Tag Archives: christmas

Our Family Christmas Letter – Volume 5

Fa la la la la and welcome to Our Family Christmas Letter #5.

The year of 2017 was the year of discovery.

I discovered that I can’t sleep past 6:00am and that I can no longer sit criss-cross apple sauce. If I do, I feel like my hips are going to crack out of their sockets. Also, I’m pretty sure there is nothing left of my knees. How do I know? It could be the fact that I cannot so much as walk to the end of my driveway without feeling like someone took a baseball bat to my kneecaps. Call it a hunch.

Why is all this happening? I don’t really know but I’m blaming the number 50 because it all went downhill starting on the magical day of April 6. Yes, I am officially middle-aged and it ain’t pretty.

I’ve also discovered that my pits have decided to sweat a river a day. I spent the better part of the second half of 2017 looking for the perfect deodorant. Just so you know, it doesn’t exist. Not even on the men’s shelf at Stop and Shop so don’t bother. Those dress shield things — otherwise known as maxi pads for your armpits — work well enough until one of them pops out of the top of your shirt. That’s a nice look. I highly recommend it.

I had my first colonoscopy which was a real joy. Everyone told me it was nothing. That the prep was the worst. I discovered that was not true and that my friends are all liars.

The worst part of it was vomiting upon waking from my procedure. Anyone who knows me knows I would rather give a speech about quantum physics with centipedes crawling all over me to a room of 12,000 people, than vomit.

Maybe that’s an exaggeration…let’s make it spiders.

Also, I still haven’t figured out how it was possible to throw-up when I hadn’t eaten in nearly 20 hours. One of the many mysteries of the world, I guess. Maybe I’ll discover why in 2018, as that discovery just was not to be so in 2017.

(Note: three polyps were found, so please don’t let the fact that I threw up deter you from having a colonoscopy. It could very well save your life.)

Work for me is going great. It took a few months, but the cobwebs are finally clearing out of my brain. I seem to have grown out of all my old work pants though, so I’ve been wearing the same four pairs.

I plan on fitting back into those too-tight pants this year, but my New Year’s resolution track record is not a good one; therefore, I wouldn’t count on it. I apologize to all my co-workers but I promise I’ll try to wash them as much as possible.

Our dishwasher died this year. So, in addition to not being able to prevent the occurrence of the River Nile from developing in my underarm region, I have become a literal prairie woman by washing my own dishes. My new nickname is Caroline Ingalls. You can call me Carol for short.

Our washer and dryer also kicked the bucket this year, as well as our microwave. There is nothing like having to warm up your leftovers on an open flame. “Carol” seems to be more fitting with every appliance breakdown, don’t you think? And no, I did not hand wash our clothes. I have to draw the line somewhere. Attention co-workers: I just lied to you back there.

As for the other members of the family, they are doing just fine.

Our college age dear daughter has decided when she comes home she is a guest; therefore, expects us to pull out all the stops. I put my foot down at putting out a pitcher of Perrier on her nightstand, though. Poland Springs will have to do.

Other than that, she is doing great. The college debt is building up just like it should be. The best part is spending an evening applying for FAFSA when we don’t get a dime. I find it entertaining to be declined. It makes me feel rich even if for just a moment when in actuality l’m pretty sure if you have at least a house made of cardboard, you are too wealthy for a government handout.

DH is doing well. Nothing much has changed with him. He still likes to park the motorcycle in the living room during the winter season. Even though I tried to explain to him that we are prairie people now and prairie people don’t do those things. He never listens.

He still has his job he loves. Last week, I caught him trying to poke his good eye out with a fork. I’m so glad I stopped him. It’s hard to do the job he loves with only half an eye. If you recall, he lost part of his eyesight last year.

He’s still slim as ever. To all you ladies out there who don’t want a fat husband, cook really bad food. Twenty five years and counting so I am living proof this method works.

Then what’s MY excuse? I love bad food. I’m selfless like that.

I almost forgot to tell you, we finally went on a real vacation! After months of planning, the three of us flew to Turks and Caicos. It rained five days out of six and I contracted something close to Dengue Fever and basically got our money’s worth in toilet paper but it was fun overall.

I’m pretty sure we’re the only people on the planet who come back from the Caribbean without a tan but that’s just how we roll. (Toilet paper + roll = pun — see what I did there?)

That’s it in a nutshell. I would write a recap, but I need to go help pick up the Christmas Tree that just fell in our living room.

Discovery #9: If it seems like the old plastic Christmas tree stand that is leaking, leans to one side, and that you’ve had since the beginning of time is not going to hold a hundred pound tree, it probably won’t.

Why is there a live tree in the living room anyway? Yet another discovery hopefully to come in 2018.

See you all in the New Year…be safe and prosper.

The Day She Stopped Believing In Santa Claus


This time of year inevitably brings about the curiosity from children on the cusp of what to think of Santa. You can see it in their eyes. They aren’t quite sure what to do. Their brains start to wonder how it’s possible but yet they are afraid of the answer.

This is how it went down in my house when The Kid was on that very cusp about 7 years ago:

Her: Mom, is there a Santa Claus?

Me: Yes honey, of course there is.

Her: Mom, please. I’m asking you to tell me the truth.

Me: Well, what do YOU think?

Her: Mom, just tell me. Please…or I’m screwed.

Did our 9 year old just say “screwed?” Yes, yes she did.

After DH reprimanded her for using bad language and after I stopped laughing because come on, that was funny, I needed to know what she meant. There are a few different meanings to “screwed” and although I knew she wasn’t referring to the one “screwed” that I automatically think of because I have a dirty mind, I needed clarification.

Me: What do you mean by “screwed” exactly?

Her: Well, what am I going to tell my children? How will I know if there is a Santa or not if you don’t tell me the truth?

And that’s how it happened. It is known as “the night The Kid stopped believing in Santa” around here and it saddened me. A little.

There was a part of me that was happy the facade was over. No more lying to my kid’s face. No more having this big, fat lie of a man taking credit for all of my hard work. No more trying desperately not to slip up, hoping some loud-mouthed brat on the school bus wouldn’t break her heart.

But it was sad because it was the end of her innocence. She had stopped believing in the Tooth Fairy the year before and I’m not even sure she really ever understood the whole Easter Bunny thing. I’m not even sure I understood the whole Easter Bunny thing. That right there is just plain creepy. If I saw a large, life-sized rabbit hiding eggs in my house, I’d probably stab him with a kitchen knife.

Because a fat man in a red suit coming out of my flue like a raccoon who went into the wrong hole is any less creepy. The only reason I wouldn’t stab him with a kitchen knife is because he is bearing gifts. Eggs? I don’t need to elaborate.

But I digress.

I knew it was coming. I’m pretty sure she was a little apprehensive the prior year. I could sense it. I’m guessing she was afraid to say she didn’t believe anymore for fear of receiving fewer presents. Little did she know it really wouldn’t have made a difference. One of the perks of being an only child? Maybe.

Even though she doesn’t believe in Santa anymore, she believes. She believes in the magic. The love and the generosity. The giving and of course, the receiving. And now that she’s driving? The crowds and the traffic.

Santa may be a lie, but only in that there is no fat man in a red suit flying all over the world delivering toys (damn, kids are gullible). But the spirit of Santa, what he stands for, is alive and kicking.

Merry Christmas my friends. Let the spirit of Santa be within you. And if your kids hate you for lying to them for the past 9 years? Eh. They are going to probably hate you in about 4 years anyway, so get used to it.


A Letter to Santa From Me

merry christmas

Dear Santa,

I know you probably don’t exist. I figured it out when I was about 10 years old and you left a thank you note for the cookies. Your writing and my mom’s writing was oddly similar. I have to tell you that I was pretty crushed. How could I have been duped all those years?

Anyway, when I see you in the mall every year, I long for those days again. I even want to go  and sit on your lap, but I’m afraid all of the other little kiddies and their mommies will make fun of me and I’m so hormonal lately. I’m sure I would run from the scene crying like my 7 year old self on the playground after Tommy Dumfarht made fun of my last name.

So, if you do exist and you do happen to get this letter, this is what I want. Because when I told my husband my wishes, he laughed. I don’t really understand why. I don’t see a thing funny about it. Do you?

  1. One trip to Tahiti please. Maybe a one way ticket? My family can visit whenever they want.
  2. For the love of God, a lift for everything that has drooped, sagged or moved more than 2 inches toward the south. But it has to be done by some of your magic. I don’t want surgery because it scares me. Am I asking for too much? Get over it, big guy. I’ve seen what you can do.
  3. 25 cases of red wine. Because 24 cases aren’t enough. And that stuff seems to just disappear. It’s the oddest thing.
  4. Why do I have to repeat this…I need a maid, a cook, a laundress and a chauffeur. I mean,  come on. This has been on my list for what? 20 years? I’m still waiting. Honestly. What is your problem?
  5. I would like to pee straight. I don’t know why, but it seems that I have turned into a shower head down there. I don’t get it. “Please be neat and wipe the seat” is very time consuming. Who even came up with that expression? It’s annoying and makes me feel bad if I don’t follow the rules.
  6. On your way out, I’d very much appreciate it if you put away all of my Christmas decorations. Just put them down in the basement. Far left corner. After you leave the presents, of course. Those presents really don’t need a tree. What is a tree doing in the living room anyway?

That just about sums it up. I’ll be waiting. Listening to the hoofs of your eight tiny reindeer on my housetop. Actually, if I hear that shit, I might actually crap my pants. So would you mind being quiet about it? Thank you and Merry Christmas.

Stop the Holiday Insanity Ride, I Wanna Get Off

I know I've used this in a past post, but it just perfectly describes how insane I feel right about now.

I know I’ve used this in a past post, but it just says it all.  It’s a re-gift.  This photo.  In honor of The Holidays.  Because if I re-gifted more often, perhaps I wouldn’t feel so nuts.

I decided that I have a love/hate relationship with Christmas.  I mean, I don’t want to sound like a Scrooge but come on.  The pressure to do all the crap that needs to get done in a short period of time is friggin’ ridiculous.  Unfortunately, I am not a Type A personality like my mother.  She had her gifts bought and wrapped by August.  I kid you not.  But the thought of having my shit together so early kind of scares me.  I wouldn’t even know who I was.  Besides, with the condition of my memory lately, I probably would forget where I put half of it come December.

I started my day in a state of total disbelief and panic.  “Holy Freaking Shit,” I said to myself.  “How the hell am I going to get it all done?”  Piss poor planning does not necessarily blah blah blah.  I don’t want to hear it.  I know most of you feel the same way.  Be honest.  If you don’t, then you are June Freaking Cleaver and deserve a medal.

Just so you know, I had a full-out temper tantrum this morning.  That included tears, foot stomping and hair pulling (yes, I pulled my own hair.  Throwing dishes would have been a good option, but I happen to like my dishes so my follicles got abused instead).  It was just too much for me.  I melted down.  I’m not proud.

So here I am, writing this post when I should be putting stamps on my Christmas cards. Christmas cards that I don’t even like because the kid wanted a family picture this year.   My neck looks like a side of beef, my boobs are a little floppy and I’m doing that stupid hand on hip pose that I hate but completely understand why it’s done because not all 46 year old women can get away with sleeveless dresses so it’s a great trick at alleviating arm fat (that thought deserved a run-on sentence…sorry grammar freaks, including me).  I could have orchestrated a new photo shoot.  But that requires time.  And I felt like doing that like I feel like cleaning dog crap off the bottom of my shoes.  So a picture that was taken in May was the winner based on the fact that we are smiling AND all eyes are open.  That right there is a miracle…and a keeper.

christmas card photo

My eyes ARE open even though they look like slits.  I thank Mother Freaking Nature for that.

I think I need Holiday Hell Counseling.  Seriously.  I don’t care what, but we need to start a chapter somewhere.  But, until we can get HH Anonymous going, this is my therapy.  Thanks for listening.  Bah Humbug.  I mean, Merry Christmas!

Where Are You Fisher Price?


I blame my mother for my Christmas obsession.  What is my Christmas obsession, you ask?  The ridiculous problem of not knowing when to stop purchasing gifts for Miss Spoiled Pants (aka The Kid).  I know.  I know.  There are children starving, poor and living in the streets all around the world.  I am aware of that.  And for the record, I also buy gifts for underprivileged families every Christmas.  And contribute to charities throughout the year.  So it makes me feel just a little better about my obsession.  But just a little.

Here is why I blame my mother:  When I was a kid, we couldn’t even walk into our living room from the gifts spilling out from under the tree.  Granted there were 3 of us and our living room was about the size of a shoebox.  But still.  We couldn’t walk into the room.  That right there is a child’s best dream come true.

My parents did not have a lot of money in the early years.  Mother started recycling before it was in fashion.  Purchasing used toys from the local Salvation Army.  Before you get all germaphobe on me, she cleaned them thoroughly with Clorox.  She swears.

And then later on, when there was a double income, I received gifts that would stack up practically to the ceiling.  This would happen until my last Christmas at home.  It was pretty awesome.  Until I became a mother.  What is the expression?  Nature or Nurture?  I think this had to do with the latter.  And I can’t seem to stop.

When The Kid was little — and when I say “little” I mean under the age of 10 — she was incredibly easy to buy for.  Or should I say CHEAP to buy for.  Because anyone who gives you a list a mile long is easy to buy for.  I could buy 100 bucks worth of Fisher Price shit, throw it under the tree and make it look like she hit the mother lode.

When she got into the early double digits, it started getting a little more expensive.  A little.  She wanted stuffed animals and Jonas Brother’s CDs.  Along with an i-Pod. Still, it did not pose much of a problem.  Totally manageable.

Now?  Good Lord.  I’m on the verge of robbing a bank.  One weekly paycheck from My Retail Job barely covers one single item on this kid’s list.  Just so you know, she does not get this from me.  I am a bare-bones kinda gal.  The cheaper, the better.  I can get 5 outfits with $100.  Even if it all falls apart after 2 washes.

DH is not completely onboard with the over the top Christmases.  I basically have to sneak the purchases into the house.  Sometimes hiding them in the trunk or at a friend’s house for days, even weeks, until the right moment hits.  Pulling the “oh that?  I bought that in August when there was a giant sale at K-Mart” card.  Totally works.  I think.  I also feel the need to fulfill most everything on her list.  I don’t understand it.  I never had half the shit she gets.  To make matters worse, she won’t share her closet with me.  But that is a subject for a different blog.

All I can say is that she should count her lucky stars she is an only child.  Because I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t be getting almost everything on her list if she weren’t.  I’m pretty sure.  Well, I think I’m pretty sure.  There is no way of knowing now, is there?

I just really miss Mr. Price, Melissa and Doug.  They were more my speed.  They have been replaced by Apple, Jack Wills and North Face.  North Face.  She doesn’t even ski.  I’m really confused.  Oh well.  Three words that don’t seem to be a part of my vocabulary this time of year:  “Just Say No.”  I think I need help.  In the meantime, if you need some tips on how to hide purchases, just inbox me.

Fa La La La What???

As part of my Christmas present this year, my dad transferred all of our family video from when the kid was born to present onto DVD.  What a great gift. I couldn’t wait to start watching them.

So, on Christmas morning after we opened our gifts and had our traditional Christmas breakfast, DH, the kid, my parents, my mother-in-law and I sat down to watch a couple of them before the day got too crazy.  It was a very relaxing morning and I was relishing every moment.  Until we got about 12 minutes into Video #3.

Let me set the stage:  It’s Christmas 2000.  The kid is 2 1/2 years old.  She is coming down the stairs and my husband is capturing her reaction to all the presents Santa left for her under the tree.  Priceless.

Allow me to fast forward…

ME: Ok, let’s open the last one over here (crackling of ripping paper).  Do you know what it is?

KID: Yeah!

ME:  It’s your very own vanity table so that when mommy is putting on her makeup you can put on yours!  See, it’s got a curling iron, a blow job, make up, a mirror that lights up….

Wait a minute, back up the truck.  Did I say…”Blow JOB???”  Yup, leave it to me to turn our G-Rated family video into an X-Rated one.  All I wanted to do was run into the middle of the road and pray for an 18 wheeler to put me out of my misery.

The funny part is, DH even laughed in the video and told me what I said.  I completely denied it.  His response was that he had it on video.  Quite unfortunate for me, I never checked.

What did I learn from this?  Don’t allow extended family to watch old video without pre-screening them first.  I found out the hard way…