Do you have a system you use to remember everything that has happened during the year in order to put it into your family newsletter?
Signed, Total Recall
For the love of everything that is holy, please DO NOT try to list your year chronologically in your Christmas newsletter. No one will read it and it will simply add to paper and electronic waste.
Use this handy standard format and all of your memories will come rushing back.
- Opening Line – this always needs to include some reference to how fast the year has gone and your surprise at it being time to write this newsletter again. If you have children (and I have never seen a childless person write one of these – they’re too busy with fulfilling careers, exotic travels and varied social lives while the rest of us are telling ourselves over and over that our children compensate for those losses), this is the time to write about how fast they are growing up and how you don’t feel any older but you guess you must be hey?
- The husband report – list his successes on and off the golf course, the amazing promotion he got at work, or the disappointing redundancy (if you include this, you MUST include his positive attitude to life in here) and a gentle gibe at his football watching on television
- The child report – best to break this down by child, adding many photos of achievements
- Your worries about the world – you should say that you are avoiding talking about politics, but then make a statement about the Government/future Government/Government of another country that you saw on CNN and are now an expert on. Finish this with a reference to your religious beliefs phrased in a way that ensures everyone knows that other religions are wrong and that you feel sorry for athiests
- What? Little old me? This is time for you to detail how little time you have for anything other than looking after your husband and children, but follow with a statement about how blessed you are. And of course, how much your Thermomix has changed your life
- Finish – a wish of love and peace and a reference to how much you have to prepare before Christmas – lucky you’ve got that Thermomix!
Tra la, you’re done. Hit SEND.
If you are super creative, you might like to try one of these advanced methods:
- Do the whole thing as a mock dialogue between your family
You: Honey, what should we put in the Christmas newsletter this year?
Hubby: I don’t know, I’m watching football. Anyway, isn’t that months away?
You: (Chuckles) No honey, it’s here already. The year has gone so fast.
Britney: Yes Daddy, haven’t you noticed how grown up I’m becoming?
Whitney: That’s right Daddy. It’s only last month that I got (insert super excellent grade in ballet exams or similar here)
Etc etc ad nauseum ad infinitum
- Hey, why not write it from your family pet’s perspective?
- Recipe for your family’s year – bonus if you can add salty tears in the saccharine mix
- Pretend you are dying – this is particularly good if you can lead with the story of your impending death, write the whole review of what this experience has taught you is REALLY important, and then finish with the terrific news that you’re not dying, but jinkies hasn’t it been the dandiest exercise in perspective that you suggest everyone tries. It will really piss people off but they will read the whole thing if they genuinely think it will be the last one they ever have to read from you
- You could be the Elf on the Shelf (do NOT send me a copy of this)
- Consider whether Santa will be putting your individual family members on the Naughty or Nice list and detail why
No need to worry too much. No one except your Mother and Mother-in-Law will read it all. Your Mother already knows everything you’re putting in there and your Mother-in-Law will just use it to justify her concerns about whether her son married well enough.