Some of you may know that my family has been working with Today’s Parent for a few years now as one of their toy testing families. It’s been an amazing job and I say job because it is work. If you’re interested, I wrote a blog post about what’s involved with testing toys. Maybe you want to apply to be a toy testing family too.
Well testing for this year has come to an end but the final list of toys wouldn’t be published until the November issue of Today’s Parent (don’t worry, when it gets closer I’ll be reminding you to pick it up).
But this year we had a surprise request. Along with the list of top toy picks the magazine wants to include some information on the toy testing process and they asked if they could take pictures of me and the kids ‘testing’ the toys (it’s to accompany an article they’ve asked me to write).
So yesterday was photo day. If you’ve been following me on twitter, you’ll recall a few tweets about trying to clean (and keep clean) my house this week until the photo shoot. That’s a task in itself with three kids at home. It almost got to the point where the kids weren’t allowed downstairs and then I realized I had to feed them. But we made it, house and kids intact.
The photographer arrived at 2 p.m. and scoped out the main floor of the house for the best lighting. That gave the kids time to change (turns out not many people in Canada wear shorts in November so they couldn’t be in shorts for the photo). Into the fall back to school close they went.
The kids were so excited, they were hyper and all talking at once but the photographer was great (it helps that he has a three year old son). We took pictures playing with toys at the table in the dining room. The photographer even took some crazy face pictures to let the kids get it out of their system. Then we moved into the living room to use toys there. After a short meltdown from my son we took a quick snack break while the photographer scoped outside.
We moved outside for a few group shots (with fall jackets on of course). I’m not a hot person but I was starting to sweat in the sun. After two-hours the shoot was over. Funny a million shots and you know they’re only going to pick one. There may have been a few small incidences where I had to speak to my kids about behaviour, but all said and done they were amazing, especially about listening to the photographer. And the photographer was very patient.
Overall it was a great experience. We usually look forward to the November Toy Issue of Today’s Parent to see what toys made the list, if any of them were our favourites and if the kids were quoted. But this year we have even more to look forward to. Can’t wait!