Annual photographs





If you've been here for a while you've been seeing my kids grow up before your eyes. Goodness it happens fast. Lupine was a baby when I started writing here. A baby!

I notice the fine details of how they are growing most of all is when I look at the photos we take each year. The "jacket pictures" as we call them.

Each year in the fall I take their photographs with the same prop: an adult-sized old leather jacket. (Sage wears Pete's vintage coat, Lupine wears one that belonged to my Grandma.)

We might not have school pictures, but these have more spunk and spirit anyway!

We started the jacket picture tradition when Sage turned one on the suggestion of a friend. (If you are inspired but have an older child you could start now and still have an amazing collection before they are grown.)

For me it's a double treat to take photos of the kids together.

Here are some favorites from this year's photos. The barn really makes it all come together. (Eeek! The barn!)




(The gnome hat idea was all Lupine. She brought a second hat outside for Sage – which he politely declined.)






And for comparison, a few annual photos from years past…





(See more here.)



(More here.)

Before 2009 I was shooting film. If you'd like to see the whole series I'd be happy to scan them after the move is done and I find my scanner. And my albums. (Ahem.)

To me, it's nothing short of fascinating looking back throught the years through these images. I remember so much from these times past. I recall where we lived, how we spent our days. I remember what made these kids tick. I recall our struggles and blessings from that flicker of time.

These pictures are so very important to me.

As for posing, I mostly just let them do their thing. Aside from
making sure we've washed their hair in the past few days I don't do much
fussing. Because really, these are their pictures. They pick their
clothes, they brush their hair, and we and jump right in.

I do,
however, bribe them with ice cream each year.

Yes. Really.

It began when
Sage was 6 and decided that maybe the photos weren't fun anymore. I
didn't want to force him so I threw down the offer that when we were
done we were going out for ice cream! (It was innocent. I swear!)

Now he
finds the photos fun again, but we still do ice cream. Because why not?
It's ice cream.

(I swear. This is my one bribe per year. Honest.)

How does your family mark time? I'd love to hear about your favorite traditions.



6 thoughts on “Annual photographs

  1. amy says:

    The photos are so sweet, and it’s such a good idea. A friend of mine does this with the same rocking chair, dragged outside, each year. I think I need to start doing this immediately! We’re homeschooling too so there won’t be any school pics. We do take pics every year in front of our Solstice/Christmas tree, but that’s rather cliche, after all.
    And, I LOVE knowing that you bribe your kids, even if only once a year! Phew. I try really hard not to resort to bribery with my boys, but man, it totally works! 🙂

  2. Tameka says:

    Great idea and beautiful children! Are the pictures taken around the same year every year? My son would definitely prefer something like this than taking a school pic.

  3. Jai says:

    Thanks for sharing! I so enjoy reading your musings and taking ideas from your life! In fact, yesterday we made our own macaroni garlands and had a blast! (i homeschool ((unschool)) a five year old boy and an 8 year old girl and have another on the way!)
    This post reminded me of a question that I have been wanting to ask you…what/how do your store your digital photos? I struggle between wanting to print them all out and put in albums because I am not so into computers and I want to write in the memories and have esy access for my kids to peruse them from time to time. And yet, I don’t see where I can fit more albums into my two bedroom bungalow. Thanks in advance for any thoughts or words of encouragement. =)

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