When the beginning of May hit us, I started brainstorming for Mother’s Day gift ideas. There are two different ways to handle Mother’s & Father’s Day: 1. Only worry about celebrating your mother and father 2. Celebrate all the mother and father figures in your life, (I.E. Grandparents and such). Personally, I don’t see a problem with either of these trains of thought. After all, the original intent of the holidays was probably for children of all ages to take a day to say a special ‘thank you’ to the two people who created them and have painstakingly cared for them their entire lives. Personally, I like to give gifts to grandparents and my stepmom as well as my parents.
Since getting married, my family now extends from California to Wisconsin. Getting gifts shipped in time has never been a strong suit of mine. You have to plan so far in advance in order to give enough time to ship it, and I’m not the planning type. I’m a procrastinator. In the 4 years that my husband and I lived in California together, I managed to get gifts over to my in-laws (who live in Wisconsin) in time once. Pretty pathetic. Thankfully, they were always very gracious about it. Now things have flipped around because we live in Wisconsin instead of California, but it’s still the same issue of getting my stuff together well before I normally would.
I’m working on it.
Anyways, so I was trying to (quickly) come up with an idea because I had waited too long again (shocking). So I did what any woman does when we need an idea–I turned to Pinterest. I decided that I wanted to do something with pictures of the girls, so I started going through the 279 pins on my ‘Photography’ board for inspiration, because heaven forbid I produce a boring picture of just the adorable kids looking at the camera. I stumbled across this adorable image and knew that was the winner.
The next day, I threw the girls in frilly dresses, gathered up some of their dress up toys, lugged the Cinderella vanity downstairs, and headed to our front lawn with my Nikon Coolpix L120. They love playing dress up and pretending to do their hair and makeup, so I thought this would be a cinch. Eowyn was a total doll and posed for the camera perfectly. Arya, on the other hand, decided that the mulch looked like more fun. It was impossible to get a nice picture of the two of them looking at the camera, and I spent a lot of time redirecting Ary to the part of the yard that I wanted to keep them in and picking mulch off of her butt so it wouldn’t be dangling in any of the pictures.
It’s not exactly what I wanted, but you never get exactly what you envisioned when you’re shooting kids. You’ve just got to go with the flow and take whatever they’re giving you. It’s really easy to get frustrated when they won’t do what you want, but the main thing to remember is to let them have fun. Kids don’t know how to fake a smile; if they aren’t having a good time, you will not get a good picture.
We were outside for maybe 30 or 40 minutes, and then it was time for lunch and off to nap. While they napped, I did some basic edits on Picasa and ended up with 12 usable photos out of the 60 that I took. I left the hubby with the monitor and headed to Target to buy frames and print out the pictures on their instant print kiosk. Normally, I don’t like using the instant print things because the prints aren’t as good of quality, but I was in a pinch. And they actually printed out pretty well. I was able to make it back home before the kids woke up, much to the delight of Daddy. Later that night after the kids were in bed, I put together 3 collages, and bubble wrapped them so that I could ship them the next day.
Even though I was able to pull this all off in a day and got them to UPS on the Tuesday before Mother’s Day, it still wasn’t quick enough–they didn’t make it to California until the day after Mother’s Day. But no one can fault me for not trying.
So without further ado, here are the pictures from our Vanity Fair shoot.