I thought I’d try and document the month for myself (and my fair readers) so that I make sure that I don’t get too caught up in the “list” that is the month of December, and make sure that I take time to appreciate these things we do to prepare. If there was ever a reason to not have an advent calendar, holiday stress would be the top one. Twenty-five, twenty-four, twenty three…
I actually am doing a lot on this Day One, but here’s the
first second thing. (The first thing was my dry run through my Christmas card and that’s top secret for now.) I’ve finally taken the time to get my digital files from our October photo shoot off the disc and onto the computer, and I’m going to take a moment to explain how in the world I went about choosing from dozens and dozens of beautiful portraits. It wasn’t easy.
We were also thrilled to work with Yvonne Niemann and hope to make this a tradition every few years. She is so easy to work with, completely professional, and her work (and the finished products) are top notch. Can I just gush a bit about the quality of the prints and the gorgeous way that she wraps them and hand delivers them? Family portraits are an investment – there’s no doubt about it – but she makes it much easier to prioritize and decide which is exactly what I needed. I first had to get past the stumbling block that was the photo album. She offers such beautiful ones, and it was really tempting to save all of these images in that way. But then I stepped back and remembered that we did this photo shoot to break out of our photo habits. We have tons and tons of photos and we do print those out and put them into albums for the girls and for our family. We were looking for artwork to go into our home, and so I focused on that instead, and it made all the difference.
I started by purchasing the full digital rights to the family portrait above and plan to insert prints of those into our Christmas cards this year. I’m holding off on the large portrait until our living room is done and I have a better idea of the ultimate size I’d like in there.
I did purchase a 16×20 of this photo of F below. This is to compliment the 16×20 horizontal image we have framed of E from the beach when she was about this age – it currently hangs over the mantel in our bedroom. I absolutely adore this portrait. It’s so very, very her. You better believe she’s not going to stand by a fence without climbing it.
I then decided to do a grouping of 5×7 portraits – two vertical and two horizontal. I have the other family portrait that I like a lot, plus one each of M and I with one of the girls, and then one of M and I together. I love the ones of us with the girls. Their personalities really come through on those, and they capture our individual relationships with each girl really well.
Next, I loved the idea of a series of the girls – I have pretty gray frames to frame the following three 4×6 prints. E at the top, both girls in the middle, and F at the bottom. I love the setting and I love that profile of F so much.
We also purchased the rights to print the following two portraits up to an 8×10. Both grandmothers loved these, and we did as well. I’m still undecided where I’ll hang these in our house yet, but I have the option to decide later since we have the digital files for these two.
I also really love this one of the girls together – I love the way F is hugging her sister, and so I purchased wallets of these for the immediate family. By purchasing some type of print we are then granted another year in which to make additional purchases of this print, so if I find the perfect place – even just a 5×7 on a desk or shelf somewhere – the file will still be in storage.
I thought it would be neat for my parents to have a photo of me with the girls. I loved the individual ones more than the one of me with both girls, so we’ll do two 4×6’s in a double frame – maybe even a hinged one. I really like the two of these together.
And M’s family will love the one of him with both girls. So do I.
Yvonne also included a few extra portraits that she must have seen in our wish list file. It was really hard to choose, so I’m glad we have a 5×7 of the family portrait below…
…and yes, even the smoochy one. Nothing wrong with a good kiss every now and then, especially to kick off this season.
I’ll follow up with some photos of the photos – in frames, and as they slowly populate the house. I’m off to get those prints made for the cards now. Lots to do on this Day One.