Free online course for separated parents
Forum - Ask questions. Get answers.
Free online course for separated parents | DAD BLOGS: Mrunal | Family Portrait

Family Portrait

Carl from Dadtalk has been nagging me for weeks (OK- months) for a picture of me and my family that he can put up on the website so that visitors can get a better feel for the type of people we are.  I have been promising him a picture for weeks and have singularly failed to deliver up until now. The problem is that the picture didn’t quite turn out as I had planned.

In my mind’s eye I had an idyllic scene where a ruggedly handsome, yet sensitive looking, man sits serenely staring into the camera as his beautiful wife and impeccably turned out children gaze at him with adoringly as if to say, “Here is the perfect father, husband and man.”

Yeah right.

Well, the first thing that went wrong was that Clare and I could not get well enough organised to actually take a picture with all four of us in it. This is partly the result of her hectic work-life and partly the result of Arun’s recent poor health sucking up all of our time. So, no adoring wife (or Clare for that matter) in the photograph.

This afternoon, up against another Dadtalk deadline day I decided I could procrastinate no longer and I had to get a picture. Whilst Meri was at nursery I set my camera up on garden table with the ten second timer on. I decided that I needed a test run to make sure it all worked.  I pressed the button and swept Arun up and sat down on our garden bench. Here is the result:

OK, clearly needs some adjustment.

So, after I had collected Meri from nursery, we had our first real go. I decided that the best way of doing it would be to grab Arun, press the button and then sit down whilst carrying him. I would then summon Meri over to me and she would join us for the photo.

So, she didn’t come over quickly enough and Arun didn’t like being swept up like that.

I thought I would try the same idea again because it had so nearly worked. I pressed the shutter, ran over to the bench with Arun and called for Meri. This time though she got really interested in the beeping camera and went over to inspect it. In doing so she was about to knock it off the table onto the flagstones. So I dashed up (still carrying Arun) to grab the camera before she trashed it.

I decided that I needed to change tactics. I sat Arun down on the seat and told him to stay put. I then grabbed Meri and pressed the shutter and ran over to the bench with her this time.

As you can see, Arun wandered off.

I thought I would try this again. I sat Arun down and told him to stay put. I pressed the shutter and went to grab Meri. But this time she had wandered off. I dashed after her to the other end of the garden, picked her up and then ran back to the bench against the insistent beeping of the camera timer.

As you can see I didn’t quite make it in time.

By this stage I was losing the will to live. I grabbed both Arun and Meri, I pressed the button on the camera. I strode, like a colossus, carrying two children across to the bench and sat down. We got there in good time as the timer continued to beep down. However, in the five seconds that the children were required to wait they got restless and decided that they both wanted to make a break for it.

By now I’m past caring. This is the best photo I have and probably the best photo I am ever going to get. I know it’s not perfect and not what I had in mind but it is a fair reflection of the reality of my family life. It probably isn’t what the good folk at Dadtalk had in mind either. Frankly though, after my herculean efforts this afternoon, if they don’t like it they can shove it.

Related entries

Too old for this

Too old for this

It was late on a Thursday evening and Rodger and I were walking up Upper Street in Islington, looking for a Thai restaurant. We were a little worse for wear   “You OK?” he asked looking at my awkward gait. “Yeah,” I said with that little inflection that indicated...

Too old for this

The big day

I could hear the rustling from the room next-door and glanced at my watch: 6:30 am. I groaned to myself but there was a certain inevitability about it   The kids bounded into our room moments later. “Is Uncle Steve here? Is he here?” They asked excitedly. “Yes,...

Too old for this

The big questions

I was walking home from school with my five year old daughter. As we approached our front door she looked up at me   “Daddy?” she asked in that tone of voice that all dads will recognise as a precursor to something that they’ve been pondering. “Yes?” I answered...

Latest entries

Bedtime tips and sleep hygiene for children

Bedtime tips and sleep hygiene for children

Bedtime for adults means slipping happily under the covers, enjoying the quiet and relaxation. Bedtime for kids can mean war- a fight between the parent wanting their child to settle, and the child who still wants to stay up and bounce off the walls. Sleep hygiene for...

Positive parenting- what is it and how can I use it?

Positive parenting- what is it and how can I use it?

There are many parenting terms being coined these days, but positive parenting is an approach proven to work. It's also easy to adopt and benefits the whole family.   What is positive parenting?  In short, positive parenting means focussing on your child’s...

Kids’ gaming safety: what can parents do?

Kids’ gaming safety: what can parents do?

Keeping track of your child's online life can be challenging. Online video gaming poses difficulties for parents trying to monitor their child's activity. Gaming and gambling safety charity Ygam shared with us their tips for working with your kids to keep them safe:...

Pin It on Pinterest