Recently one of our mum members mentioned that ‘she’s always the one behind the camera and not in front of it’.  Thanks for the wake up call El x.

I’ve thought about this a lot since then and have taken polls among my friends, work colleagues and clients.  It seems to be quite a unanimous state of affairs amongst us mums; we spend all the time capturing the moments, carefully downloading the images, sharing with friends and family, compiling into beautiful books for Christmas and then carefully backing them all up on external hard drives.  And yet, rarely does any one of us feature in these shots.

I cannot tell you the number of images I have captured of my children with their father; rumbling, wrestling, him playing the guitar and them singing, them showing him their Easter baskets overflowing and them all chasing each other around the garden with water bombs.  Yes, when it comes time for someone to put together the ‘slideshow’ of his life, there will be a significant library from which they will be able to choose.

Can I say the same for me? Well there are probably a few more now than there were a year ago which has only to do with the fact that the children have somewhat mastered the iPhone and sometimes take photos of me (usually that I don’t know about) from incredibly unflattering angles.  The focus is well, out of focus and the image is usually blurred so when I recently saw an opportunity to jump into a shot with my children … I took it.

When I’m not chatting to you all on facebook, packing boxes of dishwasher tablets for MoM Reviews or writing blogs for Mouths of Mums, I have a job.  That job is a lot of fun, some of the time and pretty good a lot of the time.  A few weeks ago, we were shooting a campaign that you’ll all see in a couple of months (I’ll tell you when).  The short story about this photographic shoot was that they needed three children in the photos so I volunteered my children and they willingly agreed – particularly when they realised it meant a day off school!

Needless to say, the shoot went off really well, we got everything we needed and we were about to wrap (finish the shoot for the day) when suddenly I remembered El’s comment about always being behind the camera.  Just as the kids and the other talent were about to jump up and run off, I shouted “Wait!!” Everyone turned and looked at me wondering what on earth was wrong.  I then very shyly asked the photographer if I could jump in with my kids and have him take a quick snap.  It was very late in the day and it was nearly dark so there was certainly no time for brushing of hair or glossing of lips but I didn’t care.

My objective was a pic of the kids and I and I got it. My challenge to you is to do the same thing this week.  It doesn’t matter what you look like, just bundle them all together and capture the moment.

To reinforce my point, know this. Nearly 7 years ago when Emma (my third child) was born, I kept forgetting to put the two boys and her on the bed in the hospital to take a photo of the three of them together.  The hospital photographer had cancelled for some reason so we decided we’d arrange it when we went home.  We left hospital that day and when we got home, I wanted to put the three of them on the bed and take it that afternoon.  Noah was pretty tired so we decided that we’d do it ‘tomorrow’.  Unfortunately the tomorrow where I could put my first 3 children together on the bed never came … Noah died that night.  That photo is the closest thing we have to our family of five at that point in time – Dad, Toby, Noah, Emma (in the crib) and my big nose! My Mother-in-Law had taken it as my hubbie walked into the room to introduce the boys to their sister. When the midwives found out that we never got a photo together, they promised themselves that they’d never let another family leave the hospital without one of the nurses getting a photo of the family together.  7 years on and they’re still doing it.

Sorry that got a little depressing didn’t it?  I didn’t mean that to happen.  But it does highlight my point – I want you to have a photo of you and your kids.  Yes, definitely get Dad in too but if he’s not there for whatever reason, get it anyway.  Take the pic and treasure that moment in time.

  • Totally agree. It’s either one parent or the other, we don’t have a single photo with an all four of us in it!
    Hubby is very into photography so takes all the photos and I’ll snap them on my phone.
    Now that warhammer has taken over hubby’s life, the backdrop has been put away and will be even harder to get a family pic!


  • We’re tossing up that idea now… but sometimes we worry abuot cost and during COVID times… is it worth it


  • I try really hard to get at least one photo of all of us together at least once a year.


  • It is a must! Photographs are memories made to look back on and smile when we are sad,


  • Yes, I completely agree. It’s one of my biggest regrets. I have two family portraits of myself, hubby and the kids. One was when my daughter was a baby the next was at her 18th. I treasure them both


  • Last year we took a photo of 4 generations. We should told the young ones to step aside and made it Mum and her children. Silly like we didn’t do it then. Mum deteriorated shortly afterwards and passed away 1 month later her 80th birthday


  • Definitely need to make more of an effort to get photos of us all.


  • I looked through our photos a few months back and was shocked to discover only 2 family photos :0 One when our youngest was a baby and the next when she was 18. That us sad I know but I hate having my picture taken and so does their dad :(


  • Its a good idea I admit.


  • Photos are very important but yes i dont have many with me in them as well.


  • Thank you so much for sharing your touching heartfelt story and reminding us of the importance of photo’s Nikki.
    Photo’s such sweet memories.


  • So very true I look though the photo album and made a promise to get at least 2 more of me


  • Thank you for sharing this story and reminding us that no matter the quality of the photo, it captures the now, which may never be able to be replicated in the future.


  • Funny, but this is timely. I’m always complaining that I’m the family photographer, and hardly in any of the great pics I take. Lately, I’m making a point of someone taking photos of me with my family. I do this it’s time too for a professional family portrait – it’s been about 6 years. Too long.


  • I completely agree with this article, and I am so glad that it was written. Will share on FB.


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