Family photos! Not the ones where everyone's at Disneyland and some stranger walking by is coerced into getting an adorable shot of the whole bunch of you in front of Pirates of the Caribbean, seconds before little Madison barfs red slushy all over Pluto's shoes. Those kinds of photos are precious and capture a genuine memory that everyone will laugh about at future family dinners. No, what I have a problem with are those staged pics, where the entire family is dressed up in a white turtleneck and jeans, in formation. And everyone's barefoot -- I suppose because that implies some sort of whimsical, laid-backness of the family unit? Are you familiar with the website Awkward Family Photos? I rest my case.
In my humble opinion, there is no worse decor plastered on the wall of a suburban home than the staged family photo. Oh wait, there is. It's the framed "artsy" picture of your shirtless pregnant self cuddled into your husband's warm and loving embrace. Whyyyyyyy??? Do. You. Do that?? But back to what I was saying. Whatever happened to the days of Sears portraits, where everyone was mismatched and one kid stared off into space while the other one, going through his/her awkward rebellious phase, refused to smile? That is what a real family looks like. Real families don't sit barefoot in trees together wearing the same shirt and doing jazz hands for the camera.
I guess the Sears portraits went out of style along with big hair and monokinis. So my plea is this -- if you do feel the urge to fill up wall space between your front door and the closest bathroom with a staged family photo, at least have a sense of humor about it. Maybe flip off the camera? Definitely include the pets. Wear funny hats? Take any of those suggestions and I will look the other way if you happen to be barefoot while doing them.