Using Photos to Help as Writing Prompts- And How I Became a Restaurant Addict

Christine Schrade-Keddy
6 min readAug 18, 2023
Photo by Albert on Unsplash

A great writing prompt to use, when working on your memoir or personal essay, begins with a photograph.

A few years ago, when going through the painful but also beneficial process of cleaning out my childhood home, I had endless opportunities to discover old photos and letters.

Photo by Anne Nygård on Unsplash

My father was employed at Polaroid.

Photo by Michelle on Unsplash

He was in the international marketing department. We had endless Polaroid cameras stored in his home office, along with drawers and drawers full of film. My entire childhood was extensively photographed…..

The photo above shows us getting ready to go into Boston for a special meal, at my Dad’s favorite restaurant, Anthony’s Pier 4. As you can see, I had a special dress for the occasion. I also, apparently, had a matching pocketbook. I wonder…..what in heavens name did I carry in that pocketbook?

I certainly didn’t carry the money to pay for the lobster dinner.

I was always massively excited about going to Anthony’s, because the trip involved all of my favorite things, the Big City (which I already loved, even as a little kid), fancy food, dressing up, and, best of all, uninterrupted attention from my father.

My brother, on the other hand, was made to wear a matching jumpsuit, and obviously not excited about these things. He enjoyed eating only two foods, hot dogs, and plain spaghetti with butter, neither of which was on the menu at Anthony’s Pier 4. He also was not a big fan of sitting still.

Going into Boston for lobster was pretty much my idea of the best day ever. What you also can’t see in this photo is that my Mom’s outfit was a snazzy pantsuit. It was radical, in the 1970s, to go to a fancy restaurant…



Christine Schrade-Keddy

“Not THAT kind of Baptist “ Minister/ Spiritual Memoir/ Sheologian/No Longer Living on a Boat/ Recovery/she-her/ on Instagram