Sunday, December 23, 2012

Project MCP: December Challenges

Menorah by Teckelcar
Menorah, a photo by Teckelcar on Flickr.
I had a very hard time with most of December's Challenges, the lone exception being the fifth and final- take a photo representing the number “13″. Of course I haven't done it yet, but I feel far more optimistic about it than the other four challenges.

So what is my issue you may ask. Well the other four are all about Christmas and I kind of chaffed at the emphasis on all things Christmas. Now I admit that we do go to my mom's at Christmas time and enjoy her tree and exchange presents, but it's her holiday, not ours. Instead of the official challenges I did my own spin on each one.

The first challenge was "Capture a photo of a favorite piece of Christmas decor." I substituted Hanukkah for Christmas and took a picture of my favorite menorah. Way back in 2006 I did a whole post on this particular menorah, go over to here to get the whole story.

latkes maker by Teckelcar
latkes maker, a photo by Teckelcar on Flickr.
The second challenge was "Christmas is full of traditions – Take a photo representing the word “tradition.”" This one is pretty much on target for the challenge. I decided to submit two pictures for this particular challenge. The first of the two is the picture of Nate I featured back on the 12th. Latkes are the traditional food during Hanukkah and we traditionally attend our synagogues Hanukkah party and pitch in the latke making. It's a fun picture of Nate in action with far less blur than normal. Nate is normally camera shy and so active that a good number of his pictures are a study in motion blur.

making houses by Teckelcar
making houses, a photo by Teckelcar on Flickr.
The second photo for challenge number two, Tradition, is of Max making his gingerbread house during the last day of school before winter break. It has been a tradition for a number of years that the fifth grade class makes gingerbread house to take back home.

The preparation for the party starts earlier in the week when the parents came to school to glue graham crackers to empty milk cartons. On the big day each child is given a foam tray with a house, an ice cream cone, and a peep snowman. Frosting and a boat load of candy is spread across the tables. The kids have  great time decorating their houses and sneaking in a few bites of candy.

Seventh Night by Teckelcar
Seventh Night, a photo by Teckelcar on Flickr.
The third challenge was "The Christmas spirit – Capture a photo of the Christmas spirit." Again it's all about Christmas. I decided to go the route of "Festival of Lights" as the stand in for the Hanukkah spirit. I love this picture I posted of one of our other menorahs on the seventh night. The tiny candles together shine brightly and, for me at least, symbolize the hope that is Hanukkah. That we will survive and at times triumph against seemingly insurmountable odds.

Keeping the faith is the true light and spirit of Hanukkah.

Which brings us to the penultimate challenge of December, Twas 2 days before Christmas, and all through the house…Snap a photo of your Christmas wish.

Lighting together by Teckelcar
Lighting together, a photo by Teckelcar on Flickr.
Well I don't have any Christmas wishes per say, so I'll just go with my wish that my children continue to love and support each other. I took this picture with my cell phone on December 14th, the penultimate day of Hanukkah (it's kind of neat the way that worked out). There was no squabbling as Nate helped Max with the menorah. The picture is horribly grainy, but the composition and lighting are wonderful.

Hopefully next year, if there is a next year for the Project MCP, will be a little less focused on Christmas. I did have fun with pictures, but I would like the challenges to a bit broader.


Diane said...

At the rate things are going, in just a few years Christmas will be an entirely secular holiday.

Have you considered contacting the organizers of the project and letting them know your concerns? These days, they should be more sensitive to differences in beliefs.

Kind of like my own university...I went to a campus-organized training session a number of years ago that included lunch. A Muslim colleague had to run up to the student cafeteria to grab something to eat when he found out the "light lunch" being served to us was splilt pea soup. :(

Sarah said...

Yes I will be later today. They want feedback for the challenge and I will diplomatically request for a less Christimas themed December. One, possibly two Christmas challenges is fine, but a whole month is excessive.

I had to get over my irkedness first!