Foto Friday: The Utah Family

So today’s Foto Friday is a little “family tradition” that has become a trademark for a small group of us. Of course I’m talking about my Utah family:

BFF Karaoke 2009 001

I’ve made mentioned of  this little family a few times, but you may be a little confused. So let me provide a little background. Looking at our group of besties, you can tell that we are quite eclectic an random group with many different identities and opinions. So one Saturday night in Soggy Bottom, our little family came into being when we were discussing same-sex marriage and families, etc. By the end of our conversation we eventually had the great idea of moving to Utah, because they allow polygamy and we’d marry one another to help with benefits and whatnot and be able to be near each other for the rest of our lives. Now at the time we thought this was a great idea. Looking back it was pretty silly and completely unrealistic, but it has become a tradition now, that whenever the five of us are together we have a Utah Family photo taken. 🙂 In all honesty, we’re like our own little cast of Friends. So let me introduce you to my Friends-style Utah Family:

Well, you all know me by now (if not, then we need to have a whole other conversation 😉 ). I’ve been told I reflect Monica and Chandler…but you can decide for yourself.

26th Birthday 002
Courtesy of Brian D. Proffer

However, next on our cast list we’ve got our beautiful Phoebe in Amanda. She is always cheerful, sweet and ready for the randomness of life. She also has a super power: the ability to balance wearing tiaras and attending annual showings of Disney on Ice with being one of the BEST health educators Saginaw has ever seen and one of the most responsible friends I have. Her optimism and positivity is absolutely amazing. No matter what was going on with you, she can always put a smile on your face.

If Amanda is our Phoebe then our Joey would definitely have to be Keith. He’s full of life, very go-with-the-flow and always bluntly honest, albeit he can perhaps be a little unfocused at times 😉 , but we love him none the less. He embraces living life and it is absolutely contagious when you’re around him. He’s probably the most intelligent, loyal and dedicated friend and fraternity brother a guy could have. Then add living with him for a year…well let’s just say that was an adventure to say the least.

We now move onto our fabulous Rachel, whom we find in Shawntae. She has become an amazing person, loving and caring selflessly for others like none other. Her own journey of discovery has always been a roller coaster, however, her resilience, persistence and drive has always been an inspiration to me. She’s also one of those amazing people who  can just listen; and I’ll be honest, she’s listened to me and my drama WAY more than any one person should. She takes life by the horns and, man, does she tackle it to the ground. It’s her inner strength that comes out on a daily basis and is what is the most inspirational thing about her.

BFF Karaoke 2011.2 003
Courtesy of Brian D. Proffer

Finally we come to Mr. Steve Mintline. Our resident Ross Gellar. His knowledge base, yet passion for living is the perfect balance. His humor and look on life is the realistic balance to our group and he has always been able to put things into perspective when the rest of us get a little crazy or out-of-hand.He is also the object of Shawntae’s affection and the two of them just celebrated their 1 year anniversary! 🙂

So there you have it. My Utah family. A group of besties who have supported, laughed, cried together and endured years of friendship, love and life.

Until next time!

Peace, Love and Pandas!


Published by Brian

I am currently the Assistant Director of Student Life for Registered Student Organizations and Late-Night Programming at Michigan State University. After earning my B.A. from the University of Michigan-Flint, I entered the Student Affairs profession. After a few years in the field, I returned to school and earned my M.A. in Educational Leadership-Higher Education Student Affairs from Eastern Michigan University. In my spare time I blog about my thoughts and musings on current issues in higher education, student affairs, digital worlds, identity development and general life inspirations and observations. I also volunteer a lot for my fraternity and multiple regional and national professional associations.

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