Sunday, December 6, 2009

Preparing My Christmas Cards

The song says, "I'm dreaming of a white Christmas with every Christmas card I write." I remember the first time I heard this song was when I had choir in elementary school...maybe 3rd or 4th grade? At our Christmas program a girl from the older grades sang it as a solo. In Louisiana yes you can only DREAM of a white Christmas! That is one of the rarest things in the South! An ice storm maybe...speaking of which, just last year I had lunch with one of my mother's friends that lives in Ohio(?), up north anyway, and I mentioned the terrible ice storm we had had in OKC, and she asked, "What's an ice storm?" I guess up north it's just snowstorms...I had to explain what it meant! Even here in Oklahoma City we do not always have a White Christmas- these days anyway.  I remember as a child when we would go up to Owasso to visit my mother's parents, it would snow so heavily...one year my mother woke me in the middle of the night to have me look out the window to watch it snow. That was a big thing! seeing we hardly ever had snow at OUR house all the time we were growing up! Another thing about my grandma's house in winter...they had no heat except a large gas heater in the living room. We would sleep under HEAVY pieced-wool quilts. You'd think all the quilts would keep you warm, but if you moved away from the place you had been lying , the sheets would be icy under the covers! I've never gotten over how heavy those wool quilts were. Actually, I have never seen them anywhere else except at my Grandma Capps', although I know other older families surely had some like hers.
Back to my card-making -

I like to work on paper crafts, not so much scrapbooking but mostly cardmaking. For several years I have collected cards from christmases, birthdays, calendar pages etc. to use to make my own cards- remake I should say. I guess I'm still a little girl at heart, cutting and pasting and using glitter!

This year I had some ANCIENT cards that I purloined from my mother who keeps all kinds of things. Some of these had envelopes yellow with age but I decided to use what I could and hope anyone that gets one of these will think how thrifty I am being! That's a laugh, because to dress some of these old things up takes probably as much money as buying all new really nice cards. But it gives me pleasure! I went to Hobby Lobby and met another woman in the paper aisle collecting for her cardmaking also- we joked that we were going to clean out the stock! Then the very next day I saw her at Michael's! She remembered me first and I wish for her happy crafting.

Some of my church friends and family know I "recycle" used Christmas cards and will give me a bundle to work with. I've wondered what some recipients would think if they received a card from me that they had sent out themselves, reworked to be usuable again! This year I found myself thinking, "Is it really worth all the time and trouble to do this?" But now I am almost finished, and I find it has brought me pleasure again. I don't believe I am saving any money, though...

One hang-up I used to have about sending cards at Christmas- my mother would not hardly send cards if she could not write a personal note in each one. That can be daunting! I know the desire is commendable and it's lovely to get a handwritten note in your cards, but the time does not always allow for this! And I still want to send out cards...I finally came to my own conclusions and will send cards now with ONLY OUR NAMES and no personal notes! (horrors) Many of my friends do the annual Christmas letter...I haven't done that yet but I do enjoy reading the ones that are sent to us.

Here is a card I made from a little page in an old Mary Englebreit calendar...
NOW! Speaking of Christmas cards...I come from a post office family. Everyone in my family except my mother has worked in the Main Post Office.  I worked there for 5 years in the Computerized Forwarding section, beginning right when they were phasing out hand-doing the forwarding and going all by machine. I'm sure it's changed a lot since I was there- 25 years ago last month!
I'm sure most people do not realize the staggering volume of mail that is worked by the USPS...considering everything, the success rate of our mail delivery is wonderful. So don't be too quick to criticize the system!

I dumped a load of cards in the receptacle yesterday and thought of the HUGE volume of mail that is being posted at Christmas time, what with cards and parcels, and most of it does not get lost or damaged. Thank your postman!
I wish everyone understood this- that you do not have to send a Christmas card to someone just because they sent you one! The idea is to send greetings because you wish them well!

 Whether they send you a card or not...don't get all hot and bothered that someone sent you a card and you didn't send them one and now you have to rush around and get one off to them...I guess presents fits in here also. We give gifts to express our love, not because we feel obligated to reciprocate when otherwise we wouldn't have given one. That's my view on the subject. Let's all be merry and bright now!!!


Hey! Only 19 more shopping days!

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