Monday, December 21, 2009

Me and My Christmas Cards

Right after pictures with Santa, my most favorite semi-secular part of Christmas is Christmas cards. Sending AND Receiving.

There is a science to this. Here's how I do mine:

After getting married, I sent Thank You notes and then Christmas cards to all the folks that generously sent us wedding gifts. After a few years, I weeded that list down to the folks that usually responded to my Christmas cards. Family and friends, of course, remain. Since I've had kids, my Christmas card always includes a picture of the kiddos.
So I send some cards to my parents' friends so they can see how Lulu and Granddaddy's Texas Babies are growing and how much Sam looks like Lulu did when she was a little girl.

I always order the custom-printed cards. I have our family name and the year printed on the cards. I have all my addresses in a MS Access database and use this to print address labels each year.

Even though the cards are printed with our family name and date, I ALWAYS personally sign our first names and often pen a short message. On 120+ cards. Each year.

And while I don't talk to many of these folks all year long and current contact may be limited to a rare email and holiday greetings, I savor taking the time to sign the cards and think of each of these people/families that have had an impact on my life. The memories of my heart are re-visited each year when I do my Christmas cards. These cards are never a task to be completed but a treasured recollection of all the people I love as well as relationships and experiences I have to be thankful for.

Though I am not a regular Christmas card letter writer,
some years I have included letters. When there is tale to tell, I tell it.

So now that you know how I do it - here's my scoring system on receiving cards. And yes, I have received some form of all of these at some point in time.

You send me a card +1000 points
It is pre-printed and you sign it personally +25
It is pre-printed and you do not sign it -25 points
It has a picture of your kids, dogs, or ducks (you know who you are) +50 points
It has a picture of your kids, dogs, or ducks & they are really cute +100 points
It has a picture of your entire family on it
It has a picture of
your entire family on it, you still look 20 years old & haven't gained a pound -500 points
It is not pre-printed & you sign it +40 points
You write a short note +75 points
You make me a Handmade card +200 points
Your card has sparkles (Bling) on it +50

Card artwork designed by you or your child +100 points
You send me a Christmas letter +25 points
You send me a Christmas letter - it is humorous & informative +50 points
You send me a Christmas letter & you brag about your new car/house & brilliant trust fund kids -100 points (seriously, if you can't tell it like it is, don't tell it at all!)
You send me a Christmas card with your kids in front of the Eiffel Tower BONUS +250
You include Cash +1 point for every dollar

I do love Christmas and the mail that goes along with it. It's the one time of year I race the kids to the mailbox.

I love it! Love it! Love it!

I love all the folks I send cards to.

I especially love all of you that send me cards. Particularly the ones where they are homemade, they sparkle, you're funny, your kids are cute, your age shows and you send me money!

Keep 'em coming!


Michelle said...

I wish I was as efficient as you. I ordered cards this year....they are still sitting on my piano :(

Reg said...

Merry Christmas! I didn't send out cards this year but you woudln't have gotten one anyway since I don't have you mailing address. If you still have my email, send it to me and I'll add you to my list for next year, provided that I have a real job and the income to buy the damn things!! Have a happy new year!

Big Pissy said...

Wow! You ARE efficient! :)

I quit sending out cards several years ago.

I know. I'm a grinch. ;-)

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