Posted by Donna MacMeans Dec 23 2012, 1:56 am
Only a few days left till Christmas Day, so how ‘re you doing?
Tree up and decorated? check
Christmas gifts purchased? check
Presents wrapped? check
Cookies, candies, cakes made? check
Christmas cards mailed? oh crap…
Of all the Christmas preparations, signing and mailing Christmas cards is one of my least favorite things. I love to receive Christmas cards but sending them out is something else. First, there’s the choosing of the card. Should one go religious, cute, sparkly…? Have to admit, I like the sparkly . Then there’s signing them all and tracking down mailing addresses. It’s a wonder any go out.
The first commercial Christmas card was produced in England in 1843. That’s it on the right. Commercially produced cards didn’t take hold in America till 1875. They’ve varied in popularity over the years but I think the current trend is heading down. According to Wikipedia, American households received an estimated 29 Christmas cards in 1987. This number dropped to 20 in 2004. I’d bet it’s even lower now. Postage costs and lack of time have taken a toll. Sometimes, just signing one’s name over and over is a bit of a chore. (sigh)
But receiving them is pure joy!
I’ve seen fancy boxes in which to keep Christmas cards, but I like to hang mine on the doors in the kitchen. That way I get to look at them frequently, rereading the messages inside, revisiting the pictures of the newest family members again and again. (I must be doing better that the average Joe as I’ve recieved 33 cards thus far this year. This number doesn’t include the number of cards that will show up AFTER Christmas
I like the photo cards. Sometimes this is the only way I get to see how the kids are growing each year. Have you noticed how photo cards generally only come from people with small kids? I don’t get many from seniors with a “see how we’ve aged” photo.
Let me give a shout out to my international friends who sent season’s greetings over such a far distance. Although I don’t save stamps, I like to see the postal stamps from different countries and how different countries depict Christmas. Here’s a card from Australia where the temperatures are decidedly different from the snow and ice here. If this card was to represent the climate in Columbus, Santa would be blue and the wave would be white.
Hats off to all those who sent handmade Christmas cards. Those are indeed the most creative. Heck, I have difficulty getting the storebought cards signed, addressed and mailed to family, friends, and clients. But I do appreciate that someone took the time to make the card to send to me.
By far, the most unique card I receive each year comes from my best friend in high school. She’s a talented artist who has traveled extensively in India. Every year she has Christmas cards made from her artwork. Hmmm….maybe I should do this with my book covers? After all, the heroine on the cover of Redeeming the Rogue is wearing a green dress. And what conveys the spirit of peace and love than a torrid kiss . My friend’s painting this year is titled “Miss Ohio.”
Have you noticed an increase in computer cards this year? Some of those are really impressive and I love the animation. I certainly can understand the convenience and postage savings of a digital card, but I can’t put them up on my door Bummer.
So how about you? Are you a Christmas card person? My niece from Oklahoma is here with me and she’s shaking her head no. With two little ones she says she doesn’t have the time to send them out. I think I’d probably live in a year round world of guilt if I received cards and didn’t send any out. But that’s me.
Do you have a preference for traditional or digital cards either sent or received? Do you prefer religious cards or just festive ones? Are you one to read a long Christmas letter? I like to read them but I’ve never written one. Let’s chat and share some season’s greetings.
As we’re approaching the end of our 12 Days of Bandita Christmas celebration, be sure to comment to be eligible for our daily Bandita prize as well as our SUPER-DUPER GRAND prize giveaway Christmas Day. There’s enough books in that prize package to fill Santa’s sleigh! For today’s giveaway, I’ll add a Celtic Christmas ornament and a copy of The Casanova Code to the 12 days prize of a rooster ornament or a dragon cookie cutter and a sugar cookie mix.
Speaking of munchies – here’s an easy appetizer to make for your holiday celebration
2 (8 0z) cream cheese
1 pkg. dry Ranch dressing (I use the Buttermilk package)
2-3 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup diced red pepper
1 small can sliced black olives (diced)
4 to 6 – 12″ soft flour tortillas
Mix the first three ingredients and then spread on the tortilla shells. Sprinkle the other ingredients on top. Roll the tortilla up into a cylinder. Wrap in saran wrap and store in the refrigerator overnight. Slice and serve (the ends I sacrifice to the chef).
Posted in 12 Bandita Days of Christmas, Christmas cards, Donna MacMeans