Christmas Letter

Okay, so here's my first draft of the letter that will accompany my still-unsent Christmas cards. (Well, you know, with some editing.)

Dear... You,

I've never written a Christmas Letter before but this year feels like a special year –and one which flew by so quickly that we feel we haven't been in touch with you, our dear friends and family, as much as we'd like. (Because, of course, we haven't. It's hard to fit socializing in with all the therapy we've been needing.) Still, it's a lot of pressure coming up with a letter that encompasses our year without putting everyone to sleep OR making you wildly nauseous at our accomplishments. (Assuming I could think of any accomplishments and not resort to lying exaggerating.)

Jane graduated from Kindergarten and started first grade but she got to keep her beloved teacher, Ms. Walks On Water, who moved up with her. This was a big bonus for us because Ms. WOW, ahem, GETS Jane. She has just the right amount of structure and silliness for the Hurricane. Jane was invited to participate on a gymnastics team, played soccer with her dad as coach (until she fired him), and reluctantly began taking piano lessons, which she WILL take as long as I say so, becauseI'mtheMommythat'swhy. So far, we've only had one trip to the ER with Jane this year.

Ana finished third grade and moved on to fourth. She started taking piano lessons in June and has made remarkable progress —get this, we LOVE to hear her practice! She also discovered Tae Kwan Do and has been taking classes twice a week with one of her best friends. She took up knitting and sewing and whistling incessantly. She apparently exists by eating only bread and a daily multi-vitamin, when I remember to give it to her. Her name still really is spelled with only one "n," which seems to confuse everyone (even some people who really should know better, not that I'm bitter), but she forgives me for naming her something spelled like that. At least, she says she does.

I found out, after 42 years of getting around more or less fine, that my feet were full of deformed bones that should never have been walked on. In March, I had reconstructive surgery which installed three Phillips head screws into my foot. The bad news is that I still haven't fully recovered and I won't get to be a runner anymore. The good news is that if anyone needs a deck screw on short notice, I'm your main woman. Also, I'm now having a series of steroid shots which will keep me out of the Tour de France but shouldn't affect my baseball career one bit. On the work front, I resigned from my position as Editor of Austin Family Magazine in May after discovering that I'm not really programmed to work "part-time." In fact, the very concept escapes me. So, now I'm blogging with a ridiculous amount of enthusiasm at and my children are still totally neglected.

Coop managed to con Santa into bringing him a plasma television set last Christmas, which led to us (me) buying all new living room furniture just in time to watch the Tour de France in high definition. He trained for the Memorial Day triathlon, as is his tradition, but a weird rainy season forced the cancellation of the event this year so he got to enjoy our annual post-race party for once. Additionally, ten years after he and five other people co-founded [IT Consulting Firm which shall remain nameless], Coop has resigned to accept a position as the CIO of a new company named [National Company which shall also remain nameless.] (CIO stands for Chief Information Officer, and not Chief Intelligence Officer, as I mistakenly told people for a while there. He does not actually work for the CIA.) The new job means that the Coopers will be relocating to Long Island, New York after the first of the year.

I probably should have started this letter with THAT news, huh? But it’s true, the Coopers –two native Texans and two of us who got here as soon as we could-- are packing up the minivan and moving to the Northeast where people will fall out of their chairs laughing every time we say “y’all” or “fixin’ to.” That is if they are speaking to us after we introduce them to Scout. At any rate, after March 1, 2008, our address will be:

[deleted just in case somewhere there is a stalker out there who is trying to find my children and will force me to prove that you can take the girl out of Texas but I really am prepared to disembowel him/her without breaking a sweat no matter where we live. Be forewarned.]

We hope you’ll come visit us in our new digs, and that the New Year brings peace and prosperity to all! [except aforementioned stalker who should just rethink stalking me or MY family because I'm under a lot of stress AND I'm dieting and I can pull certain parts of your anatomay out through your nostrils if you make me mad.]

Much love,
Barb and Co.


I'm sorry you have to go through a move, but we readers will only benefit, I know.
TheOneTrueSue said…
Perfect Christmas letter. Just enough self mockery to make the wonderful accomplishments go down like SUGAH... :>
I'm ALWAYS terrible at keeping in touch with the e-mailless members of my family, so I usually do write a XMAS letter. This year, where I followed the adage, if you can't say something nice, say nothing at all, I just sent everyone a sheet of photos of the kids and my new address.

I hope to have lots to say next year.
Lynn said…
Sitting here, clapping in between keystrokes, cheering silently so as not to wake SheWhoNowDrives.

You have just disproven my theory that there is no such thing as a good Christmas letter [including my own, when I bother to send them].
Lynn said…
Have fun on Long Island (that's how they say it, ON LI, not IN LI). I lived out on the eastern end of the island 15 years ago and the good thing abt the island is that while it WILL get cold, it doesnt get a ton of snow.

and you are only a train ride away from some awesome yarn shops (or so I've heard, I haven't been to any of them yet)
Ei said…
Editing out your address! Pffft! Where's your courage? Your gumption? Oh...hanging on the endtrails of some poor soul who spelled your daughter's name wrong (so glad I live far away from you because now that you mention it, I'll bet I have).

I didn't know how to write a holiday letter in the year of the divorce and subsequent OTHER PROBLEMS so I quit. I just figured they either know, or they don't. If they want to call, they can do that.

I went to my first meeting! Woo hoo.
Tenna Draper said…
well, I'm not the stalker, but

you scare the bejesus outta me!

Stalker, beware.

But you'll be just a hop, skip and jump from me here in Lansing, Michigan....should I worry?
Barb Matijevich said…
It's the dieting. Never cross me when I'm dieting.

Have I mentioned that I HATE diesting?

Maybe I've mentioned that.

LaDonna said…
The letter is fabulous, Barb, but say it with me.....

"It's not a diet, it's a lifestyle change!" :)