Over the years when the kids were growing up, I would use countless rolls of film (yes, film) and try to get the perfect holiday card photo. Armed with my camera and some determination I would have them sit outside for what would feel like hours just trying to get a picture that I could send out to all our family and friends. But as you can imagine, getting three kids ages four, five & six to all look at the camera AND all smile at the SAME TIME was nearly impossible. Yet, I was always determined to get the perfect photo every year. Occasionally I would even call my sister over to work her magic and help me get them to pose.
Looking back, I wish I hadn't been so focused on getting that 'perfect' picture. Instead, I wish I had used one that captured their personalities. What better way to say Happy Holidays than with a silly face or devilish look, or the sweet spontaneous hug! Now as my kids are all grown up when I go through our old photos those are my favorite ones. So for all the new parents or parents of younger children, 'perfect' isn't always what the media says. And if you look at these pictures too, I'd say they're pretty darn cute.
One of my favorite traditions this time of year is pausing long enough to sit down and handwrite our family Christmas cards. For over 10 years, all five family members have personally signed every card that is given or sent out. It’s our way of telling the recipient they matter and that we care about them. To me, it’s an added connection that goes with the photo card we’re sending them.