Strike a Pose

Todays the last day of our annual family reunion weekend. Everyone comes; Aunt Janey and Uncle Bob from Fairhope, Alabama; Cousins Willa and Geena from San Fran; the Grans from Long Boat Key; etc. All 75+ of us spend time catching up, barbuquein’ and pot luckin’, playing football at the park and chowin' down on ice cream at the beach. But my favorite moment of all is this moment right here. The Picture moment.

At the end of every reunion we all get together on the bleachers at the nearby track and soccer field to take a massive family photo. But this isn’t the typical family photo. How could it be with so many people, most of them totally crazy. We don’t all sit proper and smile simultaneously – no, that’s definitely too much to ask. Instead we set up the tripod, Uncle Martin lines up the shot and the ten second timer, he clicks the shutter and runs to his spot, and when the light begins to blink furiously, he shouts “strike a pose!” and we all do whatever wacky thing suits our fancy.

The resulting picture is a true representation of my family. The bizarre faces, the fighting siblings, the crying baby, the laughing aunts and uncles, the content grandmas and my funky grandpa. Ever year it’s different and new – as people age and grow, change and change again – and yet every year it memorializes the same feeling: the feeling of home.

Photo credit: Greg Strock