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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Family Portrait



This picture was taken this weekend at Janine's homecoming. It was one of those rare weekends where my entire family is in one place at the same time. Everyone; sisters, brothers-in-law, nephews - the Redds in all their glory, and slight berserkness.

I think this picture captures our family perfectly. If you don't agree, or don't know enough to either agree or disagree, let me tell you the back story to how this photo came to be.

It was the morning before Janine's homecoming. We had a bunch of family over before church for lunch. All the adults stood around and talked about law school, and Russian art and intelligent things, and the kids ran around the backyard with swords. It was great, and a pretty typical get together of the Redds.

Then, someone said something about getting a photo of me with my twin cousin, Monica. We dug out her camera, and my camera, and took pictures. That was all it took to get people started. People wanted to take pictures with Janine, with Mom, with everything. Before we knew what was happening, Grannie was commanding the hoards of people in different directions so she could get a picture of "Karyn and her girls," aka - my mom, my four sisters, and me.

Immediately, every camera in the vicinity was yanked out and cousins and brothers-in-law were engaged to use them. Then we thought of something - it was hardly fair to leave one of Mom's kids out of the shot because he was a boy, so Peter was brought into the picture. Then it just seemed to make sense to take one with Dad in it as well. If we include one boy, we may as well include the other.

Now here's the interesting bit; the idea for the photo shoot came up at 12:30. Church starts at 1. There was a lot of us there, so Monica, Peter, Jeff Redd and I were supposed to be leaving to save seats for family and any lonely friends who should show up (we ended up taking three pews to seat our hoard).

But Grannie wanted her picture. We were in a hurry. Emily had disappeared as she's just started potty training Isaac. The Thompsons were packing up to leave right after sacrament meeting, and Ben and Brigham were not pleased to change out of their pajamas into their Sunday clothes. Janine was getting the things for her talk together. Bedlam had broken out in the Redd house and people were still trying to get pictures. Katey was chasing after an irate Ben, Emily was gone, and I was late. Lots of people were yelling, and running around, and then we all turned, smiled and took a family picture.

Looking at this picture just makes me laugh. We're all smiling and trying to look like a Hallmark card, but really, we're all thinking; "I need to leave, we're late!" "Where is Benny's sweater?" "I need to be putting everything in the car," or "I want to drive to church so I can pretend my sister's car is mine and all my friends will think I'm cool now that I'm 16."

So this is my family. Emy getting me to hide her belly by standing in front of her, Janine in the middle of saying something, Jaima, well I don't know what you're doing, but you remind me of Ivy in this picture. And of course, Petey's towering over everyone. There you have it - the Original Redds.

You pay ghastly sums to have a professional photographer for a family portrait, but to me, this picture my brother-in-law snapped with a point on shoot on our way out the door says more then every professional one we've ever taken.