So. We had family photos this weekend. Or, I guess I should say, we attempted family photos this weekend.
You guys! I was SO excited about this. I had all these mental images of how things were going to go. I had *the* perfect photos running in my head. I did my homework and pinned plenty of images and sent them to our photographer, you know, so she would know what we really liked. I invested (way too much time) time putting together outfits for all three of us that somewhat matched. I was so excited to work with our sweet/amazing/talented photographer-turned-friend again. Added (huge) bonus: The weather this weekend was amazing. Like, could not have picked a better day to take family photos kind of amazing. And we had the perfect location all planned out.
But you know what? It. Did. Not. Go. As. Planned.
I severely underestimated how difficult it would be to take photos with a toddler. Go ahead, laugh at me.
Leading up to it I was kind of nervous about how Ellie would do. I knew there was a possibility she wouldn't exactly cooperate. But... I just did not plan or anticipate how badly things were going to go.
Wriggling her whole body.
Would not sit still. At all.
Arching her back.
Swinging her arms and kicking her feet.
Did not want to look at the camera.
Did not want to prove that she is capable of showing any form of affection.
You get the idea.
Attempt #1 at family photos was this Saturday. After Ellie made it quite clear that the last thing she wanted to do was pose for photos, our sweet photographer kindly offered to come to our house the next morning and try to capture some better images (at no additional charge!!!).
I was really bummed things didn't work out at our first location, but we happily accepted her offer. My amazing sis-in-law even obliged to come over and provide a familiar face to coax some smiles and giggles out of Ellie while the three of us posed for photos.
Family photo session #2 went a little better, but the weather was unexpectedly less than ideal and Miss Ellie still made it quite clear she did NOT want to take pictures. I was just perplexed. People, I promise my child is a happy, smiley, vibrant, giggly, expressive toddler when she's at home 99.99999% of the time. And she normally lets you hold her. And lets you kiss her without freaking out. And will even give you sweet snuggles and kisses. Apparently that is all unless you want to take a photo of her.
I'm sort of laughing at the experience now. I really do wish someone could've videotaped this.
A few things I learned from the experience:
1. These are complete first world problems. Fact: We probably didn't capture *the* moments and photos I was hoping for. But, my goodness, we are so blessed to afford the opportunity to take family photos.
2. Never ever, ever, ever assume a toddler will willingly pose for photos. This is not in any way a reflection on the toddler's personal behavior and personality. This is just based on the fact that you are working with a TODDLER.
3. Teething toddler working on molars + family photos = not a good combo.
4. Pinterest, man. Are all those family photos with happy, smiling little kiddos just 100% photoshopped?!?!?
5. A small toddler who JUST LEARNED TO WALK is not going to be content when forced to sit still within a huuuuuuuge, open field. <---Palm to face. Duh, Jess.
6. Though absolutely adorable, a light colored dress paired with cream tights are not suitable wardrobe options for a 13-month-old taking pictures outdoors. In the fall. Read: Dirt, dirt, dirt everywhere. Seriously, what was I thinking?!?!?!
Our photographer assured us she was able to capture some good images (though admittedly probably not quite what we had in mind). I'm a little nervous to see the final product. Either way, I have been served a bittersweet slice of humble pie. Reminder #1,001 that I can't control everything.