I always have good intentions when it comes to Christmas cards. I mean, I have four gorgeous, photogenic children, three adorable dogs and a kitten to place beside them on the hearth, with the obligatory Christmas tree and stockings hung behind. I should clearly be sending out the best Christmas cards. But that's not how things work out for me. It's not my fault, though. It's the rapidly rising standards of the cards arriving in my mailbox. They're oppressing me.

  1. Y'all need to stop upping the ante.

    Lately, I have been receiving cards in the mail that look like they're from England's royal family. Is your house actually that perfect? Did you hire a professional photographer? Because I feel that is kind of cheating. I want you to think hard about what this does to the rest of us. You are placing undue pressure on me, and that is not the spirit of Christmas.

  2. Where are you getting this matching clothing?

    I have three daughters and one son, who is the youngest. The matching Christmas clothing is not really an easy thing to do when your oldest is 15 and your youngest eight. The 15-year-old wears adult sizes! Nobody makes matching dresses for these girls anymore when they wear adult sizes! Also, both the 15- and 12-year-olds have decided to develop STYLE. Like, their own styles. Not mine. They don't want to wear Old Navy snowflake t-shirts anymore. The oldest only wears black and that is not a nice holiday color unless you are in mourning. If you're making the matching clothing yourself, go ahead and unfriend me on Facebook. I don't need that kind of negativity in my life.

  3. Is that your real Christmas tree or did you go to a fancy department store to take pictures?

    Did you actually go to school to learn Tree Decorating or am I missing an important genetic trait? I am examining the edges of your pictures for signs of shopping bags or stranger's legs walking past, because you must be in Macy's, right? Those ornaments don't look plastic, even though you have twin toddlers. What sorcery is this?

  4. How did you make your daughter's hair look like that?

    You learned Tree Decorating and The Art of Curly Updos at yourschool?

  5. I don't know how to contour my face or wing my eyeliner.

    Judging by the cards I receive, this appears to be a new holiday necessity. I can't even do a decent job of putting eyeliner on the normal way and I don't even know what is required for face contouring -- is that even the proper term?

  6. How did you get your pets and children to look at the camera at the same time?

    Seriously, are they hypnotized? But then how are they smiling perfectly? Did you drug your dog and tie him upright? Did you sell your soul to the devil for this one picture? WHAT CAN I DO TO BE ADEQUATE COMPARED TO YOU?

  7. Did you have to bribe your husband to wear that argyle sweater with a checkered button-down underneath?

    Mine is in sloth mode and won't wear anything but a hoodie!

In short, you will not be getting a Christmas card from me this year because my family is too busy to be all unstained and clean at the same time, too large and too varied in age to find matching clothing and too abnormal to all look at the camera at the same time. I am too old to know how to follow the new makeup trends, my ten-year-old daughter looks like the kitten slept in her hair last night, the black-wearing 15-year-old thinks smiling is uncool and pouting lips are in, and my local Macy's wouldn't let us use their tree for an hour. Merry Christmas, and don't forget to unfriend me if you made those sparkly dresses.


Sarah Broussard Weaver lives in Oregon with four kids, a husband, three dogs, a cat, a hedgehog and some fish. It's actually insane and she can't even think most of the time, but she loves them all anyway.