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Friday, January 30, 2009

Diary of a Portrait

We're terrible about taking pictures of each other and we hardly ever get the three of us in one frame. I love pictures and I'm usually the snapper, but having a kid that has hated (with a passion so deep, you can't imagine) his picture taken, it's been too much of a hassle to keep trying. Being overweight, I've rarely wanted myself captured for all eternity. D is the same way. I have more pictures of him with his tongue out than I could possibly want.

We're all working on it and mostly it's me insisting that I will not move one more step or allow anyone else to until a picture is taken. It's kind of a tantrum in a silent, tenacious mom way.

All of that said, we've had our camera for quite a few years now. It's been on many trips and we love it. For the price, it takes great pictures. It's a Kodak EasyShare Z740 if you must know. Extremely user friendly, which was so important to me, and it shoots stills in various settings and videos. We've rarely used the timer function (for all of the above mentioned reasons) and so I was determined to get a family picture somewhere on this trip, even if it meant using the timer.

Now, I took countless pictures of families while we were strolling the theme parks. They all looked so awkward, trying to use their timers without success. I just had to step in, but one thing amazed me about every one of these encounters. Not one family offered the favor returned. Not one. I won't go on and on here about their manners. I'm hoping that it was a cultural difference (in many cases the tourists were Japanese or Argentinian). I'm hoping that we haven't lost all sense of courtesy to each other in this country!

It was our turn to try using the camera timer. We had taken a much needed nature break. I couldn't handle the contrived perfectness of the theme parks anymore. We visited a 14,000 acre wildlife refuge, which, I found out once we got there was owned by DISNEY. Of course, I couldn't escape their reaches even for one minute. This park, however, only cost a few dollars to get in, and it was blissfully EMPTY. No whining kids with their rude parents trying to cut lines, no expensive concession stands, and best of all, no rides ending in gift shops. It was "old Florida", raw and untouched. We hiked for about an hour and came to this beautiful, quiet lake. I was hoping to see a gator in the wild, I've always had a fascination with them since my best friend from nursing school who was raised in Florida told me that occasionally a kid would get eaten by one when they went swimming. A part of me knows she was kidding, a part of me knows she was not. We joked that once we got home after all the craziness of taking these pictures, that there'd probably be half a dozen alligators in the background that we missed because we were so busy.

Here's the lake. Isn't it eerily beautiful? Spanish Moss would look so funny in Minnesota. Young One said, "You can just buy it at Michaels and hang it on our trees." Yes, we could, but then we'd be the weird family on the block.

Here's the first picture the camera timer caught. I think it's lovely. Yep, that's my shirt.

I think it's on! Let me look closer. Yes, the green light is flashing, I can see it with my piercing stare.

D: "You're never going to make it, run. It's flashing, the green light is flashing, hurry..."

Young One: "This is so dumb. I'm so embarrassed. Adults are so intimidated by technology. Is it over yet?"

There she is! It's the best we could do and, seriously, this is the only one that turned out. I look a bit like I'm hiding, but hey, everyone is smiling even though our legs are killing us from squatting and I'm out of breath from running back and forth to the camera about one hundred times. There are several more of my thumb, the sky, and the picnic table that we balanced the camera on, but I won't burden you with them.

No gators in the background! At least, none that I can see!

1 comment:

    We feel your pain. I always offer to help people out and take there pictures and very rarley is the favor returned!!

    You guys look great.

    I'm sorry no gators were to be found, theres always next time :)


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