A Real Family Christmas Photo

west family feet card

Can I just be real for one moment?

Family Christmas photos just suck. I really think I would prefer to have a root canal.

The Christmas cards started arriving in the mail the other day. The families in the photos looked so together, all smiles in their color coordinated outfits. I felt the pressure, completely self-imposed, to send out cards.

We attempted family pictures today.

In every picture we took, someone was not looking at the camera or I had turkey neck (yes, I just said turkey neck). My son’s nose was red and snotty from crying. My daughter, being the sweet child she can be, tried so hard to lift the spirits of two grouchy parents and one obstinate brother but with little success.

After thirty minutes of begging and several tantrums later, I gave up. I guess we would be the only ones (at least in my head) that failed at getting Christmas pictures out- again.

About the time I had resigned myself to the couch, a dear friend called and asked me to go with her to town. I jumped at the chance to get away for a moment. I began sharing with her about the frustrating yet comical photo session that had taken place earlier.

We had a good laugh.

She then shared her own “horror” story about family picture day. I quickly discovered I was not alone and that the struggle was real. Only minutes before her children had been photographed, they were crying and complaining. Yet the photo I received from this precious family did not show any of that struggle.

And as lovely as their family Christmas photo is, I think the fact that I know the real story behind it makes the photo even more beautiful.

The point is this: We see only what people show us. We see family pictures where everyone is smiling and maybe even photoshopped. We don’t see the tantrums, the pictures where the eyes are closed or the goofy smiles.

So instead of showing you a great family picture (which we did not get) I wanted to share with you a REAL Christmas greeting.

May you be blessed in this holiday session.

real family pic


The picture below is after a lot of begging. It was as close to “good” as I could get. We shall try another day! I look terrified but the kids are smiling so I say it is a win.

family pic





2 thoughts on “A Real Family Christmas Photo

  1. Oh, you made me laugh, Sarah! 🙂

    These days our friends are sending us Christmas photo cards of them with their grand-kids… If that’s the case, for Rob and me, I’d better send a picture with our daughter-in-love’s belly – and you can imagine how THAT suggestion would go over, considering she’s due in the next 10 days or so! LOL (No, I don’t intend to be THAT mother-in-law!)

    I wonder if a picture of all our feet might work? bwhahahaha

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