Saturday, December 11, 2010

It’s Christmas Card time again. Every year I have mixed emotions about this ritual. I love to receive cards and know that someone cares enough to include me on their list. I also enjoy sending cards because I reflect on each of the names on my list and about what those folks have meant in my life. It’s the process of sending the cards that gives me a little pain. To begin with, it has become fairly expensive. The cost of the card and postage, plus a photograph of the grandkids, becomes a little steep compared to the days of the three-cent stamp.

It’s not the cost that bothers me the most. Keeping up with the address list requires a full time secretary plus a private detective to keep track of everybody. I can’t believe how often folks move, especially the younger generation. Of around 250 addresses I on my Christmas list only a couple of people have had the same address since I started the list almost fifty years ago. At my age, many of my acquaintances have lost a spouse or obtained a new one, so I am constantly altering the list to avoid sending a card to somebody who has passed on or has been exchanged for a new partner.

We attach a photograph of the grandkids in our card. We have done this since they were tiny infants. A picture of an infant is always good. The infant is like a dog when it comes to photography, all the pictures are keepers. We have seven grandkids and it has become progressively more difficult to get the perfect picture. My son is great with a camera, but it takes him about a hundred shots to get the perfect one. Someone is usually looking away, has their eyes closed, or is squinting at the sun. It’s a big job just to get all the kids in one place at the same time, especially since we now have teenagers.. Thank God for digital photography, it make picking the perfect shot a little easier.

We keep many of our cards for years and sometimes look at them and just reminisce about friends, some of whom are long gone. Thinking about these folks, who are no longer here, makes Christmas a little sad, but I am cheered when I open the new batch of cards for the current year.

I plan on keeping up the ritual of the Christmas Card exchange to maintain contact with folks I care a lot about. I also want to do my part in keeping the postal service in business. Christmas Cards and junk mail is about their only business these days. I like the e-mail cards, but there is nothing like getting that piece of real mail at the post office.

Sorting through the Christmas Cards is one of my favorite activities on the porch this time of year. We even have a Christmas tree on the porch that helps keep us in the spirit. All this Christmas activity on the porch puts me in a positive frame of mind and the deer eating my yard almost becomes tolerable. I just pretend they are part of Santa’s herd. Christmas does make you a little crazy.


Blogger Dad said...

JLM posted this comment made by Calvin Bowden

Hope I'm doing this right. With regard to your comments about Chaistmas cards, want to say that we share some of the same thoughts. Too expensive. Why send them to those we see or talk to often? Each year we say we aren't going to send them, and then the cards start coming in from friends, relatives. We can't just ignore people who have sent us such nice cards, can we? So we continue th4e practice.Perhaps we sould place note inside ours that suggests we should consider discontinuing the custom.

9:11 PM  
Blogger jeff ludwick said...

All I know is that I still enjoy the few cards that I get, especially the ones with hand written notes. They are one of the last special things of Christmas that political correctness has not taken from us....

5:48 AM  

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