Five people, twelve times

One of my favorite family photographers is Tara Whitney.  I love her style, her attitude, her photography.  She has a very casual attitude and believes photos should reflect the honest you, not always the dressed up, cleaned up, posed up, you. Tara started a project in January where she plans on taking a photo of her family every month for a year.  She will post the photo on her blog, write a bit about what is going on in their lives and use all 12 photos to create a year end book.

I thought this sounded like an incredible project.  You see, last September, I told my husband that I wanted to get a photo of all of our family some beautiful fall evening.  I take a million photos, but I am rarely in the photos and I never get a photo of the entire crew. 

Well, it is February, and that family photo has yet to happen.  Until today.

When I read about Tara's project I thought - This is the just the project I need to finally get that family photo.  But, not only that, I will get twelve family photos!

So here we all are!  The whole crew, freezing out on our snow covered back deck that I made my not-so-happy hubby shovel.  And, this is also a very honest photo.  My husband in his athetic pants, my 3 kids with hair that hasn't been combed since Friday.  A typical Sunday at the Smith's!  Oh, and as you can see, this photo was actually taken by Christina!  The kids weren't too happy about the whole thing, until they realized they could take turns trying out the remote!

February family photo

On the bottom of our family photo we have the youngest, 4 year old Kallie, or Kallie-Wallie as we call her.   She is the pickiest eater ever and either eats chicken nuggets or a peanut butter sandwich for dinner.  I am hoping she will eventually grow out of this.    She loves to play with her Noah's Ark animals or her Nintendo DS.  She loves her big sister Christina most of all, and except for the occasional squabble, they are the best of friends. 

Then we have Christina, or Tina Wina as we call her.   Christina is 8 and too smart for her own good sometimes.  She does incredibly well at school.  She is finishing up her first year on our local Y's swim team this week.   With a dad who not only was a swimmer, but has also been a swim coach for about 22 years, she was pretty much born with fins.  Next week is her last swim meet of the season.  She has some great coaches and has made some great friends.  It was a very good swim season.

Eric, aka the hubby, is in the middle of his swim season.  It has been a harder year for him.  After many years of coaching very successful teams, he is now facing a few years of "rebuilding" his team.  It is sometimes hard being on the very bottom after years on top, but he still loves coaching and I doubt he will ever quit.

Caroline, aka "baby sister", is our special needs sweetie.  She is tube fed, non-mobile and non-verbal.  But, you can tell just by looking at her in the photo, that she is nothing like the "vegetable" those specialists predicted she would be.  She rolls around, she talks her own language, she knows much more than many people think.  Caroline is scheduled for some out-patient surgery at the end of the month.  I am a bit nervous about this, and just hope she will see some benefit after all the trauma they put her through.

And then there's me, Irene.  It has been slower in January and Feburary with my photography.  But since my husband and my daughter have been so busy with swimming, I really don't mind.  I have been working on my website, my blog, my pricing and I have been booking some new weddings for this year.  January and February are the months where I always get a bit stir crazy.  My husband is gone a lot, I am stuck home a lot, it is cold, snowy and the days are short.  And I always get the itch for a day away...ALONE.  Today was that day.  I set out for our local outlet mall and happily found quite a few amazing bargains!

So that's us!  This 7th day of February 2010.  It was fun having our first family photo session.  Hopefully next time it will be a bit warmer so my kids won't complain too much.  And next time maybe I will position my tripod a bit higher so I am not looking down and emphasizing my double chin!  Yuck!!!