Last week I had the opportunity to photograph a “grandparent and me” session!! During Baby’s First Year sessions, I often recommend to families that if they would like to photograph a 9-month session or add in a mini-session somewhere along the way, that they make it with the grandparents, when possible. There is a definite reason for this. Beyond capturing memories, I truly and honestly believe grandparents are some of the most special people in the world. Growing up, I was lucky to be close to my grandparents on my mother’s side. My dad’s grandparents lived in Newfoundland and my dad’s dad (Pop) had passed away many moons ago. We used to eat supper at my grandparent’s house on Sunday’s and my brother and I would spend a weekend or even a week at a time at their home. I’m so thankful for these memories. I still have my grandmother in my life, but my grandfather passed away when I was 7. I have memories of us watching Land Before Time together over and over (along with Milo and Otis, another personal favourite of ours…). When I was 6, I got the chickenpox (like those in kindergarten used to get) and I spent the week with my grandfather. He loved to play blackjack and he spent the week teaching me to play that game along with many others. I remember calling my mom to tell her how much fun I was having. These are memories I have and carry with me over 20 years later.
My grandmother continued to be a huge part of my life. She still calls me up, we chat on the phone and I get to see her every few weeks. She and my husband get along famously and think the world of each other. When I got married, she stood up with my parents and gave her blessing in giving me away. My grandmother spoiled us rotten as kids. She loved taking us places like Canada’s Wonderland and did so countless times. I have tons of memories with her, as well.
I was also undoubtedly lucky to have my great-grandmother as a big part of my life. She passed away when I was 19 years old. She lived with my grandma until this time so I saw her as much as my grandmother. She was a little more difficult to get close to – with a huge generational gap between styles in life. She was old school but still loved us a lot. I treasure having all of the stories she shared about trips, the farm and history. She saw a lot in her almost 102 years (and nearly 3 centuries…she was born in 1902, she she was just short of the 1800’s, 1900’s and 2000’s!!)
The point of this long winded account of my life, is grandparents give us love, they show us kindness and remind us that life is about giving children pop even if mom doesn’t want you to! They are put on earth to spoil and love and then give you back to your parents at the end of the day….the more hyper the better! Each time I photograph a grandparent with their grandchildren my heart gets happy. So many adults fuss about getting their photos taken…they put off pictures until they lose a few pounds or until the timing is better. What they fail to realize is those memories – those tiny captures in time – aren’t really for them. They’re for their family who follows them and who love them dearly. They are memories that will be looked back on while people tell stories sitting around the table. Jamie and I have a “wall of history” in our house, with photos of our grandparents, parents and some really neat things they have done in their lives. It’s kind of our shrine to those who came before us and made us who we are. I have a much loved and cherished photo (just one that I have myself) of my brother, my grandfather and me sitting together (probably watching a cartoon movie) on one seriously retro couch! This hangs in my wall and I see it everyday. Most days I pass it without thinking, but some days I stop and just remember. This photo is so important to me. I also have many cherished photos of my grandma and me (and we have some 4-generation ladies pictures as well as now 3-generations with my mamma duck in there too).
I posted the photo of my brother and me with my grandpa on Facebook yesterday and it took my brother about 5 minutes to respond (in serious outrage) with, “WHERE DID YOU GET THIS?! I WANT ONE”. It’s amazing how that photo triggered his brain right away. So, this inspired me. After editing a really fun grandparent and me session where I realized how much those kids will adore those photos when they’re older, that I thought I’d hold a little fun contest on my blog!!
Here it goes:
I want to see your photos of you and your grandparent(s) or your child and their grandparent(s)!! Send me your photo via my facebook page by posting it on my wall – please post on my personal page, my group page is being shut down soon so I’m in the process of switching to a fan page or send me your photo via email at email@example.com
It can be a photo of you as a child, adult or anything in between. I’d also love to hear your stories behind your photos. Please feel free to include why the photo is special to you or a fun / loving / sincere / memorable story about you & your grandparent.
Just to make it a little more fun, and to give you some more incentive, I will put everyone’s name into a draw for a complimentary Grandparent & Me session (or any other type of family photo session you might like along with 2 – 8×10 images, a value of $110). WINNER IS: JACKIE!!
Please let the emailing begin!!
Photo of my brother, my grandfather & me!! I was about 2 in this photo. Love it!!
“This photo means so much to me because my Grandma is only 54 but is disabled because of her back condition, she has deteriorating disks and they are getting so bad where she can hardly walk. I don’t have any photos of me and her only ones from when I was a kid and she was still able to do things, so these pictures of her and my kids mean SO much to me. She was able to hold Sophie for a minute here for a picture while sitting, it has gotten so bad now she couldn’t even think about holding one of them for even a second. My grandma was like a mother to me and still is, it would mean so much to have some nice photos taken with her, they would mean more then any amount of money, priceless like this one is to me. Thanks for reading I also enjoyed reading the other story’s and was inspired by them to write my own about my and my kids very special Grandma / Great Grandma”. ~Angel
Marianne & her grandmother taking a nice stroll!
Little M with her papa….so adorable!
“My father is normally the one behind the camera so pictures with him in them are rare but on this occasion I was able to steal his camera from him to get this great shot. This is my daughter with her Papa. He is her second favourite man in her life (next to her dad). They have such an amazing relationship and she simply adores him, as you can see in this picture. She is constantly asking to call, visit or go on one of their special movie dates with him. I am so happy that we are fortunate enough to live fairly close to him so that she can enjoy all kinds of special moments with him that she will remember forever.” ~Rachel
Anne’s grandparents. She isn’t in this photo with them, but here’s her story:
“I have lots of great pictures of my grandparents, but this is the most special. About a year before my grandmother died, they were moved to a nursing home in Oshawa about 8 minutes from my house. I shared my grandparents with 15 other cousins, so each single minute we got to spend with them was a very special gift. Having them so close was the best gift of all as I got to see them more than anyone. I usually visited with my sister and when we would leave, my grandparents would walk us to the door and wave good bye. Not one to carry my big camera around, I grabbed my cell to take a pic of them waving good bye. Now keep in mind, it was an old cell phone, with a crappy camera. They were just the cutest things. I cried all the way to the car that day, not wanting to say goodbye, knowing what was coming sooner rather than later.
When my grandmother died, I was lucky enough to be with your mom at her cottage. The girls kept my mind busy all weekend. It was a rough weekend.
After she died my grandfather would walk around the nursing home with my grandmother’s picture in the basket of his walker and hold it up to compare to all of the ladies to see if they were her….he never stopped looking for her.” ~Anne
Jacey & her Nannie
“My Nannie and I. I love this picture because it’s the only one I have of us together. ” ~Jacey
Jackie & her grandparents
“My grams, gramps and I on my wedding day!! Arent they soo adorable?!?!” ~Jackie
Anita & her husband with her grandmother on their wedding day.
“Kelly your blog post was very touching! I often think about parents and grandparents and how they have shaped us to who we are today. I love chatting with my grandma (whose memory is failing) over an old photo album and hearing her stories of her life as a young teacher or having fun with her sisters– she remembers some of those times like it was just yesterday! Thanks, your writing put a smile on my face!” ~Anita
Samantha & Grandpa!
“I saw your Grandparents post and I loved it and it gave me an excuse to share this photo. I have it in a frame in my apartment and I love it so much…and love any excuse to talk about my grandfather.
My grandfather, Egbert Tingli…ng, passed away 6 years ago Monday (the 8th). I’ve never claimed to have heroes, but if I had a personal hero, it would have been him. He was the strongest, most independent and one of the most fascinating people I’d ever met. He was always honest with me and always made me feel so beautiful, especially after I got sick with my skin condition.
He was a fantastic cook. Every time I went to his home it always smelled like something different, and part of my inspiration now as a chef comes from his love of cooking. His fierce independence is something we both shared, and even in his final days (after suffering a long and drawn-out illness that robbed him of much of his strength) he lived in a senior care facility equipped with ‘apartments’ for their residents, so he was still able to maintain the independence that always inspired pride within me.
He and my grandmothe (who passed when I was only 3 mths old) raised 10 children together. My grandfather will forever be someone I think about, smile about, and draw strength from. Although I miss him still, I feel so lucky and blessed to have had almost 17 wonderful years with him.” ~Samantha
A recent grandparent & me session I had the pleasure of photographing. Ava & Ethan will be able to have these photos as memories like we have ours!!
Rebecca & her grandmother Edna
This session was incredibly special. This young girl (only 16) was visiting her grandmother last summer. She lives in France and her grandmother lives near the Hamilton area. They contacted me and said that while visiting, her one gift from her grandmother was to have photographs taken of the two of them together. They came in and we had so much fun. Even her parents (who had no intentions of getting photos done) got some taken. Looking at the images afterwards, I was teary the entire time while editing them and they still get me slightly emotional. There is just something SO special about this session and the love Rebecca has for her grandmother and family. I posted some of these images on my blog after the session and I have had people ask me about this session in particular because their happiness and adoration shines through. I see all of that in the photos you’ve been sending me, too!