What do you think of Christmas Newsletters?
I'm not a big fan of the annual Christmas newsletter.
We've all received one of these letters at one time or another. You know the type — the happy letter full of wonderful news letting family and friends know what happened in the lives of the wonderful family during the wonderful year.
Of course, I've received some decent letters over the years, but others are filled with shameless bragging: The husband got a big promotion and a big raise. The wife also is doing a bang-up job at work and travels to exotic locations on business trips. They just bought a lovely summer beach house with all the dough they're raking in. The son is getting all A's, is the shining star of the football team, and in his spare time takes piano lessons and is in the French club, debate club and leader of a group that helps non-wonderful students with academic and personal problems.
The daughter also gets all A's, is the head cheerleader, takes tap, ballet and swing lessons, volunteers weekly at the homeless shelter and received a national Who's Who award for all-around wonderfulness.
The family also enjoyed a wonderful three-week vacation, where they went skiing and had a wonderful time sipping hot cocoa in front of the fireplace in their wonderful 10-room chalet.
Even the family dog, a purebred of course, is wonderful. He placed first in obedience class, visits old people in nursing homes and saves drowning children from neighborhood swimming pools.
So, in honor of this annual tradition, I thought I'd pen one of my own.
Dear Friends and Family:
Well, I've been at the newspaper full-time for just over a year now. I like the work, but the rest of my life went downhill. I've gained five pounds because I can't find the time to exercise or do yoga much any more, and my healthy diet has bit the dust as I grab bad-for-you food out of vending machines. I've got four new wrinkles, the old ones are deeper and my hair is grayer.
Since I work nights, I don't see The Boss four days out of the week, but since we've been married 16 years that's actually a blessing. We are happy to report we now annoy each other less.
The Boss is stressed by work and counts the hours until he can retire and sit around the house doing nothing other than work the remote.
The dogs are happy they're not alone too long between my leaving for work and The Boss coming home, but get antsy because they haven't been taken for a long walk lately.
I tried to bring in a stray cat, but Tarzan and Catfish attacked it merciliessly, so I had to find her a new home. We had a few dog and cat fights that drew blood, but nothing serious enough to require an expensive trip to the vet.
The house is dusty, the closets cluttered, and the home-improvement projects still aren't finished because The Boss prefers staying in his garage fixing up old cars and dreaming of retirement. Heck, we've lived for two years without gutters on the apartment addition, so what's a few more?
My mother, now 76, is doing fine and still enjoys her favorite hobby, complaining about my sister, with whom she lives. I call her every day for a report on the latest worry, crisis or umbrage at what my sister did or didn't do. She often says she'd love to go to an assisted-living facility, but when sis and I offer to sell our blood or unneeded organs to help pay for it, she finds a reason why she can't move.
Nobody won any awards, got promoted or got a raise. In fact, we are both totally unappreciated.
And for the sixth year in a row, we haven't gone anywhere for vacation because I have yet to find a replacement for my pet sitter who stayed at our house to watch our babies.
We didn't do anything special for any holiday, because I work on Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year's Day and all the rest.
But our lives are truly wonderful because we have pets. Pets love us no matter what we look like, what we do, or what we earn. Plus, they are cheaper than a psychiatrist and always make you feel wonderful at the end of a not-so-wonderful day. And since they can't read, they are never bothered by Christmas newsletters.
Picture above is Peanut with one of his new Christmas balls his Auntie Stacy got for him. He has lots of balls, but he LOVES getting new ones. Since he got his presents, he carries one or the other of the new ones with him everywhere he goes, even when he goes outside to do his business.
posted by Sandy at 12/26/2007 10:42:00 AM