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February 9, 2011

Step Aside and Hand Over That Camera!!!

Just before I was born, my dad invested in a state-of-the-art 35mm camera. He wanted to be able to document my first smile, my first ice cream cone, every Easter dress, and all the milestones in between.

And sure enough, there are scores of pictures of me from the time I came home from the hospital until I graduated high school.

Sort through those tomes of photographs, though, and there’s something quite noticeable missing…pictures of me with my parents.

What I wouldn’t give to see pictures of my mom making cookies with me in the kitchen, or of my dad and me erecting a tent in the front yard.

Fast forward about 30 years, and I, too, invested in a state-of-the-art camera before the girls were born, also set on documenting every hair on my precious babies' heads.

What I’m trying to do differently, though, is remind myself -- and my hubby -- that it’s equally important to capture some pictures of us with the girls.

It’s not as hard to think about turning on the camera when we’re all dolled up to go somewhere, or when we’re having a true "Kodak moment" – like baking cookies together. But I try to think about turning it on when nothing special is happening, too.

Frankly, when “nothing special is happening”, I often look less than picture-perfect. I may have on my crazy sock monkey pants, my hair may not be looking its best, and I might not even have on makeup (theoretically speaking, of course…). But I try to remind myself that my girls will likely appreciate that “slice of life” one day.

They’ll enjoy seeing us piled up together, reading books, as we do a hundred times a day…they’ll laugh thinking about the picnics we staged for their puppy doggies in front of the fireplace.

They’ll enjoy being reminded of building impossibly high towers with Daddy…and they’ll smile nostalgically as they see pictures of him cuddling their baby dolls.

I’m quite sure they’ll appreciate seeing all those things, even if Mommy’s hair looks a little ratty and Daddy appears not to have shaven in a few days.

So even when you don’t feel like subjecting yourself to the flashbulb, step aside occasionally and hand over that camera for someone else to take a few shots. Your children will thank you for it one day.


Andrea said... made me cry! So precious and beautiful! The last couple of days there has been so many posts from everyone that has made me cry! Some have brought happy tears and some have brought sad tears. This of course brought tears of happiness! I love being a Mother! I feel so blessed to come across so many special people here in bloggy land! Happy Wednesday!

Double the Giggles said...

Well said. I will make an effort to be on the other side of the camera more often ;)

Liz said...

It's so true Mandy. It's so important to make sure we get in the pics with the kids as well. I'm usually the photog in th family so it's definitely a conscious effort to get me in the pics. My husband is in alot more pics than me.

Julia said...

What a great post, Mandy!

My parents were here this past weekend, and I was able to take some pictures of my dad reading to my girls. I have a couple pictures of my dad reading to me when I was little---I love the nostalgia--priceless!

Julia said...

P.S. You look radiant in your sock monkey pants :)

reanbean said...

Great photos! I'm sure you're quite right about that. I already regret not having many photos of me with my kiddos when they were infants. I was no where near what I would consider attractive, and did not want that look captured for all eternity. I know we could still do better (even with just taking photos in general on non-event types of days), but we try to snap shots of us with the kids when we can.

Tracy said...

How right you are.... I fall short so often and know I will regret not having more pictures of me with the kids....

Twingle Mommy said...

I'm the same way. One of my goals for last year was to take more pictures of my husband and I alone and with the kids. This year my goal is to take pictures of the kids by themselves. Hmmm I forgot to think about having mom and dad in the pictures with them. Thanks for the reminder!

Missy said...

So sweet! What a great post!

Anonymous said...

agree, agree, agree. at the definition in your arms! :)

Barbara Manatee said...

great post...just wish my DH would pick up the camera and take pics once in a while! if I don't do it, pics don't taken! :-(

Mandy said...

Fantastic! I couldn't agree more. I think your next post should be teaching the hubs how to use the camera! All of the girls' birth pictures and first NICU pictures

I have noticed that there are very few pictures of me with the girls. I'm so glad you have those moments captured. I'm so not a fan of staged pictures!!

Rebecca said...

I hate saying, "take a picture of this," but it's gotta be done! I also got a tripod for Christmas this year and that will be used a lot more in the coming months!!!

Christina said...

I'm guilty as well!! Great post!