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Christmas 2014

© 20014 by Miriam A. Kilmer
       This letter is for my relatives, and I'm going to start it with a great big winky emoticon, thus:

       I would be just horrified if anyone were to take what I'm about to say seriously, even for a moment. First, the following paragraph is true:
       I've never been well organized, but I used to be intelligent. I was even a card-carrying member of Mensa for a while. I filled out a whole book of intelligence tests just for fun. One college classmate asked me how I managed to answer correctly all the questions the teacher asked in class. I can't remember what I did answer, but I do remember thinking: "I read the class assignments." Now I'm 63 years old, and like my friends who are close to my age, I often find myself unable to remember what I read five minutes ago, let alone last night. For many years, Concerta® mitigated my Attention Deficit Syndrome (ADD), but then it had a paradoxical effect, and I was able to replace it only with a medication that helps just a little.
       In case you're wondering what all this has to do with Christmas, here it comes. The Kilmer Family (descendants of Joyce and Aline) has been growing exponentially. The Slattery Family (descendants of Joseph and Helen) is far smaller, but going in the same direction. Births far outnumber deaths. The family sizes are also increased by marriage, adoption, step children, and revelations (sometimes aided by Facebook). My mother-in-law wisely urged me to stop sending individual gifts to my great-great-nieces and -nephews. I still try to send one gift the first Christmas after the birth. I'm not going to tell you just how many cards and gifts Tim and I are sending out this year, because it would take too much time to count them.
       I have two proposals to lighten the load:
           1) Each couple is allowed no more than one new baby per year. To heck with those twins! (You did see the winky face, right?)
           2) There are thousands of wonderful names to choose from. Buy a Baby Name Book, or search for baby naming sites on line. In particular, we don't need any more Jennifers, Matts or Matthews, Logans, Nicks, Nickys or Nicoles, Jasons, Jacks or Jacksons, Elizabeths or Lisas, Noelies or Noelles, Charlottes, Patricks, Pauls, Martins, Judys or Judiths, Davids, Barbaras, Rosamonds or Rosies in the family. If you find someone by one of those names whom you wish to marry, please make it a condition that he or she change the first name. Likewise, if you discover a long-lost relative who shares a first name with a long-established member of the Kilmer or Slattery clans, ask him or her to change that first name.
       Seriously, I am going to have to cut way back on the cards and gifts. Most of them will be digital from here on out. I probably won't be able to stop myself from sending tangible gifts to the babies, as I have an especially soft spot in my heart for the little ones. Just refer to rule #1. ;-)

Feel free to pass this on via email, if you like, but please include my copyright notice and internet address:
© 2014 by Miriam A. Kilmer
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