Thursday, December 15, 2011

December Greetings!

It's been a bad year for the elderly in our family.
I lost my Grandpa a bit ago.
Sam lost his Grandma this past week. She was the last of our Grandparents.
So we attended another funeral this week.
I guess when I get older, now would be a good time of the year to go--you would escape yet another bitter cold Utah winter, and you could forget about Christmas.


Sam found this picture in a magazine, tore it out, and brought it to me.
He thought he was funny, and "how do these people KNOW you?"

They don't know me.
Yet, they do...

Cause they have me pegged.

See my bathrobe chasing me?
See how angry it is, that I would leave it?
See the scowl on my face?
If she were wearing a track suit, and Uggs, and walking out into a frozen tundra instead of the pleasant looking illustrated yard I would wonder if I was literally being stalked by Bristol-Myers Squibb.

Seasonal Affective Disorder has been kicking my butt.

There was a stretch when I didn't really get out of bed for three days.
I read a lot.
Seasonal Depression feels like you are dead inside, and you don't really care that you are a mere shell of a person.
You don't really want to run out in front of a truck, but then again, if that truck came barreling towards you, you wouldn't move out of the way.
It comes and goes.
I am in a good cycle now.
Sam has banned me from listening to Christmas music, cause he thinks it is "depressing crap" and contributing to my mood.
He also gives me dollars to go tanning.
And brings me Rolo's.
I go through spurts, and right now Rolo's rock my world.
Sorry Big Hunk, you were so last week...

Anyway, on to less depressing stuff!
I am finished with Christmas shopping!
I bought almost everything online this year, and holy cow, I will never go back to shopping, in a store, on my own two feet like a sucker.
Me and my robe have spent a lot of quality time in front of the computer.
Search, click, enter free shipping code, discount code, Sam's credit card number, send!
Then watch for the delivery truck.
Me and my robe love getting packages!
I love this time of year for the good mail alone.
We have been getting Christmas cards from friends and family.
I used to do those.
I got really tired of planning the photo, taking the photo, printing the photo, etc, etc.
My family is the ROT when it comes to stuff like that.
So I cut it out of our seasonal traditions, and no one seemed to care.

This year, however, I figure it has been long enough that people probably wonder how we are faring.

So here you are, Internets.
Our 2011 Family Christmas Letter:
Jayden is our oldest and will be turning 16 this year.
Being the service-oriented child he is, he is always begging us to let him drive us places.
We told him he could drive any time he wanted--when he got his learner's permit.
We told him he needed to get his Eagle first.
For those of you who don't know what an "Eagle" is....lucky.
It is a Boy Scout thing.
Jayden puts as much effort into Scouting as he does the rest of his duties.
I can say that last phrase with full confidence that I will not hurt Jayden's feelings should he read this. Jayden took Spanish, and will therefore not be able to translate it.
But, he is excellent at finger-boarding.
"Flip, snap, snap....flip, snap, snap."
I am sure this is a skill he will be grateful he put many hours of practice in, and honed in his teen years.
He also showers every day for 2.5 hours.
He is about six feet tall.
Has abs like a washboard.
And weighs 130.
He likes to snack on celery and sunflower seeds, even when there are chocolate chip cookies in the house.
Like a damn rabbit.
This is Brendan.
He is 13.
He is our most valuable child.
He is currently in possession of $6000.00 worth of braces.
I take him to the orthodontist every three weeks. They give him new elastics each time. As a result, he has gotten into the habit of not opening his mouth fully to speak.
Like a ventriloquist.
We affectionately call him "mumbler."
"Brendan, what do you want for Christmas?"
I can't understand a word that comes out of that kids' mouth.
He likes to tease his sisters until they cry, and then deny it.
He is plugged into his iPod 24/7, and likes to sneak crappy music onto it.
If there is an obnoxious song on the radio, one you can't change the station fast enough for, rest assured it will be in Brendan's "most played" rotation.
He is also getting stellar grades like his brother.
I would tell you what they are, but I don't want you guys to be all jealous and stuff.
This is Shayne.
His voice changed this year, and now he sounds like James Earl Jones.
He likes to watch Spongebob.
It is weird to see a 12 year old boy, but then hear a man's laugh come out of that boy.
He has the attention span of a gnat.
If you send him on an errand that requires him to leave the room, you can forget about seeing him ever again.
His physical body is comprised solely of peanut butter and honey sandwiches.
That is all he eats.
I make him take a multi-vitamin.
This is Shayne's twin sister, Shianne.
She is also 12, going on 18.
She enjoys drama, pouting, and is very generous in distributing stink-eye.
She wears my shoe size, and my shoes.
She loves when other people are in trouble, and goes out of her way to make sure that they are.
And then she wonders why in the world "everyone hates me!."
She does like to cook, and has learned quickly the power a warm chocolate chip cookie has over an angry mom, or a livid brother.
She did just receive the "student of the month" award in Junior high.
I called to verify.
I was sure they were mistaken.
She is getting curvy, and pretty, and her Dad has cleaned and loaded all the shot-guns.

This is the baby of the family, Mikayla.
She is eight.
She can whistle whole songs through that gap in her teeth.
Her foot odor could be used in a gas chamber.
We buy her new shoes every 2-3 months, because at that point they are toxic.
She loves to craft, and has crafted up the whole house.
Everything she creates is a "treasure" and gets stuffed into nooks and crannies in her bedroom.
Mark my words, that girl is destined to become a star.....on Hoarders.
Sam and I keep getting better looking every year.
We can't help it.
We continually get offers for modeling, which we promptly turn down.
We don't think it is fair to the general public.
I was "Mother of the Year" again, this year.
Sam is so handy, he made me a hand-carved wooden cabinet to house all of my many awards.
In his free time.
He still works two jobs, hits the gym, and thinks that sleep is for the weak.
He eats a lot of protein, protein shakes, protein bars...
They give him a lot of gas, which is always hilarious, and the smell is so very attractive to me.
His hobbies include: metal detecting, crossword puzzles, and golf.
I worry that he will have nothing left to do when he is a retired old man.

I have had a very busy year maintaining my "trophy wife" status.
I can't live without my tweezers, as my chin has given my teen boys a run for their money with it's menopausal whiskers.
My hormonal mood swings keep everyone on their toes!
Who will greet us when we get home from school?
"Nice mom", or "crazy chemical mom?"
No one knows.
Not even me.

To summarize our 2011.
Our family has logged many hours lovingly sitting on the couch together watching trash.
We have spent quality time stuffing ourselves with Chalupas and other Taco Bell dollar menu delights.
We went on a bike ride once, and Shayne's chain fell off.
We almost went on a trip, and then Sam's truck needed $1800.00 to run again.
We inherited three Parakeets. The kids love them. Sam thinks he can talk to them.  I think they are secretly plotting to peck my eyeballs out.
2011 has been mediocre.
Nothing spectacular, and yet, nothing horrible.

Just how we roll.


dstandard said...

ROTFLMAO! Holy S girl - you keep me in stiches! I can SOOOO relate but you put it so well! The teenage boy - been there done that - the girls - girl you haven't seen nothing yet - they aren't teenagers - ask KIM! She was my gem but thank GOD she grew up (well kind of - she still has her moments!) Merry Christmas - hope your is wonderful!

Beth Hallgren said...

My kids ran in here to see what I was laughing about. You described me to a "T"! Moments ago I was in the kitchen yelling at my son like a maniac. Now I'm feeling downright cheerful. Right there with ya ;)

ana roat said...

Dear Shaunte-
This year Hobby Lobby opened one town over from us. I was disappointed so I too bought a new robe and took to the couch for a week. My daughter and son-in-law had a baby girl in June. Paybacks are so sweet-- she's teething and has a cold. Baby Reagan is eating stage 2 food now. My daughter called to report there was something foul happening in her diaper and could I come over to check it out...hummm...our son fell in love with a girl that has a degree and owns her own home. They moved in together this summer. Everyone loves Sarah. I think she's plotting to peck my eyeballs out and steal my new robe. Oh and the dogs took over our bedroom so Pete and I are sleeping in the family room on the dog bed. Other than this it's been a good year.

Wishing you all the best this Christmas season!

ana from Tracy California

7packofbearss said...

Let's go south for the winter. We need a night/week/months out. Extended girls night. Call me, maybe just text me. Too many muscle required in putting the phone to my ear.

callyannc said...

I love reading this! I suffer from depression too so I feel ya! I love your projects on Imaginicse blog! Thanks for sharing! CallyAnn(new follower)
By the way I live in UT too? Wonder if we are close?? Ogden!

Vicki and Don said...

Oh my! I'm a new follower and I already love your blog! I absolutely love the projects you've designed for the Imaginisce blog! TFS!

Luanne said...

HI Shaunte, I love your post homey and humorous and lovely big family.
Thanks for sharing an everyday life with you.

Moni said...

Great pics of your family. You have fab projects over at Imaginisce Blog. Hugs,Moni

jazz's crafts n life said...

hi Shaunte, I'm a new follower from Malaysia, came here through imaginisce, and i'm also a 9 mths old scrapper,a mom to a 2 year old son n only wife to a wonderful husband, i've been new to the blogging system n quite excited about it.
Enjoyed reading about your family, n those are really wonderful pictures.
Checked out your xmas season projects n love your mini album and altered tin, hoping to be the winner for the i-rock take care and enjoy a wonderful new year...


do check out my blog & leave a comment.

csparky61 said...

Oh my , I seldom start laughing so early in the morning. What a great way to start my day. If for some reason you need extra income, I think comedy writing would pan out very nicely.

Sue D said...

I am a new follower to your blog--I came over from Imaginisce--loved your projects esp the altoid tin. Enjoyed reading about your family.

Jean said...

Love your projects on Imaginisce! Had so much fun reading your letter!

Svetlana said...

Merry Christmas!

JuPooh65 said...

Best Christmas letter ever! Funny, entertaining, and best of all truthful! thanks for the laughs. (Although, how do you keep your kids from killing you for publishing this?) Mine would have my hide. :D Maybe you should think about being a writer too!!

Beatrice Lawson said...

Absolutely hilarious. I loved your blog and could not stop reading while my hubby is wondering what on earth can keep me away from shopping!! (now that Xmas is over, mom gets to do some shopping for the house!) I am now following it and hope you'lll have the timke to write daily (I know, unrealistic!!). Have a wonderful 2012!!

Unknown said...

I don't even know you, but your sense of humor matches mine perfectly! LOVED your newsletter! I am a new follower to your blog and I like what I see!

Denise ~ Paper Ponderings said...

I'm a new follower, but must say I totally enjoyed your Christmas letter! I can relate to so much and it brought a smile to my face!

{VICKI} said...

I've come over from Imaginisce
gonna sign up to follow you now

Cassie_lu said...

I am a new follower and your letter is great. Love the honesty of it.

Unknown said...

Sorry to hear about your loss. I love the pics of you and your family.

Sandy said...

Sorry about your loss.

I love your projects on Imaginisce. They were absolutely darling. Congrats on being the guest designer this month.

Anonymous said...

I love that you were open and talked about your depression... I suffer from mild depression off and on in general. Then I had two back to back unplanned surgeries that have had me out of work since November... My husband is disables and doesn't work, so the partial pay is kicking out butt right now. We emptied our savings prior to the unplanned surgeries to purchase a much needed uses car. It just felt like the roof was crashing in... I'm clawing scratching and fighting my way out. It was just refreshing to know that I'm not alone in my struggle!

Shannon Colon, TheIrishScrapper said...

Wow - just found u on Congrats on being a designer for them they have awesome stuff!

scrapperbecka said...

Love it! You are too funny! Thanks for making my day!

Becky Dunham said...

Oh Shaunte! This post makes me smile all over! Well mostly.. I am sorry about the loss of grandparents - that is always difficult. My hubby has 1 grandmother left and she is 101, mine are all gone. At least the kids got to know all 4 of their great-grandmothers, though none of the great-grandpas.

I can certainly identify with Seasonal Affective Disorder - of course, I take a happy pill every night to stave off the mood swings which started when my kids were little - I was always very even tempered before that :)

Your descriptions of your kids are too funny! But they are so cute. My youngest is 14, looks 17 like my middle child - I get asked a lot if they are twins, not because they look alike but because they look the same age. Both girls wear the same bra size as me, in fact I have to keep a close eye on mine or they go missing! Middle daughter does not like the fact that her little sister gets as much if not more attention from the boys and I have to keep a close eye on her friends so they don't make moves on the youngest one. And my husband is prepared to go to prison if anyone gets too close or hurts his girls. For that matter, so is my son who just turned 20 :) He is very protective of his sisters! Sometimes, I want to lock both girls up in their rooms, but then they both pretty much stay there anyway - hardly ever see the youngest. But as your blog title says, this too shall pass, and pretty soon I will be old and gray (against my will) and they will be gone living their own lives. Thanks so much for sharing all your cuteness and your creativity with us!

I am a new follower and I am so glad that Imaginisce sent me over because I feel I have found a kindred spirit - and I live in Utah too :)

rebeccadunham at hotmail dot com

JaniceA said...

I am a new follower and I really enjoyed reading about you and your family. Thank you for sharing!

Chelle said...

I agree Christmas music is depressing..tanning bed helps with SAD. I know. Good luck.

Bonnie B. said...

Searching the internet for ideas for Sharing Time tomorrow(well, today, now)....that is how I found your blog. Loved the CTR posters, btw. So now I have procrastinated Sharing Time even longer so I could peruse your very funny blog. Seriously LOVED your family letter. I myself have never written one because our family is far from the perfect "suzie loves to help mommy and is such a good sister and practices the piano 3 hours a day and...." When I read your letter it was like you were writing about my own kids. It's very refreshing to read about a real family, not a perfect family. Thanks for the laughs and reminding me that I'm not alone.

Unknown said...

Noone is impervious to SAD. The only issue here is how to deal with it. Personally I prefer sweets and walking, here;re some other options: