KELLY BROWN Mum’s The Word...Smile for the camera please – but without the ‘cheese’ grin

It is getting harder and harder to capture that picture-perfect family moment.

Actually it is hard enough just getting a picture of my son looking at the camera with a nice smile. Why? Because he is well and truly in the ‘cheese’ phase!

Now when your kids are tiny you can spend hours taking picture after picture of your little one to get that perfect image for you to share with friends and family. Thanks to the world of digital cameras it really doesn’t matter how many pictures you take because you can just delete the rubbish ones and keep the best.

As your baby lies down or sits there you can manoeuvre to different angles, faff about with lighting and basically spend ages creating that ‘spontaneous’ shot. Of course this does come with the downside of having 300 pictures of your baby and struggling to choose which ones to print out.

But these days I seem to have the opposite problem – not enough pictures of my son growing up.

First problem – two-year-olds do not stay still and look at the camera. Second problem – when he does stay still and pose, he is mid-sentence, fidgeting or has that over-the-top ‘cheese’ grin on his cheeky little face. Natural smiles, I fear, will not come naturally for some time.

This morning I spent a good hour trying to take new pictures of him while he was playing with his cars. I have some lovely ‘action’ shots, but out of the 40 or so pictures of him actually looking and smiling at the camera, I think only about three are any good.

Also, alerting a little boy to the presence of a camera invites problem number three – the ‘let me take a picture’ element. So added to piles of slightly dodgy pictures I have to delete later are some of his cars and garage.

Thankfully a reasonably-priced professional photographer was at his nursery recently and we have a heap of amazing images which are already adorning our wall. Just how do they do it?

** On balance, a very relaxing way to wait

Monday will be another milestone in my baby wait. My last exercise class.

Not that you can call body balance energetic.

It is nice and relaxing and makes me feel like I am doing something other than sitting on a sofa, even if I am completely unable to stretch beyond my shins!