It’s Christmas time and as of today, we have a total of 8 Christmas cards delivered to our house in the mail. Okay, you are thinking to yourself, “So what?” Well…it’s sad, that’s what! The art of letter writing and the sending of personal Christmas cards is becoming lost.
When growing up in my small Prairie town, it was a tradition to send and receive cards at Christmas time. It was a way to keep in touch with family and friends who lived miles away. I recall my mom spending hours writing individual letters (not photo copies) and including them inside a card. She never once grumbled that this was too expensive or a chore at such a busy time of the year.
Mom enjoyed relaying some of the events of the past year and she provided just a little glimpse of what our family had been up to. She talked about our grades and achievements in school, how much her garden produced that summer, and even how many kittens our Mama Kitsa had. Mom managed to send everyone a bit of news (maybe even a bit of gossip) and a bit of cheer, if not the occasional chuckle.
One year I recall that the news was not so happy and some of the letters went like this:
Merry Christmas Uncle Sam and Aunt Helen,
We are good. How are you? How is your foot that you broke? Do you remember the neighbour old man Snider? He climbed up on his roof last week to shovel the snow off. He died, funeral when ground gets thawed. It stopped snowing now. No other news.
For some reason I remember this one:
Best wishes to your family. We are fine. I am doing lots of cooking but what for? No one coming this year for Christmas because too much snow on the roads. Plough has a broken blade, and town too cheap to get a new one. But all is good. Maybe you can phone or come for visit in March.
For our family, I have been keeping up this tradition of sending out Christmas cards. The letters are all hand-written and include snippets of our family life the past year. Sometimes we include a couple of photos too.
I do not know when the sending of cards started or whether it was a card company’s marketing scheme way back when, but for me, it started many years ago when I was growing up in my family home.
Yes, I could email a greeting or even send out an animated e-card to our friends and family. But it just doesn’t feel the same. As for me, I am always excited to open a card that comes in the mail. Our long distance friends and family deserve, in my opinion, a real old-fashioned letter and a paper Christmas card greeting. Please join me this year and send out a card. Let’s keep this tradition going.
Merry Christmas and all the best for 2015!
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