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Quill

I’m considering giving up Christmas cards

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I’m a stalwart. But I’m becoming disillusioned. We don’t get many anymore and they are pretty much always from the same twenty families. Some people whom I always send to never, ever send themselves and, while I’m not giving cards specifically to get cards in return, it does begin to feel like a giant waste of effort, time and money. AFAIK, most people put them in the trash in a month or two, if they keep them even that long. *I* don’t do that and I LOVE getting cards, especially photo cards, from others and literally do keep them for years and years and years. But it’s dawning on me that probably the large majority of people who get my thoughtfully-designed cards every year probably could not care less. 

One thing I like about the process of making the cards is that it is a sort of family history record. Now that 2/3 of my kids are semi-launched, the cards now are a small collage of representative photos, since getting everyone here for a family photo ends up being tricky. Maybe I will still do cards this year but will drastically reduce the recipient list to somewhere around 25, most of whom will send me cards as well or, as I know in a couple of cases (like with some Aunties and such), I am confident they appreciate them and love to see how the family is growing on. 

What do you think, Hivers? 

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Ah see we view the cards as our family newsletter to people who know us, especially those who we don’t have nearby anymore.  Since I don’t use Facebook that way and don’t send our anything else it’s where kid updates, birth announcements, etc happen.  A good chunk of our friends also do Christmas cards, which I love, but I don’t think we would stop the letter and card even if nobody reciprocated because I always hear from them how much they enjoyed reading our updates.  So they’re grateful, even if they don’t send out one, themselves.

We basically type a letter with pictures up and fold it into a standard card of our choice 🙂

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Quill, 

I could have written your post. I am overly sad about Christmas cards going away as a tradition, but it does seem we've reached the end of an era. We still write our end of the year letter, because those letters are our family record for us to look back on and enjoy one day. Who knows, maybe my children will even read them, or show them to their children! We've got a password protected family website where they are all kept, so there's no clutter! I have photos from throughout the year along with the letter. But last year was the last year for us to send cards. Booo....

 

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I like the tradition, but we don’t do cards.  We did early in our marriage, but not anymore.  It seems the only ones we get now are from businesses like our tax people or the dentist office and such.    Stamps cost a lot when you multiply it by xx.   Plus, I think Facebook and before that, MySpace, contributed to the Christmas card fade.     Maybe you could just pick out say 5-10 families and drop the rest?

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Well, please don't hate me, but I hate cards.  I try to remember to send one to my grandmother, because she *really* likes them, and places a value on the fulfillment of that obligation. But generally, I don't send cards *specifically* because I don't want people to send them to me.  If someone that I have a hard time keep in touch with were to send me a personal Christmas letter or personally designed card specifically to communicate with me, I would find that touching.................and then in a month or two, I would still probably pitch it.  I just don't keep mountains of cards or letters around.  Part of this is how I have always been.  But when FIL passed, that really solidified it for me.  We had to go through all the papers and dressers and chests and so on.  MIL's hope chest was FULL of cards and letters, 95% of them from people we didn't know.   SIL kept one card that FIL had sent to MIL decades ago, with a very sweet and heartfelt lovenote, but the other several pounds of cards, we pitched. 

So, IMO, send the cards to those people that you know will appreciate them.  And don't worry about the rest.  People who don't appreciate them aren't likely to be upset by not receiving on.  

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I am fortunate that one of my daughters loves doing this and has kept it going. She has found an opportunity to get a photo of at least some of us each year. We do still have many older friends that are not online at all, so they appreciate getting the photo. We hand them out to people at our church. We receive very few in return. Once she moves on, that will be the end of it for us. But my oldest is a missionary and we get to send out their end-of-the-year letters, so I will be involved in a Christmas mailing of some type for awhile.

 

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7 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Well, please don't hate me, but I hate cards.  I try to remember to send one to my grandmother, because she *really* likes them, and places a value on the fulfillment of that obligation. But generally, I don't send cards *specifically* because I don't want people to send them to me.  If someone that I have a hard time keep in touch with were to send me a personal Christmas letter or personally designed card specifically to communicate with me, I would find that touching.................and then in a month or two, I would still probably pitch it.  I just don't keep mountains of cards or letters around.  Part of this is how I have always been.  But when FIL passed, that really solidified it for me.  We had to go through all the papers and dressers and chests and so on.  MIL's hope chest was FULL of cards and letters, 95% of them from people we didn't know.   SIL kept one card that FIL had sent to MIL decades ago, with a very sweet and heartfelt lovenote, but the other several pounds of cards, we pitched. 

So, IMO, send the cards to those people that you know will appreciate them.  And don't worry about the rest.  People who don't appreciate them aren't likely to be upset by not receiving on.  

Well, let me play Devil’s Advocate on the bolded for a minute. I personally don’t intermingle the incredibly precious with the pedestrian, so, if I died right now and people had to go through cards and stuff, it would actually be pretty easy. There is, for example, a pile of cards and letters, bound through one corner, for, say, 2010. If my survivors don’t find anything interesting about that, chuck it right in the dumpster. 

I do have a storage bin with the incredibly precious, irreplaceably sentimental cards and letters in it, like a letter my sister, who is now deceased, sent me when I lost my baby. But no one surviving me would have any doubts that that storage basket is full of the most precious things of all. 

 

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I stopped doing cards perhaps 10 years ago. I still wanted to do them, and would even get the photos of the kids printed on cards, but I wasn't getting them sent out. I tried organizing them early and sending them out right after Thanksgiving, but I found I had trouble making that happen, too. After a couple of years of ending up with the stack of unsent cards, I decided just to stop doing it.

I regret it, a bit, now, because I'm also not on Facebook, and the Christmas greetings were my only connection to some of my old friends. When I stopped sending cards, people stopped sending them to me, and now I get very few. Many of those connections are gone, now, and I never hear from them.

As long as you won't regret not GETTING cards any more, I think it's fine to stop sending them. But realize that once you stop, others will take you off of their lists.

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I love sending and receiving *real* mail!!  I also have loved ones who are letter carriers.  I would hate to see the usps go away so I send cards!

I love getting cards but I still recycle or craft most of them eventually.  It isn't a sign of not caring.  The ones I do save have handwriting that I love to look back on or will some day.  Hopefully, one day someone will recognize they were meaningful to me and not be angry with me for keeping them.

I vote send the cards.  Real mail is a tradition worth keeping!

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2 minutes ago, Storygirl said:

I stopped doing cards perhaps 10 years ago. I still wanted to do them, and would even get the photos of the kids printed on cards, but I wasn't getting them sent out. I tried organizing them early and sending them out right after Thanksgiving, but I found I had trouble making that happen, too. After a couple of years of ending up with the stack of unsent cards, I decided just to stop doing it.

I regret it, a bit, now, because I'm also not on Facebook, and the Christmas greetings were my only connection to some of my old friends. When I stopped sending cards, people stopped sending them to me, and now I get very few. Many of those connections are gone, now, and I never hear from them.

As long as you won't regret not GETTING cards any more, I think it's fine to stop sending them. But realize that once you stop, others will take you off of their lists.

We should all let your experience inspire us to not cut people from our lists if they don't send to us.  You never know why people stop and Christmas cards should be a desire to spread good wishes even if none get sent back.

Just my two cents!

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Our family sends a handful of thank you notes at Thanksgiving.  We think of people or places we'd like to thank and send them out.

One year we thanked a zoo and the director wrote us back! (Not expected but fun!)

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7 minutes ago, Storygirl said:

I stopped doing cards perhaps 10 years ago. I still wanted to do them, and would even get the photos of the kids printed on cards, but I wasn't getting them sent out. I tried organizing them early and sending them out right after Thanksgiving, but I found I had trouble making that happen, too. After a couple of years of ending up with the stack of unsent cards, I decided just to stop doing it.

I regret it, a bit, now, because I'm also not on Facebook, and the Christmas greetings were my only connection to some of my old friends. When I stopped sending cards, people stopped sending them to me, and now I get very few. Many of those connections are gone, now, and I never hear from them.

As long as you won't regret not GETTING cards any more, I think it's fine to stop sending them. But realize that once you stop, others will take you off of their lists.

I do know that will happen. It is the main reason I have kept sending them over the last several years, though I continue to feel conflicted about it. I even sent them last year when I was recovering from Breast Cancer because I was afraid that if I don’t, the tiny well will dry up completely and the tradition will end. 

But OTOH, I really don’t want anyone to think that card I sent them is just another annoying piece of junk mail they have to do something with. 

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2 minutes ago, happi duck said:

Our family sends a handful of thank you notes at Thanksgiving.  We think of people or places we'd like to thank and send them out.

One year we thanked a zoo and the director wrote us back! (Not expected but fun!)

What a wonderful tradition! I love that! 

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I personally don't care to get Christmas cards. A letter from someone specifically written to me is a wonderful thing. But generic Christmas card with a picture attached just means nothing to me. If we are close enough that I care to have a picture of your family displayed in my house, chances are it is already in my house. If it isn't on my wall it is on my computer somewhere that I can look at when I want, which I do.

I have never sent cards but do get cards from people. I do save and display some because they are people who I love dearly but don't get to see often. But for example, getting one from dh's cousin who never talks to us even when we are in the same room just reminds me why I don't like them.

For you, if you enjoy sending them out just do it. Maybe cull it down to people you know would genuinely love it. But don't give up a tradition you love because the general feel is that it is going away. I know many people who still love them. My mom displays her cards for monthsh

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38 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Well, please don't hate me, but I hate cards.  I try to remember to send one to my grandmother, because she *really* likes them, and places a value on the fulfillment of that obligation. But generally, I don't send cards *specifically* because I don't want people to send them to me.  If someone that I have a hard time keep in touch with were to send me a personal Christmas letter or personally designed card specifically to communicate with me, I would find that touching.................and then in a month or two, I would still probably pitch it.  I just don't keep mountains of cards or letters around.  Part of this is how I have always been.  But when FIL passed, that really solidified it for me.  We had to go through all the papers and dressers and chests and so on.  MIL's hope chest was FULL of cards and letters, 95% of them from people we didn't know.   SIL kept one card that FIL had sent to MIL decades ago, with a very sweet and heartfelt lovenote, but the other several pounds of cards, we pitched. 

So, IMO, send the cards to those people that you know will appreciate them.  And don't worry about the rest.  People who don't appreciate them aren't likely to be upset by not receiving on.  

I'm with you and just have never gotten the endearment of cards of any sort. I have always looked at it as a personality thing. I'm just not a "things" type of sentimental person. I also don't like genealogy, or reading old diaries, or scrapbooking- I feel like there is a crisp divide between my friends like me and my friends that aren't and LOVE this type of thing. I don't think there is anything wrong on either side- it's just personalities as much as time period maybe. In the past maybe there was just more pressure on people like me to send them as an ettiquette thing so I did do it for a while (even though I hated doing it and saw it as a chore, not a pleasure). 

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Last year someone sort of lightly made fun of us for sending them a card and saying how old fashioned it was.  I definitly won't bother them with one this year! LOL

I'm still going to send them to old friends.  I love anything personal that comes in the mail.  

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I cut way back on Christmas cards a long time ago. I used to send out quite a few, but IDK. I just sort of backed off. I might send 20, to old friends and family members.

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37 minutes ago, Quill said:

What a wonderful tradition! I love that! 

Me too! I’m making a note for next year!

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I will say that getting Christmas cards doesn't annoy me and I don't view it as junk mail. They just aren't something that is important to me. 

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I gave up Christmas cards one year when I was grieving and depressed and needed to cut back to only the basics to survive Christmas. Last year I got one Christmas card and that was from my mom. I do sort of miss the tradition. As others have said, sending a yearly letter was like a record of our family life. I've always liked getting Christmas letters telling about what's going on in the life of far off (or even geographically close) friends or photo cards so I can see how people have changed or grown. I dislike getting a card that's just signed. I know it's still a sign that someone was thinking of me, but it's always a bit of a disappointment when there isn't something more personal from the sender.

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I have cut way back over the past couple of years.  I do not write a year end letter, but do photo cards.  I get some in return, and I love getting those, but still send to family members and close friends even if they don't send one in return.  I will probably stop when the boys are out of high school in another 3 or 4 years.

 

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I am on my 15th year of really wanting to do Christmas cards, but finding it too stressful/expensive/time consuming to actually do them. I love getting cards from people. No, I don't save them. But I do love the updates. I wish I was better about reciprocating. 

If you are going to send out cards, do it for you because you like it. If it's causing you stress, don't do it.

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We send cards to family and very close friends only. I like writing notes, even just a few lines, so I buy boxes of cards and just write some out; photo cards have been a fail for us for a few  years now; one kid hates being photographed, I always hate the way I look, and it's just so much trouble.  I do enjoy getting photo cards but I admit I kinda dislike it when it's just a photo and the printed greeting and printed names of the senders, with nothing personal in it at all. 

Edited by marbel
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Most of the Christmas cards I send anymore go to foreign countries where we have sponsored kids (And I don't usually get all cards to all the correspondents. Just the financials). It seems more criticial and "Gets DOne" to send to them than the cards I have sitting at home from a couple of years when they didn't get sent out at all -- though they were purchased.  I like the idea of spending Thanksgiving weekend being thankful and getting this together.

 

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I am a grief-stricken, anxious, depressed person.  The past few years have been really bad.

I kept my card tradition because it's important to me.  I did, however, cut letters and photos because disastrous years are not pleasant to revisit.

Please, please don't even slightly judge the cards without a personal touch.  Even if you think you would, there's no way you know why it isn't personal.  Heck, even if it isn't personal because "this is how mom always did it" that's still a greeting!

I shared not because I think trauma is the reason for every preprinted card but I do think that choosing to just accept a greeting in any form is good for humanity. 

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1 hour ago, Æthelthryth the Texan said:

I'm with you and just have never gotten the endearment of cards of any sort. I have always looked at it as a personality thing. I'm just not a "things" type of sentimental person. I also don't like genealogy, or reading old diaries, or scrapbooking- I feel like there is a crisp divide between my friends like me and my friends that aren't and LOVE this type of thing. I don't think there is anything wrong on either side- it's just personalities as much as time period maybe. In the past maybe there was just more pressure on people like me to send them as an ettiquette thing so I did do it for a while (even though I hated doing it and saw it as a chore, not a pleasure). 

Yep, I agree. I'm not a card person, either. I don't send Christmas cards, and while it is nice to receive them, I have never kept any. In fact, I usually toss them as soon as I have opened and read them. Nothing against the sender - I just don't hang on to things like that.

I agree with previous posters that if it is something you enjoy, keep it up. If it feels like a burden, let it go.

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I think you could perhaps contact people on your recipient list and ask? 

I don’t think long term keeping of cards is necessary.  Appreciating one during the season seems enough to me.

 

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I view Christmas cards in a different light.

Once a year, I send cards out to people reaffirming our relationship---I'm thinking of you, you're important to me, best wishes. I ESPECIALLY find it valuable to send cards out to those more distant relationships.  I don't need them to hold on to the card---I just want to them to have that brief moment of remembering our friendship/family relationship in a positive light.

It's ok if other people aren't in a position to send cards or don't have the desire to do so.

I do pre-printed photo cards. If I have time to add a note, I do. I'm starting early this year so hopefully most people will get a note.

I expect that I will only receive 3-4 cards in return. 

 

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3 hours ago, Storygirl said:

I stopped doing cards perhaps 10 years ago. I still wanted to do them, and would even get the photos of the kids printed on cards, but I wasn't getting them sent out. I tried organizing them early and sending them out right after Thanksgiving, but I found I had trouble making that happen, too. After a couple of years of ending up with the stack of unsent cards, I decided just to stop doing it.

I regret it, a bit, now, because I'm also not on Facebook, and the Christmas greetings were my only connection to some of my old friends. When I stopped sending cards, people stopped sending them to me, and now I get very few. Many of those connections are gone, now, and I never hear from them.

As long as you won't regret not GETTING cards any more, I think it's fine to stop sending them. But realize that once you stop, others will take you off of their lists.

This is my situation as well, except that I am on Facebook. 

I stopped for several reasons, including time constraints, the fact that my yearly letter was hard to make cheery (at one point, kids' special needs made it hard to write a heartfelt and genuine letter without being too free with information about our kids), and the circumstances around the holidays were just difficult (DH's work schedule, having to deal with my MIL). 

Also, my DH never helped nurture connections with far-flung friends and relatives, and by the time I figured this out, I had probably overextended myself keeping up and trying to not offend (pictures to be included were a huge, huge issue with his mother). If he wants his family to be in the loop, he can make some effort. 

Okay, and getting accurate and up-to-date addresses...ugh. Thankfully my mom would often forward her file to me that had her address labels on it, lol! 

I would like to be less behind and overwhelmed and start a tradition of the yearly non-Christmas letter/card/photo card instead, but we'll see.

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I stopped over a decade ago.  For me the point was to check in and let people see what was going on in the family and how the kids were growing.  I get that check-in fix more regularly  and efficiently on FB or through email.  I also think it's nicer to see candid holiday photos of people during the holidays than the posed photos that are taken in the fall.  I don't feel anyone is missing out . . . the sentiment is there . . . it's just not on cardstock.

ETA: If someone DOES send me a card, I display it, forget it's displayed, and leave it up FOREVER.  Last year's holiday card from my SIL is still on my fridge because it has a cute collage of her little kids and because I neglected to take it down.  I don't get offended when people finally stop sending cards through the mail because it seems inevitable.  

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2 hours ago, mom2scouts said:

I gave up Christmas cards one year when I was grieving and depressed and needed to cut back to only the basics to survive Christmas. Last year I got one Christmas card and that was from my mom. I do sort of miss the tradition. As others have said, sending a yearly letter was like a record of our family life. I've always liked getting Christmas letters telling about what's going on in the life of far off (or even geographically close) friends or photo cards so I can see how people have changed or grown. I dislike getting a card that's just signed. I know it's still a sign that someone was thinking of me, but it's always a bit of a disappointment when there isn't something more personal from the sender.

I write a little note or include something personal, unless the person is too distant for me to have something personal, in which case, I write something like, “Wishing you a wonderful holiday and a great 2020!” Or something. 

I will say, though, I have not always done this. I started doing it maybe five or so years ago because the card tradition was dying off then and I was striving to make it more personal. 

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I'm generally not a "things" person either, but I love the tradition of sending Christmas cards.  Maybe I'm of a slightly older generation so it's more a thing?  I send about 85/year, and probably get back around the same amount.  I only keep the ones I get for a year, so I can remember what people wrote, jot down new addresses, etc.  I've lived in a lot of different places and have made such sweet friends around the world that I rarely if ever have the chance to see these days, but we enjoy keeping in touch and seeing how each other is doing.  Friends represent slices of my life, and Christmas is a nice time to remember those friends and those slices. 

I DON'T usually send cards to people I see all the time.  They're for friends/family I rarely see -- usually because of distance -- but want to keep up some type of connection with.  I don't do Facebook.

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1 hour ago, Pen said:

I think you could perhaps contact people on your recipient list and ask? 

I don’t think long term keeping of cards is necessary.  Appreciating one during the season seems enough to me.

 

I don’t think it’s *necessary*, no. But it made me start to think why do I bother spending time taking, editing, choosing photos, arranging them, choosing the design, paying for them, addressing them, writing a little note on each of them, paying for postage - all these things, if a lot of people (I don’t know if it IS a lot of people, but it feels like it sometimes) could take it or leave it and will shrug and say, “eh, I saw that picture of her kid on Facebook anyway.” 

I think most people would be loathe to say, “Yeah, don’t send me one,” even if they felt that way. I mean, I can’t imagine I would ever say that to someone if I felt that way. 

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1 minute ago, Quill said:

I don’t think it’s *necessary*, no. But it made me start to think why do I bother spending time taking, editing, choosing photos, arranging them, choosing the design, paying for them, addressing them, writing a little note on each of them, paying for postage - all these things, if a lot of people (I don’t know if it IS a lot of people, but it feels like it sometimes) could take it or leave it and will shrug and say, “eh, I saw that picture of her kid on Facebook anyway.” 

I think most people would be loathe to say, “Yeah, don’t send me one,” even if they felt that way. I mean, I can’t imagine I would ever say that to someone if I felt that way. 

 

You could say it in some way that indicates that you’ll keep sending to people if there are several who especially appreciate them, but if it’s a thing of the past that just causes people clutter problems you are ready to let it go. 

I think if you have people you send to who are in nursing homes or shut ins etc, especially if they don’t do FB, cards might be super appreciated even if only for a season.  Others may not. It just depends.

I do appreciate cards though I’m not good about sending them.  But I keep them on mantle for season, as reminder of people distant. , I don’t keep long term like you do.  

You perhaps could honestly say that with cancer you want to cut back on things that aren’t appreciated and maximize what is appreciated.  

Maybe some people would prefer a phone call to a card, if you asked.  

Or maybe several would turn out to treasure your cards whether for season or long term.  

 

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I don’t do cards very often anymore but when I was still doing them I transitioned to an Epiphany newsletter.  I found a graphic of the Wise Men’s trek with camels to print at the top of a one page info letter.  It took the job out of the very busy time before Christmas, which was nice.  Later we started celebrating the 12 days more, and I counted it good if we sent these during the Epiphany SEASON, which is any time before Ash Wednesday.  I keep thinking I should just send out a whole bunch of Valentines, but I somehow never do.

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We send cards but don’t have a standing list- we send to people who have been special to us during the year or who we know just need a card to cheer them. For instance, this year we moved and for 6 months I lived here while dh was living 900 miles away in our old place. Lots of people went out of their way to show us kindness- a friend loaned him a car for a couple months, a few made an effort to invite him for home cooked meals. And then we have a few friends who lost a spouse this year and we want to send them a note to let them know we’re thinking about them.  I know a few friends are struggling and even if they toss the card in the trash right away, I’m confident they enjoyed it when they read it. 

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I enjoy doing our photo card and letter. Dh's big hobby is photography, so he'll take a family photo of us sometime during the second half of the year. I like writing the letter and usually make it pretty humorous. I do keep it real; no one will be stressed out comparing their lives to our amazing accomplishments! The letter is as much for us as for our friends and family. We have all of our letters and photo cards in a Christmas scrapbook, and I also save photo cards from family. We all really enjoy going through our 2 Christmas albums and reading our family history. I could see scaling it down when the girls are out on their own. I might do a photo card and just a brief summary on the back of the card for instance. We send about 45 cards now--I could see that going down to 25 as we get older (it's more fun to get photo cards with cute little kids than old folks). So I would vote for scaling back rather than eliminating it--as long as you are enjoying the tradition.

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I love Christmas cards! We send out around 150 and receive 75-100 every year. I’m picking my cards this week, in fact.  Fun!

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I stopped doing cards perhaps 10 years ago. I still wanted to do them, and would even get the photos of the kids printed on cards, but I wasn't getting them sent out. I tried organizing them early and sending them out right after Thanksgiving, but I found I had trouble making that happen, too. After a couple of years of ending up with the stack of unsent cards, I decided just to stop doing it.

 

This is what happened to me, and I haven't done cards in a few years as a result.  I'd like to get back to it, but I do think I will keep my list short, to people who especially like or need a card, people I don't see so often, that sort of thing.

As for the cards themselves, I don't normally keep them and I don't think it's necessary. I don't have a place for keeping that amount of stuff, and I don't think that is the point.  I tape them to a door in my kitchen for the Christmas season and they are part of my decor, or occasionally I have a string to hand them on the fireplace. I also don't care about photos and such, those are rarely my favourite cards, I like ones that are beautiful or have some meaningful image or are funny.  When I have sent cards I go to a fair bit of effort to find ones that I think are really lovely.

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We love getting cards, and manage to get out a singularly plain card, usually one photo of the nearly-grown kids on front/another of the dog on back, most years. We aim for right after New Years; that seems to work best.  We keep a list, with mailing labels, which helps the production a good bit.  

We send out ~100 and get nearly that many back, not necessarily from the same people.  We keep them all in a pretty basket through about March, at which point we make a vague effort to add in people we've received FROM to the list... but the "system" isn't, er, foolproof.  And then we pitch all but the most cherishable.

If life is too hectic in a particular year, we just skip and pick up the following. It's not a big deal. But most years we manage.  

Love @happi duck 's tradition of "thank you" cards to people/organizations that have somehow touched us during the year.  :wub:

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I gave them up, but MISS THEM SO VERY MUCH!! We used to have a huge wreath of Christmas cards and I loved watching it grow each season as more and more cards came in. 😕

Our family/friends stopped sending them because "we post photos on facebook anyway...." but most of them now only post political stuff, forward funny memes, etc. Only a few still post photos and what they're up to. I feel farther from them than ever before! 😕 Seems most ppl are on facebook to keep up with their Candy Crush games or to keep up with whatever news/entertainment pages they follow. I think the rest gets swallowed up.

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I now only send cards to my elderly relatives. The younger generations do not give a flip about cards and often seem vaguely annoyed by the expectation they now have to reciprocate since you sent one.   

I'm also pretty sure I'm the last person in North America to send hand-written thank you cards for gifts. Instead of a thank you card, I get a text from my sisters saying "Thanks for my kid's gift!". I guess it's better than not hearing anything, (I'm looking at you, cousin K), but... *sigh*

I'm feeling old and cranky. 

Edited by MissLemon
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We stopped sending cards when we started at a parish because it was too big a deal to try to buy that many (we felt we couldn't play favorites and would have to send all parishoners a card). We did still did a Christmas newsletter for a few years, to far away friends and family, but stopped that when Ds was about 13 and the 10 years of addiction/residential treatment/mental illness started. We just couldn't put a happy face on our lives, and people couldn't bear the truths we were living. 

Now we live where we don't even get regular mail. We received three things last year--a box of presents from my mil, and two cards (nothing from my friends or my side of the family got through). I miss it. 

Edited by Chris in VA
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@Chris in VA

Quote

and people couldn't bear the truths we were living. 

I am so sorry. When I was in my twenties, I had no idea this was a thing that happens. And then I found out it is. 

I hope you have the support you need now. 

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Well, I LOVE LOVE LOVE getting Christmas cards!! Especially with photos on them. So I say send them! Heck, I'd love to exchange addresses and send you one and get one from you! But, full disclosure, I do throw them away after Epiphany. I just don't have space to store such things. (under 1500 sq ft for 6 people, 3 70lb dogs, 2 cats, and no basement/attic). But I still love love love getting them, even if I don't keep them forever. 

And I think it is fine to pare down the list to people you think really do care about getting them. 

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I want to add a more positive note (been feeling down and I know it shows)--

 

For several years, we collected our displayed Christmas cards after the holidays and put them in a basket on tbe table. At dinner, we pulled one and added a quick prayer for that family/person during grace. 

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20 hours ago, happi duck said:

Our family sends a handful of thank you notes at Thanksgiving.  We think of people or places we'd like to thank and send them out.

One year we thanked a zoo and the director wrote us back! (Not expected but fun!)

oh m y goodness! I was wanting to do a new thing with the kids this year for Thanksgiving - but not another silly craft. This is it!!!!! We are SO doing this! I have  card stock so we could even make our own!

18 hours ago, happi duck said:

I am a grief-stricken, anxious, depressed person.  The past few years have been really bad.

I kept my card tradition because it's important to me.  I did, however, cut letters and photos because disastrous years are not pleasant to revisit.

Please, please don't even slightly judge the cards without a personal touch.  Even if you think you would, there's no way you know why it isn't personal.  Heck, even if it isn't personal because "this is how mom always did it" that's still a greeting!

I shared not because I think trauma is the reason for every preprinted card but I do think that choosing to just accept a greeting in any form is good for humanity. 

True. I'm careful never to judge why someone does or doesn't send them, or whatever. It's not about me 🙂

17 hours ago, prairiewindmomma said:

I view Christmas cards in a different light.

Once a year, I send cards out to people reaffirming our relationship---I'm thinking of you, you're important to me, best wishes. I ESPECIALLY find it valuable to send cards out to those more distant relationships.  I don't need them to hold on to the card---I just want to them to have that brief moment of remembering our friendship/family relationship in a positive light.

It's ok if other people aren't in a position to send cards or don't have the desire to do so.

I do pre-printed photo cards. If I have time to add a note, I do. I'm starting early this year so hopefully most people will get a note.

I expect that I will only receive 3-4 cards in return. 

 

Yes! This is it - it's a "hey, I know we don't get to talk in our busy lives, but I'm thinking of you" thing. 

4 minutes ago, Chris in VA said:

I want to add a more positive note (been feeling down and I know it shows)--

 

For several years, we collected our displayed Christmas cards after the holidays and put them in a basket on tbe table. At dinner, we pulled one and added a quick prayer for that family/person during grace. 

Another wonderful tradition. Going to do this!

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16 hours ago, kbutton said:

This is my situation as well, except that I am on Facebook. 

I stopped for several reasons, including time constraints, the fact that my yearly letter was hard to make cheery...

I remember a thread last year or maybe a few years ago about how people hate Christmas letters. We do a yearly letter (although it frequently goes out around Valentine's Day or later) because that is how people we know keep up with us. We aren't good about emailing on a regular basis or calling. We're not on FB. But I do not feel the need to make the letter cheery. Some years the letter is funny, but not always.

@Quill If we have not heard back from someone for three years, we send a note (or printed label) that this will be the last letter they get from us unless we hear from them. Thus, they have an opportunity to say they still want to receive our greetings but can't, for whatever reason, reciprocate. Then we keep them on for three more years.

Our list has decreased tremendously from when we were first married. DH should be starting on the first draft around Thanksgiving....

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28 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

Well, I LOVE LOVE LOVE getting Christmas cards!! Especially with photos on them. So I say send them! Heck, I'd love to exchange addresses and send you one and get one from you! But, full disclosure, I do throw them away after Epiphany. I just don't have space to store such things. (under 1500 sq ft for 6 people, 3 70lb dogs, 2 cats, and no basement/attic). But I still love love love getting them, even if I don't keep them forever. 

And I think it is fine to pare down the list to people you think really do care about getting them. 

PM me; I’d be happy to exchange with you. 

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7 hours ago, MissLemon said:

I now only send cards to my elderly relatives. The younger generations do not give a flip about cards and often seem vaguely annoyed by the expectation they now have to reciprocate since you sent one.   

I'm also pretty sure I'm the last person in North America to send hand-written thank you cards for gifts. Instead of a thank you card, I get a text from my sisters saying "Thanks for my kid's gift!". I guess it's better than not hearing anything, (I'm looking at you, cousin K), but... *sigh*

I'm feeling old and cranky. 

 

We really try to get out thank you cards every year -- it just doesn't always happen :(

 

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