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22 Days Until Christmas……Christmas Letter Etiquette

Posted by Melissa Schmalenberger on December 3, 2010 in Family, Holidays, Moms |

Every year I write a letter, this year with the idea of simplifying I thought I would skip it.  (Plus I post my daily happenings on facebook and if you really wanted to know what I was up to you could find me there and read about me and the kids until you are ready to puke.)  When I mentioned to my family I thought we should skip it this year, my oldest was shocked and said “I love reading how great I am in those letters”.  He is right, he is great and why shouldn’t we share it with the world! 

This led me down another path, the etiquette of the Christmas letter, and here are some tips that I thought could help you with the letter writing task.

  • Only send it to your friends and family who don’t live in your town.  If you need an update in letter form from me and we live in the same town, we aren’t that good of friends.
  • Do not write it from the perspective of your pet….that is just creepy.
  • Do not make me solve a crossword puzzle to find out your news….that is too much work for me to do.
  • Do not use iambic pentameter and set your card to a beat.  I will have flashbacks to college and break into a sweat.  How about a nice Haiku?
  • Do not put un-flattering pictures of your children in the letter and card.  The scary pictures of your kids scare me and make me have nightmares.
  • Do not tell me about the fabulous places you visited but “Ralph puked the whole time”.  I hope that was not the highlight of your vacation!
  • Do not include great detail about your illness that involves mucus or bowel functions.
  • Do not tell me your kids 1st place finishes in every activity they ever were in for the year.  Simply say “Pedro likes swimming and excels in the back stroke”.  Do not say “Samson improved his butterfly time by .07 seconds this year as well as took 1st place in all seven of his competitions.”  We are looking for the highlights, not the details.
  • Do not talk about your pets more than your children (this one is to my parents), cause that hurts our feelings and we already know how much you love your pets without it being seen by the whole world.
  • Do put some sort of handwritten message on the bottom and personalize each letter.  Show your friends and family that you care by saying, “I was so happy when I heard that  Sarah got that dream job she wanted”

Please take my list in good spirit.  I do have proof of every “Do not” listed.  The same family wins the worst Christmas letter award that I give out every year, but each year I love reading it and can’t put it down…..kind of like a Stephen King novel and watching a train wreck all condensed in one page.

To Joyful, Simplified Living,

MS. Simplicity

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