Scene: Kids are doing something precious and/or funny. Maybe they’re just getting along (GASP!). Mom pulls out her phone to take a picture. Suddenly, kids are ducking and dodging. Mom yells, “Don’t move!” Kids moan and groan. Moment is over. Photo is taken. And it’s not too bad! A for effort, Mom.

End scene.

Does this sound familiar? Rikki, Chatbooks’s resident party girl (i.e., Event Planner), shares with us how she manages to get all seven kids (yes, seven) into photos together.

“A few years ago, I noticed people on social media taking weekly family pictures,” said Rikki. “They weren’t professional. They weren’t perfectly staged. But it was them. Together. And I loved it. I also noticed they used a hashtag. And when I clicked on that hashtag, all their pictures popped up and I could see the progression of time. I could see the seasons changing. I could see their kids growing up!”

Rikki was inspired.

“Now, I’ve got a lot of kids,” she said. “And some of them have a particular abhorrence of picture taking of any kind. But I’m the mom, right? And besides, this wasn’t for them. This was for me.”

So, Rikki introduced her kids to #sundayandersons. She started lining the kids up each Sunday, told them to smile, took a few photos, and here’s what she got:

Not too shabby for the first time!

The next Sunday was more of the same.

And so was the Sunday after that.

But she kept lining them up and taking photos.

“It’s been two and a half years since I started taking our #sundayandersons photos and it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done! I love clicking on our hashtag and looking back at how much the kids have changed, how their sun-bleached summer hair has faded, their missing teeth grown in, and the clothes passed down to younger kids!”

Rikki discovered a way to easily document her family’s growth with this one little weekly ritual.

Sure, the pictures aren’t perfect. Kids still complain. Someone is grumpy about having to pose for a photo. Someone else is half dressed or hiding in the back. But it’s a family together, and a pretty perfect representation of their life.

And their mama loves it.

Rikki has printed two copies of the first edition of her #sundayandersons book, spanning about 100 Sundays, and plans to keep making books. The book turned out so great that she sent a copy to her long-distance parents in Florida. They’ve requested copies of the next ones!

If Rikki’s Sunday photos have inspired you to try a book, learn more about making a #hashtag book. And tag #chatbooks to share your creations with us!

Rikki Anderson is the little sister of our own Chatbooker-in-Chief, Vanessa Quigley. Rikki is a Florida transplant, living in the shadows of Utah’s mountains. She’s been married for 17 years, has seven kids, two cats, a dog, and a neverending to-do list. Most of the time you can find her at her kids sporting events or trying to pressure her husband into just one more cat.