We took the kids on Saturday to get their passports in preparation of our Australia trip this summer. I had scouted out the post office a few weeks ago, getting the paperwork and asking exactly what we needed to get their passports. The biggest thing was we needed both parents in person, official birth certificates, not copies, and that we should not sign anything until asked in person. I also learned we could get their passport pictures taken there, which seemed just as good as trying to do it at Costco and be told later it was the wrong size.
I scouted out the Burke post office on a Friday and it was dead. Not so at 11:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning. It was packed. We waited about 40 minutes until our turn. At a certain point, they split out the passport people from the regular post office people. Unfortnately, by 12:10, the kids were luggage. Andy was toast from gymnastics and together they were an unstoppable, whining force. I was so proud. The guy at the desk was taking the whole thing incredibly seriously and was not amused by the kids. Kind of a bummer since there were a dozen families like ours there.
It was time to take the kids back for their pictures, or as Bjorn and I like to call them, their first mug shots. God, they are awful. Just awful. Part of it was they had to have both eyes fully open (no squinting when saying cheese) and looking right at the camera. So after five minutes of each not doing it right, he finally settled on pictures where they look half resigned, half crazed. I love that they'll have to carry them around for five years.
By the end, we were settling up at the counter and I turned around to see Andy lying on the floor with his hands in his pants. Naturally right in front of an entire line of folks waiting to mail packages. Course, he wasn't crying or whining anymore so I think the rest of the patrons prefered it over the former.
The best news is that the passport applications are on their way and we'll have them within four to eight weeks. Jubilee! Bjorn needs a new passport, too, but he just has to get new pictures and mail them it with his old passport and an application. Far easier.