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November 27, 2007 / Maleesha Kovnesky

Christmas Letters – part 1

I’ve never sent out a Christmas letter.  You know, a Christmas letter.  The ones that inevitably arrive each year, from at least one person you know.  Christmas letters are photocopied and the opening line is addressed to everyone, therefore to no one.  Very rarely are Christmas letters signed.  Christmas letters follow a certain script…they go something like this:

“Greetings to your family from the Smiths! 

It’s been another fantastic year for the Smith family.  We hope your family has had a good year too!  We wanted to update you on the multiple accomplishments our family has had the great fortune to experience this year. 

Our eldest, Sam, finally graduated from Harvard Law School.  We are eternally grateful to his fiancee, supermodel Arlianne Wantaburger, for giving him the generous gift of paying off his school debt!  They plan on a small, 800 person wedding next Spring, depending on the weather in the Hamptons, of course. 

Kensington won first place at the state forensics competition, just two weeks after she led the Sweet Valley High track team to a record championship season!  She was a tad worried about getting scholarships since her GPA is only a 3.9, but this seems like these wins will seal the deal.  Will we have two children Harvard alumni?  Well, Kennie has another year before she has to start applying…but we are hoping the new Audi we gave her for her 16th birthday keeps her motivated!  Wow!!!

And last but not least, our littlest Benjamin has made great strides toward greatness.  Though only seven, he received his first real patent!  Both Sam and Kennie were eleven by the time they joined the ranks of inventors.  Benjamin has high hopes for his revolutionary new scanning technology, designed to detect maladies within the human body up to a year earlier than science can today!  We’re very proud of Ben!  Now if we could only get him to stop practicing the violin so much.  Granted, he is scheduled to appear on the Ellen DeGeneres show in three weeks, so we can’t blame him for wanting to be ready, but between the patent and his music, we barely have time to take him to karate lessons!

Richard and I both retired this year.  We spent the first week of our retirement in the Caymans, it was wonderful weather.  To celebrate Richard’s 48th birthday, I surprised him with a brand new car!  He returned the favor a couple months later by surprising me with a three week trip to Africa.  The flight there was just awful…possibly the worst experience of my entire year!  There was no soap in the airplane’s bathroom and I spent half the flight asking people for hand sanitizer.  Looking back, the whole experience really made me appreciate our easy access to soap in America, and because of the traumatizing experience, Richard and I have started Soap for Sudan, a non-profit group whose purpose is to send antibacterial products to developing nations.  Angelina Jolie will be introducing Richard at a White House banquet in February, where we plan to do some fund-raising.  If you’ll be in the DC area during that time, ring me and I will try to get you some tickets.  Laura usually hooks us up.  Who knew so many people had a passion for soap? 

Until next year,

Sandy Smith



Sometimes the letters are accompanied by a photo that looks a little too much like this:



Leave a Comment
  1. go go / Jan 21 2008 2:49 pm

    My daughter and I conclude that if the authors of these puke letters really kept in touch with you throughout the year and picked up the phone to dial your number instead of the other way around, one wouldn’t mind getting one of those letters. However, this is not the case. I actually had a friend that I emailed throughout the year. Yes, I spoke of my kids and the latest that was going on in their lives. I would ask her questions and chit chat away in my email. Her response?… She didn’t address one question and made shallow one-liner emotionless comments about my kids. She never mentioned anything about her kids and what was going on in their lives. Why? Because she was saving it ALL up for the infamous Christmas letter. You know the kind…”our daughter got engaged and just got a job as a teacher in the school that her and her brothers went to school and her grandma and I come into her classroom each week to listen to her students read. My husband and I spent our 25th in Sedona, AZ blah blah blah………….
    What ever happened to Christmas cards that were signed and addressed personally and had a photo in them with a wish for a Happy New Year???!?!?!??!???!???!??!???!?

  2. pikespeakdenise / Nov 27 2007 8:50 am

    You know how we all wore different colors the year you took our holiday photo? Well, this year we were to take photos on Thanksgiving again, and we all had on different patterns on purpose. However, Dorie’s niece heading to the ER rather ruined the photo op plan. *sigh*


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