So, here it is the end of September and I find that despite my best intentions, I’ve been remiss about updating this blog as frequently as I’d like. Trust me, it’s not for a lack of things to say but rather, as you might imagine, the lack of time to articulate my thoughts! With October just around the corner, I find myself thinking of many things – many things that manifest themselves in my ever-growing “to do” list. A random sampling includes: drop off snacks for back to school night (I had to bail on the brownie baking – that was too ambitious even for me!), plan Ciara’s third birthday, buy birthday presents. Buy shoes for Liam and Ciara. This one’s a priority – with this morning’s temperature hovering in the 50s, it seemed downright irresponsible to send Liam to school in “water shoes” and Ciara out in Crocs. Too small Crocs that give her blisters. But, on the upside, there was rain in the forecast today so I justified it by thinking of the fun they might have splashing in puddles. That’s what I’m telling myself anyway.
With the first of October just a day away, the biggest thing on my mind is the fact that these amazing babies of ours – the “Cubs”, the “trips”, the “puppies” – well, they are about to turn one. And really, how does one go about celebrating the first birthday of three little guys who completely defied the odds, who were each born weighing as much as a “singleton” and, with their first birthday less than two weeks away, are babbling, crawling, eating us out of house and home and doing all the things one-year olds do… including incessantly playing in the dog’s water bowl and flat out refusing anything that even closely resembles jarred baby food… because, of course, as they seem to know all too well, their true baby days are almost behind them. Those mewing newborn cries, the forced tummy time, “back to sleep”, nighttime feedings, and all those first milestones – rolling over, sitting up, crawling, standing, these are all behind us now. And, as conventional wisdom suggests and each day affirms, the time has flown by far too fast.
Fortunately, I’ve documented it ALL in pictures. Yep. Everything. Three babies in one crib, three babies in three cribs, babies in bouncy seats, bumbos and Baby Bjorns. Babies on the front porch, babies in the back yard. Babies in car seats, swings and strollers. Babies at the beach, at the park, at the pool. Babies with siblings, babies with parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins. Heck, I even have a ton of picture of babies with the DOG! Which brings me to a troubling item on that aforementioned “to do” list. What, pray tell, am I supposed to do with all of these pictures?!
An album commemorating this remarkable first year – and that fact that it looks like we’re all going to survive it with our humor in tact – would seem a reasonable thing to do. So, with that goal in mind, I logged on to KodakGallery.com to create the perfect photo montage of our Cubs first year. On the first go-round, I uploaded 972 photos. Shockingly, this included only pictures from October – February. For real. 972 of them! I decided I better get started so I selected an album, devoted an hour and a half that I should have used to get some much-needed sleep, and then, CRASH! My internet connection was lost and, since I hadn’t saved my “project”, all my work was lost. Stupid, right?
Well, it gets worse. Because I won’t be deterred! I log back on, recreate the first 18 pages of the album, make some additional progress and then, bleary-eyed, decide to upload a photographic sample of the next few months. This time around, my “sample size” exceeded 1200 pictures. And that only got me to July. No joke. Since I could no longer see straight and was facing about 4 ½ hours of sleep at best, I decided to call it a night. And, I haven’t gone back. Although, in the spirit of full disclosure, that was only last night. I still have plenty of time to finish my project before the Cubs turn one on October 10th. But really, I feel like there is a lesson to be learned and shared here. My attempt to memorialize the past 365 days with a photographic journey has reminded me that I often get so caught up in capturing the “right” moment that I often fail to just “be” in the moment and appreciate the many amazing moments that have filled the past year. While I continually try to capture the perfect picture, I too often lose sight of the fact that life isn’t picture perfect. So, that album might get done… and, it might not. Either way, I’ll relish the few short hours of sleep I get before a new day (and new photo ops!) dawn…