Anyone remember their mom panicking about getting the “perfect” family photo, turning it in a masterpiece of a holiday card and sending it 200 of her nearest and dearest?
I think my mom might have taken a break from Phil Donahue long enough to buy a box of cards at Hallmark and send them to relatives. She wasn’t very organized so they usually arrived after Christmas.
We’re still finishing Thanksgiving leftovers yet the first of the holiday cards have hit my mailbox.
Still don’t have the “perfect” picture? Scratch that, haven’t even put the Jack-o-Lantern’s away? Don’t panic. The exchange of cards is supposed to be a personal gesture, not a mass mailing competition for cutest family run by most organized mom who sends out cards day after Thanksgiving. Stop trying to pose the kids for that “magical” photo. Go through your photo files and find the photo that makes you laugh, it will make your friends laugh too. One year I couldn’t find a picture I really liked, as I was looking I came across this one from the best concert ever. It made me so happy just looking at it, I though it would make everyone else happy too. I decided it should be my card.
The next year I had a great shot of my 3 year old playing electric guitar in his diaper. That year the card was from “Richie Sambora”. The one my friends continue to talk about though is the year I made us the “Brady Bunch”. Our nanny wasn’t too thrilled about being put in the middle of the card looking up, but she humored me.
I save my good friends’ cards every year and hope that my card is worth saving to them. I love looking through the old photos every year when I get out my decorations.
A few points of etiquette:
- Ladies name first. The real rule is that a man’s first name should never be separated from his last. Just remember ladies first and you’ll be fine. i.e. Kim-Marie and Jeffrey Evans
- Always include a return address. If you can’t afford to have the printed on the envelope go ahead and use the ones the March of Dimes sends you even if you didn’t donate, I won’t tell.
- A “holiday letter” should not be a tale of woe. If someone is a good enough friend that they should know about your gallstones, you would have called them, DO NOT put it in your letter. Really.
- Do not send them before Thanksgiving. Even the day after just screams “hey I’m more organized than you”. Sending them any time until Easter is perfectly acceptable and understandable.
- My pet peeve however is receiving cards that have NOT BEEN TOUCHED BY A PEN. A Christmas card is personal correspondence, not a mass mailing piece. If you don’t have time even put a little “Hey KM’ or a heart next to your name, don’t send it to me.
- Last but not least. don’t get hung up on who celebrates which holiday. I’m happy to get a Kwanzaa card and I know my Jewish friends are happy to get a Christmas card, it’s about sharing the joy of the season.
You don’t need to spend a fortune on your cards, it’s truly the gesture (and the handwritten note) that matters. The Stationery Market did my cards this year. I think they have some of the cutest options for Christmas, Hanukkah, or just “holidays”. You send them the picture, you can write your own text and voila’, your cards ship straight to your house.
Use the code Luxury Travel Mom and you get a 25% discount. Now how merry is that?
Here is this year’s masterpiece. When I saw the card, I knew this was the perfect photo to go with it. We were visiting Jackson Hole and I’m a sucker for those mountain photographers. He convinced us to jump in the air at 10,000 feet and it would look like we’re flying. We just look like dorks, but the picture made me laugh.
So Happy Holidays from Luxury Travel Mom and The Stationery Market.