This past Christmas, I flat-out refused to buy my father his 733rd golf shirt and I didn’t care how many times my mother insisted he needed a blue one.
And because last year I bought my mom liquid gold, otherwise known as Obsession (for all of you who were thinking, What? She bought her mom unleaded?), and she uses an average of five drops a month, there was no need to replenish her stockpile this year.
Also, I was under the mandate that was repeated to me ad nauseam through the year, specifically, DON’T BUY US STUFF, WE DON’T NEED STUFF, WE HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF, WE ARE SUFFOCATING UNDER STUFF, which, despite the refusal of my parents to cop to it, stems from the ginormous 3D puzzle of the New York City skyline that I bought them one year because #1) I refused to buy my dad his 689th golf shirt; and #2) I decided to be spontaneous and whimsical, thereby proving to the universe that I have no business being spontaneous or whimsical.
I thought that puzzle was pretty cool and referred to it as “the shiznit of all things puzzle.” Nate referred to it as “that big-ass thing.” My parents referred to it simply as “what the hell was she thinking?”
That poor puzzle has never seen the light of day, presumably because of its unfortunate big-ass-ness.
I guess I should be thankful that I’m allowed to see the light of day.
So anyway, I debated on what to get my parents for Christmas. And my in-laws. They’re another couple who just doesn’t need any more “stuff” in their house which is already a 1200 square foot temple of PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, I WANNA GO TO GRANNY’S, I WANNA SLEEP AT GRANNY’S, I WANNA LIVE AT GRANNY’S in the eyes of the seven grandchildren who run, play and/or drool amuck through it.
And just in case you’re wondering, I’m biologically and legally responsible for only two grandchildren of the non-drooling variety. Thank you, God.
One day, when I ran downstairs into my kitchen and abruptly stopped and simply stood there, staring blankly at my sink, trying in vain to remember what was so important as to cause me to fly down my stairs and leave the cocoon of my office in the first place, it suddenly occurred to me.
I need more memory.
Well, that, and the foregone conclusion that my family believes our kitchen sink is not unlike a clown car in that an endless supply of dishes can be crammed into it for their amusement.
Nevertheless … we all need a better memory and I’m not just talking RAM here, although for the record, I would do the happy dance all over my house if it meant I would never again see a “your system is low on virtual memory, dumbass” message yelling at me through my monitor.
My human memory needs more RAM. I bet yours does too? It’s like I tell What’s-Her-Name there, my youngest, the one with the glasses … time goes by wicked fast. Pretty soon, she’ll be entering high school and following in the footsteps of the other one, her older sister, the one with the long hair who’s constantly breaking bones in her body.
I forget what they were like as babies. As toddlers. As little people who hadn’t yet figured out how to make their mother’s head explode off her body in thirty seconds or less.
I forget what they did five years ago.
I forget what they said five minutes ago.
I forget … wait. What were we talking about?
And if I’m forgetting this stuff, can you imagine how my parents and in-laws are faring? Not to mention my 84 year old aunt, who constantly asks me why I find it necessary to refer to her as “my 84 year old aunt” instead of simply “my aunt,” to which I respond, Ummm, I don’t know, because I can be quite verbose when I choose to be.
I’m old but they’re all, like, ancient. And I’m including my in-laws here because, even though they’re not nearly as old as my parents and my 84 year old aunt, I was always taught never to exclude anyone so, Bill and Sue? If you’re offended … go right ahead and blame my parents. It’s all their fault.
So anyway, if I’m forgetful, can you imagine how they must be? My God, it’s a wonder they remember to stay vertical and blink, right?
Which reminds me, someone call my parents and see if they’re blinking. I’d do it, but I’ve got my hands full trying to remember what I’m doing here.
I decided to give them all some memories for Christmas. And those memories arrived under the tree, looking like this:
A twenty-seven page hardbound book filled with photos of the two non-drooling grandchildren (or nieces, in the case of my 84 year old aunt) who arrived on this planet via my uterus.
It came with a thick, acrylic cover that allows you to see through to the first page of the book. It’s bound with a two inch band of black linen which is all but invisible here because I am an idiot and took these photos against a black backdrop, despite the fact that a dark green Christmas tablecloth was readily available underneath the black backdrop at the time.
Someone remind me next Christmas to dress up as a scarecrow and ask Santa for a brain.
Here’s a view from the top – you can kind of see the black linen on the binding, right?
Can you see it now? How about now?
By the way, when I’m done with this post, I’m applying to Verizon. I think they need some estrogen in black horn-rimmed glasses, don’t you?
I love SharedInk, the company I used for this book. They do top quality work and I used them all the time when I had my custom digital design business. The book is sturdy, the pages are nice and thick, the colors are vibrant.
Just like me!
Except for the vibrant color part.
I included photos of Zoe at various ages:
And Helena at various ages:
As well as some photos of them together at various ages, where they weren’t killing each other or crying or screaming or blah blah blah:
I also threw in some photos of us as a family unit, lest anyone think these two raised themselves because they most certainly did not, and I don’t care what they told you.
I kept it all clean and simple, which is pretty much my calling card in the digital community. Hi digital community! ((waving))
I think my parents and my in-laws and my 84 year old aunt liked the memories and while they may still forget to blink once in awhile, hopefully they won’t forget how beautiful their own DNA can be.
I’m considering doing a book like this every year from now on.
And now that I’ve just typed that out loud, may we all have a moment of silence for the best of intentions.
Because chances are, I won’t remember a bit of this by next week.