Day Three: Say cheese

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Ghosts of Christmas past. Image: Cathi Kern Borushek for mutterhood.

‘Tis that time of year – the annual holiday photo shoot. Over the years I’ve approached this tradition with the zeal of an art director on a blockbuster movie.

I’ve sifted flour over my kids to make it look like snow. (It didn’t.) I’ve made them wear reindeer antlers and Santa hats on their heads. I’ve wrapped them in Christmas lights, glued light bulbs to their noses, and made them stand in the snow, the rain and one year, sleet. I’ve posed them in front of enough Christmas trees to open our own lot, and they’ve sat on Santa’s lap in a sleigh full of ways — with their cousins, with and without props, in matching shirts, matching pajamas and in festive holiday sweaters. They’ve role-played everything from elves to rappers to the actors on the Stepbrothers movie poster.

Without fail, every shoot served up side dishes of tears, frustration, anger, swearing (me), threatening (me again) and more tears (yup, also me.)

So during this Thanksgiving break, each day after their 14-hour REM cycles were complete, I greeted my two college kids with elaborate plans for this year’s holiday card picture. And each day they mumbled excuses, until we were out of days.

These boys were done with my photo shenanigans.

My final threat — to send out a drawing of them as stick figures — was met with shrugs and offers to forward me selfies. So I called it.

Our 2017 holiday card will be a blurry photo of us being photobombed by a stranger at a summer wedding. It’s the best I can do. That’s good enough, right? It’s not a competition, is it?

But just in case, can anyone Photoshop together a bunch of selfies and make it look like it’s snowing? Asking for a friend.

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