Thursday, December 6, 2012

Fucking Christmas Cards

Every year people try to create the perfect Christmas card, displaying their angelic children or how wonderful their lives are. In recent years the trend of sending photo cards has gone to the extreme. To some it is a competition of who has the most artful pictures on the most luxurious paper. To others it's an opportunity to brag about their lives and children in one of those dreaded holiday letters. Gone are the days of simply picking up a cute pack of cards at the drug store and scribbling a quick note then mailing them.

I don't know why, but every year I think it will be so quick and easy to take a snapshot of the minions and slap it on a pre-made design then, voila! Pick them up at Walgreen's and go. That's much easier said than done.

This year's card fiasco began when I decided to throw dresses on the girls and run into the yard for a quick photo shoot. We spend a few minutes brushing hair and applying a few curls for an extra finishing touch. Fifi adds a dab of lip gloss for the perfectly polished pout, then we head outside.

I'm by no stretch of the imagination a photographer, but with my handy DSLR camera and some fancy dresses on the kids, the pictures are usually pretty good. Unless one is sick and every picture features a huge snot string dangling down her nose and the other is grumpy and uncooperative because she doesn't like sitting in the yard with the bugs.

Devil Baby won't look at the camera and Fifi is trying to do her version of the coy cocked-head model smile, which just makes her look like she's having some sort of seizure. When Devil Baby does look towards me for a split second, Fifi is distracted by an invisible flying bug. When Fifi finally flashes her normal gorgeous, glowing smile, Devil Baby throws her head into Fifi's lap and starts sucking her thumb. I get upset, yell profanities ('tis the season), the kids start pouting, I snap some pics of the pouty faces and threaten to put them on the cards, the kids start giggling and finally I capture the perfect giggly, smiley picture reserved for the best Norman Rockwell paintings. Except for the snot string. Damn it!

When I finally have one or two pictures worthy of center stage on my card I peruse the designs at Shutterfly. I create two or ten of my favorite layouts. Then I cannot decide which one I like best. Wiener, of course, does not like any of my selections- we have very different tastes. I flip flop on the designs and can't pick one. Maybe I'll order two or three different layouts. But how to decide who to send which one to? I delay some more and the coupon codes expire. Do I need to spend this much on stupid Christmas cards, I wonder? I throw together some designs on the Walgreen's site, but I love the look of the matte paper instead of the glossy.

Jeezus, you'd think my house would be immaculate as anal retentive as I'm being about fucking Christmas cards that people will glance at for two seconds and toss in the trash. Maybe I'll just scrap the whole concept of sending out Christmas cards. This way I'll have more cash to spend on what's really important this time of year. That's right, vodka. You know me so well...

Some features must be changed to protect the innocent.
 See, I wasn't lying about the snot string.
Now she looks like a bandit zombie with a snot string.

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