Today I took the kids in to get "professional" pictures to commemorate their 1st and 3rd birthdays. Now when I say professional I'm not talking about some highly trained photographer who specializes in family portraits, weddings, etc. as their livelihood. I'm talking about the photo studio at the local mall with staff who may be highly trained, but regardless, you never know what you're going to get. When McGee was born I took him in almost monthly for a photo and often times left with only the free 8x10 advertised on the many coupons I receive in the mail or find in a parenting magazine. Was I taking advantage of the system - taking up their precious time and digital photo memory storage only to leave with a free photo and not actually paying for anything? I struggled with this sometimes, but really, often those were the times that there really wasn't a GREAT picture that I wanted to spend our hard earned money on. Here is a shot from McGee's 1st photo session at just 3 1/2 weeks old (we wanted to get something for Mother's Day):
Now that we have two little cuties, our trips to the studio have sadly been minimal. Our first venture out was when Miss Em was about 3 months old and the pics just weren't that great and she wasn't very happy throughout the session. Daddy came with us for the first time that day and boy was I glad for the help (I typically go mid-week when there are less people, but daddy is working so I'm on my own)! Here is the only picture they had with both kids:
After this session I said I would never go back, but....never say never I guess because in February we headed back into the stress-filled photo studio. It was a much better session this time with both kids pretty cooperative, but it was still near impossible to get a great one of the two of them. Unfortunately the best one of the two kids also included a not so great shot of mom included. :( Here are some of those pictures:
All of this to say that once again this morning off to the mall we went for some AMAZING 1st and 3rd birthday pictures (I hoped). Once again we had to wait a 1/2 hour past our appointment time before they called us in. Don't they know the fine line we moms are walking in trying to schedule pictures at just the right time when the kids are rested, fed and happy? Anyway, I should have nursed Em beforehand but realized I'd left my nursing cover at home and since she was all smiles while we waited I figured it would be okay. Once again...I was wrong. Between McGee's ants in his pants (he couldn't sit still more than a couple of seconds) and Miss Em's tired and hungry crankiness, I was amazed that we ended up with a fairly good shot of each of them. I had hoped to get one of them together (you can see how well that one looked) and one of Miss Em in her pretty Easter dress, but they were done and I think the photographer was tired of this stressed out mom and cranky kids as well so we called it a day. I also thought a pretty headband would be cute for Em, but she wanted nothing more than to take it off. How do you like the finished products???