It’s Day 8 of the 21 Days to a Simple Christmas Challenge! And today we’re talking about Christmas cards.
As a child, one of the highlights of Christmas was receiving all the Christmas cards and letters from friends near and far. We’d keep the letters in a basket, string the cards around our living room, and put the family pictures on the refrigerator.
Sometimes, the Christmas letter was our only real communication with friends from our past. But it kept us up on their lives and gave us a small sense of connection, even though our paths had drifted apart.
It was always exciting to hear of marriages, babies, grandchildren, trips, new jobs, and exciting adventures. It was fun to see how the family pictures changed over the years. And it was always somewhat of a thrill to see how many strings of cards we’d be able to hang up.
Many people opt not to send Christmas cards or letters any more. There are many valid reasons given: “We’re too busy living life to take the time to write about it.” “We can’t afford to mail cards since postage has gone up so much.” Or maybe, “We didn’t get a decent family picture.”
I definitely think that Christmas cards and letters are an optional aspect of Christmas and I totally respect people who have chosen not to send cards in order to keep Christmas simple. That said, I think that we’ve become so used to texting and Facebooking and emailing, that sometimes we forget the joy of sending and receiving real physical mail via the postal service.
Creative Christmas Letter Ideas
If the thought of writing a detailed letter is overwhelming to you, here are some creative Christmas letter ideas:
Put together a Top 10 list from the past year.
Make a graph of some interesting facts from the past year.
Create a newspaper-style letter with short stories and tidbits from the past year.
Other Simple and Inexpensive Ideas
If you’ve decided that sending a Christmas letter isn’t your thing or mailing out a lot of cards or letters is outside your budget, here are some other ideas:
::Send photo cards.
We’ve skipped sending a letter for the past few years, but we have sent out photo cards. It’s a very simple way to send a Christmas greeting and share pictures of our family with dear friends and those we don’t get to see often.
::Send out your letter as a PDF via email.
Can’t afford to mail your letter? It’s perfectly okay to send it out as a PDF attachment via email. Be sure to include some sort of teaser in the email you send out so that people will be sure to open the attachment and read the letter! 🙂
::Post your Christmas card on Facebook.
Jenae’s family decided to post their Christmas picture/card on Facebook in lieu of sending out a Christmas card. This might not work for everyone–especially if most of your recipients are not on Facebook–but it’s definitely an inexpensive option!
Day 8 Project & Update
1. Read the above post or chapter 5 from Celebrating & Savoring a Simple Christmas. (Did you sign up for your free copy yet? If not, click here and fill out the form to be emailed a copy.)
2. Decide whether or not you’re going to send Christmas cards this year. If so, what types of cards are you going to send? Are you going to send a letter?
My Update: After some thought and consideration, we decided to streamline and keep it simple this year and not send Christmas cards. This is the first year in awhile that we’ve not sent cards, but it was a big relief to decide to simplify things this year and skip this tradition. And we’ll probably pick it back up next year. 🙂