Nailed It

Do you ever lay in bed at night and wonder where your day went? Then you mentally review what you did and experience a sense of shame that you spent an entire hour looking at something called fingernail art? Okay, maybe that’s just me.

Just to make it clear, before you judge me too harshly, technically I am looking at art and my voyeurism is more motivated imagining the person who had the patience to sit there for h-o-u-r-s so their nails would look like mini masterpieces with teeny-tiny pictures of everything from flowers to images that could qualify as nods to the Post-Impressionism movement. I find myself deeply pondering who has the fortitude to not only endure that level of manicure but to then not ruin it immediately afterward. Because that’s my M.O. – mani/pedi destroyer.

I have a long history of obliterating my nails before I even exit a salon. I don’t even bother to get my hands done anymore because apparently, I’m gifted in the “manicure messed up in ten seconds or less department.” In fact, years ago, I switched over to the pedicure only family thinking it’s a lot harder to ruin your toes than your hands. Well, lucky me because I also have talent in that arena. There’s at least a 50 percent chance that I will not make it to my car without damaging the polish on at least two toes.

The last time I got a pedicure I didn’t even make it out of the salon chair before the polish on three toes were smeared. I, a fully ambulatory woman, couldn’t vacate the salon chair without tripping and smooshing my toes. Meanwhile, an elderly woman, who walked with a cane, was more graceful, lithe even, in her chair departure than I was.

My daughter who was with me laughingly suggested that I just give up the whole mani/pedi experience. “At this point mom you’re just wasting your money.” Sadly, I think she’s right because it doesn’t matter how long I let my nails dry or how much UVA power the drying lamps possess I have issues leaving the salon with polish that is still intact.

At first, I thought my problem was the salon chairs. Those recliners with triple massage action are troublesome. First, the whole “massage” element feels less like a spa experience and more like you’re on a Southwest flight with an unruly five-year-old kicking the back of your seat. Then there’s the issue of exiting the chair which is elevated and usually very close to another chair.

I don’t think much thought was given to the point of egress for women with size 11 feet (Cautionary tale – I wore a size eight until I had two kids. Where’s that Mother’s Day card? Dear Mom, thanks for giving birth to us so your feet could grow by three sizes.) It’s almost impossible to get out of the chair without messing up the polish on at least your big toe.

The problem with that theory is that even when I do my nails at home and use copious amounts of nail polish drying spray, I still don’t escape with the polish on all 10 ten toes staying perfect.

Maybe I need to start a “no polish” movement. It would give me something to be self-righteous about this summer when everybody else is in full mani/pedi mode. Because instead of nail polish I will be wearing the color of “bare and don’t care.” This, I will tell polished toe women, means that by “letting my toe nails breathe” I’m practicing the ultimate in self-care. Only I will know that I’m cursed with the dreaded SPS – smooshed polish syndrome.

 

Be Careful – I’m Packing

If only going out-of-town didn’t require packing a suitcase.

I love traveling. I just hate packing for that travel. It’s not that I stink at packing. I like to think I’m pretty good at it. I know my way around the various Ziploc space saver bags and I’m up to date on all the packing hacks from how to roll, not fold your clothes for optimum luggage stuffing to condensing your cosmetics.

My problem is I loathe packing. In fact, I despise it so much that when I’m packing, I’m secretly thinking that I’d almost rather stay home than endure the agony of taking a 64-ounce shampoo bottle and squeezing it into a three-ounce container. The blame, like 100 percent of it, goes to my children and my husband.  Over the years this trio has managed to kill my suitcase mojo.

Nothing, and I mean nothing, ruins the packing experience like years spent packing for yourself and your kids. The best thing about my kids getting older wasn’t things like their ability to drive themselves to and fro it was that I never had to pack a suitcase for them ever again.

Because when they’re young not only are you packing a suitcase for each kid you’re packing a “go bag” of items required if anything goes wrong from medical emergencies (coughs, colds, flu, diarrhea, nausea, headache, earache, sore throat, and enough various sizes of band aids to cover the entire body of at least two family members) to food provisions that ranged from fruit to items with a shelf life that would take you through a doomsday scenario.

Then there’s the “backpack of fun” that each child needs jammed with things to keep them busy during the journey, so they don’t drive you or any fellow passengers bonkers. This means craft supplies, books, toy cars and dolls, miniature board games and of course electronic items and at least three back up chargers. Each trip we took more than 100 miles from our home required the skills of a packing Ninja, the Best Buy Geek Squad and a CDC medical specialist.

Meanwhile, my husband would throw some underwear, a pair of jeans and couple of shirts into a suitcase and ponder why it was, one, “taking me so long to pack?” And two, why was I complaining so much about it? Some days it’s a wonder that man is still alive. One year, I did throw a pair of shoes at him. They were kids’ Sesame Street flip-flops, so he got off easy.

Trust me when I tell you that if you go through all that enough times packing to leave town can make you jittery and cause feelings of intense anxiety. Never mind the worry that you’re going to forget something. And what’s up with that? I feel like that when I pack, I act like I’m never going to see a Super Target again. If you’re vacationing domestically and you’re not going off the grid there’s 100 percent chance, you’ll be able to buy whatever you left back at home fairly easily.

My packing phobia has also been known to affect my self-esteem especially when I see large families traveling with only one suitcase. Are they using witchcraft to get a family of seven’s clothes and assorted shampoos into one carry on? Are they privy to some secret space age cramming technology that allows you to shrink your items by 90 percent? It’s either that or the outfits they wore on the plane are the ones they’ll be styling their entire vacation.

One time at the Orlando airport I did ask a fellow mom how she got her family down to one carry on suitcase for her ENTIRE entourage. She gave me one of those condescending looks that moms use when they feel superior to you in both the parenting and intellectual arena and quipped, “We only stay at five-star resorts with laundry facilities.”

Because I didn’t like her la-di-da tone, at all, I shot back with, “Yes, because nothing says vacation like doing laundry,” and then I did a subtle hair flip. After that she dramatically shooed her family away from mine in the gate area. Her loss because I’m the person you’ll want to be close to in case of any travel emergency. I’ve got everything you’ll need from batteries to bacitracin.

Dear Snarky – Help, I Work With Slobs!

Dear Snarky,

I work for a super hip company that has no dress c0e76277b18840f2a65e83f12d2daecc4--office-humor-work-humorode and everyday I’m literally picking my jaw up from the floor when I see what people wear to work. There’s men and women with wet hair. There’s disgusting feet in flip-flops in the middle of winter. More than half of the work force looks like they’re wearing their pajamas and haven’t bathed in days. The smell is so ripe sometimes I feel nauseous. I like my job – a lot – so I need some advice in how to get past working with slobs.

 Signed, Grossed Out at the Office

Dear Grossed Out,

 Ugh, I feel your pain. Grooming is not what it used to be. I totally blame casual Friday which gave birth to no deodorant Monday and free-range foot fungus Thursday. Since you like your job your only recourse is to learn how to accept those things you cannot change.

There’s not a polite way to tell someone they reek nor; can you ask a co-worker to please consider wearing something other than their Star Wars pajama collection. All you can do is be beacon of sanity by continuing to dress like an adult and being a champion of showers, deodorant, and toothpaste.

Take heart some of this will rub off on your co-workers. Every office needs a leader and you, my friend, you hopefully guide others into the fabulous and exciting world of adulting.

P.S. in the meanwhile you can deal with the noxious office B.O. by putting Vick’s Vapor rub under your nostrils. It’s probably best you don’t ask me how I know this.

Wanted: A Career as a Professional “Namer”

I finally know what I want to do with my life. Yes, it took a while and most certainly my career meandered through many twists, turns, and some cavernous sink holes but today I’m going to share with you my true calling. It’s something so simple and yet so glorious I’m embarrassed it never occurred to me that I could do it and do it well. For you see, I’m embarking on a career as a “prénom.

A prénom is a person who names things (hence the French word for name) for a living from paint colors to weather crisis. Did I just make up that whole thing up in an attempt to launch myself into a new job that I’m not sure exists? Perhaps.

But before you roll your eyes let me make my case for the world’s urgent need for prénoms. All you have to do is look no further than when we were at the mercy of a polar vortex. Did you get sick of hearing that term over and over again while you prayed that your pipes wouldn’t burst and become basement water cannons? I’m going to vigorously assume that your answer is yes.

Wouldn’t it have been much more descriptive and catchier if the term polar vortex got some word accessories like “piercing polarthermia” and “below zero brutality.” Admit it both phrases are an upgrade from polar vortex. Just saying “piercing polarthermia” out loud makes me shiver and bonus points for the alliteration. I’m certain TV weather forecasters would embrace the term with gusto. Never mind, the meme gold mine the phrases would create.

Just think of all the bits and pieces of our daily existence that require names, especially in the home design trade. Every single one of us has looked at a paint chip and gone WTH? I’m currently looking at a Benjamin Moore paint chip that is called “Beau Green.” I have two solid take aways from this name. One, Benjamin Moore needs to hire me because two, “Beau Green” tells you nothing about what kind of green it is. A better name would be the “Color of the Pool Water at a Really Sketchy Motel.”

I’m going to bet that you immediately conjured up the correct color green. Not to brag, but that’s what they call a gift. Wallpaper names are just as bad. I almost bought wallpaper for my half bath called “Ebru.” After doing some research I discovered it means paper marbling in Turkish. But a better name would have been “Tree Trunk Under a Microscope.” Again, you’re totally seeing it, right?

Toilet names are an area that is crying for a prénom. Continuing on with my half bath theme I found one called “Empress Bouquet.” What does that even mean and why do I want that in my bathroom? With this toilet’s high-tech features and mega flush power, a more accurate name is “Plunge No More.” Right there, you know what you’re getting and who doesn’t want to retire their plunger?

Sink names are also ridiculous and so pretentious. I was gazing at farm-house sinks and the names all sound like surnames of the British aristocracy during Queen Victoria’s reign. There’s Alcott, Eton, Aldrich, and even a Grosvenor. What does that have to do with a sink? As a professional prénom I would have gone with “Martha Stewart’s Kitchen.” Again, the visual is instantaneous.

I don’t know who is naming all this stuff (and don’t get me started on the names of nail polish colors) but I feel someone with my skill is needed. Our lives are fast paced and confusing and the very least companies can do is attach a semblance of accuracy to their products names. Now excuse me while I go tweak my resume or what I, as a professional prénom, would call a “slightly exaggerated timeline of my talents.”

 

New Year’s Resolutions – File That Under Never Going to Happen

The first week of the new year is always irritating. You keep forgetting that it’s 2019 and you have to endure people’s social media proclamations what their New Year’s resolutions are. My favorite are the people who say their signing off from social media on social media (of course) usually with some long-winded statement about taking their life back and then a week later, in a surprise to no one, they’re on Facebook posting a cryptic statement, usually about politics, that ends with “I’ll just leave this right here.” Umm okay, crazy.

 I also hate it when people ask you what your New Year’s resolution is because apparently responding with “maintaining my trajectory of fabulousness” is not seen as a sincere answer. I don’t understand why people aren’t fine with that. Who wants to hear the truth that my goal is to remember where I hid two Christmas presents?

 I’m not kidding, I seriously couldn’t find two gifts. And it’s not because my brain is having a moment it’s because our cat is Satan and, in my effort, to keep the presents safe from Satan Claws, I had to become very creative in selecting a hiding place. Unfortunately, now I can’t remember that genius location.

 I realize when responding to queries about my New Year’s resolution I could go with the perennial favorite – lose weight but that’s so pedestrian and who really would believe it? Plus, lose weight has gotten a make-over. You now say you’re embracing a mission to “adapt a sustainable healthy lifestyle.”

 This I love because that phrase is open to a lot of interpretation especially the word sustainable. It gives you wiggle room to get away with a lot because for anything to be sustainable in my life, especially my sanity, chocolate is a must have.

 New Year’s resolutions are also a little creepy and invasive. I feel like changing a part of yourself or attempting to fix a flaw in your life should be something that is private. Like HIPAA or one of those for your eyes only top-secret “Mission Impossible” sequences. Although, psychologists say sharing a goal helps you achieve it. I guess I, sort of, buy that but humble braggers have taken over that whole goal share ideology to such an extent that I don’t want anything to do with it.

Is there anything more hilarious/eye rolling than people who share their resolutions as a way to fly their I”‘m awesome” flag? As in, “For 2019 I’ve set a goal that less is more. This year I’m vowing to right-size my life. Owning two vacation homes has certainly been fun for my family and so many wonderful memories were created in Aspen and Oahu but I’m now focusing on just one vacation home and maybe a Paris condo in an effort to embrace simplicity.” 

Yes, I just made that up but I’ve seen worse. My favorite is when they the over-the-top braggers finish their boast with “your thoughts and prayers are appreciated as I attempt to obtain this milestone.” Yeah, I’m praying for you alright. Praying that you get the gift of self-awareness in 2019. 

Humble braggers aside, just the act of making a New Year’s resolution can be exhausting. Some experts advise breaking your resolution up into “sub-tasks” and then doing an action plan to achieve each task by creating a color coded map. Hmm, am I the only one that got exhausted just reading that? Frankly, I checked out after the term sub-tasks and I don’t think there’s anything I want badly enough to create a color coded map for. 

That might make me sound lazy, but really it’s all about time management. Why waste time on something that’s probably never going to happen? Consider that my first deep thought for 2019.

Holiday Shopping Puzzlers

il_340x270-1.1358738970_n9r8I actually enjoy holiday shopping but sadly my family has ruined it for me. Now, I get lists where all I have do is point and click to their on-line shopping bag. Efficient? Yes. Fun? No. This means the only real shopping I do is for myself because, yes, I buy my own presents.

There are though a few things that puzzle me about shopping in December and one of them is the music being played in stores. Props to Bath and Body Works for their traditional approach in regard to holiday tuneage. Burl Ives gentle crooning on “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer” is something to be treasured and lulled me into buying yet another “Fresh Balsam” holiday candle. And when Johnny Mathis started singing “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” I felt duty bound to double up on my “Peppermint Twist” bath gel purchase.

Sadly, the music segued to ghastly at the next store I went into. What’s up current singers butchering a classic? Jingle Bells doesn’t required vocal gymnastics? I’m tone deaf but even I don’t think that “dashing through the snow in a one-horse open sleigh” requires a show-offy take on the lyrics.

Another thing that confuses me are coupon conundrums. Pretty much retail speaking, no matter what store you go into everything is marked down by at least 30 percent. You also then have your digital coupons and loyalty savings for a “joining” the store “club” etc. The problem is that the math required to use your coupons is ACT worthy and presents a mathematical brain teaser.

Can you combine the current discount with your coupon and loyalty card? If the answer is no, you then have to try to figure out what will be cheaper just taking the discounted price or going the coupon route combined with the loyalty reduction? And then what if you return the purchase will you get your loyalty bucks back?

The people who say you never use math once you graduate are fools. I use math every time I shop and not to brag but I can add up what’s in my Target cart and I’m usually not off my more than 15 cents. It still amazes my kids. My son once asked me how can I do that but not know basic algebra? I told him my skill set was “everyday math.”

Holiday shopping also woos me to make dumb decisions. As in I recently bought a hat. Not a hat to wear when I walk my dogs, but a fashion statement hat. A beret to be exact. J Crew had all these cute berets laid out on a counter and the fact that they looked like giant macaroons might have influenced my decision to buy one. (I was hungry.) As soon as I attempted to wear my beret in public, I felt very self-conscious, like the people might be feeling sorry for me kind of self-conscious.

I just don’t have the face or the head for a beret. But, then not two days later I was seduced by a fedora at Anthropolgie. It didn’t help that some very lovely young ladies were in the store wearing fedoras. I decided to give it try and let’s just say it wasn’t for me.

I was bummed. I want to be the kind of woman who can pull off a hat. But then I started thinking positive about my beret. I was going to wear it but only when I go out with my daughter. At 18 she’ll be mortified to see me styling a huge hot pink wool macaroon that’s perched on my head at a very jaunty angle. Hmm, maybe that beret wasn’t such a bad purchase after all.

 

 

A Dear Snarky Holiday Buffet

So many Christmas conundrums. So little time. In an attempt to help spread some holiday happiness I bring you a trio of letters. Let’s hope my answers deliver a soupçon of seasonal sanity to your family gatherings.

Screen Shot 2018-12-17 at 10.12.49 AMDear Snarky,

My mother-in-law spoils my children and goes overboard with presents. I’ve told her to stop but she won’t listen to me. I don’t think I can handle another Christmas where she’s trying to one up my husband and I in the gift department.

 Signed, Present Overkill

Dear Overkill,

Calm yourself and count your blessings. It’s a grandmother’s prerogative and great joy to spoil her grandchildren. If your kids are drowning in presents, I suggest discreetly donating some of the goodies to charity after the first of the year. P.S. Quit looking so hard for something to get your nose out of joint about. There are parents out there that would be THRILLED for their kids’ grandparents to so much as send a card.

Dear Snarky,

My weirdo and single sister actually expects us to buy a gift for her dog. She says her dog is like her child and since she buys presents for my four kids all the time, we can get her dog something.

Signed, No Way

Dear No Way,

Umm, no way, I say, yes way. Drag yourself off of your high horse and go get your sister’s dog a $10 chew toy and get over yourself. Also, being a pet lover and a single doesn’t make you a weirdo. It probably makes you very happy.

Dear Snarky,

My in-laws make the whole family go to Midnight Mass and I think it ruins Christmas morning for my kids (ages 8 and 10) because they’re so tired the next day. How do I get this tradition to stop?

 Signed, Not a Fan 

Dear Not a Fan,

Grab some caffeine and accept this hard truth. Midnight Mass isn’t going anywhere, and you know where you’re going – uh huh, that’s right to Midnight Mass. So, suck it up, have your kids take a nap and deal with traditions that are older than you are.

*I hope your holidays are drama free BUT if they’re not you know where to send your letter. snarkyinthesuburbs@gmail.com 😉

I Finally Got a Clue

clue-boardMy family loves board games. Well, that’s actually a lie. The truth is my daughter loves board games and forces us to play them with her. This is why on Thanksgiving while feeling very uncomfortably full or as my Southern relatives like to call it “tick stuffed” (yeah, I know – yuck) we all settled in for a not so riveting game of Clue.

Clue was bad when I played it with my kids when they were in elementary school and they fought over who was going to be Colonel Mustard. But playing it with four adults is mind numbing. The game has zero excitement. It’s not like Scrabble where you get all jazzed when you get a Q and a U, and that triple word score is wide opening and waiting or even Life with the cool spinner thing or Monopoly where you’ve got money and houses to keep you awake. Heck, I’ll even take the game Are You Smarter Than a 5thGrader? over Clue which, spoiler alert, apparently, I am not.

My son, for years, has managed to avoid playing board games, but this Thanksgiving even he fell prey to his just home from college sister’s pleas. As we settled in to play, I was already miffed because

I got stuck with the maid token – Mrs. White. I already felt like a servant after cooking a Thanksgiving dinner and then cleaning the kitchen with some very lackluster family assistance. I wanted to be the erudite Professor Plum but someone (cough, cough, my husband) got to him first and wouldn’t relinquish him.

My mood didn’t approve when I kept on getting lame rolls of the dice and for some reason the game dragged on longer than usual. In what universe does it take more than 15 minutes to play Clue? Usually it’s seven minutes max before it’s Miss Scarlett in the conservatory with the rope.  When I asked why the game was never-ending the response, I received rattled my entire world.

It seems for my entire life I had not only been playing Clue wrong but had also taught my children a half-baked or “sketchy way” to play the game. My son, after 22 years of being on this earth, had actually read the directions to the game and for the first time in my life I was playing it the correct way.

He basically had me at “read the directions.” Who reads the directions to Clue? The game is self-explanatory. You roll the dice, mark some stuff down and then make a guess. Who needs directions for that? Well, apparently, I did.

But, was it really my fault we had been playing it wrong for years? My own mother had taught me how to play Clue. How could she be wrong? Hmm, could that be the issue? Did my mom teach me an abbreviated version to get the game over with faster so she could continue on her way with all her other mom duties?

Within seconds I immediately knew that’s how it must have went down. What mom in 1973 had time to play a long-winded game of Clue. Heck, the microwave hadn’t even been invented yet. I’m sure she jettisoned the directions for a mom version that would get her in and out of the game in under 10 minutes. I had then, unknowingly, carried on the tradition.

Instead of feeling betrayed I was bowing to my mother’s genius and wondering what other 70’s parenting hacks she had employed. I do remember that Monopoly went by rather fast and sometimes she thought there was a gas leak in the house and for our safety she told us it was best everyone played outside for h-o-u-r-s.

Oh, well-played, mom. Well played.

Why Am I So Impatient? (Deep thoughts while waiting in line.)

 

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You would think with everyone having a phone to occupy their brains that we, as a society, would have gotten better about waiting in line. There are emails to answer and the universe of social media to peruse. But for some reason it seems like we’ve gotten even more impatient. And by we, I mean, me.

I have become so impatient that the other day at the Nordstrom Rack I had to do some soothing inhales and exhales. What has happened to me that I think I’m too good to wait in line? Correction: Too good to wait in some lines because I’m still processing why in July of 2014 in a Florida heat wave (Wait, it that an oxymoron?) with a humidity level that was so miserable I felt like I was swathed in wet towels that had been soaked in Dollar Tree mayonnaise I stood in a line at Disneyworld for 93 minutes to ride the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train (which ended up being the lamest ride in the history of theme parks).

So, why was I okay enduring the misery of standing in that line and yet I was having a mental health crisis at the Rack? Needing human interaction and because I love chatting up strangers, I asked a woman standing next to me in line that very question. To her credit she didn’t look scared about my sudden and unasked for true confession wrapped in an inquiry and gave it some serious thought.

Her three-word response was “self-checkout lanes.” Could that be it? Had the efficiency of checking ourselves out upped the irritable factor as we were forced to wait in line for a human to do what we’re totally capable of doing ourselves?

I will share that, at first, I wasn’t a fan of self-checkout. It seemed like another chipping away of customer service. But it didn’t take long for me to get on the self-checkout band wagon. It was so fast, and I got to bag my groceries just how I liked them. Even better no chit-chat with the checker.

It’s not like I don’t like chit-chat (see the former paragraph where I divulged my love of talking to strangers). It’s that I don’t like comments about my grocery purchases. Hello, Trader Joes and your super skinny cashier that made a sarcastic comment about me buying waffles and maple syrup at 7 pm and asking if “that’s what I’m calling dinner?” Because my answer is yes that was my dinner and it was delicious.

My new “friend” standing in line with me soon began to open up sharing that Sam’s had ruined her in regards to checkout experiences because at Sam’s you just use your phone to checkout. You don’t even stand in line. When she told me this, I got goose bumps. I was that excited.

But not so excited I wasn’t doing a mental overhaul of the Rack and it’s three open checkout stations. They used to have a separate stand for people just using credit cards but when I first walked over there the cashier told me his “devices weren’t working” which I think is code for they need to be charged. Also, why isn’t there a separate area for returns only? I was timing it and the average return was taking seven minutes or more and sadly most of the people in line were returning. Where was the love for the person buying?

That got me all riled up again requiring more deep breathing leading me to the conclusion that I was perhaps not even a self-checkout girl but worse – a dedicated on-line shopper. I’m afraid once you can buy 36 rolls of Charmin 3 ply on-line and get free next day delivery it changes you – forever.

 

 

Is It Really Christmas Without a Hallmark Holiday Movie?

Fake snow, meeting cute, and the classic two second end of movie smooch means Christmas is here and warning I’ll throw down with anyone who doesn’t agree with me.

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 Being an influencer is a huge deal right now.  You’ve got your YouTube influencers that include people with make-up tutorials that teach you how to do the “perfect face” which really bothers me because who wants to use 23 different cosmetic products and take two hours before you can leave the house? Never mind all that blending of seven different foundations. I want to live my life, not spend it seamlessly merging liquid and powder concealers and inner eye shimmer. And then there’s the fashion and foodie influencers and on and on.  All of this kind of makes me mad, because I was an influencer before it was a thing.

Case in point, I feel like I’m single handedly responsible for the current Hallmark holiday movie craze because I was a fanatical Hallmark holiday movie watcher before those movies were cool.  18 long years ago I was watching Hallmark holiday movies and enthusiastically proclaiming their greatness in the face of friends and family giving me the side eye.

But did I care? No, because “Special Delivery” staring Andy Dick (yes, comedian Andy Dick, in a sweet movie full of hope and redemption – go figure?) or “The Flight of the Reindeer” featuring the cinematic talents of Beau Bridges and Richard Thompson proving that reindeer really can fly should be celebrated by all of humanity with a box of Kleenex and a side of gingerbread.

Yes, I know for all you new converts that it’s hard to fathom that there was ever a Hallmark holiday movie made without the acting talents of Lacey Chabert or Candace Cameron Bure. But I can assure you, back in the day the movies were made without the allure of 80s and 90s TV stars. Totally mind-blowing, right? But for true hardcore Hallmark holiday aficionados this is our truth.

The whole Hallmark bandwagon started to blossom in 2011 when the networked launched their “Countdown to Christmas.” Before you could say, “Jingle Bells,” people were hooked and acting like they had discovered holiday paradise when, in fact, it had been around for a solid decade.

I can remember the moment like it was yesterday. I was at a party when two women dressed in “This is my Hallmark Christmas movie watching shirt” dared to attempt to one up me about Hallmark movies. I wasn’t having it, not one bit. One of the women, who I’m sure was a little tipsy on spiked eggnog, spouted off about how the first Hallmark holiday movie was “Matchmaker Santa.” Are. You. Kidding. Me.? Just because it starred Lacey Chabert before her, some would say, overzealous Botox injections doesn’t mean it was the first Hallmark holiday movie. I know for a fact that movie is from 2012.

I got in both of those women’s faces and let them know that they were frauds in their Hallmark shirts, nothing more than wannabes. I told them that I have been “Hallmarking” for almost two decades.

I was there when the sets were tacky, and it looked like they were filming all their interiors in an abandon Sears. I was there when the Christmas décor looked like Hobby Lobby rejects purloined from the 75 percent off bin and all the fake snow had a hint of beige like it was a cast-off from a Christmas carnival. I was a loyal fan when all the actors looked like they did their own hair and makeup. How can anyone forget the 2004 “Single Santa Seeks Mrs. Claus” when poor Crystal Bernard’s hair looked like she was wearing a wig made from the straw in Rudolph’s stall. If ever there was a cry for a deep conditioning treatment and a stylist who knew their way around a round brush this was it.

To say I unloaded my Christmas bucket would be an understatement. But it had to be done. Hallmark holiday movies, most shot in the summer and made in about a month, starring a 42-year-old Candance Cameron Bure (aka Her Royal Highness of Hallmark) as a twentysomething spunky up and coming executive should be respected. They’re all future classics. 50 years from now, forget about “A Wonderful Life” because weary mothers will be watching “Snowmance” from 2017 pondering the fashion choices (Why all the flannel?)but never questioning the plot where a snowman comes to life and turns out to be, of course, the most perfect man ever.

Pass me the hot coca because I’ll drink to that all month long.