Yesterday, I bought and set up this year's Christmas Tree. It is a small one, like last year's, much snippier with its needles than last year's but very pretty, I thought. This is the tree right after we got it home and set up in its special stand.
After the tree was decorated, which included the annual last minute run to the store for more lights (why are there never enough lights?), I tried unsuccessfully to get a decent photo of the three dogs and me by the tree. If I am holding the camera, my dogs are like professional models, except for their hearty appetites. If others hold the camera, they are like... regular dogs with little interest in having their pictures taken. The Lhasa tends to complain bitterly about being by the Border Collie. The Border Collie tends to look long suffering. The Sheltie is old, deaf and not feeling well these days, so she actually is suffering a bit and looks unhappy. This was the best photo of me with my little pack after several attempts:
Last year's photo was more successful in my dogs looking semi-cooperative (the Lhasa was distracted by something out the window so had shut up when the photo was snapped). I was at least 70 lbs heavier last Christmas than I am now, but closing in on a weight loss of 100 lbs for 2011, so I was very happy with how I looked at that time.
When I was really heavy, I never wanted my photo taken. I used to joke that people could only take my picture from my eyebrow up. But the reality was that it was just too painful to see what I truly looked looked like. I'm not sure how I managed not to see myself in the mirror every day, but photos were always appalling. So at Christmas in 2010 and several Christmases before that, there are no photos of me by the tree, with family and friends, or even trying to coax dogs into posing by my side. There are few photos to be found of me at all for years and years. For an extra, extra large person in real life, I did my best to be invisible in photos and, heaven help us, videos.
I'll end with the best photo of this year's sad lot. The Lhasa got his Christmas Wish to be the only dog, at least in this pose with me in front of our pretty little tree. I only have 1/3 of my pack with me, but then again, there's not a whole lot more than 1/3 of me, compared to what I looked like at Christmas 2010.
Happy Holidays to All (especially Lhasas)!