All Hail the Mighty Christmas Card

I’ll throw it out there right now, I’m terrible at sending Christmas cards.  I’ve looked adoringly at the ones I have received in the mail through the years and am amazed at how stinking cute and creative some people have been with their photos.  And, then… what?  They expertly pick something that screams “Christmas Card” and manage to print them up in time to stamp and ship!

Then there are the people that send the cards with their favorite themes on the front, sports, religion, nature, jokes, I love them all and have a drawer full of cards purchased but not sent.  And, how about the Christmas letter?  It’s just… wow, hats off to these folks, every single one blows me away.  

Oh Joy! Woman, are feeling like you send most of the Christmas cards in the relationship? Well, you’r right! Of over 2 billion sent each year only 15% are purchased by men…. Photo by Brigitte Tohm on Pexels.com

It’s not personal that I don’t send Christmas cards.  It’s just that between the work, the household, the bills, the furnace that blew last year the same week the dog blew his knee out, and then there’s the “where are all the Christmas decorations in the attic”?  Each one of us can look around and say that we know one person in our circle that makes Christmas look easy.  I’m just not one of them.  In fact, I’m always so behind, Clark Griswold looks like a pro in comparison!

And, it’s not that I don’t like the holiday.  I intensely love the season, the joy, the giving, the baking, (especially the baking), the lights, and the parties… OH wait, that’s right it’s a COVID year.  Hold on… In the year 2020, it is so important for us to cause no harm to the people we love (including the ones we don’t even know), that means no visiting, no caroling, no office parties (what’s an office?), no hugging, and alas… no travel.   With so many NO’s this holiday season, could it be that the simple Christmas card will be one of the endearing traditions to survive this tumultuous year?

Bang, bang!  Enter Annie Oakley.  Yes, Annie Oakley (in case you were wondering) is the first known person to have sent the very first personalized Christmas card in 1891.  Yes, this sharpshooter, in Scotland at the time as star of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West show, sent cards to friends and family in the U.S. with a picture of herself in full tartan.  Who doesn’t love Christmas plaid???   By 1910 through 1920 greeting cards became very popular (especially for the Christmas Holiday) so much so that Hallmark reported the season as the largest card-sending holiday in the United States with 1.3 billion cards sent annually.  

Photo: Watson & Wilson, 83 Jamaica St, Glasgow, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

And, now during this year, 2020, it might be more important than ever to get those cards out. Think about it, you don’t need a mask because the stamp is your social distance and if it’s ever a year to tell your neighbor how much you appreciate them for their simple presence across the driveway or thank your niece for setting up the Thanksgiving family zoom Scattagories game… This. Is. The. Year.  

I get it now… my collection of Christmas cards have been dusted off and my pen is at the ready, see you in the next blog!

Stay safe this Christmas season, send a card instead of a hug… Baby it’s Covid Outside Christmas Card

Deb Fries is a freelance writer and designer and worked with Julianna Rae in Graphics and Customer Service.  She will be sending out Christmas cards this year even if they are a little bit late