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Why is it so hard to get a Christmas picture? Maybe I should say – why is it so hard for ME to get a Christmas picture?

Every year we get cards from other grandparents with all of their precious grandchildren lined up, all smiling, either dressed in lovely soft colors on a beach, or in colorful ski outfits on a slope or just relaxing surrounded by cute pets; clean, hair brushed and shining, cheerful, happy; ALL SMILING and LOOKING at the camera!

We had what we thought was a wonderful opportunity this past weekend when all five came to spend the night with us. The sun was shining brightly through newly washed windows, they all had on pajamas, were stuffed with pancakes and no one was fussing or crying. We’d decorated cookies, colored, read books and watched movies. A very special time!

We lined them up on the old settle and proceeded to take a ton of pictures. I followed my own advice – first do silly faces, then do sad faces, and then do sweet faces. Oh right! Even tried doing silly faces myself at them – that didn’t work either.  Got the bright idea to ask them funny questions – which got all five hysterically jumping all around and raising their hands. We were desperate enough to try or promise ANYTHING to get them all to focus on giving us a photo for our Christmas card. For heaven’s sake, I followed the steps for “getting the Christmas picture” that I wrote in our e-zine Pages. Why weren’t those suggestions working???  I sure am hoping that at least one of those 26 tips worked for you!!

It didn’t help that my little Olympus was back at the fix-it place for the 3rd time. Not sure what they didn’t understand about “the off-on button doesn’t work” but hoping that the 3rd time will be the charm for getting it fixed. At any rate, I was using our son’s really nice Nikon.

It should have been a snap. We couldn’t wait to check them out in Historian. Well, out of all those photos all but three were out of focus. (Not Historian’s fault – I had the Nikon set incorrectly!) (Tip for next year – use a camera that you are used to using!!) Our 8 year old thought it was funny to keep crossing his eyes – a little hard to fix but Historian let me do it fairly quickly using the Clone Tool.  The glare on the glasses of our oldest granddaughter was a little harder to manage but using Artisan made it fun and easy. I just cut out an oval of her head and slapped it on over the one with the glare. I used the “Lighten” tool on her shirt and it was done.

No, they aren’t all smiling or even looking at the camera – but it’ll do just fine for this year.

Here’s wishing that every one of you gets a perfect Christmas photo and your children and/or grandchildren pose perfectly!

Happy memory making,


P.S. And please let me know how you did it!


Content used: Jen Martakis Retro Christmas

Embellishments: Katie Pertiet Elfin Magic Scrapbook Kit

Font: KG Drops of Jupiter

Christmas 1a

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11 Responses to Blog: OK, 1-2-3 – SMILE!

  1. Carolyn says:

    Your grandchildren are so adorable that even what you call an imperfect photo is stunning. They’re gorgeous and obviously a happy bunch!

  2. Kaye Rhodes says:

    What darling children and a terrific page!

  3. Billie J says:

    Great photo and page Anne. It reminds me of my attempt to get a “good” photo of my 3 sons for our Xmas card. It was over 20 years ago when they were teenagers. I made them dress up and they looked great! But trying to get them to pose without acting goofy was difficult. This was in the days of film and I took a roll of 36….I did get 1 photo for the card. But all of the rest were the 3 of them acting out, making faces, etc. I look back on that now and wish I had used one of the goofy photos for our card that year, which would have reflected how much fun they were having.

  4. Karen says:

    Anne I enjoyed reading your Blog today. For the past few years we have taken family pictures at Thanksgiving and I have come to the conclusion that there is no way to get ten adults, six dogs, and seven children all looking at the camera at the same time. As the seven grandchildren are not together because of distance very often, they are so anxious to get to play and enjoy time together and that does not include posing for pictures.

  5. Jan says:

    What a darling photo and card, Anne! You wouldn’t have them any other way, would you?

  6. marsha4560 says:

    Great blog! I think all parents and grandparents run into this problem when trying to take pictures of more than one child. But, those imperfect pictures are what life is all about. Those are the memories we cherish as we look back on these special photos. Can you also tell me when the Serendipity Blueprint came out? I can’t seem to find that one among my near 500 blueprints that you have so graciously shared with us over the years. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and happy and safe New Year.

  7. Sandy says:

    I love your results and hope you do too. These are the pictures that they will talk about forever. My daughters look at their cousin pictures from years past and laugh. Of course their grandparents wish they would have gotten one good click of everyone at the same time. This had me go back and look at some of the family pictures from when I was younger and even though they were goofy they brought back lots of smiles and fun memories.

  8. JR says:

    Anne, I feel for you. I have tried and tried to get good photos of the 5 grandchildren and cooperation is not something they seem to understand. Bunny ears, smiles that are not natural, closed eyes, bad hair days. You get the picture! I have been trying to get nice photos for frames that my daughter has hanging on her wall of her three daughters. Each child has maybe three photos out of the six openings filled with a photo. The others are blank and it drives me crazy. Hoping for an opportunity when they arrive for Christmas.

    Cute page!!!

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