A few times each year, I’ll receive a coupon for a free photo collage or 8 x 10 print, which I typically use to print some of my favorite recent photos of our boys. We don’t take them for studio pics or have a photographer we use for a yearly family photo – I just annoy them, now and then, taking photos with my phone or camera, and somehow manage to end each year with a few memorable images.
As they’ve gotten older, I guess I’ve gotten more complacent about capturing those moments and, last spring, I discovered I had no favorite pics to print when the “free offer” came around. Cue the mom guilt.
They’ve grown so much this year. Our oldest is just a few inches shy of six feet and our youngest can already look me in the eyes. One’s voice has changed, the other’s language is richer, there’s a faint mustache behind one of their Kool-aid smiles and it’s hard to tell whose underwear are whose when I’m sorting laundry.
Summer absolutely flew past this year, but we squeezed in a trip to see my sister and her family, who just moved to Maryland. Something about road trips makes my boys less averse to having their picture taken, so I took tons of photos. Then, in between selfies and my requests for them to “Smile!” I began to notice all the non-physical changes in my little men.
They help without complaint (most of the time) – doing chores around the house, packing the car for our trip. They truly enjoy each other’s company (getting them to stop talking at night is like trying to catch a wave upon the sand). They are absorbing some of what I say to them (both the good and the bad) and I see it in their choices and behavior.
They are, hands down, the best obtainium we have – chock full of potential, with countless options for making something of themselves and their lives.
Today was their first day of school (5th and 8th grades) and I sent them off this morning hoping their teachers will see some of what I see and help me make the most of this school year. The days when minutes felt like hours are long gone and replaced by years that fly by all too fast. Yet, I feel like there’s so much left to teach them . . .
Yeah, I gotta take more pictures.