First birthday, Take Two

by Lady Estrogen
Originally Published: 

Not every parent is quick on the draw with a camera, but things are changing. It’s true that with mobile phones it is becoming more and more convenient to upload photos and share them on social networking sites and email. “Isn’t my baby the cutest, ever?” Hey there, world, get a load of my baby!

We take these photos for two main reasons; to puff out our chests and show off are oh-so-adorable offspring. And secondly, to document the special moments in our children’s lives and keep them as a photo journal of their special moments. Even those less-than-keen parents still manage to capture the golden moments, such as the birth, of course, and subsequently, there are all the must-have “firsts”.

First bath.

First smiles. First teeth. First steps. First birthday.

Then, there are the artsy-fartsy parents that also happen to be photography teachers, like moi. Watch out kids! Your every waking moment will be captured… well, as long as it can be a part of a triptych, on a unique angle and possibly work in black & white or sepia tone. Fantastic.

The twins’ first birthday was approaching. Of course the milestone was important, but I wanted to get the-best-photos-ever for the big event. I usually refuse to spend more than $10 per outfit, per child, but I saw the most adorable onezie tuxedoes, complete with attached bow tie and tails. Screw it! They will totally rock their first birthday sporting these fashion statements, and so I bought 2 of them.

The party was about to begin. The boys were dressed. The balloons were up. The cake was chilling. And I had begun taking photos of everything – from every angle. Changing the depth of field focal points and aperture settings. Christ, how do I love thee Nikon DSLR? Let me count the ways.

I had a few people bring their crappy point ‘n shoots but they knew who’s house they were in. “Na, I’ll just get copies from you later; email them to us!” Will do. No probs. My pleasure.

The party was great; no dramas or anything out of the ordinary. Everyone had some nibbles and cake and left at a decent hour. We had bathed the twins and it was time for me to sit in front of my computer and gaze in wonderment at all the fabulous photographs that I had just taken. I opened the card slot of the camera and I suddenly got very hot and all the hairs on the back of my neck were prickling. No-Fucking-Card. I wanted to vomit, but instead I started to cry. I didn’t want to tell my husband, but I knew there was no way of covering this debacle up.

I got the “I just regurgitated lunch” face, followed by a “Nice job, Mommy! GOOD ONE!” Then, he broke out into his Homer Simpson impression and danced around like an ape while saying, “Oooooo! Look at me – I’m a photographer!” I truly hated my husband at that moment.


My way forward was clear. I washed their tuxedos and the next afternoon, I dressed the boys back into them. I brought out the balloons, what was left of the snack platters, and some cake. Card in the camera this time? Check!

Chow down boys! That’s it! Get it all over your face for mommy… again.

I did manage to get the shots I wanted, so it all ended well – and I must say, the second take went a lot smoother than the first take – and no one will be the wiser.

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