Sunday, December 11, 2011

Cards of Christmas Pasts

Christmas cards are super important to me.  I love creating just the right card with just the right picture to send out to all our family and friends near and far.  I love receiving them just as much as I do giving them, and I save all the photo cards to revisit in years to come.  Ever since I can remember I've loved Christmas cards.  As a kid the month of December was very exciting to me.  (aside from the fact that the guy dressed in a red suit delivered a whole bunch of new stuff at the end of the month)  I always tried to be the first to the mailbox so I could open the cards that came that day.  I didn't care if it was addressed to the whole family or just my mom and dad, I opened and cherished them all.

This enthusiasm over Christmas cards has only increased as I grew up and started a family of my own.  I remember our first Christmas with Joey, then 5 months old.  I propped up my cute little redheaded baby day after day in cute Christmas onesies until I got just the right picture.  Seriously, I'm not exaggerating... I think I have over 200 photos of Joey for our first Christmas card.  Here are the (surprisingly ordinary) ones we ended up using:

Now to you (the untrained eye) these two pictures probably just look like any other happy little baby dressed in red & white.  And with just 1 kid... how hard could it be?  But believe me, I had to work for those smiles.  Any mom will agree that it isn't easy to get your non-sitting little one to look at the camera, not drool, not droop their head, keep spit-up at bay, and smile

The following year Joey was a crazy little toddler with 2 baby sisters on the way.  (Yes, just 12 months after his first Christmas I was 5 months pregnant with twins. -you do the math!)  My patience was tested as I tried to get yet another just-right Christmas card picture.  Here's a few that didn't make the cut:

Look closely; Not even a cookie could convince him that this was OK.

"I am Joey, hear me rooooooaaaaaar!"

"You want me to do what?"

"Ooooooh... smile!  Don't think so, mom.  How's this?"

And finally one that did land on the Christmas card:

Oh how I love that little guy.  Sigh. 

2009 was a challenging year for so many reasons.  Getting the right Christmas card photo was no exception.  My camera was stolen the day after Thanksgiving right out my car.  We were in a tough financial situation and didn't have the means to replace it immediately.  With a borrowed camera I managed to get 3 individual shots of my kids to piece together a Christmas card, although I was not overly excited about the fact that it was our first Christmas with 3 children and I couldn't get a picture of all 3 together that looked halfway decent to send out.  Here's my attempt at a group shot of our 2 year old and 7 month old twins:

Yeah, no.  That was clearly not going to work out.  So I settled for these poor-quality images instead:




Last year I was determined to get a picture of all three kids in their Christmas outfits for an adorable Christmas card to send to my list of 50 closest family and friends.  After a night of Christmas parties and sugared sweets, my kids were in the perfect mood for a group photo shoot.

Or maybe not.

I instead opted for some great individual images of my sweeties that I took during the month of November at a local park.  Perfect blue eyes, happy smiles, and clean faces made my card almost perfect.  I loved the fall colors in the background, and the girls wore a couple of momma-made outfits!

As for this year's photo, I did manage to get one of all three together.  Hurray!  It's not completely perfect, but what picture of 3 crazy kids is?  So I guess it not being perfect makes it perfect for me.  I know that statement probably doesn't make sense but this is my blog and it makes sense to me, so there.

I'm not sharing the picture here because I haven't sent out the cards yet, and I don't want to ruin the thrill factor for any other Christmas Card Enthusiasts out there.  However, once I'm sure all the cards have reached their destination I will post the picture here for all you lovely blog readers to see. (crafters beware... I see some inspiration coming your way!)

Well, this post is significantly longer than I anticipated and my hubby is off to go watch Football so I'm back to my mommy duties.  Since I worked so hard to share these pictures with you, I think ya'll should do a little work and leave me some comment love... tell me about your Christmas card adventures!


Erin (fave cuz) said...

these are all adorable.... seriously- how freaking hard is it to get more than one kid to smile at the same time??? REALLY HARD MAN! I've already returned one set of cards that made me cringe once it got here- waiting to see if i can stand the next batch! well, i guess i have no choice at this point!

marie said...

this is a really cute post sorry i am so late reading it ... save these photos forever ... they are so cute


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