Posted on 14 Comments

Shared Family Summertime Delusion

Shared Family Summer Delusion, at Polka Dot Cottage

Back in the Good Ol’ Days of my blogging career, my kids and I did a lot of stuff that I photographed and shared several times a week. You may have noticed those days are pretty much over.

Kids get bigger and expect more privacy. And, let’s be completely honest here, teens and preteens are not nearly as photogenic as preschoolers. Heck, even if they were, they’re still a lot less likely to jump in front of the camera for something that they know is going to be plastered all over the internet on Mom’s blog.

Shared Family Summer Delusion, at Polka Dot Cottage

Add to a general lack of offspring cooperation, a general lack of time for posting Everyday Life Stuff every day, and you find me where I am now: on a blog that is mostly filled with my own solo creative exploits, which (again, being completely honest) are not overly revolutionary lately or even as frequent as they used to be. sigh

Still, once in a while, my family gives me something really fun to write about, and they give me permission to plaster it all over the internet.

I love it when that happens.

Let me tell you about this past weekend.

Shared Family Summer Delusion, at Polka Dot Cottage

You probably know this has been a terrible winter, in terms of really cold temperatures, and really frequent snow storms, right? (If you don’t, you haven’t been paying attention to my numerous complaints on the subject…)

Well, Saturday was sunny and 52 degrees. Oh, yeah! While 52F is not exactly summer, in comparison to what we have been dealing with it was truly amazeballs. Seriously. I stood on the front steps without a jacket on, and felt the warm sun on my skin… That’s when an idea began to take shape.

Shared Family Summer Delusion, at Polka Dot Cottage

I have these silly photo-shoot ideas all of the time, but I mostly do them alone. Sometimes I ask my family to get involved, and sometimes they even say Yes, but usually it’s just me, my camera and a handful of props.

“Hey, Neil,” I said, “want to put on a pair of shorts, sit in the front yard on our beach chairs, and take silly pictures?”

After a few strange looks and a couple of mild protests, he eventually replied, “I’m lucky to be alive. I should probably learn to enjoy the stupid stuff.”

And with that, we both put on our Summer finery and set up our tableau in the front yard.

Before long, the boys joined in.

`Shared Family Summer Delusion, at Polka Dot Cottage

I sipped ice water, while Neil built sand snow castles. Eamonn brought out a book and a deck of UNO cards, while Aidan fetched a rain umbrella (which is the closest thing we have to a beach umbrella). It was surprisingly warm out there! The sun was shining right on us, and as long as the wind didn’t blow, it felt really nice.

Eventually, though, the wind did blow one too many times for us, and one-by-one we packed it in.

Later, safely inside and toasty warm once again, I put all of our pictures together into this little video. I hope you enjoy it, and it makes you feel warm and happy wherever you are!

Technical details:

I set up the camera on a tripod, and used my tablet connected to a Triggertrap to take a picture every 5 seconds.

I used Picasa to create a movie from all of the images and set them to music.

I pulled the resulting movie into Corel Video Studio Pro, separated the soundtrack from the video, added some title and credit screens, and shrunk the movie ever so slightly so that the music started and ended exactly where I wanted it to.

By the way, if you’re thinking of trying something similar (time-lapse set to music), Picasa is capable of handling the whole video-making process, and it’s free. The reason I used the other software was so that I could add title screens. Picasa can do that as well, but I have been having bad luck getting the captions to save properly with it and I didn’t want the headache of trying to get it to work.

Some cameras have a built-in time-lapse function, too.



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Posted on 14 Comments

14 thoughts on “Shared Family Summertime Delusion

  1. Well, now I’m just grinning my silly face off! Thanks for that–I NEEDED it!
    Snowed all day yesterday here…..

  2. lol! That is how I felt when we hit almost 40 last week! Of course tomorrow morning is supposed to be -30 again so I’ll leave the beach wear to you 😉

  3. Love it! It’s amazing how warm 50 degrees feels after a cold, snowy winter.

  4. And this is why I read your blog!

    Also: although it has been sunny and bright here, it is still -30C. There isn’t a chance of us doing similar without serious harm. I will live vicariously through you crazy peeps.

  5. I love that you did this! This is absolutely adorable and I’m glad the whole family joined in! What good sports!

  6. What a lovely family adventure! I am originally from New Jersey but have lived in Barbados for the past 25 years. This past weekend I was at the beach and sending pictures to my sister in New Jersey. When I saw your post I had a good laugh and realized just how lucky I am to be on this little Rock this time of year. Will try and send more warm weather your way,!

  7. Hi, Lisa, I just found your blog today and read your polymer button series! I wasn’t sure where to comment so that you’d be able to find it, so am coming to your most recent post, though of course this is off topic of this post.

    I love the simplest ones in your series, the single colour buttons, best for my needs! But I’d love to put a texture in and then pick out the texture by painting and wiping off. It was great to read your recommendations for the type of clay to use to stand up the best to actual wear and washing, so now I hope you might advise me what paint and painting/baking method would stand up to washing when used on the Premo Sculpey clay?

    Thank you so much for an awesome and detailed tutorial! I am so excited to try this! 🙂

    1. (This is the texture idea I was hoping for, but using mostly your tutorial Thank you for any thoughts.


    2. Hi, Natalia. I’m sorry it took me so long to get back to you! Acrylic paint would work fine, but then you would want to use some kind of sealer over the top. There are glazes that are made specifically for polymer, and you can find them in the polymer clay aisles in the craft stores. Also, Future floor polish works nicely, if you have some of that around the house.

      One other option is to use liquid polymer clay. You can tint that with oil paints or powders (or you can get it pre-tinted). Then, apply it to the baked button, wipe off the excess, and re-bake it. The liquid polymer hardens in the same way that the regular clay does, and it doesn’t require a sealer of any kind.

      Hope this helps!

  8. How fun! i love it! 🙂

  9. wonderful! thanks for sharing and what a great family you have!

  10. LOVE THIS!

  11. […] you for all of your nice comments on my last post. I’m so glad we were able to entertain you while simultaneously entertaining ourselves! It […]

  12. Awesome!!!!! What a fun family 🙂 It is a good thing for all of us to enjoy the silly stuff. What a good memory for you. Thanks to all for sharing.

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