Saturday, May 15, 2010

Snapshot Saturday or The Racket That Is Spring Pictures

Mighty Mouses Spring Picture


This post is for those that don't know or haven't figured out the fall vs spring picture racket.

As mom's, we want those school pictures of our kids. It's like a requirement or something for good mommyhood. You cannot imagine NOT buying those pictures. After all, it could get you kicked out of the "good mom" club or something if you don' matter how AWFUL they are.

Am I right?

Yet here is what I have learned from having one finish school, one make it to high school and one in Kindergarten.

It doesn't change over time.

It doesn't change by location.....and we've had about 8-9 of those changes so I feel qualified to speak.

Fall pictures go like this: They send home an envelope and a date for your kids pictures. Yeah! And you pre-pay for those pictures, sight unseen, prior to picture taking. Period.

The pictures come home about a month later....

And they are awful. Or barely okay. Visible buggars. Messy hair. Lunch on the shirt .... or snot...depending on the kid. Wet stretched out neck line for the kid that chews their shirt. It's all there for everyone to see.

And what is it with my kindergarteners and thinking its BAD to show their teeth in a smile?? Still have not figured out how this happened with ALL THREE of mine.

So now you have this wonderful packet of pictures to stuff in the Christmas cards, that are less than flattering in so many cases. To be fair, I think my son had ONE good fall picture. And you can try for picture re-take day if you want to take that on.

But admit it. You keep those photos. The ones we bought unseen. That we would NEVER do if it wasn't the school system. I personally have walked away from other picture sessions and not bought less than flattering pictures. Why would I pay for something I don't want to send out?

So Christmas comes and goes and here comes Spring.

And now they throw in a Spring picture.


They take the pictures, then send them home. With an envelope to pay for them or you can return them.

Except they are always FANTASTIC. They actually have a cute background instead of dead grey. The kids hair is brushed. They smile. The photographers actually TRY to get a good shot. Because we aren't going to buy them if they get sent home and are NOT good.
Fall (I picked one of the kindest shots...don't want the bad ones all over the net!)Spring

And you kick yourself as you fork out more money cause these pictures are actually WORTH having and are a better representation of your beautiful child.

So moms, listen to this.

You can actually NOT buy the fall pictures.

But what if the spring ones aren't good?????

Haven't seen it happen yet. And with three kids over a 15 year spread...that's pretty good odds. I figure if it ever does happen, I'll take the kid somewhere and have them done and still be better off.

And you could just buy the smallest packet if you just can't NOT buy the fall insults (sucker! photographers dream!!). And Kindergarten moms are going to buy that first fall package no matter what because it is a first - totally get that.

But, after that first set of kindergarten fall NEVER have to do that again.

Really, its okay.

And for those Christmas envelopes? Go have a FAMILY picture done. People actually like that.

And then, when those Spring pictures come? Right before summer send them out to all your friends and family. And they will actually have something in the mail from you 2X in one year! Gasp! Can you imagine! I'm sure they will HATE that you thought of them and spent time on them TWICE! Seriously. Don't you love these people enough to fit an extra hour or two A YEAR stuffing envie's and writing a letter to those worthy enough of a picture?

Oh - and once they hit high school this all goes away. Whew. But the pictures in the fall are better since they TRY a little with the whole yearbook thing.

So there is your fair warning for those that don't have the kids in school yet.

Fall pictures are horrid. Spring pictures rock.

And you don't HAVE to buy those fall pictures. I don't. Except kindergarten and high school.

Trust me.

It will be okay.

And you wont feel like you flushed money down the drain to insult your child.


  1. Very funny!!! I've never bought Spring pictures - always the fall ones. We never even had Spring pictures when I was growing up! I did get the scoop on middle school though. They actually take their fall pictures at registration!!! And they don't tell you!! I heard some moms talking about that one!

  2. I refused to purchase the spring photos on principle, but I was so, SO tempted. We did buy the class picture though. Can you say sucker?

  3. Oh, I so agree with you. I'm so glad it's not just me that gets irritated about the spring pictures. Last year they were just awful, so the decision was simple, but this year they were actually good, and I was so tempted, but I held out on principle.