When A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words About Another Picture

It’s the time of year when I start to plan what I’m going to do for holiday cards. I’m one of the dinosaurs that still sends them, you see.

I used to make them myself: papercrafting, when I had time to do it, was a blast. I loved expressing my creativity on my holiday card project every year, and if the card didn’t have a picture element attached to it, I included one in the envelope so our friends and relatives who don’t see us very often can check out how much the boys have grown during the year.

For the last few years, I’ve ordered cards online, and that’s fun too because there are so many choices out there. I always go with a photo card because you know, those boys just haven’t stopped growing. (Thankfully, they’re slowing down a bit!)

Back in the year 2000, I decided that it would be fun to go into Chicago and take pictures of the boys in front of Buckingham Fountain. I can’t remember what month it was, but the fountain was still “on”, so it had to be September or early October.

It was cold.

That brings me to the picture I have on my kitchen counter. (Forgive the quality: I took a picture of it rather than scanning because it’s NaBloPoMo and I’m in a hurry!)

Grant Park

It’s an adorable picture of Jim and the boys, standing at a street corner in Grant Park on our way back to the car. Jim is wearing a denim jacket, which always makes me go, “Ooh! Hawt!” because he was wearing one the first time I ever laid eyes on him during high school and that memory is as clear as ever. He’s pretty darn hawt in that picture too. And today, even. Wait, where was I?

The denim jacket has nothing to do with my story, by the way, but now you know.

Anyway, the funny thing about this picture is that often one of the boys will say something about it, like “UGH, that was that cold day when you were really mean to us!”

After one of them says that, I have to reply, “I wasn’t mean. All I did was ask you to take your coats off for a minute at Buckingham Fountain so I could take a nice picture!”

Did I mention it was cold? It was like WINTER COLD, and standing spitting distance of Lake Michigan didn’t help either.

Apparently I may have shouted at them from behind my camera, “YOU’RE FINE! JUST PRETEND TO BE WARM!!!”

Bad mom.

Then we all laugh about that day. Or maybe it’s just me laughing.

Or cackling.

Because the picture I sent out with our holiday cards is ADORABLE. I mean, they don’t even look cold, do they?? You can’t even tell their lips are blue.

Grant Park COLD


  • Kari aka Gopher

    I still send out cards too!
    Which reminds me, I need your address!
    We all have moments, like the time I told my kids to “suck it up and pretend to be happy” while taking a great photo op picture.
    I get this completely.

  • Shannon

    My kids used to moan and groan when I said it was photo shoot time. I would have had them take off their coats too.
    And, yes, it was worth it. The picture is adorable.

  • Sally

    We took our Christmas card picture today and I can relate to everything you are saying! We went to the beach with the wind gusting 800 miles an hour (not quite but really windy) and everyone was sooooo happy (lie). At least we have next weekend to try again. Many a time, I have echoed your words and also “look like you are having fun!”

  • Momo

    It looks like a summer day to me! I wonder how many times I’ve said, “You’re fine!” since I’ve been a mom. Thousands, I’m sure.