Tuesday, 9 April 2013

Playing happy family

I have a 13 year old:
an 11 year old:
2 of these: 
and one of these:

I have lots of photos of each, but none of all. So when the opportunity came my way to get all of them in a photo together and incredibly cheaply, I grabbed it with both hands and strangled the life out of it. The catch? The photo op was in Euroa, 200 kilometres away. The problem? Getting a photo with all of my adoraferals in it. At the same time. Together. After driving for 3 hours to get to the photographer. Together. Did I mention for 3 hours, in travelling time, each way, together? As much as I was looking forward to finally getting a picture of all my shitlings looking like they actually like each other, I was browning my knickers thinking what I would be like emotionally and psychologically after the event. I had promised my husband I would bring all of them home from our day trip, and preferably in one piece. He didn't specify what one piece he wanted returned. A little bit of my mind was left in the next suburb, only minutes after we set off from home.

With ten minutes to go before we were to leave home, Campbell was still in bed. Ella was still complaining she had nothing to wear, even on her fifth change of clothes. Scarlett had delivered her morning mud bath in her nappy. Grace had chocolate eyebrows and Lily had changed from pretty to prostitute.

I had asked for something simple - everyone could wear a plain t-shirt with denim jeans or jeggings, and add to it their favourite colour ribbon or headband or shoes (providing it was what I picked). Everyone would match. Or close enough.

Campbell eventually surfaced wearing a dirty black and brown Metallica t-shirt that smelled as bad as it looked. Ella picked a maroon tee with a great oily stain in the middle of her stomach and a tear down the side. Grace wore a pink striped top with a bright swirly floral patterned skirt. Lily put on a thick pink sweatshirt with denim shorts over white floral tights and pink and blue polka dot socks and purple high heels from the dress up box. Hobos and hookers.

Me: For the love of God, put on the bloody clothes I gave you.

Campbell: Fuck this. I don't even want to go.

Me: Watch your language. Clean is all I ask. Not hard.

Campbell: I'm not going.

Lily: But I look pretty. 

Me: True. But waaaay too pretty for these photos. Let's save that outfit for the shops.
I fucking hate Dora.

Grace: I want Dora dress.

Me: Not today.


Ella: I can't do this. I have absolutely nothing to wear. And I'm not being in a photo with Campbell unless you pay me.

Me: I'm not paying you.

Ella: Then I'm not standing with Campbell.

Campbell: Fuck you. That's it. I'm not going.

Me: How much do you want?

Dress code gone, but clean clothes agreed, we set off. Three suburbs away, two children crying, one complaining of starvation, one asleep, one who can't hear a thing anyone says, and me close to tears of nervous exhaustion, Campbell turns to me and says, "I don't know how you do it."

Professional photographers are the ultimate illusionists. From the couple of photos I've seen so far, no one would believe the sibling hatred, the impatient sighs of having to stand too close to another, the smells, the tantrums of a three year old who refuses to look at the camera as her face is too tired to smile, the constant nose picking of the other three year old, and the distractions of ducks, dogs and sticks. Hundreds of photos were taken in the hope that a handful will give me the images I want.

A nice, normal, loving family.

Jessica at Angelic Angels Photography, you're worth your weight in gold.
The Adoraferals by
Angelic Angels Photography


  1. Miss A still wants to join your family, 2 days later! Love this photo, Scarlett looks like the most fiesty of all!

    1. You're probably right about Scarlett, but she's too young to tell yet.

      Miss A - after a week with us you'll be wishing you were part of the Manson family. Charlie & his crew were psycho & less murderous.

  2. Haha the things we do to get what we want. Awesome photo! I'm curious though - did you pay the older kids?

    1. I always pay them with a blood-sweat-tears-&-a-pound-of-flesh casserole. And money for the skatepark & new clothes.