The Happy Family and the Magician

A Happy Family made an appointment to have pictures taken by a professional photographer at the beach. In preparation the Responsible Mom, went on a futile search for a black toddler t-shirt. Meanwhile, Disneyland Dad took the children to the park to keep them occupied.

Six stores, 5 phone calls and 2 fast food stops later, RM did not have a black toddler t-shirt. However, she did have the very last 2T navy blue t-shirt which, she was sure, would dye black with little to no effort. She arrived home at 3 pm – plenty of time to dye said shirt, dry it and leave the house at 6:00 to meet the photographer.

Responsible Mom arrived home to an empty house. Disneyland Dad was not home with the children yet. Uh oh. RM rushed around getting t-shirts dyed, clothes ironed, showered, calling DD, calling DD again, and again. Finally, DD arrived home at 5:15 with children who had not napped nor eaten. Dear Readers, this almost became a homicide story. Children were thrown in bathtubs and shoved roughly into newly dyed black clothing. The appointment was met on time.

It became immediately clear that there was going to be no cooperation in the posing for pictures from the smaller members of the Happy Family. D seemed intent upon charging on all fours across the beach with a rhino-like force, head down, sand flying from his hands and knees. B’s ADD meds had worn off and he was quickly unwinding. The more D charged about the sand it seemed to act as a catalyst to B’s own battery. He began following D around on all fours with his tongue lolling around like a dogs.
Ultimately, Responsible Mom and Disneyland Dad gave up trying to control the children, appologized profusely to Extremely Patient Photographer and settled for some lovely shots of themselves. The whole photo shoot was a ball of crap with a family rolled up in it that hadn’t napped or eaten. And yet, the scenery was beautiful and the photographer was so nice and understanding.

Just yesterday, Responsible Mom was called by Extremely Patient Photographer (who, by the way, had offered, time and time again to retake the shoot if there was nothing worthy from this one) and told the pictures were ready. As it turns out, Extremely Patient Photographer is really a magician. Somehow, she turned a ball of crap with a sleep-deprived, underfed family rolled up inside, into a group of pictures very characteristic of the Happy Family. They may not be the “formal” family poses that Responsible Mom thought she wanted. And they certainly weren’t the “no pictures” that the children wanted. They were a touch too close to the sabotaged pictures that Disneyland Dad was shooting for… Mostly, they are beachy, scattered, happy, upside-down, laughing and disorganized just like the people in them.


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