Holiday Pictures. Moms, You Know What I Mean.

Honesty right here: Isn’t taking family pictures a mostly unpleasant experience? Well, for me, it is. It’s always a beautiful outcome (well, not every time for us, but most of the time), but to get from point A (no pictures) to point B (nice family pictures), it’s a STRUGGLE. Those beautiful family pictures you see on Facebook take a lot of behind-the-scenes grunt work. And most moms I know (myself included) stress the entire time that we aren’t going to get the right shot.

Let me quickly break it down for you and show you what “challenges” I’m working with:

1. MOM.

That would be me, of course. Obsessed with outfit coordinating. Spends at least two weeks prior to said family picture date trying to get the right combination of color, print, and texture in all family outfits that must also coordinate in some way. Wants to respect husband’s wish to “wear what he already has in his closet.” (Husband does not share wife’s affinity for shopping for new clothing, to say the least).

Spends the hour before the picture taking appointment debating whether the hair should be worn straight or wavy. Immediately regrets decision to wear hair wavy but does not want to show disappointment as to add a negative vibe to the picture taking experience, which at least three out of the four family members do not enjoy. Like at all.

2. DAD.

“Do we really need another family picture? We just took one in April.” (My response: Yeah, but Johanna’s hair is like 6″ longer now, and she has like 10 more teeth…)

“Can I just wear what I already have?” SURE.


“Mom, (insert any one of 10,000 questions I get asked on a daily basis, in rapid fire procession)…”

After two different shots (in which he behaved and smiled like a good boy), “Mom, I’m done!”

I snapped these pictures on my phone while Bobbie checked her lighting.


Does not say much but wiggles out of Mommy’s arms every chance she gets. Refuses to look at the camera 95 percent of the time.

Can’t deal with the cuteness in the fur vest, though.

Enter my friend Bobbie Nygren, who took our photos this time around (and she did my blog photos for my last Twirl Trunk post, if you want to check those out, too!). She agreed to come to our house and work out of our backyard, at my request. I figured the experience might not be so bad if we could stay in familiar territory. If one of the kids needed something, then it was right there in the house. I also liked the idea of the setting for our family picture this year to be at our new house, since this will be our first Christmas here!

Bobbie was so great to work with in that she completely understands how kids operate. She’s a mom. She also knows my kids, and working with a photographer who knows my family as well as she does made for a pretty stress-free experience.

We took breaks and didn’t take a whole lot of time to take our pictures, which was pretty great. I had originally just thought if we could get one family picture for our holiday cards, then great! But she took some amazing candids, too, that I thought I’d share.

Gosh, this boy is so funny. Yes, he asks, on average, 500 questions an hour, but my heart is stolen by him forever.
God, thank you for this beautiful baby girl and for allowing me to be her mom and dress her in a fur vest, moto jeggings, and ankle boots. And for the times when she tells me, “Hold you.”
And here we have the family picture!
Friends and family, when you get your Christmas card, act surprised, like you’ve never seen the picture before, OK?
If you’re asking me for advice in coordinating your family clothing, I really don’t have a ton. I actually think it’s pretty hard, to be honest. I do have one really sound thought I try to keep in mind every time, though. Try to stay true to who each family member truly is. If your son wears ties and likes them, go for it! I know that’s out of character for my Jack, so I try to avoid pieces like that for him, for example. 
Extra special thanks to Bobbie for some beautiful pictures that we will cherish in years to come. There’s really no better investment than in a great photographer. Visit Bobbie’s FACEBOOK PAGE to check out more of her beautiful work and to contact her to book your next photo session. 
Blogger’s note: I received this family photo session at no cost, though all opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the businesses that support my blog!

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