Sunday, September 27, 2009

Impossible Variables

My mom is going to be 65 years old in November. Her main wish for her birthday is that she get a recent photograph of her entire family, since the last one was done 22 years ago. You would think that this would be fairly easy to do, since we have a "budding" photographer in our family, which keeps the cost down significantly.

Well, it isn't, and at this point I'm losing hope that we'll get it done.

The first obstacle is that the only possible time we can all meet AT THE SAME TIME (which is kind of important if you want it to be the entire family) is on Sunday. Every other day and evening of the week somebody is working. Our second obstacle is that we have to have a second photographer, since our budding-photographer-relative kinda needs to be in a few pictures. So, for the last two Sundays we have planned to run home from church in the morning, change into nice casual attire, and then meet at a previously decided location.

It was hotter than normal temperatures the past two weeks. Three records were broken in the province. Except last Sunday. That was the day it decided it was tired of being hot and that the earth needed a drink. And it rained cats and dogs. Obviously pictures last Sunday were cancelled.

Now, today. This Sunday. Sibling #3 (I won't say which one that is, except that she has the youngest children) was concerned Saturday because her youngest child was getting sick. There was also 40 percent chance of rain in the forecast for Sunday. Sibling #3 warned Sibling #1, 2 and 4 of this, so it was decided that they would just have to get up Sunday morning and play it by ear. Sibling #3 was pleasantly surprised that her youngest offspring awoke happy, with no fever, and only a slight cough. The skies still looked gloomy, however, and the forecast still called for 40 percent chance of rain. And, it was very windy.

Sibling #3 discovered, with great bitterness, that the rest of her Siblings had a privilege that she didn't have. Perhaps they never used to have this privilege in years' past, but at this point they have arrived at a place in life that Sibling #3 was not. And that was the privilege of SLEEPING IN. So, while Sibling #3 was up with the dawn, her other Siblings slumbered. She was left to wonder whether pictures were going to take place or not because of the weather. Since Sibling #3 had more work to do to prepare, with younger children, she had to make a decision. And that decision was to awake another one of her Siblings (the one who was least likely to bite her head off) and ask them whether there should still be pictures in light of the cloudy skies and Oz-type winds. Sibling #4 said that she thought we should still plan for pictures, even making the decision just after church if necessary.

Immediately when church was out, Sibling #3 set about trying to convince Sibling #2, the budding-relative-photographer, Sibling #1's wife, and the rest of the relatives at church that since it wasn't raining, even though it was windy, that pictures should still be done. After all, Sibling #4 agreed with her, right? However, it was discovered at that moment that photographer #2 could not make it to the photo shoot. And so thus all plans were again kiboshed.

Sibling #3 called Sibling #4 after church to tell her that pictures were cancelled only to discover that Sibling #1 and Sibling #4 had already discussed it and decided that it was much, much too windy (and cold) for pictures and that they weren't going anyway.

Broken down, here are the unique variables of actually trying to get pictures done in our family:

a) whether it's raining;
b) whether it's windy;
c) whether it's TOO sunny (according to the budding-relative-photographer);
d) whether it's perfect, mostly cloudy, non-windy, non-cold, non-rainy, non-snow weather, between the hours of 1:00 - 3:00 p.m on a Sunday afternoon;
e) whether NONE of the family members, particularly the smaller children are SICK;
f) whether the second photographer can make it or not;
g) whether the spouses of Siblings 1 through 4 get too cranky about the whole process and tell us to jump in the lake (particularly the male spouses of Sibling #2 and 3);
h) whether any of the relatives love one another at all by next Sunday, the next presumed attempt.

I realize this is a lengthy story and it's meant to relieve tension and find some humour. However, to anyone reading this blog, trust me when I say that if you ever decide to try to have family pictures - particularly if your family has more than ONE person - just let that thought pass on by. For the sake of peace, harmony, love, and sanity.

Here's to next Sunday.


Mrs. Wizzle said...

Why not do it indoors???????

Rachel Peterson said...

Indoors poses another problem: Location for large groups without terrible lighting and having to pay. However, this problem is being worked on and will hopefully be resolved by next Sunday

Rachel said...

And here we're having babies 4 and 5... I will heed your advice and NEVER have family pictures taken, even though my wonderful husband loves to take pictures.... (He takes awesome pics, too!) I refuse to pay for school pics because the kids respond so much better to Daddy and he has a much better eye for background, AND they are WAY too expensive...

I feel your pain!!!

Rachel G.

Laura said...

Not to mention #2 and #4 sibbling not having well as the photographer of above mentioned #2 sibbling.

Mrs. are a winner...indoors isn't as easy as it seems. There are not as many places to take four families with proper lighting for pictures, as we don't have our own studio.

Maybe we should throw in, just for the fun of it, now at this late stage of the game, that we all have to co-ordinate clothes!!! That would be fun, eh?

Mrs. Wizzle said...

cool idea Laura! I think denim and black are cool or black and red or denim and white. don't the cadets have someplace or someplace like our devonian gardens that are inside. Wasn't someones wedding done inside with bridges and stuff or am I truly crazy =)

Darla said...

Mrs. Wizzle, Laura was just trying to stir up trouble (thanks, Laura). It was actually suggested by some of the family that we try some coordination, but was met with STIFF resistance with other members of the family. Laura knew that and was just trying to be, uh..funny.

It was my wedding pictures that were at a hotel lobby. However, there are more of us than my wedding party and the lighting apparently isn't the greatest.

I must also confess (which I should have done as one of the "impossible variants") to being one of the hold-outs to having them done outdoors IF AT ALL POSSIBLE. The fall colors are absolutely perfect for the pictures. However, if by next Sunday the weather is still terrible, we will go to "Plan K". Rachel is looking at using someone's indoor photography studio, checking out costs and stuff.

There you have it folks. Thanks all for commenting.

Darla said...

Oops, I meant "variables", not "variants".

Laura said...

Mrs. Wizzle...I wanted to match and co-ordinate. Hee, hee. So clearly I am not being the obstinate one here. For a change, eh? Let's mark this one on the calendar for the rest of the family to see!!!! Laura not being the obstinate one...hmmm, the world is coming to an end? Maybe...