Dec 23, 2014

Take the Picture

This is one of my favorite (and one of the very few, I might add) photos of Dad, the boys, and me, taken in the summer of 2013.  It's a miracle Barbara got the four of us to sit still long enough for this gem.  None of us were typically enthused to have our photo taken.  I'm so glad she got us to go along!

If you're lucky you have someone like my lovely wife Barbara in your family.  Of course there are many reasons one would be lucky to have someone like Barbara, but in this case I'm talking specifically about her penchant for pictures.  Every time the family gathered Babs would insist on taking pictures.  Lots of pictures.  Multiple pictures of the same pose.  I have to admit I often griped about all this photo-taking and I probably wasn't a very cooperative subject. ("Are we done yet?  Okay that's enough.  We have enough!")  But now I'm so glad she pushed to get the shot.  We have a treasure trove of photos of Dad, many of which we wouldn't have had without her determined insistence.  Here are just a couple of my very favorites.

Pure joy.  Elijah and his grandparents, early 2010.

Ezra and his PaPa, Summer 2014

Nap time for grandfather and grandson. Not all the photos Barbara took were posed.  She was great at capturing spontaneous special moments too.  

This photo of the Leen family, taken on Sunday, September 28, 2014 has special significance.  Not only is it the last photo taken of the complete Leen family, but it also appears to be the last photo we have of Dad.

This holiday season, there will likely be ample opportunities to take a picture with loved ones.  My advice is go ahead and take the picture.  Whether you opt for top-shelf photo session with a pro (check out my friend Heather Rice; she's one of the best in the business), the budget shoot at Wal-Mart or a DIY at home with your iPhone,  let 'em take the picture.  Sure some pics will be destined for the pages of Awkward Family Photos (Heather can help you avoid that fate!), but there will be others that will bring a smile and tear in the years ahead.  And if you're always the one behind the camera, be sure to get in some photos too.  Those pictures of you will mean a lot to someone who loves you when the day comes that those photos and the memories that go with them are they'll have.

So quit griping, strike a pose, smile, and take the picture!

This photo was taken at Dayton area photo studio in March of 2012 (a session arranged, once again at Barbara's insistence).  I cropped this image to make it a solo portrait of Dad and it became the photo we used for the obituary and funeral program.

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