We're home and all was well. I'm suspicious of the poses the photographer used, but I'm hoping they'll look more natural then they felt. I coaxed a few final pictures out of the kids when we got home, before they tore up the stairs to shed the cute clothes. The battery in my real camera was dead, so I had to grab my old point and shoot, which Emma apparently had been using earlier because look at the HORRIBLE smudge and fingerprint right in the middle of my lens!! I didn't even really notice it when I was snapping the pictures. Oh well. At least this will prove some sort of reminder that my children really were once this clean and smart looking. I enjoyed all ninety minutes of that. :) You may notice that a certain small someone is missing from the picture. We could stick a fork in that poor girl she was so done. No more pictures to be had!
Clearly, there's an urgent need for a blog update, because I know I have throngs of readers (hello, Grandparents!) who are eagerly anticipating the outcome of the wardrobe conundrum. A final decision has indeed been made. I was leaning toward white shirts and denim bottoms for everyone, but Ems didn't have a white dress, so it was back to the drawing board, otherwise known as the mall. (Hannah didn't have a white shirt either, which is a whole 'nother epic tale.) I entered Strasburg Children, which, if you have never been there, is like walking into a fairy tale land of princess dresses. A land where pearls and smocking prevail and where family portrait dreams really can come true. Even in October, when you are the one and only woman shopping for a pure white dress. (Be gone, winter white. You are an impostor. You are CREAM, and you will NOT work for my family portrait.)
I gently broke the news to the Strasburg salesperson that I wasn't willing to sell our family car to fund the mega-expensive smocking and pearls because, after all, I need that car to shuffle my brood to the portrait studio. So, she showed me this cute little number and whispered that Martha Stewart has used this exact dress in three issues of her Wedding magazine.
She had me at Martha.
Emma will look like an angel in her delicate little slip dress. We chose the one with embroidery at the neckline because Hannah and I both thought it was precious. I'm certain my little angel will behave like one wearing a sweet dress like this one. I couldn't decide between the white satin ribbon at the waist or the pale blue, so I brought them both home. What I really need is one more thing to deliberate about in the final hours before we get dressed in these much thought about clothes. White? Blue? I haven't even allowed myself to consider the no ribbon option because three choices seems like too many.
My score at Strasburg was such a boon to my mood that we sailed right into Macy's where I instructed my teenager to go ahead and pick a sensible, non-see through, pure white, preferably long sleeved number, and I generously allotted her ten minutes. "In style" was purely optional, because as far as I was concerned she would look darling in a sensible button down from Brooks Brothers, which was absolutely going to be my next destination if she couldn't achieve success in nine and a half minutes, and counting. Blessed of days, she secured a white, cable knit sweater top and spared herself a preppy fate. This is actually an abbreviated version of our morning, which also involved her trying on twelve "in style", short sleeved options which did not meet with my approval. (Or hers, to be fair. She is a very conservative dresser, but white is hard to come by this time of year so we were trying whatever we could find.) Lucky for me, by the time the turtleneck sweater came into view, my teenage non-fashionista who passionately hates to shop was willing to pluck from the rack and purchase just about anything if it meant a hasty departure from the mall. Worked for me.
We're ready, folks. If the pictures are a bust it simply won't be for lack of an amazing wardrobe.