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Holiday Sharing: Self-Portrait Party, Recreate Old Photos + Win $100

24 December 2011 1,501 views 30 Comments

by heather

self portrait party

My family knows how to celebrate the holidays in crafty style. The adults swap homemade gifts instead of store-bought, and in the past couple years, we have added a crafty activity to the day as well! My favorite holiday moment in the past few years was when we decided to have a self-portrait painting party.

dsc sponsored post

Kodak is giving away $100 to one lucky reader - click here for details, or read on. Update: This sweepstakes is now over. The info is at the bottom of the page. Back to the self-portrait party details!

Host a Self-Portrait Party

Project Estimate:

  • Wooden blocks or plain canvases, on hand or about $2 each
  • Assorted acrylic craft paint, on hand or about $1 a bottle
  • Paint brushes, on hand or $1 and up
  • Pencils, on hand
  • Mirrors, on hand
  • Paper plates, on hand or $1
  • Cups of water, on hand

Total: about $4 per person

Inspired by a post at Fresh Picked Whimsy, my sister and I organized a “secret” activity for the family on Christmas Eve. We prepared some hardwood blocks we already had on hand by painting each one a plain color with acrylic paint. We then gathered acrylic paints, paint brushes, paper plates (to use as individual palettes), and set up tables to give each person in the family a workspace. We also had a couple of big mirrors for people to use for reference.

We let people choose their blocks one by one, then everyone got down to work. Some people used the computer to take a picture of themselves to refer to. Everyone was pretty into it as soon as they found out what we were doing.

I love seeing how people interpret their own appearance – the features they choose to emphasize, the details they have to include to make an authentic portrait.

This Year's Christmas Eve

pink pjs

Pink PJs - 1974 and now

This year, I really want to try to recreate some childhood photos of me and my brother and sister while we are all together, like the ones at Young Me/Now Me. I'm not as prepared as the ladies in this photo were - check out the detail on the pajamas! The haircuts are even perfect. I just love this idea!

Sharing Family Photos with Each Other

Well, I'm about to leave to go to Christmas Eve at my parents' house. I'm bringing my camera (of course), and everyone else at the party will definitely take tons of photos as well... but it is still so hard for me to know that there will be some photos of the event (and my three little boys) that I will probably never see! We've all been there -- wishing that we could get the photos that someone else had taken with their camera!

I just learned that KODAK Gallery has figured out how to fix this little problem with their new Group Albums. With Group Albums, multiple people can upload, share and comment on photos all in one place, for free. And not only that, you can download other people's photos for free. And then you can order prints of your favorites.

merry christmas

So I just created a Group Album and invited my family members to join the album (easy - we can all log in with our Facebook accounts). Now I know I won't miss any of their amazing shots of our family fun (including my boys), and I'll be able to download high-res versions to keep forever.

I'm not gonna lie, I am a little bit excited about this Group Album! Every year when I sit down to make my photo album, I am always bummed because I just know there are some prize shots of my boys that I don't have access to. The Group Album would mean that I could steal legally download all the awesome photos my professional photographer sister takes!

Want to get your own Group Album? You know you do! Just click on this link to sign up for your own Group Albums and don't forget to invite your family to share!

Kodak Wants to Give One Lucky Reader $100

UPDATE: This sweepstakes is now over. Congrats to our winner:

kodak winner

How to enter:

  1. Share a memorable holiday moment in the comments to enter.

Giveaway open to United States residents only, 18 and older. Ends on Thursday, December 29th, 2011 at 11:59 PM. Full rules here.

p.s. Kodak Gallery is also giving away a Hawaiian vacation package worth more than $2,500 on their Facebook page -- go on over and get in on that sweet action! Sweepstakes runs until Jan 3.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kodak Gallery. All opinions are 100% mine.

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  • april said:

    i shared mine!

  • Katherine said:

    My mom’s side of the family always gets together to celebrate Christmas, and the tradition is to do a shot (or two, or three…) of Aftershock. Watching new girlfriends/boyfriends/family additions join in for the first time is hilarious! It’s pretty strong…

  • Amanda said:

    One of my favorite holiday memories is the year my dog ate one of the wooden shoes we left out for St. Nicholas (Dutch Tradition) Every year since we put the 1 1/2 shoes out and laugh!

  • rachel said:

    We always attend Christmas Eve service and then go home for a delicious dinner. At the end of the night, we get to open one gift.

    This is my first Christmas married and away from home–it’ll be different!

  • RoChele said:

    My most memorable holiday moment was seeing my sister for the first time since finding out she is pregnant. It will be my first time being an aunt and I live out of state so seeing her little baby bump was the best gift of all!

  • Kristi said:

    My most memorable memory is from Christmas 1984. My dad was in a horrible accident in March of that year. His doctor’s decided to let him come home for Christmas Day. Even though he knew he would be going back to the hospital the day after, he was the happiest we had ever seen him and the smile never left his face that whole day! The picture of him in his plaid flannel pajamas and silly hat is my favorite of him and always puts a smile on my face…

  • jessie said:

    the time i saw santa in the parking lot when i was about six. he stopped and asked what i wanted for christmas and gave me a candy cane. i thought that was so cool!

  • Jen VG said:

    The Christmas my hubby was in Iraq the kids and I decorated our Christmas tree with the yellow paper chain we had been making (one link for each day he was away)… the next Christmas he was home and instead of putting it on the tree, we burned it in the fireplace! That was a nice glow. =)

    Jen VG

  • Daphne said:

    One of my favorite Holiday memories is just gathering with family. Often times we will discuss our plans, dreams, goals for the next year and then reflect on those from the past year!

  • Sarah T said:

    My favorite holiday memory is telling our parents that we were pregnant after infertility treatment. We got to tell them right before Christmas.

  • lauren said:

    One of my favorite holiday moments this year was when two family members started to bicker over something as we were opening presents and my 3 year old brother loudly said “AWKWARD…” and totally broke the tension by making us all crack up.

    I wish I could convince my family to swap handmade gifts!!

  • PamS said:

    One favorite memory was when my son was being filmed by his dad at age 3 singing Christmas songs by the tree. His dad went a little long for him and he got this self conscious look and said “Turn da page!”.

  • GM said:

    When I was around 4th grade my father came to my house to celebrate Christmas. It was the only Christmas I ever had (where I was old enough to remember) with both parents together. I was on cloud 9.

    satsukirebel AT gmail DOT com

  • starla said:

    A couple of years ago my daughter helped to make a memory for me that I will always cherish. I had to give up a storage space because it came down to food on the table or the storage space, need less to say I lost all of my pictures. My daughter went around to all of your family and found pictures of my mom and gave them to me for christmas, lots of tears were involved. It was one of the best Christmas memories I have.

  • Laurinda said:

    My husband looks more & more like Santa as time goes on. This fact was finally driven home for him a couple of years ago, when I finally convinced him to start wearing a santa hat.
    We had gone out to breakfast, & as we were leaving, a little boy, maybe 7, called excitedly “Santa!”
    That little boy’s voice still brings happy tears to my eyes. My husband gave him a wink & a smile & happily wears his santa hat with pride now.

  • Michelle Ames said:

    At the time I was mortified – and my parents still have the photo to prove it! We all gathered around the Christmas tree. My dad played ‘Santa’ by handing out the gifts…

    Brother Greg opened up Legos.
    Brother Rob opened up Lincoln Logs.
    I felt my package…it was soft…maybe socks? Nope…training bra! On Christmas morning! Oh my…

    Well…now I laugh about it and remember it in a funny way. I wasn’t laughin then!

    Thanks, Mom!

  • Linda Jeter said:

    My most memorable Christmas was a few years ago when three of my five daughters were still at home…all presents were open and here comes hubby with a Bonsai tree for me..there was a note on the tree asking me if I liked my shiny ornament..well, I looked at the Christmas tree, then back at the Bonsai tree,,about the third time of looking I was ready to give up, then I looked again at the Bonsai tree and there hanging on a branch was the most beautiful ornament,,a brand new Wedding ring..I had lost the diamond in my other wedding ring somehow about a year past..Oh my gosh I was crying, I looked at my daughters they were crying, looked up at hubby he was very teary eyed and I got up and hugged and kissed him oh so gently in front of the girls.. Best Christmas memory for me and all of us…
    Linda J
    [email protected]

  • Stephanie Evans said:

    This Christmas, the funniest moment was, when my 1 year old Grandson was having fun opening presents. And right in the middle he stopped and wanted a corn dog. My daughter made him a corn dog and he would not go back to his presents until he ate the whole thing. (He recently discovered big people food).

  • Marcie said:

    Making donut puffs with leftover pizza dough on x-mas morning. After opening gifts from Santa (of corse)! :)

  • Gayle said:

    It gets hard when the kids grow up and get married, cuz we have to share them with the ‘other’ family on holidays. Fortunately, our entire crew was here for Christmas morning, so after eating our traditional quiche for breakfast, it was on to the presents. It’s been a long time since we were all together for this occasion and it was wonderful!

  • jessicac said:

    I entered a gingerbread house contest for charity one year… it was 4 days of epic baking and candy placement, and a constant sugar high! My house didn’t win, but it was so much fun!

  • Sandy N. said:

    When I was a kid my Grandfather always dressed up as Santa every Christmas Eve. I started to notice that when Santa showed up, Grandpa was gone. I told my Mom and Dad that I thought Grandpa was Santa and that Santa wasn’t real. That year when Santa showed up, I immediately looked for my Grandfather and much to my surprise, there he was! So, in my mind, that made Santa real (at least for a couple more years). I found out later, that was the year that my Grandmother dressed up to throw me off the scent!She couldn’t stand the thought of me not believing in Santa anymore. That is my favorite holiday memory and with both my Grandparents now gone, we talk and laugh about it every year.

  • Dahbou said:

    My most memorable holiday moment was 21 years ago … it was Dec. 15 and my 2nd son was born. He was the highlight of the season and I don’t remember a better Christmas than that one. His older brother was 3 and just loved his new baby brother. Thankfully, the three of us were able to spend this year together again. Now I just have to get across the country to see my new nephew, who was born Dec. 5, 2011!

  • Gloria said:

    A wonderful Christmas I vividly remember was when my friend Bert had a Christmas party at his place. He was an exchange student from the University of North Carolina spending a year in Sevilla. I was a student too, thinking about going to college in the US. Bert bought a tiny artificial tree, no more than 2 ft tall, and at the party he handed everybody colored pencils and construction paper and asked us to create ornaments. There were many levels of expertise among us. Bert’s mom said at one point, “I can’t draw”, which sounded odd to my English-as-a-second-language ears, because she was, in fact, drawing. I distinctly remember the ornament that our friend Marvin created, a little teddy bear, so perfect it looked professional. We also had a big bowl of popcorn, and we strung it into garlands, also a first for me. At the end, that little plastic tree looked beautiful, with its paper ornaments and the popcorn simulating snow, a touch of home for a whole bunch of American kids spending their first Christmas abroad.

  • Linda said:

    Remember when stickers were the thing? Everyone had books to collect them in? I found a book that I wanted so badly! So badly. I ripped through my Christmas morning presents and not there. I had saved my grandmother’s for last because she kept giving me carob treats as a present (ick!) and I didn’t have much hope for that year either. Lo and behold, the sticker book! I was so happy.

  • Amber said:

    Our family dinners are always potluck, i love having everyone together and to share new dishes.

  • Christie said:

    I have so many memorable holiday moments! My favorites from this year were watching our 5 month old daughter as she learned that pulling on wrapping paper would reveal a surprise, and my husband’s joy at seeing how much she plays with the gift he chose for her.

  • steff said:

    when my husband dropped a jar of pepper during christmas.. and everyone couldnt stop sneezing! oy.

  • Traci Funk said:

    My most favorite and memorable family traditions/moments around the holidays is on Christmas Even – both of my children write their letters to Santa and leave out cookies and milk for Santa and carrotts for the reindeer!

  • karen said:

    what wonderful idea….have to get the family together and do this