The Truth Behind That Perfect Family Photo

As mothers, we are often on a quest of capturing that perfect family photo.  Maybe you are into the catch-em-in-the-act, candid type shot, or maybe you like the more traditional, look-at-me-and-smile type image.  Or if you are like me, you like a little bit of both.  Well, regardless of which type of “mom-tographer” we claim to be, we usually pull out our cameras on special occasions or when that little one is doing something especially cute…or maybe when he/she’s being a little mischievous…

Saturday, Tyler swam in a swim meet and rocked it might I add, and since we were nearby, my mom and I took the boys to Stony Point Fashion Park.  We had one destination in mind:  Gymboree.  We are both suckers for the sale rack, and Gymboree was having a 40%-off-already-reduced-merchandise sale.  Holla!  We found a set of pajamas in a size that would fit Tyler and one that would fit Nolan.  Now, before you make fun of me, let me start by saying that I am NOT a dress-your-kids-alike kind of mother normally.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.  I just don’t usually do it.  But when Tyler saw those pj’s and realized he and Nolan could dress alike, he was over the MOON.  I never thought he’d be so excited about such a thing, but it’s Tyler.  And he’s full of surprises.

We took those pj’s home, the boys took their “tubby’s”, and they got dressed in their matching Gymboree pj’s.  The first words out of Tyler’s mouth were, “Mommy, will you get your good camera and take pictures of us?  Please?”  This kid, my first born, who has run away from my camera more than he has EVER run towards it, was asking me for a mini photo shoot with his baby brother in their new, matching, Gymboree pj’s.  I didn’t really feel like it, but I got my camera anyway.

Oh!  WHO AM I KIDDING?!?!  I was THRILLED!  What?  He is begging me to take photos of them?  They match….and they are CLEAN!  This never happens!  I grabbed my camera, and we made our way into Tyler’s room where…wait for it…    his.  bed.  was.  made.   This moment was certainly made among the clouds.   It was as if I was preparing for a Pottery Barn Kids photo shoot.  Ok.  Maybe not quite like that.  But close.  Very, very close. 

I instruct Tyler to sit on the bed with Nolan, but to sit close to the edge where the light would hit their faces.  It was already 7:30, the sun was going down, I was fighting low bedroom light, but these shots… the ones where they are matching and clean… had to be perfect.  Well, friends… here is where things took a turn for the worst.  Instead of telling you about it, let me just show you.


Tyler actually follows my instructions and places Nolan on the bed beside him.  Can you tell how excited Nolan is  already?Perfect Family Photo-1

No amount of jumping, peek-a-boo, or singing was making this kid buy into any. of. this.

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Ok.  No problem.  “Just hold him, Tyler.  He’ll probably LOVE that!”   Hahahahaha….

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Plan B.  “He loves it in his chair.  Let’s go downstairs!” 

Left image:  Tyler looks possessed and Nolan is catching flies.  Right image:  Half way ok, but still not what we are going for.

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“We got one!  We got one!  Y’all look cute smiling at each other!”  Then Tyler informs me that THAT is not good enough.  He wants them to look at me and smile.

Kill.  Me.  Now. 

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Clearly, Nolan doesn’t share Tyler’s enthusiasm.

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Tyler gets mad, gets in Nolan’s face, and antagonizes him for not smiling for HIS matching-pjs-with-my-brother photo.  Nolan seeks revenge in the form of an arm pinch.

Perfect Family Photo-21


It hurts.  Tyler cries.  And pouts.  Nolan doesn’t waver from his position.

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Tyler gives up.  Nolan kicks him for good measure.

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Nolan attacks me and my camera and hits the shutter mid-attack.  Hello, cute 17-m0 foot.

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One last ditch effort.

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Mission aborted.

Happy Monday!

M xoxo


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