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Kids Today: Supermodels! Movie Stars!

Even ordinary kids these days live lives of supermodels and movie stars. It's all in the eyes of the parents and relatives. Doing something cute? Snap. Remotely clever? Snap. Moment to remember, maybe? Snap.

Looking through old family albums that are filled with snapshots of my older sister, the first child when Pop was away in WWII in the army, I am hard-pressed to find photos just of my brother or just of me. If we were children now-a-days? We'd be plastered all over like some kind of hyped-up PR campaign.

My niece Janean Thompson Baird, mother of two boys, helped me understand picture taking these days by writing me this message. --JGR


Watch sometime at the zoo or park or fair and you'll see doting parents snapping away. Now there is just the expense of the camera itself. Gone are the days when you bore the expense of the camera PLUS film and developing. Not to mention all the do it yourself home photo print options. Now every moment is recorded for posterity.

Maybe it's not just the cost making the difference - though for me that's enough of an incentive. It could be it's just the generation that was raised with the launch of MTV, remote controls, VCR's, CD's, DVD's and truly portable cell phones is so techno-savy. We figure it's what we're supposed to do: record and save as much of it as we can. So much personal technology was developed and launched in the last 30 years it's staggering. Home movies have been around for awhile, but it's never been so easy as it is now to download and upload and share those movies with the world.

I used to joke our kids were going to think they were models with as many pictures that were taken of them. Though I think it was my husband's way of keeping me in the loop on what they did when I was not with them. It wasn't all bad. I don't take as many pictures, or as wll-composed pictures as he does. But every so often there will be a moment I don't want to miss and I'll grab the camera and shoot. Mostly I just try to live in the moment and not be so worried about capturing the moment.

The night I celebrated a major life change with my New Beginnings party, we didn't take one picture. While I wish there were a few, I know I don't need them to remember the feeling of the night and who was there to share in the celebration with me.

I have always loved Grandpa Thompson's poem, "The pictures that I didn't take". There have been times my son has said to me, "Mom, take a picture" and I didn't have a camera to freeze frame the moment. I always tell him, "I'll take one with my heart instead." One of the lessons in my book-in-progress "Camo Matches Everything," (a quote from my husband when I was trying to match an outfit) is to carry a camera. But, if you don't have one, take a picture with your heart.


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  1. Also, be sure to check out the research on how kids react to frightening things in movies as well. It is very interesting to see just what goes through a kids mind.... sometimes it's hard to see their young point of view.

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