A few years ago, the manager of the Welcome Center in our neighborhood asked if they could have my girls pose for some photos to put in their pamphlets, ads, etc.  Derrick works closely with the Welcome Center, as his firm does the all the civil engineering for our development, but I know that had nothing to do with this request.  I know that my children were needed for their dazzling good looks and me, for my legendary stage-mothering skills.  So, here’s a glance back to good ‘ole 2004 and some of the photos that ended up in the newspaper, Creekstone pamphlets and magazines, and even in some brochures on airplanes.  (An old friend called us from the airport, wondering what the heck our kidlets were doing on his flight!) So if you’re one of the few people on the continent who haven’t seen my child stars yet, here’s a bit of what the (highly professional) photo shoot produced when Rache was just five, and Megan, three: 

Weren’t they sweet?  Well, the Welcome Center beckoned us once again this year, and–sigh–once again I consented to having our good looks exploited for no pay.  (What can you do when your public needs you?)  Picture day just happened to fall on the same day as my half-misery-marathon, so these outfits were pulled out of the closet and not ironed about thirty minutes before shuttertime.  Literally, they were the only solid pieces of clothing in my kids’ wardrobe, which is why a multitude of us ended up in brown.  (It hasn’t happened yet, but someday I’ll show up in something besides a plain T-shirt for my family portraits.)

Here is another completely candid shot of us frolicking in the clover while sharing secrets and giggles.  (A typical Saturday afternoon for our family, of course.)

I imagine these photographs will be splashed across every major magazine in the country, so be watching your Gap ads!  The upside is that we can keep these images at no cost.  So there’s our merrychristmasfromtheSmithfamily photo, free!  (I am not kidding.  Expect it in December.)

The downside is that looking at the old photos of the girls made me nostalgic and slightly depressed about how fast my family is growing up.  I’ve really been struggling with this lately, as I seem to every September when school starts.  President Monson’s talk today at General Conference , however, gave me a much needed perspective change.  The main goal I’m taking away from Conference this year:  to enjoy what I have, today, and not wish my time away on the past or future.  To stop trying to do more; rather, keep doing what I am already doing, more happily and gratefully.

I am now opening up the commentary for two answers I hope to receive from all of you:
 1.  What part of conference inspired you the most?
 2.  How cute is my family and how much do I look like I haven’t aged a bit since you saw me last?  (Comments for #2 need be neither truthful nor sincere, obviously.)

I’d better run.  Our fifteen minutes of fame are almost up, and I’m gonna make the most of it.  Gotta go find someone to do lunch with!

22 thoughts on “Almost Famous

  1. Well, after reading the tribute to your grandfather, I am certainly happy that my linguistic skills finally were made manifest in one of my children. Practicing your language skills by talking alot and using big words will eventually impress someone-if not just your mom.

  2. Oh yeah…next year it's a solo for Rachael or bust, baby. What's with this "duet" stuff?? 🙂 btw–thanks for the pizza party today! My mom-in-law was Primary Pres. in her ward and said she never did anything like that. She said you were an overachiever. I told her, "you have no idea…" Appreciate you!

  3. Wow I want to move there! Look at how great looking your kids turn out thanks to that Kennewick/Creekside water supply!

    Thanks for sharing your fun pictures.

  4. I loved the same talk as you. I ‘try’ to live by that theory…but it was totally reinforced hearing Pres Monson say it.

    As for the photo shoots….Rachael was so little!!!! They do grow fast and it slightly depresses me too! Wasn’t Elisabeth just born???

    Your new family photo is darling.

    Speaking of Creekstone photo shoots…they did a whole bunch of them in Summer of ’06….and nothing became of them. They did a set with my girls playing in a kiddie swimming pool. I requested to see them…and they turned out cute. But never saw them anywhere….oh well…it was fun…and I think they gave us a target giftcard for our troubles.

    Your new hair do is adorable by the way.

  5. Jamie–

    SO great to hear from you! How is Boise? We all miss you here. I saw that your house sold–congrats! That must be such a huge relief. How is your ward, neighborhood, etc? Hopefully a bigger primary this time?

    I met Mike’s cousin and her husband a few weeks ago at a youth activity, and I’ll be getting to know her more through the PTA. They seem like such a great couple, but then again, they’re related to you guys so how could they not be? I’m gonna check your blog now and post there. So great to get back in touch!

  6. HI!!! (i just typed up a long comment for you, apparently too long because i lost the connection we’re bumming off of until we get our service and lost the whole comment) So….anyway….how have you guys been? What’s new? We miss Kennewick! I’ve had your old blog address all this time and finally found you again!

    Love the pictures!!! Especially the family shot! You look gorgeous! In fact, I think you should have charged them big bucks for all your cute faces! So great to have your family pic done for free! I would have totally been sold on the neighborhood if I saw that picture in a pamphlet! 🙂

    So, I was thinking about you the other day when I bought my first food storage wheat. The funny thing is, I haven’t the slightest clue what to do with it. I suppose if we ever have a major crisis, we would all be nibbling on the little granuals!
    I told Mike we have 30 years to get ourselves a wheat grinder and bosche. I’d love to be able to pull out your yummy bread recipe sometime in the next 30 years!!! Could you email it to me when you get a free minute?? uteinky2006@yahoo.com. ….and could you send an autographed hard copy in the mail?? 🙂

    It’s sure fun to check in on your blog- you always make me laugh! Tell everyone hi…..better stop typing before I lose the connection again…!!!

  7. 1/2.jen, you keep upping your stats! you are hilarious.
    1. i loved the talk on sacrament meeting… it’s nice to be reminded of those things.
    2. i’ve said it from the day we met you guys… you are an adorable family!

  8. Rache–

    The answer is easy: Just go to your parents house along with some of your siblings. The kids all run off and play for five hours at the other end of the house, and we get five hours of heaven (no pun intended.)

    Of course, we had a special FHE about GC wherein I passed out “Conference Bingo” for them to fill in while they watched at least one full talk per session. But once we got to Grandma’s and they ran off, I decided their spiritual growth comes second to my need to enjoy. Not a bad mothering philosophy, right?

    Are you already training for H2C? I better get busy–yikes!

  9. Alisa–

    How great to hear from you! Where are you now? I’m checking out your blog right now to find out. We still miss you in YW! Everyone reading this should know that Alisa and Jared are the coolest people ever who have gotten off the suburban grid and spend half their year in Alaska. So completely (and literally) cool.

  10. 1. First of all, I need to take parenting tips from you and all of your friends that know how to keep your kids quiet enough so that you can hear conference. I try, really I do, but for now downloading it on the ipod and listening while I train for H2C is the best I can do. I also tivoed it so maybe at naptime, I can get a talk or two in.

    2.Just as cute as the first time I saw you in piano class!

  11. I must be related to Emily. I LOVED the primary children’s choir. I was in tears, it was so beautiful. I also enjoyed Elder Holland’s talk. I had heard he would speak on angels and I looked forward to it. He did not disappoint. Elder Bednar’s talk on prayer, also really good.

    Honestly, you look fabulous. Running agrees with you – you make excrutiating pain look hot!!!!

    And one more thing: you are so dang thin!

  12. 1. I were able to enjoy most of conference – of course missed President Monson’s talk! Augh! I will listen to it! I actually enjoyed the talk on sacrament meeting – I need help in that area for sure!

    2. I love the pictures and you haven’t changed in the ??? years since I have known you! You always look amazing and I am always jealous of your adorable children who frankly are as cute as their cousins – the smith genes are pretty cute!!

  13. Well, hello! I finally found you!

    1. I really liked President Monson’s comments, as well…it made me realize how I need to enjoy all of the special moments with my children and hubby (and I need to MAKE more moments…SIMPLE ones)!!

    2. Your family IS gorgeous, and I’m not surprised that they asked you again! What a great deal…free great photos! Oh, and you haven’t aged at all in 6 months 🙂 You still remind me of the beautiful Reese Witherspoon…but that’s a tangent…

    I hope you’ve had a great summer!

  14. 1. I loved all of Saturday afternoon, starting with the children’s choir that had me sobbing, and the very sweet opening prayer. Also, Elder Holland is always phenomenal, and I really thought Sister Dalton gave a great talk.

    2. Seriously, cute! Seriously, you haven’t aged!

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