December 9th is Christmas Card Day, a day to get started on that all-too-often postponed holiday chore of getting your Christmas cards completed and mailed. The first commercial Christmas card was created by Sir Henry Cole of England in 1843. The tradition of sending cards became popular in Western society and Asia, and has remained so until recent years have seen the emergence of electronic greeting cards and the decline of “snail mail.” Still, everyone enjoys finding a little something in their mailbox and the winter holidays are the perfect time of year to send your salutations and let your friends and loved ones know you’re wishing them “a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!”
Every winter I tell myself I’ll be organized during the upcoming holiday season — I’ll get all of my shopping finished early and drop Christmas cards in the mail early enough to be delivered before Christmas. I think I’ve only kept this promise to myself maybe two out of the past ten years. Actually, it might have been only once; one year I remember sending out cards but I think it was a little late in the month and they arrived between Christmas and New Year’s. But one of the wonderful things about this season is that its so full of positivity and the promise of new beginnings. That’s why each year, regardless of whether or not I followed through with my good intentions the year before, I keep telling myself this will be one of my proud years, when I see these goals through to completion.
I’m happy to report that today’s “unofficial” has made 2011 one of those happy years. As soon as we got home tonight I went through my address book and started making a card list. I used the opportunity to update the contacts on my iPhone, finding that most of them were woefully out of date. Once I was sure I had correct addresses for all of our friends and family who had relocated in recent years I started going through the masses of holiday cards I’ve stockpiled from too many after-Christmas sales. Chris and I picked a couple of cute Hallmark Shoebox designs and I got to work. My hand is a little cramped from writing addresses (which I find particularly stressful since my handwriting isn’t that good) but it sure is a relief to have this task completed. And I really am glad we’re sending out cards this year; we have wonderful friends and family and we want them all to know we’re thinking of them during the holidays — and always.
Tomorrow Chris will get his geek on in observance of International Shareware Day!