Grace-filled Holidays

It's hard to believe that it has been almost two full weeks since I last posted. I am not sure if it has more to do with the hustle and bustle of the holidays or the fact that I have been negligent (to the blog Kurt, not the kids....for the most part...) but whatever it may be, I apologize for the absence.

At any rate, some of you may be on the receiving end of the most hideous Christmas Card ever. If you believe you have already received such a card, just wait. Ours is still a'comin'!

You see, since Kurt started his own business almost a year ago (and seeing as how this blog has not yet made us that fortune I had anticipated....seriously, you'd think EVERYONE would want to get their hands on a Graceful Like a Chicken T-Shirt, no?), we have been on a mission of saving money wherever we can. So, last January, after having moved across the country and in the midst of settling in, I happened to wander down the 90% off Christmas clearance aisle in Wal-Mart. Now, I am no product connoisseur but from what I can tell Wal-Mart is not exactly the epitome of high quality products; although most of them are certainly good enough and I am a frequent visitor. But that day, my eyes targeted the best deal ever on Christmas Cards. There were boxes and BOXES of these cards (probably my first hint...) with this fairly simple holiday cake on the front. Each box contained 15 cards and only cost 50 cents! Do the math: that is less than 4 cents a card! WHAT A BARGAIN! I was thrilled. I snatched up as many as I could and felt so on top of things for I was going to be WAY ahead of the game come the holidays.

Fast forward to last week. Already feeling behind, all sorts of beautiful cards rolling into our mailbox each day, I finally dug out my boxes of bargain cards and got my address labels set so I could begin the long process of writing each one. (Seriously, it is nearly impossible for me to just sign, seal and send these things....it's a problem, truly.) Anyway, I was sitting there the first night and Kurt comes in. He took one look at the cards and said,

"Those cards stink."

Oh, did I forget to mention that they are like the scratch-n-sniff brand of Christmas Cards? I did? Well, you won't have to be reminded when it arrives in your box because you'll likely catch a whiff of them BEFORE you even get the mail....and if it isn't obvious, you may notice the mail carrier hunched over in their truck gasping for air or perhaps wearing a special gas mask as they drive by so that when they yell out Merry Christmas, it will sound a little bit more Darth Vader and a bit less Santa.

Yes, the cards I bought literally STINK (in every possible way)! Whoever thought to add scent to their holiday cards should probably be sentenced to drowned in perfume; and I, the crazy person who knowingly made that purchase, right along with them!

Then, to top it off, you still have to OPEN the card. On the inside are the typical pleasantries of the holiday written on a removable insert:

Here's to all our Holiday favorites!
Wishing you a wonderful and festive Season

And if you take the insert out, you discover a festive recipe card on the back! Woo hoo! Not only did the genius who made this card add smell, but they also added the pressure of having to write a recipe on EACH AND EVERY ONE! (Side note: we send out close to 200 cards every year!)

So, in my hysteria, after pointing out the recipe card to Kurt he says:

"You aren't going to send these out to people I do work with are you?" (I am guessing he'd rather me scratch them altogether and not allow our family to be associated with them in any way.)

Uh, the answer to that is obviously no.

"I'm not now," I said, still laughing. And then holding up a stack of last year's cards that we didn't use I said, "Hey I can just use these!" I think I was eye-rolled...

So much for the cheap cards. For those of you who are on the receiving end, please note: it is only because we love you and know that you love us so much in return that forgiveness is forthcoming. For some, you may not get the privilege of receiving the card's season's greetings on the removable insert for I took the liberty of replacing some with a photo to save myself the time. For others, you may get to see the insert I am referring to, so please, use the recipe card for whatever you may choose: perhaps you were looking for another lovely trashcan filler? I will not be at all insulted if you fail to even notice the insert's removable-ness and the fact that it is absolutely and completely blank on the other side. For those of you who get the card and think it isn't all that bad, may God bless you (for you are as in need as I am!)

As for the chicken scratch on the card that appears to be some sort of writing...that would be me trying to write something festive in the midst of gigantic, aroma-induced belly-laughs. Good luck reading it.

And for those of you who receive not only the card and the photo and the insert complete with a hand-written recipe, please know I have totally lost my marbles and go ahead and call for help. I probably need it!

May your lives be filled with the love and joy (and humor) of the season!
May you experience the grace that has arrived for all of us (however 'like-a-chicken' it may be!)

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