We all receive disgustingly cheerful newsletters listing dubious progeny accomplishments this time of year. Here is my contribution to the trend.
The holidays are upon us once again and our family has much for which to be grateful. We are finishing our Christmas shopping and eager to place our gifts under the tree that Husband dragged home yesterday. I’m not sure where he found it, but it smells like he found it at the county landfill. This tree is so scraggly that even Charlie Brown would reject it. The good thing is that the tree was easy to decorate. A single string of lights runs straight up the trunk and ends just below the star that is leaning precipitously to starboard. We were able to toss two strands of tinsel onto the limb stub. Three strands overloaded the stub and made the tree list to port.
Because of the economy, our gifts this year will be simple. Son #1 asked for a package of socks with extra wide tops to warm the lovely ankle bracelet generously given him by the judge. He finds the ankle bracelet attractive, but tends to fuss about the frostbite that forms on his leg. Additionally, he is beginning a trend by inspiring his friends and siblings to achieve his greatness. Already, three of his “buds” are sporting their own ankle bracelets. They cheerfully text each other about how many phone calls they are receiving from the police department when the bracelets set off bells at the station.
Son #2 is aspiring to earn his own bracelet, but so far is receiving only probation. He also wants extra wide-top socks so he will be prepared when his turn for a bracelet is approved. He also requested an ergonomic pillow for study hall naps. Classmates have learned not to criticize his snoring. His nap habit has contributed greatly to the economy as the school nurse’s office needs to keep a large stock of nose bandages.
We are so proud that Daughter #1 is achieving greatness at her high school. She passed chorus this year when the choir director generously agreed to accept her reggae version of “Stairway to Heaven” as an entry in the school’s alma mater contest. Luckily, the academic advisor has decided that she no longer needs to pass such courses as biology, math or history and will be graduating two years early. This daughter was easy to shop for, because she just asked for a year’s supply of black nail polish, black lipstick and green hair dye.
Daughter #2 won honors for selling the most Girl Scout cookies in her troop. She accomplished this by blackmailing her middle school teachers. I’m not sure where she found all that salacious information, but our family had fun reading it. It’s too bad the teachers bought the cookies, because we’d really love to share these stories with the school administrators. No shopping problem here either. This daughter requested a gift card to Slut-Mart.
Husband is doing very well. He was awarded Slacker of the Year award by his company. They said he is doing so well, that if he keeps up the good work, he’ll be given a permanent vacation. Can you imagine how much fun we’ll have with all that spare time?
As for me, I’m learning how to cook without setting of the smoke alarm. It only paged the fire department once this week when I baked brownies for Daughter #2’s Girl Scout party. The girls smiled bravely as they gazed at the brownies and held tissues over their noses to protect the tray of well-done brownies from their cold germs. They showed their generous spirits by tossing the entire tray into the snow to feed the birds.
Happy Holidays to you and your family. We hope our year has been as wonderful as ours.
© by Sharon D. Dillon, December 3, 2015, edited from 2009 version
Chesapeake Bay Writers, Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop, Southern Humorists, National Society of Newspaper Columnists
Author of “Twins! Oh no!,” one of 14 stories in The Book of Mom: Reflections of Motherhood with Love, Hope and Faith, published by booksyoucantrust.com. Available in print and e-format at Amazon.com.