Lets get this straight from the beginning, I am completely guilty of not sending out enough real cards and real letters. I still try very hard to make a physical holiday card/letter every year and have for well into 10 years now. I am not sure if the recipients of those letters love them as much as I do, but they are so fun to make that I do it for the sheer joy of creating them. I also send out cards, I make home-made ones, others are store-bought with the recipient in mind. I always write a nice note or add a funny photo or even confetti to the cards. I know what you are thinking …Really who has time to think about a card the much? I do! I want the people in my life to remember how wonderful they are to me and this is how I do it. I take the long road and write on paper or print it out and put it in the mail with a lovely stamp and doodle on the back and let the my joy spread slowly with anticipation about what is in side. I am telling you good letter writing is a lost art.
I love e-mail don’t get me wrong. Inside the work place it is the very best way to communicate with co-worker and it is so much easier and cheaper to sending a thousand letters to people around the globe. I get that, but what I don’t get is why we would Facebook the words …. “Happy Birthday” to 46 different people in a year. It is fun the frist year… adding up the number of sentiments, comparing it to your friend who has 1100 friends and some how got 800 “Happy Birthdays” compared to your lousey twenty six. But the following year you are disappointed with the fact that very few people take the time really say anything of value and you certainly don’t remember in a month who even typed the standard line on to your wall. If you are lucky some one might drop you a short note via E-mail about your plans for the weekend or the party you are planning but it is not the same.
I have a friend who I communicate with regularly in every way that is possible. We send letters, cards and talk on the phone we like home-made letters and we have both been known to save, for years, the letters and cards that we have sent each other. Do you do that with e-mail? How often have you gone back 10 years and looked over your best friends e-mails about their divorce, or pulled up a Happy Birthday e-mail from high school. It does not happen and no one stops and cries over a love note on Face Book.
I have and will again look over love letters and poems that I have received over the years. The torn corners of blue lined note-book paper, the napkin from a bar with a note and home-made cards all mean the world to me. I love them they take me back to a time, place and person who took the time to write them. Remember that you are making memories when you take the time to not just write your blog or that e-mail but write something on paper. You are physically touching another life when a letter arrives in the mail box. If that person on the other end of your gesture does not see the importance of your words and toss them in the trash, then forgive them and do it anyway. Any normal person will still smile and linger over your gift more than if it was electronic.
Yes, it is slow and more expensive for me to send out holiday cards and letters. Many things are so much better when done slowly and when they cost a little more. Paper and ink are such a wonderful combination why not share them.
As I am sure you can already tell I am in the process of sending out more than three dozen letters for the up coming Christmas holiday. It is tradition and it is fun for me to get responses from those that receive them about how they enjoy them and the photos I enclose. In my world I have friends who save and reread some of them and I keep copies for myself. I still cry at times over a holiday letter that friends send out about their very tough year where a family member dies or a relationship ends.
I will not say that I am a skilled writer to anyone. I can barely use this blog most of the time due to my dyslexia. But I am good at getting to the heart of things and seeing things that others over look. So when I write that letter, note or card, it is hard work. It is painful for me … I hate that I misspell and forget grammar rules but I put it out their.. I stick my neck out and take the time to share my love in a real way. I made a difference to some one a thousand miles away who is taking chemo today… did you? All with a letter I sent.
Good article and so very true. Although my Christmas cards are professionally done and all I have to do is address them, I have been taking more time to send out regular cards lately, trying to do two a week. I will write things in them to personalize them to the receiver. For 2014 I hope to start sending birthday cards out to my friends.