Sending Holiday Cards Off
As we round out the year into one final jolly celebration, I’m thinking about our Christmas and holiday cards for the year. The display in the shop seems to be a bit more comprehensive than is online right now, so please come and visit us and say hello. Or otherwise we should be getting everything online soon.
It is a joy and a blessing and my cup runneth over as the list of people to give cards to grows every year. New vendors, teachers, old friends, pen friends, people whose paths have crossed with ours, adults pouring into our children’s lives.
I wish I was more strategic, but I can say that the best thing I ever did that I thank myself for every year is to make a Google doc (I know, I know) that I update every year. Technology! Agh! Who am I? But as someone who is chronically disorganized, I strongly recommend this. Every single year I wonder at the foresight of the stranger who put together this list in the first place.
I know people who use address books, and I myself have an address book that I use for pen pals, but my doc is specifically for everyone I need to send holiday cards to, so I don’t need to compile a new list every year from my paper address book. Each year, I check it to add addresses or other details, and then print it off. I cross names off my paper list as I go, and sometimes add details to it as they come up. When I’m done, I update the list digitally before I shred it. The Google doc is extremely helpful because it leaves no wiggle room for trying to interpret my bad handwriting, and allows me to move things around before printing (all the vendors in one place, alphabetically, people Jon needs to send cards to, etc.). I can easily check if I’m missing anyone and make sure I have added the addresses I need to add, and update any old addresses. To not have to come up with everyone who needs a card, every year is one less mental exercise that I’m extremely grateful to not have to do.
As the kids’ classes are beginning to wrap up for the term, their final classes taking place sometime mid-December, their teachers are first on the list for cards and gifts, but I’m also looking forward to settling into writing the cards that go into the post. There is something meditative and reflective about taking the time to think of someone and to write down words to convey some thrust into their lives. You are thinking of this person! Not just thinking of them: you are thinking of them, and selecting a card for them, and writing down some good wishes for them, and then sending it off into the world to arrive at their doorstep. You will never regret sending that card, making that connection again.
Most years I have a little card writing session involving the kids and stickers and popcorn and chaos, but as a family and as a shop, we have a stack to get through and the kids are hooligans.
Finding a quiet hour or two, alone, with my cards and stationery supplies and wax seals, and with snacks and a cup of tea and 98 Degrees in the background, is my own little holiday tradition.