You're going to think I'm crazy, but that's ok, I probably am. Ward and I have been sending Christmas cards for nine years now and we had a 'system', a fun system in which we would buy one to two boxes of holiday cards every year and we would sit down and pick cards for each member of our family and all of our friends, making sure that no one in the same family or town would recieve the same card. One night every year we would get out the lists from each card box and get to work, wishing our loved ones a happy holiday from Ward and June. I liked our system, it seemed thoughtful and unique.
But deep inside, I was jealous of all those photo Christmas cards I would receive in the mail every November through December. When I got pregnant and Christmas rolled around I was excited that we would soon have children and could join the ranks of photo christmas card senders. So as the months progressed I built up our phantom photo card in my mind, picturing the most festive, beautiful card imaginable. Ward was on board as much as can be expected and we shopped for everal Saturdays looking for matching colors and outfits, we were beyond dorky and I was loving it. I wanted to take the picture in late November but Bailey mauled her own face and the even had to be postponed. Then we had company, and then, well life just happened. Finally, this past weekend we marked the calendar and added it to a list, ensuring it would get done.
On Saturday morning, after the twins first nap, I shot over 300 photos of my family, being a perfectionist, not one of them made me happy. But I uploaded them to the computer and in some sort of hurry ordered them from Walgreens, one hour. That afternoon I went to pick them up and found that I hated them. My brother, who lives with us when he's not in college, had been cropped almost completely from the photo and it was the glossiest card I had ever seen. I hate glossy photos.
I was so sad. I had done what always happens to me, I had built an event up so high that life could never match my fantasy. I found the pictures so bad that I was in no hurry to send them after hurrying to order them.
I was in a complete funk over it, I have to admit. This morning, after looking at them again I sat down at my computer to rework the cards and found that I had just skimmed over some decent photos. I began working on a new card and became increasingly dissatisfied with the card I had in my possession.
I started to wonder if I could return the old photo cards and order new ones, ones that were more up to my standards. After talking to my sister, husband, and sister-in-law I decided, what the heck, I will try and return them.
Fortunately, they were one of the easiest returns I've ever been involved in (or at least it seemed that way) and instantly my holiday mood was brightened. I have learned a lesson here, that rushing into something can yield terrible results. So I am beginning work on a second card, and maybe it won't be everything from my wildest dreams, but I can't imagine that my second attempt will be so disappointing.