Christmas Sunday...

As we pulled into church today, I told Blake that I wish there was a name for the Sunday before Christmas. (Actually, I really wish Christmas was always on Sunday but I don't think I have that much sway over the calendar companies). I know in some religions, they use the term Advent to cover the four Sundays before Christmas but really there should be a name for what today was. I just refer to it as Christmas Sunday although I wish there was a more meaningful name to it. Christmas Sundays have always felt special. I love the music, the readings, and the audience a sea of reds, greens, and silvers.

I had to do my part to make sure my kids were part of that sea:

And because an elf dropping by coordinating outfits will not always hold the magical power to get them all to match for church.

I've been asked how I get pictures of all my kids smiling or at least looking at the same time - so here is my magic formula:

1. Make it a big deal but not too big of a deal: "Hey guys - let's take a picture to send with our thank-you card to Silver Spurs!" If you say much more than this - your kids will know this is something you really want and will kick back.

2. Be fast. Once everyone is bathed, dressed, and hair done. Get a bench or blanket or whatever prop you want where you need it and all set up (preferably naturally lit and where they can get their heads close together) and yell, "K - guys. Real fast, let's take this and be done!" My girls are well-trained and report for duty immediately.

3.  Recruit more smilers by saying, "Who else wants to be in our picture?" Fielding came next just because the girls looked they were having fun and he didn't want to miss out.

 4. You might have one resistant, in my case it is always the 2-year-old, so you break out the big guns and say, "Come smile then you can have a candy cane!" Don't be above bribery in parenting - it works wonders.

5. A good way to get kids to look at you and offer up smiles is to put something (toy, blanket, lens cap) on your head and then say "On my head, on my head, on my head!" as you tilt to one side and it falls off. I learned this working at Kindercare from the infant room teacher who would do it to distract the babies to look at her while their mommies sneaked out... turns out it works great for pictures too.

This 5-step method works best only on special occasions with the use of a real camera. Cell phones are so common place that my kids barely flinch when that thing is shoved in their face. And I know cell cameras have come leaps and bounds but there really is no comparison...
(shot at the same time on my phone)

 if you want great pics - use a camera...

...and bribery.


Jana Weaver said...

Great advice, darling children! Kate was so bummed we didn't get to see your family tonight when I informed her we were getting together woth the extended Nay side of the family. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas!

Trisha said...

Beautiful Kids!