A few weeks ago we had a whole bunch of family photos taken. We’re not usually big family photo people. We’re more, mom’s-not-in-the-shot-’cause-she’s-snapping-it people. I know, there’s this new fangled thing called a timer, and I get a kick out of watching folks set theirs and then run like hell to be in the picture. But as I have a tough time just opening the battery compartment on my camera, not to mention a habit of tripping over my own two feet (and at my age, who needs to break a hip?), I’d say that particular technology is beyond my scope of capabilities.

And frankly? All we’d really wind up with is photographic proof of my coming thisclose to killing my kids in an attempt to make them sit still and smile, dammit!

In any case, we had all these pictures done and the fact that everyone looks happy (and no one was threatened with death and dismemberment to achieve that result) is testament to Kim Petro’s incredible talent. Not only is she a terrific photographer, clearly the woman can herd cats.


I love this shot. In fact, I loved so many of them I ordered quite a few including several in black and white. I’ve been thinking about doing an entire wall of black and white photos for oh, the past six years. And now, with Stu’s illness, Casey’s post high school plans frighteningly in flux, Cuyler launching his stand-up comedy career (complete with Richard Lewis-like neurosis that “someone’s stealing my stuff!”), the final changes to my manuscript due really, really soon, and of course the holidays on the horizon, now? Is the perfect time to add this project to my plate.

Mad multi tasking skills, or terminal adult ADHD? You make the call.

I myself am going with mad multi tasking skills. Why? Because apparently there’s a mental health benefit to doing a dozen things at once.

In my quest to “get those black and white pictures up, pronto!” (because really, after all this time I should rush, right?), I’ve gone rummaging through scrapbooks, albums, and folders full of pictures looking for other black and whites to include. And the result? Is that my walk (albeit a speed walk) down memory lane, my taking just a little time to “go back,” is giving me the energy to go forward. Lately I’ve been running on fumes, but the images of family and friends – many of whom I haven’t seen in years – have refueled me.

Maybe someday my sons will break out our collection of pictures and feel similarly. Or maybe they’ll see them and say (maybe to their own sons), “Damn your Grandmother! That’s the day she made us wear our Giants jerseys and we jinxed them. Cowboys 33. Giants 20. I thought Grandpa was gonna kill her.”

Hmm. Maybe it’s better we’re not big family photo people.