Friday, December 21, 2012

O Christmas Card Part 5

For most families, the fact that the kids start to grow up becomes an obstacle in creating the perfect Christmas card. But not for us. Oh no. Getting older meant it was not just about cute little dresses and poses. This is where we really started to get creative. And by creative, I mean really really embarrassing.


So if you've been round these parts before, this may not be your first time bearing witness to this photo. You see, last December, when I was busy mocking the ridiculousness that is the yearly Kardashian holiday monstrosity, I posted this photo to show that Christmas cards are not about sunken cheekbones and architecture. Unlike the Kardashians, this particular card was meant to show off everyone's personalities. The tagline was: "We're Never Too Busy to Wish You a Merry Christmas!" But you could probably tell that. This is another garage "studio" photo shoot, but this time with a self-timer because my parents made only their second appearance in card history. If you ask me, the props are what really makes this card come alive. From my mother's burnt oven mitt to my father's not one, but two cameras (because no one would have known he was a photographer if he was only holding one camera, obv), and of course, my blue furry purse. I remember my parents took us on a trip to Boston and let us buy one thing, and that was mine. It was from Wet Seal (the epitome of style) and I brought it to school everyday. I was clearly making an attempt to channel my hero, Cher Horowitz, and failing miserably. 


Apparently in the late 90's, not even the Scalera's were impervious to the Calvin Klein effect. Except we, you know, smiled. My mom was always obsessed with the matching denim jacket concept, even if I had to wear my dad's to achieve it. This is also the year that I started taking completely unattainable celebrity hair inspiration photos when I went for a cut. This one was Sarah Michelle Gellar if you couldn't tell, which you probably couldn't because she didn't have an outrageous cowlick. Or maybe she did, and figured out how to work with it, unlike myself who spent many years attempting a center part that was clearly unachievable. I can't even say anything about my sister, because unlike me, she experienced far fewer awkward years. I'm pretty sure her top was from a 90's workout outfit though.


This was another one meant to show off our personal styles, at least musically. That's my karaoke machine microphone and my sister is showing of her trumpet she spent a whole year playing. I remember I curled Becky's hair secretly and my mom was so mad because she hated "drainpipe" curls. My particular hair 'do was modeled after Christina Aguilera from the "Genie In a Bottle" days. Clearly, we're twins. The best thing about this photo (aside form the blue curtain/red walls combination) was that I had a reason to wear my Freshman Reception dress again. I loved that dress. Despite all my awkwardness, I remember feeling pretty when I wore it. It was from Rave and made of velour and shed glitter like a mother. And isn't that what Christmas is all about?

Tomorrow- sweaters and a 20th anniversary celebration you have to see to believe.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

O Christmas Card Part 4

I can't pretend that there is any sort of blanket statement that would explain this next round of photos. The first three posts were all like, "look at these cute children in pajamas/Christmas dresses. Aren't they darling?" These next three in comparison don't even seem like they're from the same family. Of course there are some Scalera family Christmas card trademarks- pajamas, winter clothes, the fake Christmas fireplace backdrop. Some of the concepts are vague in purpose and one is just downright "inappropriate" (Grandma's words, not mine). See for yourselves.


I guess if I had to classify a theme for this one it's "Stuff We Like That Totally Dates This Photo." For Becky, The Lion King was her ultimate obsession. How she went from being afraid of the preview to watching it everyday on VHS when she came home from preschool, I have no idea. Her world was consumed- everything from her bedroom to her clothes, covered in singing African animals. She was physically in love with the character of Timon, despite the fact that she was freaked out by the stuffed animal version's "elbow hair" and made my mom trim it. For me, it was all about Kirsten Larson. But you probably knew that. Unfortunately my love for her did not translate to properly caring for her hair, and by this point her traditional Swedish loop braids were history, never to be the same. I love how this picture says, "oh hello there. You just happened to stumble upon us waking up on Christmas morning as we come down the stairs and get a first glance at our glorious gifts." But since people were opening this card in early December, I imagine they were confused. Was this a card from the future? No one will ever know...


I'm going to be honest, I don't even remember why we did this. It's a miracle that there's snow in this picture, but again, it's New England so this could have been Halloween. I vaguely remember that someone my parents knew had painted these and used them as lawn ornaments at Christmastime. I have no idea who these people were or where they lived. I just remember being ushered into the car all bundled up and being told that "today was the day" we were going to take our photo. So go stand in a stranger's lawn and let's get this wrapped up before someone comes. Okay, I'm sure we actually had permission. I still think something is weird about this though. Can we also notice that my sister has now inherited my jacket and the plaid purple pantsuit pants?! Some things just refuse to die. 


My apologies for what you have just seen. In case you're not sure and you don't believe it, yes, that's a photo of a sixth and second grader in their bikinis. I may have mentioned before that my dad has a slight obsession with Jimmy Buffet. The concept for this one was the whole "Island Christmas" vibe, which was ironic, because again, we lived in NEW HAMPSHIRE. And it's not like we took this on the beach in the summer. Oh no, this was the first time I remember the Christmas card becoming a full scale photo shoot. We usually had to set it up in the garage and run a space heater because it was so freaking cold. Especially when you're in your BATHING SUITS. I'm going to spare you the other photos, but let's just say Doreen was quite the propmaster that day. There were lawn chairs, fake presents, and margaritas- virgin, of course. I believe the tagline read: "Wishing You a Cool Yule." I think that all those things could be fine, but what really takes this photo from silly card to future therapy patients are the poses. I think my sister would holla for a dolla way before Honey Boo Boo was even a twinkle in Sugar Bear's eye. My grandmother was so offended by this card she sent it back. Unfortunately for you, that's not an option. Thanks, Internet.

I swear, the next installment will be less emotionally scarring. For you, at least. I can't say the same for myself. 


Wednesday, December 19, 2012

O Christmas Card Part 3

And we're back. And it's the 90's! Can you think of anything more fun and tacky than Christmas in the 90's? If you're wondering why I am exposing an embarrassing yearly tradition featuring my family, you can catch up here and here. But let's get to the good stuff.


Moving on up! That’s right folks- no more photo shoots on rocking chairs in the living room in front a curtain. This was the year we finally moved out of our tiny two-bedroom condo and into our own house. Though you probably couldn’t see it due to my mother’s hair obstructing the view. Another thing you may not be able to see are our festive Christmas sweatshirts with cross-stitched moose wearing wreaths. If that doesn’t scream New Hampshire, I don’t know what does. This was also the first (and last) card photo featuring my beloved cat Tiger (RIP!) who like my sister, was not to keen on being forced to be in the picture. She lucked out, because unlike the cat, we did not put her on a leash when attempting this. Despite the new house, sweatshirts, Santa hat, children and cat, we needed just one more prop, and that’s where the inflatable candy cane came in. Why we even had an inflatable candy cane is beyond me, but it obviously completed the photo. 


I told you- you can’t escape the Christmas background! That’s not the only hand me down in this picture, as my sister is wearing the same dress I sported in Card #4. Always a bridesmaid, those younger siblings. Not only did I get a new dress, I am also rocking a sweet oversized satin bow and I obviously got my hands on makeup for the first time. I don't know why someone wouldn't have stopped a second grader from smearing blue eyeshadow halfway up her face, but hey, it takes some of us years to grow into our fabulousness. And let's face it, the saggy nylons are certainly not speeding up the process.


Oh, man. Where do I even start? Now you have to love my mother for dreaming up a card concept in September, but it would have been nice to have at least one of these pictures with snow in it. Instead we were forced to sweat in our winter attire and pretend that Christmas was just around the corner. And I'm all for warmth, especially growing up in New England, but I don't see why puffer jackets ever had to look like this. C'mon, my sister looks like a miniature body builder and I look like that chubby purple girl in that children's movie I still haven't seen. Also, can we talk about my pants? Steve and I certainly did.

Me: These are the ugliest pants in the history of the world. I don't think a worse pair of pants have ever existed.
Steve: Um, I believe you tried to buy those exact pants at J.Crew last week, and I told you they were hideous. So who are you trying to fool?

Up next- the unintentionally offensive Christmas card. 


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

O Christmas Card Part 2

I'm sure that after the first Christmas card post yesterday you have been left with so many lingering questions. Like... would little Lindsay ever grow up and wear anything other than pajamas? Did her parents ever buy her new socks? 

I can't promise answers to those questions in the this round. But I can promise... even more awkward photos. So let's continue.


Ladies and gentlemen, I am officially a grown up. I started wearing tights and appropriate footwear. This look to me says, "pajamas are so beneath a three and a half year old. Velour is where it's at." I had clearly had enough of standing on that death trap, and since I had been an only child for so long, I took to just sitting on my rocking chair like the royalty I was, primed to receive the commoners when they came a calling. Also this is when I think my mullet really started to take place. Probably because I highlighted it with headbands. Okay, so maybe it's not really a mullet, but it's definitely mullet adjacent. Poor girl. She has no idea this is her last year as the star of the Christmas card. Life would never be the same.


As you will see later, this is the first appearance of many by the Christmas background. Oh I'm sorry- did I ruin the magic? Were you thinking that we were just hanging out in front of an actual fireplace and perfectly placed holiday garland? Sorry to burst your bubble, but it is all a lie. Except for my bangs. Those are horrifyingly real. Also have you ever seen a more uncomfortable infant? I had to hold onto her like that to keep her sleeves from catching a light breeze and carrying her away. 


What did I tell you about that background?! Also please note the matching pinafore dresses made by our grandmother- I believe those collars featured some very festive holiday geese traipsing around. I don't understand how amongst all that Christmas cheer my sister could dare to sport a look that says, "I've been kidnapped. Send help." Who wouldn't want to be a part of this?!

Up next: The 90's called, and they want all of their hair and clothes back. See you tomorrow!


Monday, December 17, 2012

O Christmas Card, O Christmas Card

The holiday season is all about traditions. For some people, it's baking cookies made from your grandmother's family recipe. For others, it's watching classics like White Christmas and Miracle on 34th street, snuggled under a flannel blanket with a steaming cup of cocoa. And for some, it's spending an exorbitant amount of time cutting down a Christmas tree that will never, not even in a million years, ever be appropriate for your 700 sq. foot apartment. Oh wait, is that just me?

In my family, we have our own Christmas tradition that has taken place every year for over twenty five years. The Scalera's don't claim to be good at many things (unless you count being awesome at trivia games and making school projects mere hours before they are due), but there is one thing that every year, pulls us all together for a common cause.

The. Family. Christmas. Card.

Did you think I was going to say something charitable? Pssssh! Forget the poor and the downtrodden, there are almost a hundred families out there waiting for our Christmas card! Priorities, people!

But seriously, Christmas cards are a big effing deal at my house. It started the year my parents got engaged, with a lovely sit down photo featuring a them and their cats. I know, nothing crazy, right? Except we have continued that tradition every year, making this year twenty nine I believe. 

Back in the day, the card was just a nice photo that was a picture of me, then my sister and I and occasionally my parents would make an appearance. But over the years, this card has turned into an all-consuming thing that my mom starts preparing for in August. I swear, if we were more together she would have a story board and conference calls devoted to planning that year's theme. Now it's a mad dash that can only be coordinated if the four of us happen to be together at some point in November to agree on the theme and plan the execution of the photos. There is always a photo. If you ever get a store bought card from Doreen with an illustrated picture of a tree or something, call the police. She's been abducted.

So in honor of Christmas being just about a week away, I wanted to share our years of holiday spirit with you and yours. Some of you reading may have received a few of these over the years, and to you I say, you're welcome. Every day I will be revealing another group of these beauties on the blog, leading up to this year's card. If you need help containing your excitement, well then... there's something wrong with you.

Disclaimer: Some of these I am missing the actual card. I know, but you try keeping track of almost thirty years of Christmas joy in paper form. Some of these are just photos, and while a part of me slightly regrets not knowing what the witty accompanying message was, I think these pictures say enough. 

Card #1:


So to be fair, this technically isn't Card #1 for the Scalera's. I know, this whole thing is now a sham. As I said before, the first was my parent's engagement photo. Card #2 was their wedding picture. I chose to start with this adorable photo because this is when the card finally gets interesting. Because it's MEEEEEEEEEE! That's right. You have a baby and suddenly you're not even on your card anymore. Because who can resist a baby in a Christmas dress on a Hunter green felt backdrop? Note the date in the corner- this picture was taken in October. Despite being a new mother, Doreen was still I'm not sure why I look so surprised, but I'm guessing it's because I just realized what I was in for... for the rest of my life. 

Card #2:


Is it just me, or should my parents have bought me a new pair of socks by now? Also I love how the danger of having a one and a half year old standing on a rocking chair is being overlooked for the sake of a quality Christmas card photo. I mean, it's not like I'm Lily on Modern Family in a Diana Ross wig, but imagine if I had hurt myself? I'm sure no one at the local emergency room would have believed my parents when they told them it was an "accident" during a "Christmas card photo shoot." But as we have learned, my parents will not be stopped when it comes to taking adorable holiday photos

Card #3:


Okay, I swear I didn't spend my entire childhood in pajamas. Although, it certainly would explain a lot now. Once again, I want to say that I'm standing on a chair. Also I have finally grown out of those Christmas socks and have moved on to Hush Puppies slippers. I think this is probably when my parents started thinking about having another kid because clearly, they were running out of ideas for a single child. 

Look for the next round of pics tomorrow. Two children= double the options for photo ideas.


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Once, Twice, A Hundred Times a Lady

Well, here we are. Or should I say, here I am. My 100th post. You see, it may seem like I only started blogging once a certain forest creature invaded my apartment just a year ago. What many of you may not know is that I actually started this blog all the way back in 2008. And when I say "blogging," I mean I registered on Blogger and wrote a single post about a one Miss Britney Spears and didn't return for five months. If you'd like to see how it all began you can catch up here.

But to understand how this really began, we have to go back. Way back to the days before blogs and Twitter and the Internets. Okay, only one of those is true. But other than having a Live and/or Dead Journal, I had never heard of blogging or knew anyone who did it when I was in college. I had always loved to write, and once I transferred to a school that actually had a functioning newspaper, I knew I wanted to be involved. The problem was that I really only wanted to write about one thing: student government. 

I'm totally kidding. Obviously it was celebrities. 

Looking back, I'm not even sure how I convinced anyone to let me write about this, let alone allow me to have a weekly column. But it was with The Clock that I finally found something that I cared about and a group of people that were totally okay with me being ridiculous. That's huge when you're a transfer student and also hot mess. 

It took some searching, but I finally found my first ever Lindsay's Look:

remember these two? ah, those were the days.

As you can see, it was originally titled "Lindsay's Look at All Things Celebrity." I remember that I loved that title and I was so pissed at that time when one of the layout people changed it without my knowledge, and that it would forever more be "Lindsay's Look at Celebrity Scandal." Or at least until I graduated. 

That's right. Reality is a cruel, cruel mistress. You get so comfortable and jaded in your little campus bubble, taking classes just because they "sounded interesting" and working for $5.50 an hour and being totally cool with it. With graduation day looming, people asked me what was to become of Lindsay's Look. I had no idea, because I never imagined that I wouldn't spend the rest of my days writing about the trials and tribulations of Tinsletown's biggest disasters. My roommate and fellow editor Erin told me that I should continue my column in blog form. It seemed like a good idea, but I was too busy imagining my fabulous post-grad life (and applying for jobs to hopefully help me achieve that) to really buckle down and do it. 

Until almost a year later, when I decided I missed my creative outlet. I obviously didn't miss it that much, because after that one post, I only composed two others in the following year. And the next year, one more. In two years, I wrote four blog posts and two of them were about Britney Spears. I know, this is shocking information.

Then, in 2011, about six months after I got married, things started to get more interesting. Slightly. After all the hubbub of wedding planning was over and I settled in being married and working everyday like a normal adult, I found myself kinda bored and completely unsatisfied creatively. I got back into the swing of things, mainly commenting on reality stars and whatever was happening on Glee. It wasn't until the end of the year that I finally started to write about anything that actually had to do with, well, me. And weirdly enough? Those first Christmas tree posts ended up being my most read ever. For some reason it seemed weird to me that anyone would be interesting in listening to me talk about myself or my life or the food that Steve cooks for me. 

And that's kind of where we've been going since then. I say we meaning me and those of you that for some reason choose to read this. There may not be many of you now, but I hope to continue to grow my readership beyond just the people that happen to click on my links via Facebook. Getting to know everyone through Boston Bloggers and attending the first Blog Better Boston conference were huge sources of inspiration for me. I love reading any and all comments, and lots of times there are only two of them, or none at all. But I like to respond to every one because I just want everyone to know how much it means to me that you took a moment to read something I wrote. I know I personally read like a hundred blogs on a daily basis and if I didn't have to work or shower I would comment on all of them. 

So nothing crazy to say here. I know a lot of you are expecting the 2012 Christmas tree story (which I promise is coming) or some other witty commentary on someone famous being ridiculous somewhere, but for now I just wanted to reflect on this. It only took me four years to get to one hundred, which I guess is kinda sad if you think about how many days that is, but it's still a milestone.

But in case you need some reminding as to why you came here in the first place, take a look back at some of my personal favorite posts:

So there you have it. I look pretty good for one hundred, eh? 

Again, thank you for reading. And please keep doing so. You're the best.


Monday, December 3, 2012

Oops, I Did It Again

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice...

why, santa, why?

...I'm a moron.

There's obviously a story as to how we got to this place (again). As usual, I'm going to need a little time to compose myself. If you're new around these parts or just want to relive a good old fashioned Christmas nightmare, you can do so here, here and here

If you're looking for me, I'll be the girl crying on the floor, covered in pine needles.