My modern family

Confining, rattly beach chairs, globs of gloopy sunscreen, a football, a bible, five Igloo coolers, and a stack of Vanity Fair magazines, form a mini mountain in the back bed of the Tundra, that struggles not to collapse as it supports my wholly, utterly, altogether, downright Modern Family.

My family happens to be about as strange as the Brady bunch.

Times ten.

You see, my Grandpa married the mom of my mom’s long time best friend, just a few years ago. But that’s not even the strangest part…

“Ally Joe! Catch!” said Joey Al.
“Joey Al! Think fast!” said Ally Joe.
“Boys, God would be very pleased if you help an oldie like me put up an umbrella,” said sweet Aunt Betty.

My great uncles, Uncle Alfred Joseph and Uncle Joseph Alfred, played for the Giants football team and the Yankees. And my great aunt Betty, believe it or not, is the Head Nun of America. She’s always integrating God into every sentence she says.

“Skeeze, Timmy, Ash, Bartholomew, Margaret, and Drew, we’re taking a family picture! Kids!” Marme, my grandma orders.

“Lauren, Reed Andrew! Libby, Amanda! Matilde, Colleen, Katherine! Jake, Jane, and Kelley! Picture time!!”

1, 2, 3, “Picklepus!” everyone screams in unison. We scream Picklepus because that’s my grandma’s nickname.

Anyway, my dad is the youngest of six and crazy enough it is girl boy order. So as you can imagine I have a bucketload of cousins. There are 11 and guess what?

They. Are. All. Gingers.
Except for me.

Red-heads may be going extinct, but not in my family. Every family photo we take looks like a sea of tomato sauce, with one meatball plopped in the middle. Me. Now imagine that picture in your head and on top of that everyone is screaming Picklepus… yes, you can be uncomfortable.

But at the end of the day, when everything gets compressed, squashed, and flattened, with the extra sand and rocks we’ve accumulated like lint throughout the day, back into the truck. We had an unbelievable time and are lucky to have more people to share the memories with… even though we most-likely forgot someone at the beach…