A Side of Rice

Hopefully Humorous (and sometimes R-rated) Musings About Life

Picture Perfect

2 Comments

For the past 11  years — with the exception of 2012 — I have dragged the kids and husband joyfully planned a trip to a professional photography studio to get the annual Christmas photos of the kids.

I do this because I tuck wallet size copies into each of the 140+ Christmas cards I mail each year. I always receive compliments on how nice the photos turn out. Unfortunately, the compliments never outnumber the total times my husband reminds me that “Stamps aren’t free, for fuck’s sake. Can’t you just send e-mails?”

I must admit that the photos have turned out marvelously each year. If only family and friends could see the back story of how we get to ‘cheerful holiday grins’ from ‘DEF-CON level 1′.

Imagine if you will:

  • Two boys, who as they have grown older, prefer not to touch each other, lean toward one another, or behave nicely toward one another as the photographer is trying to pose them.
  • A mom who bribes her children with the promise of milkshakes at Red Robin if they will just sit still for one freakin’ minute so we can get the damn picture already.
  • A wife who bribes her husband with the promise of unlimited sports watching for the remainder of the weekend if he will just clam the ‘ef up already about how much he hates doing the pictures each year.
  • A husband who mutters under his breath so that his wife can’t understand what he is saying, but she knows for sure (based on his tone) how much he hates the whole production. Note that the clarity of the muttering tends to increase sporadically so that words and phrases like “stupid”, “waste of time”, “missing the game”, and “not worth it” are what his wife does hear.
  • Making the JC Penney Portrait Studios staff and customers there for holiday photos completely uncomfortable as the mom does not mutter — but snaps at her husband very clearly — “Jesus Christ! I’m not asking you to lop off a nut. I only do this once a year. Stop being such a damn Grinch.”

To avoid DEF-CON 1 this year, I decided I would take the photo myself. I ordered wallets for pick-up at a local discount store that promised photos from online orders in an hour.

And here’s how the do-it-myself photo shoot improved things:

  • Realizing that just because we aren’t being watched carefully by store security, we still have two boys, who as they have grown older, prefer not to touch each other, lean toward one another, or behave nicely toward one another as the photographer is trying to pose them.
  • A mom who barks at — and is no longer willing to bribe — her kids to just sit still for one freakin’ minute so we can get the damn picture already.
  • A wife who bribes her husband with the promise of unlimited sports watching for the remainder of the weekend if he will just clam the ‘ef up already about how much he hates having to put the tree up earlier than usual so that his wife can take the picture herself.
  • A husband who mutters under his breath so that his wife can’t understand what he is saying, but she knows for sure (based on his tone) how much he hates the whole production. Note that the clarity of the muttering tends to increase sporadically so that the words and phrases “stupid”, “waste of time”, “better be cheaper”, and “not worth it” are what his wife does hear.
  • Making the staff at Walmart Photo Center pick up line completely uncomfortable as the mom does not mutter — but enunciates very clearly — “Jesus Christ! I’m not asking you to lop off a nut. I just need you to save my place in line while I go get some gingerbread M&Ms. Stop being such a damn Grinch.”

Here are the fruits of my photography labors. Happy Holidays, readers!

Author: A Side of Rice

Married, mom, marketing professional. Loves swearing, pedicures and celebrity meltdowns. Hates making dinner and working the little league concession stand.

2 thoughts on “Picture Perfect

  1. As the oldest of 8 kids, I can definitely relate :) Great post! And lovely photos :)

    Sarah Allen
    (From Sarah, with Joy)

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