Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Picture Day

This time of year is killer.  September owns the excitement of Graham's birthday, October brings Cael's a couple of weeks later, Joel's birthday is in November, and what seems like a nearly daily slew of birthdays in December, three of which piggy-back on the glory of New Year's Eve and the coattails of Christmas.

As if this wasn't enough, last Tuesday was Cael's picture day at school.  I know what you're thinking... isn't every day "picture day" in your house?  My iPhoto library and it's 17,000+ photos would agree, but any mom of an elementary-aged child will understand that picture day is not like any other day.

Perhaps if Cael were lower-maintenance or if he had no opinion about his appearance, I could pull out my favorite of his ensembles, wriggle it onto his skinny self and drop him off at school with all of the confidence in the world that he would not flip off the camera, share his best T-Rex impression at the worst possible time (tiny, ineffective claws and all) or even ask the photographer for permission to drop his trousers and photograph his bits. 

Alas, Cael is not low-maintenance.

So I did everything I could to prepare him for the day before it came around.  We picked out outfits and discussed how not to roll in the mud.  We practiced wiping his nose on a tissue and not on his sleeve.  Lastly, we staged a mock photo sesh, and Cael gave me a preview of his picture-ready smile.

Or something like that.

The face he made would have fit right in amidst a group of Kramer impersonators, but it was not appropriate for his school photo.

And the next was no better.

Before we were done,  I felt that there was no hope for a sweet portrait of my son, and I mentally prepared myself for a phone call from the principal or the very real possibility that I'd be paying for a retake later in the year.

But just as I began to put the camera away, I muttered to Cael that he was a "mugwump" and his face lit up like a Christmas tree.

"Use that smile for your picture, okay?"


All things considered, our first photo day went off without a hitch.  And although I won't know for certain until those photos arrive, I think it's safe to say we dodged a serious "say cheese" bullet.

But there's always Graham...


  1. Awww, his last smile was adorable! My girls both have horrid cheese faces. I think Raya's preschool pics aren't until spring, so maybe by then she'll improve ;-)

    1. Cael had a pretty cheesy smile last Spring when he had his pic taken at the church preschool, too. But miraculously, the photographer got a really natural, sweet smile out of him, so maybe there's hope for Raya, too!

  2. I feel your pain! We can sometimes get good ones individually, our problem is getting a nice photo of all 3 of our boys. Our iPhoto has 35,000 pictures and I think we have 2 with all 3 of them looking at the camera and smiling nicely. Oddly enough, all of our school pictures have turned out really good- go figure! Your boys are ADORABLE!!!

    1. Thanks, Lori! After this weekend, with the wedding and Graham's b-day, I'm up over 20,000, and those pictures only date back to 2007! I think I may need an extra computer just for photo storage!

  3. I think they behave themselves and smile 'nicer' for the photographers they don't know than the ones that they do! I was impressed with how smoothly my daughters pictures went -- hopefully you get some great pictures back as well!!


Leave your own "ism". Cael and Graham double-dog dare you.