We are that cheesy-Christmas-card sending family!
This year is Bella’s fourth Christmas, and it just gets better and better each year. Her understanding of the big build-up, her excitement, her eagerness to get involved; it all makes my Christmas-loving-heart so happy. This is my favorite time of year and it seems to fast becoming Bella’s too.
Bella was 3 months old for her first Christmas, and I couldn’t resist the urge to put a photo of her in Santa booties onto a card and send it to all of our friends and family. It was just too sweet! And everyone loved it. I still see that first Christmas card on friends’ fridges or even framed on their wall of family photos. So naturally, when Christmas number two rolled around, I decided to do another card. This time it was her sitting amongst tree decorations, playing in tinsel and laughing at us pulling funny faces at her in attempts to get a cute smile. It was such a fun afternoon!
For Christmas number three, I was officially in the Cheesy-Card-Sending Club, so I embraced the hell out of it and got a little creative. We had two cards made, both done in front of our garage door, as I had just started taking photos for my Garage Portraits series. There was one with Bella and I together, caught by the photographer while I was trying to tickle Bella into smiling for the camera, together with a little blackboard heart with our Christmas wishes. And the second was Bella standing on her own facing the camera, which my brother edited into a Christmas police line-up with the caption ‘Dear Santa, I can explain…’. I know right, how cute?! Both of these were printed big, in black and white and are now framed in my lounge, I just adore them!
And so that brings us to this Christmas. Every November I start thinking of ideas, researching and Pinteresting other cheesy-card-sending family ideas. We set the date for a summery Saturday morning. Bella was to wear a white tutu and sparkly red shoes and I was going to wear a black and white dress. We were both going to wear Christmas hats and do a black, white and red shoot. It was going to be so cute! And then we woke up to the coldest day in Joburg. It literally rained from the time we opened our eyes, to the second we ended the shoot. In typical 2014 fashion, I was taught the lesson that has resounded LOUD and CLEAR throughout this year – motherhood can’t be planned!
We tried to wait out the storm and that didn’t work. So we decided to just let it go and go with it. Bella grabbed her gumboots and New York hoodie that my Dad bought her earlier this year. We bought a bunch of red helium balloons and headed to Delta Park, in the rain. We did the entire shoot in about 30 minutes, laughing and running around getting soaking wet. And they turned out beautifully!! It was once again a lesson in taking it day by day, rolling with the punches and not sweating the small stuff. I will forever love this year’s card as a gentle reminder that I am never fully in control, and that’s okay. Now bring on Christmas, this Mama and her girl are ready!!!
*Special thanx to the amazing Leigh Benson, www.leighbensonphotogaphy.co.za, for always putting up with my crazy ideas and for taking the most beautiful photos of my baby every year!