Monday, January 24, 2011

9 kids + Photo session = Agonizing Form of Torture

One of my Macaroni Kid partners, Wendy, came up with what she thought was a fabulous idea.

"Wouldn't it be awesome if we could get a huge portrait of all our kids together with our Macaroni Kid banner...we could use it on our website!" she exclaimed to me and our other partner, Ann, one day.

Awesome?  Well, not exactly the word I would've chosen for such an occasion. 

Crazy?  Oh yeah.  An agonizing form of torture?  Most definitely.

You see, between the 3 of us, we have 9 kids ranging in age from 2 years old to 7 years old.  

Okay, stop laughing hysterically and try to compose yourself.  We haven't even gotten to the funny part yet.

So being the go-getter that she is, Wendy partnered with one of the most well-known photographers in our area.  After the holidays had passed, she immediately contacted the photographer and set up an appointment to have the portrait done.

In the meantime, Wendy kept saying things like, "I was up all night, envisioning how it will look.  I was thinking we could have the kids all laying together on their bellies across the banner.  They can all wear matching shirts!"

I tried to share her enthusiasm.  Really, I did.  But I know my spawn...and I knew we were headed for disaster. 

The day arrived and we had arranged to meet at the photographer's studio and then head out to the beautiful grounds of the local university just down the street. 

When I arrived at the studio, Wendy was already there with her 2 kids.  I opened the door, sprung the spawn loose and the photographer looked at me and asked, "You have 4 kids?!"

I nodded my head as I noted the sparkle in his eye began to fade.  The noise level in the studio was quickly rising and Ann still hadn't arrived with her 3 kids.

The photographer asked, "Is this everyone?"

Wendy answered, "Uh, no....Ann has 3 kids".  He then excused himself and went into the back of the studio, probably to toss an entire bottle of Advil down his throat and to desperately search for some ear plugs.

After Ann got there, the photographer had one of his partners and her assistant join us and he explained that she would be taking our picture.  She didn't seem nervous though as she watched our kids fight over a pack of gum, while 2 of my spawn spit at one another and 1 was crying for no obvious reason other than to annoy me.

It took only a few minutes to get down the street to the college campus and once the kids were released from their carseats, they happily ran across the grass....and into a courtyard full of rose bushes, where one of my kids got stabbed in the arm by a bunch of thorns.

Just as I said, "'ll be one of my kids who falls and gets their shirt dirty", one of my kids fell and got his shirt dirty.  Could this get any better?!

So, my friends, in case you're ever wondering what it's like to do a photo session with 9 young children (4 of which are the spawn of the devil himself), let me give you the breakdown in the form of numbers.

5 - the number of times I asked my kids if they had to go potty before we left the studio after lying to them that there would be no bathroom where we were going

4 - the number of children who insisted they didn't have to go

1 - the number of children who came up to me with a sad look on their face AFTER we had already arrived on campus and said, "Mommy, don't be mad at me but I might have pooped a little in my pants".   

10 - the number of minutes we had to hold up the photo session for the 1 kid who had to finish pinching one off, preferably in the toilet this time

3 - the number of times I was told by 1 of my spawn that he hated me because I was mean

6  - the number of times Wendy threatened to spank her son if he didn't stop doing what he was doing

8 - the number of times Wendy and I demanded to know what Ann puts in her kids' juice to make them so quiet and well behaved.

0 - the number of times Ann's kids talked back to her

11 - the number of times my kids talked back to me

25 - the number of minutes one of my kids cried

7 - the number of times I threatened to remove the crying child from the photo session

2 - the number of times I actually followed through on that threat

13 - the number of times I told my kids to keep their hands to themselves

17 - the number of times they hit one another anyway

1 - the number of trees which were watered by a child who had to pee desperately

26 - the number of times all the kids complained that they were cold

28 - the number of times we told them that if they would just stop fooling around and do what they were told, we could get into our warm cars and leave

5 - the number of unopened wine bottles we have in our house, which kept dancing through my head

2000 - the number of calories I wanted to consume after the torture....I mean, photo session

30- the number of seconds it took me to tell Tim, once I got home, that I was getting the hell outta there and he was on his own with the spawn to figure out what to do for dinner

But's not over.  The next day the photographer posted on our Facebook wall, "Give me a call.  I have some other ideas if you're up for it".

After viewing the pictures online (and laughing our asses off), we came to the sad conclusion that the photo session had not been successful.  No shit, right?

So we will be going back for yet another session but, this time, in the studio where the photographer says we'll have more control.

Her words, not mine. 

Lord help us all. Registered & Protected


Jenny said...

Oh my! What a day that was! We can't get a nice picture of my daughter and her 2 cousins, let alone 9 kids!

singedwingangel said...

God bless your heart for even daring it.. I would have laughed at my friend and said sureee you pick them all up and take them on I will be here to play referee when you return..

Zookeeper Jess said...

Helene, you can ALWAYS make me smile!

Too bad it's at your expense!

I can ONLY imagine what a hellacious time that was!! I can barely get a decent picture of my four, let alone 9. Setting them loose outside for a photoshoot would be torture!

Shell said...

And you have to do it AGAIN????

Heather said...

That does NOT sound fun!

Kim said...

Ha! I was going to be all original and say "I can't even get a decent picture with two," but I see everyone else has already said the same thing about their own! Nine kids . . . that's like a class picture.

Rob said...

After all of that you are going back for a round 2? LOL? You are a crazy women. HE HE. BTW I like the don't be mad I might have pooped in my pants a little comment. That made me LOL at work!

Anonymous said...

Can't you send them your own photos and let her work some photoshop magic??

I think you should let the Daddy's take a turn with the next shoot.

ashley said...

Hilarious! This reminds me of my great idea to have 6 flowergirls ages 2-7 at my wedding. 5 made it down the aisle, 1 cries at the end of it and never walked down, 300 pictures were taken of me and all 6 of them, and 0 have smiling faces on every girl. It was a zoo!

Merri Ann said...

Wow ... you're really a good counter. My mom brain is so bad these days, I'm not sure I could count to 26.

If it was me trying to get this photo, I'd take the most ridiculous one from the previous shoot and use it ... every mom that visits the page would get a good laugh.

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

After that, my dear, you needed a serious glass of wine or 7.

Just sayin'.

And you are going to attempt this again???

The photographer must be smoking crack in the back, not popping Advil.

Eva Gallant said...

And the photographer wants to go through all that again??????????

MiMi said...

THAT is hilarious. And I want to see the pictures.

Nezzy said...

What wonderfully brave women ya'll are!!! ....and your goin' back to do it all again???? Heeeheheheh

I've got a feelin' this is gonna be good for a heap of blog fodder.

I too want to see....please!

God bless and have a great time next round!!!

Marianne said...

I'm with Merri Ann. The mom's will laugh and it will be wonderful payback when they are older! Plus, when they have kids are all, "Mom, you're so lucky we weren't as bad as my kids. They are EVIl!" You can be all, "Oh. Really? Let me show you a little evidence that says otherwise."

Stuff could always be worse said...

You can say that was an adventure, just to get a pic taken!

Colleen said...

Been there! We have attempted the previous 2 Christmases to take a picture of all my grandmother's great grandkids as her gift. The first attempt was in a studio. Year one: 7 kids ages <1 through 7
Year two: 8 kids ages <1 through 8 with 2 of us extremely pregnant and unable maneuver to keep the running toddlers at bay. This attempt was at my aunt's house as we decided to spare ourselves the embarrassment. The picture doesn't even have all the kids in it. This year we smartened the hell up and said the hell with it.

shortmama said...

Oh Lord I hope the second time is the charm!

Twins Squared said...

Oh dear. That's all I can say. Well actually...first let me say that at least one of the other moms was having problems too. I don't know how people have well-behaved children. But I do know the more you have the harder it is to control them, unless you're the Duggars.

Second, I cannot even imagine. We have done lots of picture taking for the holidays and it was horrible. It's probably one of my next blogs coming up so be on the lookout! But it all sounds familiar - it was so cold that day and I just remember saying over and over that we could go home if they would just stand and smile. And my older 2 were cooperating! So really all I had were 2 NOT cooperating, and 4 total, compared to your 9 total and 4-7 not cooperating.

Good luck in the studio - I recently did ours outdoors thinking they would behave better than in a studio! It didn't seem to matter was my ultimate conclusion! Sorry for your torture - especially when it doesn't turn out.

blueviolet said...

It will be better. It will be better. It WILL!

Jen said...

Can you bribe them? Do you want Lauren to come down and sit on them for you?

Dysfunctional Mom said...

Ba ha hahaha! Oh I mean, good luck with that!

Aimee said...

You HAVE to post at least one of the photos! I laughed so hard I we say in our neck of the woods, "bless your hearts!"

Rebecca said...

I'm pretty sure the photographer didn't down a bottle of Advil, but stuck to vodka!

Yikes!!! You're hysterical BTW...I hate when other people's kids are behaving...why aren't they being tortured like me???

Crossed Fingers said...

haha - I'm sorry to laugh at your situation but your imagery has me cracking up.

Hopefully the next session goes better...

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

I know what a photo session is like with my two...I can only imagine adding SEVEN others into the mix! I'm just closing my eyes as I read your post, though, as I tell myself it's bound to get easier when they're a little older...PLEEEEEEEEASE???

The Lane Family said...

A photo session with my 3 is a NIGHTMARE so thank you!!

I loved what you told Tim in 30 seconds..I need to say that to Jim occasionally :)

Twinpossible said...

I agree, just 3 or 4 kids at once, is a nightmare. 9 kids would equal one mommy + 2mg. of Xanax!

Even just the twins in utero had to be re-photographed, because of being stubborn, so before they are born, kids are already uncooperative. Sheesh.

That is some hard, hard work for any photographer, and a lot of stress for the moms. I hope you took the edge off with a glass of wine when all was said and done. I admire your strength!

xoxo Shelly

'The home of the loonies!'

Tiffany said...

LOL! But what about sharing a few of the outtakes?

MommaKiss said...

Oh god.
Sorry but I laughed and laughed and LAUGHED!!!

Tropical Mum said...

"So we will be going back for yet another session but, this time, in the studio where the photographer says we'll have more control."

Is 'control' a code word for 'sedatives'?

Oh my goodness, what a day, and you have to do it all again!

Mrs Montoya said...

How long did the 5 bottles of wine stay empty??? Less than an hour after your impromptu dinner? HOPE SO!! Bless your soul, but thank you so much for the laugh :)

Bethany said...

Oh wow, the idea of 9 kids for a photo shoot scares me...haha. That poor photographer. Good luck on round 2!

The Mother said...

Oh, yeah.

I remember 'the photo'--the one that got taken of the consecration class (4 and 5 year olds)--all 60 of them.

Parents sat through hours of hair straightening, rebukes about stupid hand gestures, reorganization--and just when they got through the last row they had to start all over in the front.

It's enough to make you yank your kid out of religious school. Come to think of it...

Semi-Slacker Mom said...

I can't believe you didn't post any pictures. You suck. Can Wendy send me some of whatever she was smoking when she came up with that idea? And whatever Ann is drugging her kids with?

Mighty M said...

42 - number of times I laughed at your expense! Impressed with you for trying!! :)

I figure that if the children are alive when my husband gets home at the end of the day, I've done my job.

----Roseanne Barr

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