded with Drew. He has had some serious clothing/texture issues since he was about one-and-a-half, but it is getting much better now. I won't go into all the specifics, but at one point about six months ago, I was convinced he had some kind of sensory disorder. I even called a friend who is an occupational therapist for our school system. After a long chat with her, she has helped me realize it is more about power, choice, and comfort on his part rather than a medical condition. Sorry, I digress. Anyway, he was crying and throwing a fit about the pants being too big. He was threatened he would not be able to go to a much anticipated birthday party later in the day if he didn't cooperate.
Neither one of the offenders would listen to reason when I told them if they would just cooperate, we would only be wearing these clothes for a few minutes! In the middle of our huge melt downs, I kept saying to Edward, "I'm sure we're going to get some REALLY nice shots!"
To my great surprise, once the tears and snot were dried up, everyone was smiling and participating! We got some decent shots! I was happy with how they turned out. I think the kids enjoyed seeing me run to take my place after I'd set the timer.
Here are a couple of the pictures I liked but ruled out as "THE" Christmas card picture. I'm still deciding between a few:
I love Drew's face in this one!

Thank goodness for Photoscape. LOVE IT!

I like this set up, but Edward's leg is a bit wonky, and Mallory isn't looking at the camera.
P.S. Guess what Elizabeth picked out all by herself tonight that she wants to wear to school tomorrow? The brown jacket from this picture. Good grief!

And sorry! I'm having paragraph spacing problems again!

I Love Fall

It is my favorite season. Here is some of the beautiful scenery that is on our property: