Taking photos. Editing photos. Staring at, smiling at, swooning over them.
Photos of my hubby, and family, and dear friends are treasures, but my heart swells up three sizes looking through snaps of my sweet boy.
What a true gift to be able to capture fleeting moments and expressions, adventures and feelings in photographs and then have them as a record for keeps. For-ever!
That is so rad.
I award myself an A when it comes to photographing my little guy's childhood. I want it documented. All of it!
But here comes the catch.
Usually the one behind the camera is me.
Maybe that's you, too?
And that can only mean that we are not always in the photos. Or rarely in the photos. Or never in them.
I have a big problem with this! Because we belong in the frame with our kiddos. (and with our husbands. and friends. and grandkids. and the list goes on and on.)
Our children's childhoods include......you and me! We must not, should not, cannot leave ourselves out of the photo books.
When I look back at picture albums of when I was a little girl with crimped hair or a teenager with awkward outfits, some of the most special are the ones of my mom with me. Whether it's us hanging out on the couch together or a family shot from Christmas or her standing with me at one of my school events, I look at those photos and feel ALL THE LOVE.
In my eyes, my mom was (and still is) so beautiful. The most beautiful woman in the world.
And I wish there were even more snapshots of my mom and me. There just isn't such a thing as too many pictures.
Because she was there. Every single moment, she was there.
So. Here's my encouragement to all of the moms of the world.
Get in the picture!!
I promise you won't regret it! No mother in all the land has ever spoken the words "Oh nuts, I should not have taken that photo with my sweet kids. I wish I could go back and not take that photo."
But there certainly have been thousands of times when moms have thought "I wish I had gotten a picture with them at....."
Over the past few years, I have gotten much better at hopping in the picture with my little guy. Here are a few thoughts and ideas ::
*For the love of selfies The selfie gets a bad rap (duck face anyone??), but throw that misconception right out the window! Selfies were MADE FOR MOMS. Some of the sweetest photos I have of me and my boy were taken on my phone by sticking out my arm and clicking a button. Quick, easy, perfection.
*Use your camera timer The timers on my "big" camera and my iphone (there's an app for that!) are like gold. If I really want a photo with my boy that's not a selfie and there's no one else around to take it, I definitely take advantage of those timers! I show my kiddo where to stand, get the timer going, and hop into the frame in time for the shutter snap. Sometimes it takes two or three tries to get it "right", but it's always worth the time.
*Ask someone Your husband. Your friend. A random person walking by. One of your other children. Don't be shy! It's not one bit weird or awkward to ask someone to quickly take a picture of you with your sweeties. So next time you're at the beach or playing the backyard or cheering on your son's soccer team, please hand over that camera, girl!
*So long insecurity Please, please do not let how you look (or how you feel you look) get in the way of being photographed! In a lot of the photos in this post, I am without a stitch of makeup. My hair is wonky in many of them. I'm not super skinny and my skin isn't zit free. I'm in sweats or pajamas in some. And you know what?? I really don't even see those things. I can see past my imperfection and straight to the heart of it all. I see my darling boy. I remember the moments. I see the joy and the smiles and the fun. I SEE US.
*It's the little things Kodak moments are not reserved for special occasions or holidays. The every day things you do with your babes like brushing teeth, siting in the carpool lane, eating breakfast at the table, shopping at Target, laying in the grass, and reading before bedtime ALL deserve to be captured, too! Pull out the camera and click away.
*Help a girlfriend out Let's make a pact. We'll call it Moms Don't Let Moms Stay Out of the Picture. Or something. ;) When you are out and see a mama taking photos of her kids, offer to snap a few pics of her with her crew. She'll thank you! And she might even hug you. Once again, don't be shy!
These days and years with your children at home with you go by so quickly. Like a blink of an eye. God chose you to be a mama. Their mama. So capture your motherhood, Loves. For your family. And for you.