People I Want to Punch in the Throat

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PIWTPITT's Official Elf on the Shelf Calendar


It's Elf on the Shelf time and so you know what that means, don't you? It's time to plan all of your Elfin' antics and this year our helpful overachieving friends have some up with a bunch of handy dandy calendars to help us less achieving souls get in on the fun too.

I've looked at several of these calendars and see a lot of the same things come up over and over. Ideas like: 

- Make a garland out of the kids' underwear.
- Decorate tree with socks and underwear.
- "Wrap" kids' bedroom doors with paper while they sleep.
- Elf writes the lyrics to "Jingle Bells" on toilet paper.

My Mom's Christmas Explosion: A Video

OK, so if you've read Spending the Holidays with People I Want to Punch in the Throat, then you know that my mom has a teeny tiny problem with Christmas. She LOOOOOOVES it too much. I've written a lot about her 12 trees, hundreds of Santas, and countless snowmen, but I was getting the impression that a few of you didn't believe me. So, last night I was over at her house (baking Christmas cookies, of course) and I asked her if I could film some of her house for a video. At first she said, "No, it's a mess!" And then she said, "OK, but be sure to apologize for the mess." Fine. Whatever. I apologize.

I give to you, the video of my mom's Christmas Explosion:


If the video doesn't work here, try this link.

Am I the Only One Who Thinks This Christmas Song is Rapey?



How is it in the 40-plus years I've been listening to Christmas music, I've never actually listened to it?

Let me explain: It was Black Friday. My mother and I were out and about maxing out our credit cards and throwing elbows for seven dollar waffle irons. After several hours of shopping, my mom faded and dropped out to go home to bed. Wussy.

The Perfect Arrival Letter for Your Elf on the Shelf


December is here and the official Elf on the Shelf season has begun. First, you needed 101 ideas of what to do with your doll, then you needed a special calendar to keep your antics straight, and now I'm hearing about Arrival Letters.

It's not enough to dig your Elf out of the couch cushions where you shoved him last year. Now he needs to arrive.

2016 Holiday Gift Guide


This week the holiday shopping season begins. May the odds be ever in your favor! If you're like me, you hate to wear pants or see people so don't worry. Everything I've chosen for my 2016 gift guide is available online. You can get everything you need without leaving the house. You're welcome.

Usually I start with the kids, but this year I'm starting with ME! What do I want for Christmas? I really don't have a list of many things I want, so instead, I made a list of all of my favorite things. Yeah, I'm like Oprah, but poorer and less famous and I won't give any of this stuff to you.


Yummie Leggings. If you follow my personal account on Facebook, then you know that leggings were a hot topic for me this fall. Now that I'm writing more and speaking in public more, I actually need some clothes to wear outside of my office. I still want something casual and comfy, though, and that's where leggings come in. I finally found some wide-calf boots that I love and I bought a bazillion pairs and decided to live in nothing but leggings and boots this fall and winter. I wanted a pair of leggings that were thicker than tights, that sucked everything in and held it tight while still allowing me to breathe and move about. This brand does all of that. 

I am the World's Okayest Mom

 World's Okayest Mom
World's Okayest Mom
We are coming into the dreaded holiday season where people mainlining pumpkin spice and holiday cheer start upping the ante and I can already feel my heart rate rising and the hairs on the back of my neck bristling. My Facebook feed is flooded with mostly humble braggy "thankful" posts from people who normally complain about everything - even the weather - on an hourly basis, mixed in with hundreds of (supposedly) unbelievably easy and adorable crafts to make between now and Christmas.

Luckily, I am able to skip right by those posts and tune out the moms at the playdates who are already worrying about how quickly their newest Easy Peasy Life Scheduling Apps ("I just downloaded it this month, and it is a life changer. I can make lists of lists I need to make!") are filling up with holiday parties, photo shoots, shopping lists, visits with the in-laws, gift exchanges, private visits to Santa, and more wedged in between the usual soccer practice, art lessons, chess club, and Kumon. Since I don't give a crap about most of that stuff, I just smile and say, "I'm so thankful that my kids want cash for Christmas this year, no one has invited me to their cookie exchange in a year now, and I just paid forty bucks for school pictures, surely no one expects me to take more pictures, right?"

Pre-Lit Christmas Tree can suck it

Don't look too close, there are some dead bulb in there.

GUEST POST FROM THE HUBS - I'M NOT THIS CRAZY, JUST HE IS.

Who has a pre-lit Christmas tree?  Who invented this instrument of supposedly cheerful holiday torture?  I know the idea sounds good, but in practice, I am not so sure.  Now, before anyone gets upset, I am not saying that ALL pre-lit trees are bad.  Just the ones that suck monkey balls like the one I happen to have.

We have a 9 ft pre-lit Christmas tree with about 3,000 light bulbs on it.  Ours is huge, massive, and heavy as hell, with more wires and lights than an airport runway in a major city.  It's a nice looking tree.  It was VERY nice to have a huge tree that we didn't have to string lights on.  You plug in all the strands, turn them all on and enjoy your Christmas.  Yeah, that happened only the FIRST year we owned that tree.  Ever since that honeymoon Christmas, it has never been the same around here.  Nope, now it is an annoying, tedious, and mind numbing battle in search of the dreaded dead bulb.  Our tree is seven years old now and once one bulb goes out, the entire strand goes out.  So, you need to find the dead bulb.  With over 3,000 light bulbs on a tree, that is a lot to go through.