There was snow on the car this morning, which feels like a personal attack.  I know I’m supposed to appreciate the unseasonably warm weather we had for early November, but I’m not ready for winter. Christmas is coming, though, and all of the joy that comes with that. The vague plan is to get a tree, for the kids. A real one that we saw down, etc. It was pretty cold out today at this morning’s school drop off so I’m not super gung-ho about the mission right now, to go off into the woods and drag back a tree and complaining kids, but it’s going to be Christmas, pandemic or not. I suppose this is the one time when not having had a normal childhood thus far as a yardstick is a good thing for our family. Caleb has never known a Christmas season where he’s had a tree inside the living room, with...presents underneath? For him?? And maybe possibly a tiny, battered gift for Naomi?? I’m not sure if it will be a treat or more cause for suspicion. 


I’m sending out Christmas cards again this year. I usually do, although some years it’s more hectic than others, getting the last batch into the mailbox mid-December, keeping my fingers crossed things will arrive before the New Year’s, at the very least. If they don’t, that’s okay, too—it’s the thought that counts, right? We’ve got some card sets online this year. 


It’s been nice to agonize a bit over which cards to send, to fuss a bit over my address list. The earlier, the better! Trying to cross things off my to-do list. More than normal people living in houses and condos and apartments, vendors tend to move around, as I guess we would know, so I’m trying to update the addresses, add the new ones. 


I still have my physical address book which I mostly use for snail mail (sending out birthday cards or letters) throughout the year, but now I keep my Christmas card address list in google drive. I know! I know. I know. Scandalous and pathetic. What sort of troglodyte am I trying to be here. 


Early in our days at 906 Dundas West a customer found it hilarious that I was using a computer to check her out while selling her stationery, but you know what, big brother has to keep track of taxes somehow. In all seriousness I recommend it highly for this task. Having an address list specifically for Christmas cards in a digital drive that you can access every year without scrounging through drawers is so helpful. You can organize recipients by category, you add and change things very easily, like addresses, names you’d like to include on the card, you can print it out every year and cross people off as you go, you can see exactly how many cards you’ll need and what kind (for example, if you send different cards to vendors versus personal, if you know certain people celebrate different holidays and you want to send them cards that honour that).


It’s a good year to send out cards. It always is, really, and certainly if there’s a lot going on for you this year, as I imagine there is for a lot of you, you shouldn’t add to your list if you don’t need to. Is it a matter of etiquette? Sure, but I think these days, in this era, it’s not even a ‘forgivable breach’ if you don’t send cards out; hardly anyone will even notice. And perhaps that’s all the more reason to send them out, if you’ve got the inclination, the fancy fountain pens, the seasonal postage stamps. It’s nice to remember people. The act of sending them good wishes for the season and the year ahead is perhaps the closest thing we’ll have to a self-fulfilling prophecy as we finally wind down this endless year.

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December 03, 2020 — Liz Chan


Lisa RR

Lisa RR said:

That soy sauce card is fantastic! From Toronto?

Yes this is a year I think the more cards sent and received the merrier. And I agree no pressure if life is not conducive to sending cards.p this month. There’s Lunar New Year, Tet, Spring Solstice, Easter or no particular reason required to send a card in 2021.

It seems really strange but I’m going to have to order Lunar New Year cards online. (But what if the pink envelopes don’t smell like soap? I don’t know why but for many years the envelopes always smelled like soap. Well I guess I do know why – the Dundas West bookstore must store the envelopes near soap ….)

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