Friday, December 10, 2010

The Anti-Newsletter Newsletter

     I have an ongoing love affair with Christmas newsletters.  As in, I love how nicely they burn in my fireplace.  Or I love how I can flip them over and make my grocery list on them, which saves paper and gets me in good with all the environmentally friendly types.
     It was this intense love that first inspired me many years ago to start a tradition of including the anti-newsletter as part of my Christmas card mailing every year.  I’m proud to say I’ve stuck by that tradition.  Most people are familiar with my annual Christmas poem, the one where I rewrite the popular “Twas the Night Before Christmas” tale by incorporating into it the events of our year.  The motivation behind this is quite simple, really:  I want you to READ IT. 
     I know holiday newsletters can be boring.  BO-RING.  You know it, too.  And being the attention hog that I am, I simply cannot sleep at night if I think my precious Christmas message is sitting, unread, in shreds in the bottom of your gerbil cage.  On the contrary, I’d be happiest if you read it, laughed ‘til your cheeks cramped up, then invited all your friends over for a public reading over hot cider and figgy pudding.  I NEED you to read my Christmas message. It’s THAT important.
     But…after ten years of butchering Clement Moore’s well-beloved classic, I fear I’m running out of creative options.  Let’s face it, there are only so many ways to reconfigure the same poem year after year after year and still get good results.  So this year’s anti-newsletter is derived from a popular party game known as “Two truths and a lie.”  This is where players offer up real facts about themselves, along with a made-up “fact,” and others have to guess which is the made-up one.  Fun, right?

     Are you still reading?  STEP AWAY FROM THE GERBIL CAGE!

     In the spirit of that game, and in the hope of entertaining as well as informing, I’ve put together a list of “facts” from the past year of our hum-drum existence.  Some really happened and some, well, not so much.  You get to read and figure it out:

-Hallie beat the snot out of a big scary guy who was trying to grab her and knock her down.
-So did Livvi.
-We got a cat and fell in love with her and she’s now a beloved member of our family.
-We got a cat and got rid of her two weeks later.
-Lucas learned to use the toilet and never misses the bowl.
-Lucas learned to use the toilet.
-Ben is an adorable first grader and is reading like a champ.
-We had our first ever experience of being stuck in the middle of a cattle drive.
-We got a pet hamster and taught her to do chin-ups.
-Our pet hamster learned to use the toilet and never misses the bowl.
-Hal, Liv, and Ben played spring soccer for the first time and thoroughly enjoyed learning the value of sportsmanship and physical fitness.
-Hal, Liv, and Ben played spring soccer and whined non-stop because spring soccer in Utah is just plain cold and miserable.
-Mommy drove through the security gate at BYU (her place of employment) and broke it.
-Mommy got busted in a panty raid at a BYU dorm.
-Lucas fell out of the family van and got his foot run over.
-Lucas finally had surgery to have his webbed feet corrected.
-Hallie got her navel pierced for her 10th birthday
-Hallie got her ears pierced at the mall on her 10th birthday, at which time she turned gray, nearly passed out, and ultimately threw up in front of the cash register.
-Livvi turned eight and was baptized by her uncle Jerry.
-Livvi celebrated her eighth birthday at boarding school.
-Mommy turned 40 and had an awesome white trash bash with awesome friends, complete with mullets and karaoke
-Mommy spent her 40th birthday in a room with padded walls.  Just her, a cupcake, and a candle (oh, if only).
-Ben has finally quit being so clumsy and didn’t trip and injure himself once this year.
-Ben tripped while riding an escalator and ripped his leg open, exposing the bone and making mommy slightly nauseous.
-Lucas and Ben both donated their eyelashes to science.
-Mommy won the “Ms. Mentally Unbalanced Spanish Fork” pageant for the second year in a row.
-Mommy posed as a journalist and attended a press conference in downtown Salt Lake City so she could meet Sheri Dew (and she did).  Don’t know who Sheri Dew is?  Your loss.

So there it is, the “Party Game Edition” of the Reynolds family annual anti-newsletter.  No, I’m not going to tell you which were the truths and which were the lies.

Sorry I’m not sorry.

Lots of love and Merry Christmas to all our family and friends.       ~Jacey, Hallie, Livvi, Ben, and Lucas