Christmas Card Shoot with the Halls | A Herculean Task

Being a photographer is great. I love being able to capture my family with high quality equipment and the artistry and technique of years spent honing and practicing. I don't have to pay anyone. I can shoot in my own time. But this one takes the cake as The Worst Photoshoot of My Career. After an impromptu, spur-of-the-moment session in the park last week with Christmas cards in mind (how did I put it off so long? And oh my goodness, how has it been a year since this Christmas Card Shoot??!), I'm starting to wonder if I shouldn't outsource this insurmountable undertaking to someone else. Someone who is decidedly not "Mommy."

You see, after being around each other all day long, Alice and Milo in no way want to listen to me while I direct and coax...and shout...and threaten...and I have about zero patience left in my tank to play Nice Photographer. To top it off, Milo's allergies immediately flared up upon entering nature, so I had a cranky little boy who did not want wade around itchy grass while his nose ran like a river and Alice wanted to do everything except smile nicely or look my way. Any passerby would have raised their eyebrows at my command and control tactics and probably wondered if the situation warranted all of my yelling and bargaining. (Totally did, let me assure you.)

While I threw out 75%, we still managed to miraculously capture some magic. Ones that warm my heart and make me smile instead of inducing sudden anger and an urge to reach for the nearest bottle of vino. I really will cherish these glimpses - even the crazy, crying, screaming ones.

Ten made the cut for Christmas cards, but here are the rest. 

(I find it a little amusing that we signed off with "Peace, Joy, & Love" for the cards when we didn't channel any of that during picture-taking. Well, maybe joy when we had a leaf-throwing party, but peace and love were totally out of the question. It was chaos and bribery to the very end.)

Enjoy :)

Miss Polka Dots

Outtake No. 1

Milo was trying to escape the wooden sled while screaming and Alice would


 cooperate and instead sang and was as stiff as a board. *Forehead slap*


Finally caught Alice but couldn't get a blurry Milo to look up (have got to up my f-stop! I get it wrong every time...). Le sigh.

alpaca kid gloves

 from our favorite local Alpaca boutique

Lady Alice

Playing with some fun new free

VSCO film


But now I need 01 and 06

real bad



Happy Milo

I had to pretend sneeze about 3 dozen times to get smiles out of the kid, but it was totally worth it.

Thanks for his new sweater, Aunt Lynnie!

And thank you, Grandma Linda, for the wooden sled. We still love it to pieces...literally. My uncle is currently repairing the handle.

Outtake No. 2

Because I couldn't


share that smarmy smile and indignant cry-face. 

golden ginko glory

This was the best part of the shoot...throwing leaves!

And did you notice that primary triadic color scheme? Be still my heart. It's just so



a teaching moment


Little Miss Sassafras




this little girl...

Opera singer? Budding thespian? Who knows, but I love her flair for the dramatic.

I think I'll keep them.