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Dianne Salerni : Writer of Teen and Middle Grade Fiction | This is How Traditions Start …

This is How Traditions Start …

Several years ago (eight, to be precise), I decided to get creative with the note I sent out in Christmas cards and I wrote a creative little drama, which got inserted into everybody’s holiday greeting. It was well received by family and friends, and before Thanksgiving of the following year, people were hinting. “You’re going to do it again, right?”

Thus began The Slice of Salerni Life skit, which sees a reprise every year. Last Christmas, I tried to let it die a quiet little death, but the hue and cry over the empty card caused me to write it after the fact and send it out by email.

I thought the original skit was lost forever, due to a computer malfunction, but my mother-in-law recently found a paper copy. Oh, what fun it was to read the first one – and to consider how times have changed …

A Slice of Salerni Life – Christmas 2002

It’s late afternoon in the winter, and Dianne has just picked up Gina from day care. Gabbey’s had a half day of kindergarten, and Dianne’s had a full day of work …

Dianne: Okay, is everybody buckled in? Let’s go home.
Gina: I want juicy.
Dianne: I don’t have any juice.
Gabbey: Mommy, I have a question for you. Do days ever end?
Dianne: Gee, I hope not.
Gina: I want juicy.
Dianne: I don’t have any juice in the car. We’ll be home in fifteen minutes.
Gina: I want juicy … I want juicy … I want juicy … (Repeats every 5 seconds for a long, long time.)
Gabbey: Mommy, my library book says that some birds fly to South America for the winter.
Dianne: Wow!
Gabbey: How far is South America?
Dianne: Pretty far.
Gabbey: Mom, Gina stinks.
Gina: I not stinky. You stinky.
Dianne: Gina, when are you going to learn to use a potty?
Gina: I don’t want to use potty.
Gabbey: But you know you don’t like to make poop in your diaper.
Gina: I don’t have poop. My diaper’s okay.
Dianne: Gina, I can smell you from here.
Dianne: Okay, okay! (Sound of car windows opening.)
Gabbey: Mommy, have you ever been to South America?
Dianne: No, but I’ve been close. Mommy and Daddy went on an airplane to a place called St. Lucia, which is near South America
Gabbey: I’d like to ride on an airplane someday.
Dianne: I’m sure we’ll take you on an airplane someday.
Gina: I want to ride on an airplane.
Dianne: Someday.
Gina: I want to ride on an airplane.
Dianne: What, now?
Gina: I want to ride on an airplane … I want to ride on an airplane … I want to ride on an airplane … (Repeats every 5 seconds.)
RING! RING! The car phone automatically picks up. (Yes, in 2002 we had a dashboard-mounted car phone.)
Bob: Hello?
Dianne: Hi, sweetie.
Bob: Do you have the kids?
Bob: Oh, I guess you have them.
Gabbey: Mom! Gina kicked me!
Gina: Gabbey hit!
Bob: Is it going to be a martini night?
Dianne: Yes, dear. It’s going to be a martini night. With extra olives.
Bob: Okay. I’ll stop by the liquor store … Again. CLICK.
Gina: I want juicy … I want juicy … I want juicy …
Gabbey: Mom, do roads ever end?
Dianne: Yes, dear. It’s just this drive that goes on forever.

Eight years … wow. What a difference. It’s time for me to get started on A Slice of Salerni Life 2010, and I’m hoping for inspiration soon!

7 Responses to This is How Traditions Start …

  1. salarsenッ says:

    Hah, can I relate to this! Great idea. I’ve done a little summary letter of our past year as a family, inserting that in the Christmas cards. I have’t even started my cards this year. Ugh…

  2. Candyland says:

    So funny! I want to be in your family for Christmas, lol.

  3. Linda G. says:

    LOL! Now, that’s my kind of Christmas letter. I totally relate to the martini sentiment. 😉

  4. At 11, 8, and 6 yo, my kids aren’t better. That’s why van’s were invented. It least it keeps them semi-separated. 😀

  5. mshatch says:

    omg, that is hilarious, I can so picture you driving with these two little girls, hear that little voice get stuck in that groove and how very patient you were.

  6. Lenny Lee* says:

    hi miss dianne! that picture is pretty cool. i like family pictures. wow you sure got lots of patience on that ride. if that was me and my sister in that car my brother would of turned round an drove right smack to the airport and dumped up out and said “adios! hope you have fun in south america!” ha ha. i could like to be in your family so i could get that christmas note.
    …hugs from lenny

  7. I love the picture of you and your girls. So very precious.