Put Yourselves In the Christmas Photos!

I’m stepping away from my usual subject of sex today to rant about your Christmas family photo. Yes, you. I’ve seen your Christmas cards and your scrapbooks and your framed holiday photos, and year after year there are all those pictures of the children and fewer and fewer of the two of you.

Why is that? Are you not thrilled with your appearance? Afraid someone will catch your “bad side”? Concerned about how much you’ve changed since you took that one fabulous picture back in 1994 that you still use as your profile photo on Facebook?

I think many married couples are missing out by not chronicling their journey, including photos of themselves as they go through the years together. Little warms my heart more than seeing pictures of couples at various stages of life, with the same look of love in their eyes regardless of how their appearance alters.

Believe me, my husband and I do not look like we did on our wedding day. Well, we’re recognizable, but you can count a lot more wrinkles and sags on these faces than you could when we got hitched over 20 years ago. But there’s a story in those photos — a story of falling in love, making a commitment, struggling through challenges and doubts, hanging in there when others might have given up, and experiencing the redemption of God our Father.

I also want my children to have this record of our relationship. And your kids will want to see your photos someday. Maybe your grandkids.

Even your friends to whom you send Christmas cards — they like seeing your kids, but you are their friends and they want to see your smiles.

I encourage you to do this simple thing for your marriage: Take a couple photo this season. Take several, so you can get one you both like. Remember why you fell in love with this person and that you’re still here. No matter who bet against you.

You can even go for a photo under the mistletoe.

Dating. We were so young!

Dating. We were so young!

New parents, who had no idea what they were getting into.

Past Christmas

Christmas a few years ago. (Man, I hated that tree.)

Spock & J - New Year's 2014

New Year’s Eve 2014 Church Party

Christmas 2015

Christmas 2015 with my favorite gift

Merry Christmas!

12 thoughts on “Put Yourselves In the Christmas Photos!

  1. susan in st louis

    yes!!! I get so bummed out when, year after year, we get pictures from friends with no sign of the parents!!

    This fall we did a family photo shoot at a nearby park with a professional photographer, who did group shots, but also individuals (of the kids) and pairings (boys, boys with dad, girls, girls with mom, mom and dad). We got some great shots of the two of us, and I’m so glad we did it!

    Reply
  2. Laura

    You two are adorable!
    Merry Christmas, and thank you for all of your inspiring & helpful posts!
    (I don’t think I’ve ever commented, but I read your blog all the time!)

    Reply
  3. I'm free2013

    You are so right. Life is too short why not leave a legacy through pictures your children and family will appreciate? One photo could release a world of memories that are priceless. Thanks for the reminder.

    Reply
  4. RNmom

    Great pictures!! You are so right! My sister and I have tons of pictures from our childhood but maybe 10 that have my mother in them and 5 with my mother and father together. It’s sad to think about it! But I am creating the same issue because I take all the pictures, or my husband does so this year he gets a tripod for Christmas!

    Reply
  5. Jamie

    You got me, here…sigh…I chuckled to myself reading this. We’ve done a few family Christmas cards through the years where it’s just my kids, and my hubby started asking why we don’t do family shots on the card. I kinda grumbled an answer. I know, so ridiculous! haha! I know now that someday I WILL regret it if I don’t start hopping into more pictures. I should suck it up, get over my pride, and enjoy life and the way God created me!

    Reply
  6. B

    @Jamie, I’m sighing, too! I like your idea. I guess I need to try and enjoy life and the way God created me. But it’s hard!

    Not only do I make sure not to be in the photos, I toss any photos I find that someone “caught” me in. I do not like the way I look. My husband claims he thinks I’m beautiful and my kids have called me pretty because they’re sweet. I want them to remember the delusional picture they have of me in their minds, rather than leave photographic evidence of the reality I see as ugly.

    And I’m not totally crazy. I don’t think I look as bad in the mirror as I do in photos. But since everyone else in the photo looks like themself, that must be what I look like in reality, and that makes me cry.

    So great idea for most folks, but not for me. It will cause me too much unhappiness. It is much easier for me not to dwell on my ugliness if I do not have photos of myself to look at.

    Unless I can find a way, like Jamie suggests, to learn to be happy with the way God made me. He doesn’t make mistakes, but sometimes that truth makes the understanding of why that much harder.

    J, you look great in every photos! You’re beautiful! Thanks for the post!

    Reply
    1. J Post author

      Thank you for the compliment. But first off, I picked photos were I was good with how I looked! There are plenty of photos where I don’t love how I appear. That said, I’ve trained myself to look at photos and notice the things I like about myself. No more brooding over my larger-than-average nose, but rather I look at my smile. It’s just too easy to focus on the stuff you’re not uber-excited about, rather than appreciating the beauty you have. And I guarantee you have beauty, and your kids are not just being “sweet.” Look for it!!!

      Reply
  7. Pingback: Merry Christmas! - The Forgiven Wife

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