Today was That Day. The day of the Annual Masters Girl's Christmas Photo Shoot. This is the one day a year that I put them in an arranged "set" in my living room and attempt a photo that is somewhat representative and decent enough to send to pretty much every one I know. I only attempt this once a year because I am sure one can imagine, it is challenging with a capital CHAAAAAAA.
This year there was more of a time crunch than usual. Some people who get these photos, we only see two or three times a year, so this is the one chance to give them their photo. Ya I could mail them, but it's always so hard to be sure they get there safe and unbent. The family party this year is a week early. And poor Holly has been battling another of her face-altering cold sores. It was a race to see if the cold sore would heal enough before the party...or if it would still be distorting her badly!
This morning was like the LAST CHANCE before the party. We left for the Valley today for the party (which is where I currently sit) and there was a snow storm so we wanted to leave early (not) and miss the snow (nope, negative) and I had to get the photos developed before leaving. So first thing, all kids into the tub. Clean faces, clean hair, clean clothes. Wash that toothpaste off the shirt and try again. LOL I move my living room around UNrecognizably, to maximize the natural light, since someone promised me a spotlight and then at the last moment realises it's Broken. So we have space in the living room and set up our screen hanging from the rocking chair with a Chip Clip and tucked under the stereo PLEASE dont pull this down, should the stereo come crashing down on top of you alL! Sheesh. The black background was missing for a while, I got the darlings to clean up some of Their Stuff and said material shows up. Hung. Blanket on floor. Ok kids come in for one last hair brushing and lets go. Change clothes to black shirt "Im SO sorry you dont like black. I hunted high and low for these things and this is what you have to wear for 5 minutes." Tears. "but I hateeee black". Threats. Bribes. Eventuall resignation that black is going to be the colour. Out to the stage, actors!
What makes Annika so sad? The first few minutes of the "shoot" start by attempting to get her to smile. Tears seem to flood from all corners of her eyes LOL for no reason. I think this is another quiet rebellion against my Photo session. She actually talks in her sleep and woke me up last night saying "i dont know WHY I cant be happy! Im SO Sad!" What a life I look forward to! Teen depression and angst coming my way! "Why doesnt he LOve me? Why doesnt he Notice me???"
We take a few practice shots. I am a firm believer that if I dont direct too much, and just keep snapping, at least one of those photos will knock my socks off. Usually works for me!
I had to redirect Scott a few times, remind the kids not to look at me, as I am not fond of those photos that have everyone sitting up straight and smiling at the camera, reminding Scott to stand closer to me and stop making them look to the side, and stop making them laugh so hard all I get is tonsil glare. Taylor is my drama queen, she tries to be all serious and "gaze off into the sunset" but ends up showing me her nostrils hahaha she's lucky tho, she always takes a wonderful photo! LOL
We took lots of group photos, and got some cute ones without any real AMazing ones. I played with a few settings on the camera and got some interesting results. I took some photos of them individually, while they were kinda milling around.
I let them goof off a lot, because it makes them sit better, and it makes their smiles a lot more natural. The struggle was keeping Annika from bursting into tears which apparently she can do at the drop of a hat. The background came down in one laughing moment, stereo remained intact.
It's sometimes hard to tell the success one is having in the moment. I was sure some photos were cute enough to "do in a pinch" but I was still waiting for that one that knocked off my socks.
More fooling around, more teasing, curtain down again...Taylor complained that she had no socks on and that the other 2 girls did, I told her it was ok because I was not taking photos of her feet...so they all proceeded to show me their feet for photos!
More wrestling and tickling, more curtain falling. I have to say, right at the end i got that photo. Not a posed one, but one I saw in an instant. Holly put your cheek here, Annika there and SNAP. Naturally I cannot show it. Too many peoplen who are getting this photo might see it. I'll post in the future. The photo session ended when the curtain fell a final time. "sigh". But I had my photo and some funny ones to boot.
So I alter and pick the one i want with some help Oh my goodness I could not choose! LOL and then I sent it online to be developed. AND I WENT TO PICK THEM UP on the way out of town. YUP, leave for 2 nights, delivering photos tomorrow. And they didnt print them. And they did not call to tell me they were not going to print them. Apparently Walmart ran out of matte paper, so they were just going to leave them unprinted til they got more paper. Been out since yesterday. SHEESH. NO phone call or anything! I was rather mad! After all ive gone through...not even a phone call! SO i cancelled the order, drove here in a snow storm, past accidents, past piles of snow, through blinding snow...3 hours to get here...and I sent them again to be printed and delivered to the Valley instead. Wonder if they are printing them.lol