3 reasons why I am not sending you a Christmas card this year.
It is the time of year that so many of us are thinking about Christmas cards. You don’t have to send holiday cards. It is fine. So many people wonder how they can politely stop sending Christmas cards. The holiday season is fast approaching and Christmas cards are such a nice sentiment. Some people love to send and receive Christmas cards. Some folks dislike the task of sending cards and even resent it. I decided years ago that I am not going to send you a Christmas card.
Why I stopped Sending Christmas Cards…
There are several reasons laid out here for why I have decided it is OK to not send out Christmas cards. Anyone else hate sending out greeting cards? You are my people. Some people get very angry that this sweet holiday tradition is going away for some, but these are my reasons.
If you like to send cards, that is awesome, but I am not sending you one! You can yell and leave mean comments, but you don’t pay my bills so I will not be moved.
Related, look at the amazing lawn display we made because we didn’t waste time doing something that we found to be a chore. We made the best Grinch Lawn Display EVER if I do say so myself. Do what brings you, your family, and your community joy this season. For us, that is our cute lawn display; for you it may be cards; for some it might be neither of those things.
Do I have to send out Christmas Cards?
No, you do not need to send holiday cards. So it is that time of year again; the holidays. I love the holiday season. Christmas is my favorite. Here is the thing though, I am not sending you a Christmas card this year. It’s not you, it’s me; or rather us.
We just decided not to send out Christmas cards this year if it is all the same to you. Sending out Christmas cards has never really been my favorite if I am being honest. Despite not really enjoying the task, I always sent out Christmas cards every holiday season. I asked for updated addresses, I picked out cute pictures, hunted down the best deal on cards, and got as many as I could stamped and on their way by mid December every year. I typically ordered more cards than our list required. Every year my sub par organizational skills manifested in the form of a Christmas card from a friend that we had accidentally forgotten on our original send out and I would hastily send one out that afternoon. Don’t get me wrong, I love my friends and family and I understand mail is fun and I mean, who doesn’t want a picture of my cute family with a fancy monogrammed ‘H’ on it? Rhetorical question, of course everyone wants that. Be that as it may, I am just not someone who relishes the idea of sending out Christmas cards and this year we are taking a break.
Update, this break from Christmas cards is at about seven years right now.
Last year we had the BEST excuse for dropping the ball in that we had just moved in mid November. Not only had we just moved, we didn’t move into a ‘toothbrush ready’ house – we moved into a ‘fixer’ <– understatement of the universe my friends. Half our stuff was in boxes, we didn’t have flooring, we were trying to do fix it stuff with my parents during their off days, and on and on. I didn’t send out Christmas cards last year. I posted a cute picture on facebook and I said “Sorry guys, we just moved so this is your Christmas card!” Here’s the crazy thing you guys…. the world continued to spin and we saved like $80.
Will my relatives be mad if I do not send Christmas cards?
I mean, your relatives might be mad if you do not send cards. But do they pay your bills? Was this part of the arrangement? Is part of the deal for the money they pay you that you send them a holiday card? If not, then I think this is a boundary issue that perhaps you need to discuss with them. If you don’t want to send cards; don’t. You are grown. Some people will be mad. You need to decide if someone looking for a reason to be mad is enough of a reason to do something you don’t want to do. I decided it wasn’t and I very much enjoy that freedom.
Why Doesn’t Anyone Send Christmas Cards Anymore?
I get a lot of comments and emails from people who range from curious to sad to mad that they receive less holiday cards as the years go on. I think this is just a sign of the times.
Decades ago women without jobs perhaps sat down while kids were at school one day and wrote out dozens of holiday cards. Now women are expected to work during the time kids are at school. And that is of course assuming a two parent household. People are working harder than ever just to keep their heads above water. Many do not have the time, energy, or extra expense (even if they get free cards there are still stamps to buy) to send out physical cards.
Many people choose to send email cards or even just post on social media. While holiday cards in the mail do feel special; please know that some of your loved ones share a curated Christmas picture and end of year message on Social Media with the same care and love.
Frankly; people are done doing things they don’t want to do. I grew up listening to my parents complain about ‘going to Christmas’ and spending time with family members they despised. They would vent the whole way home. I cannot think of one nice thing my parents ever said about any family members except ONE time when my cousin lost weight. They also talked poorly about those who didn’t attend…. I think they were secretly jealous of those who disobeyed the ‘obligation’. I remember knowing even before I hit my teens that I wouldn’t be going places where I didn’t want to be or wasn’t wanted.
I hate to say it, but maybe it is you. If you haven’t taken the time to reach out to me all year why on Earth do you think I would take the time to hand write what my kids have been up to at the busiest time of the year. The vast majority of my biological family and my husband’s biological family do not put in any effort to know my husband, myself, or our kids. Even before we had a major boundary set in place our kids didn’t get many birthday cards, much less us – no calls that they were thinking of us. Sorry Aunt so and so but if you don’t have the time all year to reach out I don’t know why that is one more thing to put on the list.
How do I politely Stop Sending Christmas Cards?
You may politely announce on social media that you are overwhelmed this year and will be taking a break from sending physical cards. You can easily cut your large list down to a smaller list of the closest family or older folks. Sending a digital card to the emails you have is another polite way to stop sending holiday cards.
Want to send a Digital Card? We have an awesome Schitt’s Creek Digital Card you can Download!
Fast forward to this year (none of these updates are this year, this post is a couple years old) – Our house is still knee deep in fixer projects, but much more stable. It would be easier this year than it was last year to carve out time to send out holiday cards, but I still am not going to send them out. I kinda feel like I need to plead my case for why I am not sending them out. I do not know why I can’t just say “I hate sending Christmas cards and would rather buy cute Disney toys on ShopDisney.”, but apparently I am defending myself against the invisible army of Christmas card sending defenders. So here are my top three reasons why I decided to not send out Christmas cards this year. (In 2018 we ignored projects since we are just at the ‘noodling’ stage and while it goes against everything we were taught, we would rather work on our relationships with one another than create unnecessary projects on our house. I can’t even use that as an excuse anymore.)
Christmas Cards are expensive (even if they are free!)
1. Cost – We aren’t exactly loaded, we aren’t exactly broke either, but I just didn’t want to spend $50 on cards and then
33 cents (scratch that 49 cents – what?!) a piece on stamps. When all is said and done we often spend about $100 on Christmas cards. Before anyone loses their bananas with “I get free cards” or “I get 99 cent store cards” – bravo for you, I’ve done that too. I’ve done the free 15 cards from 3 different places life, I have rescued free boxed cards from Estate sales, I know I can do free or really cheap cards, but those pesky stamps are never free. Also, it doesn’t matter because I am not asking you to pay for them. I even found you Christmas Cards are Too Time Consuming
2. Time is Precious – So we are always complaining about how we need to slow down and enjoy the holiday season right? We keep saying we need to edit our schedules so we can spend time with these kids that just keep getting bigger and this year we really did remove a lot of ‘un necessity’ so we could focus on what is really important to us during this season – Faith & Family.
We shut down our kid’s crazy Christmas lists, we decided one Christmas parade and community tree lighting was enough, we turned down several holiday media events, we turned down a bunch of opportunity for toy and techy product reviews because I just didn’t want to be that busy. And here is the thing, I still think we are too busy. Between work, school, three kid’s schedules, and house projects we are just still very busy.
I wish I was someone who loved to take an afternoon to sit down with a stack of cards, write personal notes on each, address, stamp, and drop in the mailbox, but I just am not; for me it just seemed like one more thing that I really ‘should’ do. I always feel good when I get them out, but if I am being honest; completely removing it from my list and sitting on my butt watching Elf with my family was way more fun. #sorrynotsorry
In the digital age it is easy to keep in touch, not everyone does.
3. You already know what we have been doing all year – this is the nail in the coffin friends. Pretty much everyone on our Christmas card list is a friend on Facebook. I mean, other than a couple relatives that un-friended us everyone on our list is getting a bunch of pictures and information in physical form that they already had in digital form. When we have made Christmas cards in the past we use our cutest photos of the year or a recent photo shoot which we obviously already shared on Facebook like weeks or months ago…… so I mean sending a card with those same pictures in a cute collage with a quaint saying on it to our friends and family seems a wee bit redundant. Back in the day you would send Christmas cards to folks you may have had little to no contact with all year. You would send updated photos and likely a short letter with a little update on your family. With technology being as it is, I am pretty sure you know all of those updates and more.
Things I typically included in (or were included in other’s) Christmas card letters a few years ago
- births, deaths, adoptions, maybe even separations – Nobody born, nobody died, nobody adopted, Harry and I are good
- new pets – Still just the one crazy dog, Mabel.
- the vacation we went on – We went to a Dude Ranch and Disney – it was awesome (that was years ago, but you get the idea).
- the new job/loss of job/decision to stay at home – Harry has a new job and he really likes it. I have cut down on blogging a bit (hence this rerun of a blog post) to focus on revamping my illustration skills in hopes of working as an illustrator eventually.
- sicknesses – Healthy as horses, thankfully.
- recovery from sickness – Harry was in a bad car accident that was not his fault. He has recovered. We are again thankful, if kids had been in the car it would have been a different story.
- kid’s hobbies, talents, awards – J is Mrs. Potts in her school play this year, she also played the lead role in a theatre camp this summer, S had a fantastic time in Fall Ball and was just given the role of Mic supervisor for the tech team at school. C is making strides with school and even got an award for all her hard work on trying to learn to read.
- new home – so far we are still here, we will keep you posted.
…… but you know all these things about us right? So I mean, we are good.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love the sentiment of a Christmas card. I really do. I actually love getting your Christmas card, but I won’t be offended if you don’t send me one. I’m not saying there won’t come a time where I will ask you all for your updated addresses and spend a cozy, quiet afternoon with a latte in one hand and a beautiful stack of cards in another. My kids are 8, 8, and 3 this year. I am living in this season with two kids that are very likely on their last leg with Santa and simultaneously just entering the understanding of Santa with the littlest. We have three kids in our house that fully embrace the magic of Christmas right now and I am not sure if we will have that next year. Christmas is much more for our family than Santa Claus and magical reindeer, but that is a part of it and I know the window of that is fleeting.
Update, kids are now 13, 13, and 8. We only have Santa magic left with the littlest. I’m not squandering a moment of that on anything I don’t love. Sorry, not sorry.
So for this year at least, know that the Christmas card we typically would have sent you is not coming. I hope you find solace in the fact that it isn’t you, it is us. I hope you love that this year we are taking a break and the money we would have spent on cards is being split between one of our favorite adoption charities and a new favorite breast cancer research charity (both in honor of friends and family). I hope you know we plan on devoting that time to snuggling our ‘getting more gigantic every day’ babies. I hope you know we love and we wish you all the blessings that Christmas brings, we wish your family health and happiness in the New Year, and just to sum it up – our year has been busy but fun and we feel incredibly blessed.
Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas and a Blessed New Year!
Christmas is almost here again. Check out how to have a debt free Christmas this year.
Update – this has been passed around like crazy thanks to Facebook – so I sure would love for you to follow me on Facebook too! (pretty please?) and if you want to share on Pinterest I would love for you to Pin it —-> https://www.pinterest.com/pin/237846424046387820/
I completely agree, and this is the first year in the last 10 that we aren’t doing cards. Part of me feels guilty, the other feels blissfully liberated. And, apparently other people are feeling the same way–I’ve only gotten one card this year!
blissfully liberated is how I feel! 😉 I’ve only gotten 2 so far too don’t feel bady! LOL! 😉
What is the woman doing with a 3rd world girl?? Chinese babies are NOT fashion accessories, you dumb libtard! You already have 2 kids, evidently the China one is to brag of your lifestyle. Do you lock her up in a closet? She probably will go all Soon-Yi on your man, lol (evidently, you don’t have a husband). Quit being a cheapskate, you lost friends being one and charities CEOs pocket your $100, buy their GF Gucci shoes behind the wives’ backs with all the $$$ dumbos like you are styiuopid enough to send them! Now you know.
I am not sure what woman you are talking about with a 3rd world girl – my oldest daughter was born right out of my body and is most certainly not Chinese – my youngest daughter is adopted – she was adopted domestically and while it is absolutely none of your business her heritage is Mexican American and Western European. My kids are never locked in closets but thanks for your concern. I do have a husband and he is fantastic. I lost 0 friends from this post, I have many who feel the same way and those that don’t are like ‘no biggie’ because they aren’t jerks and have lots going on in their own lives. You have a lot of anger but I’m gonna go out on a limb and assume you probably had that anger before you came here – please know ‘required @ display dot com’ you are in my prayers. I don’t know what happened in your life that you spend any precious hours you have on this earth attacking people you don’t know from behind a computer but good gracious it must have been awful – I am honestly praying for you.
You are a real piece of work! People like you are the reason Christmas is just like any other day. You should feel real proud of yourself.
While we all know you are a troll hiding behind a computer screen, I have to chime in and say that your comment is ridiculous- no matter who it is intended for. You should be ashamed of yourself for attempting to insult a loving mother. I will pray that you find true peace happiness in your own life…
I like this sentiment. I mainly do Christmas cards because I want the holiday family picture and the excuse of Christmas cards is one of the only reasons my family will indulge me. But I get it. The thought of my 100 (!!!!) cards languishing in someone’s trash makes me sick!
You’ve got the Christmas spirit! Perhaps you will think about sending cards during the year whenever you have a prompting such as letting your kids’ teacher(s) know how much you appreciate them; sending a New Year card to some people who have had a difficult 2014 (letting them know there’s hope for a new beginning); lots of other occasions where people just might like receiving a card in the mail. Just a thought. Thanks for sharing your wonderful story!!
I only ordered some because I won a contest and I got $100 off. So I ordered postcards that cost me exactly $100. 🙂 And they say Happy 2015 so I can send them whenever I want. : ) Love your pics in the card above!
This is amazing, Kate! I love it, and I’m following your lead. I hope you don’t mind? Your Christmas card at the end of your post is beautiful! 🙂
Thank you Amy! I know not everyone agrees but there do seem to be quite a few people who think that at least during certain times it is totally OK to skip on cards 😉
We have had the kids hand write cards to people whom they choose and my mom of all people called crying to say thank you because she has had a very bad week and it made her day! She also gets to brag about them because who gets a handwritten card from their grandchildren anymore?????
that is a really great point! My kids do send things to their great grandpa and their great aunts – we deliver handmade cards with gifts on Christmas day to our relatives we see. We may someday do cards for everyone, but this year it is only a very select few 😉
I used to do the Christmas letter each year and then just whittled it down to the card. As you said, we’re all FB friends anyway, so we all know about each other’s lives.
You would really include separations in your Christmas letter?! Sorry, I know people do that, but I can’t get over it.
Kim – I don’t because I haven’t been separated, but we have gotten that info a few times in cards – usually just the pic with the one parent and kids and signed by just mom & kids – but sometimes it is in the letter too. It’s a sad reality – but again, something I am not at all shocked by anymore when I get the card bc I already know that info through facebook.
I LOVE this! Every year I am left feeling badly that we don’t have that “pristine Christmas card”. We moved as well! We are busy, I lost my Mom this year, and I feel no obligation to send the world a card! Also, you’re spot on: it is pricy to send out those cards! It cost 2 stamps just to send in a reply to a ticket!! Shout out to the hubs for the ticket, and double shout out to the DMV for your heavy paper! Either way, thank you for owning this! 🙂
Well Erin – don’t feel bad! I totally get it – if we can, Christmas cards are a blessing to our friends & family – especially the older generation, but if you can’t you shouldn’t feel guilty – you have a beautiful Christmas season settling into your new place and create lots of fun memories with your family! Boo on your hubs for the ticket 😉 hopefully no tickets in 2015! Thank you for your nice comment!
I actually really love sending and receiving Christmas cards and I’ve noticed that every year we get fewer and fewer cards and I get a bit bummed about it. It seems as though people are just too busy to slow down and send a thoughtful message to people they love.
I totally get your point and if this is what’s right for you and your family then by all means do it but I feel like in a time where we are all too consumed with social media and online shopping we have forgotten to remember the small things that can truly make someone’s day.
Maybe it’s just me but I do really love that card every year – and also birthday cards and any kind of handwritten note
Thank you for sharing.
I totally hear you Chassie – even though I wrote this I actually am bummed we only got 3 cards this year so far LOL – I pinky promise we will get back to it someday and since I know you love them I will add you to my list…. but not this year 😉
Sounds like a plan 😉
Thank you….I have also decided not to send out Christmas cards after doing it for over 40 years. Everyone was shocked when I told them some not so happy with my decision. Now with facebook everyone keeps up to date with what is going on in my life. I to will put a card on fb.
I totally agree with all your reasons. I don’t do Christmas cards either!
No, I still think traditional cards are the way to go. It is good to have something physical in your hand, especially if you are sad, lonely, sick etc. and later in the year, almost everyone will be one of these. Sounds like you have the good life though, and that’s great.
I agree that traditional card is important, we hope to get back to it someday – I just think some things have progressed that it doesnt server all the same purposes it used to – but I agree, there isn’t much of anything that warms the soul like a hand written card =)
This is the first year we are sending out Christmas cards. We didn’t even send out birth announcements for our twins (we had twins and then moved… I mean enough said). I feel like everyone has their years and thats great, but when it doesn’t work people just need to give grace and get over it. Xoxo
And isn’t grace (at least in part) what the Christmas season is all about? =) I agree!
There is something special about a card in the mail. It’s a little gift for the receipent. And even when one has seen many a photograph there is something tangible about holding it… framing it… filing it away with the names and year written on it. I understand your reasons. But do not forget the light your card can bring to those that are lonely, aged or forgotten. So I might suggest to send just a few cards next year-with photos, drawings from the kids. Better yet save the postage and hand deliver them! Those mean the most :). Blessings to you this Christmas. xo
I totally agree and that is why we might get back to it, and I think why I do struggle a bit with it – in a perfect season I would hand deliver all cards, that would be wonderful!
Same here. With the exception of one or two people, I don’t send out cards. And in fact, it’s last post today and I still didn’t remember to write them, oops.
It’s not the financial cost. It is the fact that most people aren’t interested in getting a Christmas letter, since they are already in touch through FB, phone, email etc throughout the year.
A biggie for me is the environmental cost. Cards get written, looked at, then thrown out. In the UK alone, we send over 800 million greetings cards. All have a cost to make (trees, labour, water, energy, waster) and then a further cost to dispose them – whether they are landfilled or recycled. All just to remind someone you exist and think of them.
We have an agreement with most friends, not to send cards. Instead we send money to charity – for me, this has gome from being Oxfam to being the local food bank. £100 on supermarket brand food does a whole lot more good than a bunch of pretty cardboard.
And as a Christian family, we feel that showing love for our planet and our community is one of the most important things we can do. Our friends and family (and God!) know we love them whether the cards go out be post, email, Facebook, or not at all.
I agree – a few people get cards, but very few – we tend to make those at home. The environment almost made the list for us too except that we aren’t ultra green in every area of our lives so while I have noticed it is a little greener not to, I felt the other points suited our family a little more and I wanted to keep it to 3 – but I agree =)
Wow! I love your reasons and thoughts on why you’ve stopped sending cards! I haven’t done our traditional photo cards for two years and it is a great weight lifted off my shoulders. Trying to look back and find the perfect picture is stressful and even more stressful would be arranging a Christmas photo to send. We just aren’t the “perfect family”and I’m okay with that, but there is so much pressure to be! !!
So now we just relax and enjoy whatever the holiday season brings.
Kudos to you for trying to explain why you don’t do something anymore! !! I didn’t even bother 🙂
We didn’t send one last year due to lack of time with a newborn and two busy big brothers. This year I decided to do New Year’s cards, but I’ll get to them when I can slowly and not all at once. I want to write an actual handwritten note in each one, so it’ll take longer. But hopefully be more enjoyed. I love handwritten notes in the mail.
I agree with you that most of the family knows about our lives through facebook! This year in fact I did not buy new cards at all! I re used the cards I had bought last year and sent them all to close family and friends who really cherish and wait to see the pictures! Downsized the list! And yea the number of cards received by us this year is void drably low!
I do not disagree with your reasoning on many of these points, and we don’t send out a card every year, but my experience has been different in a few ways.
-I got 50 cards for $8 using a groupon (+$20 postage) not terrible.
-much of my family is not on fb, and I love a physical reminder. I save Christmas cards from others.
-the front of ours was photos and the back was a letter. I didn’t write individual letters to everyone. It took about 4 hours total with tracking down addresses and everything. (I keep all my addresses on a spreadsheet and print labels. No handwritten *gasp* but ultra quick.)
I sent a card every 2-3 years. Not annually, but I would love to some day! Merry Christmas!!!
I quit sending Christmas cards years ago when my children we’re young, my mother’s health was failing and was just getting too old. The first couple of years I felt guilty but you get over it. If people really matter to you take the time to make a phone call or a visit. And yes every year more people stop sending me cards. I really do not miss it, especially don’t miss the letters making them and their kids appear above average, extra special, and financially blessed. Way too much bragging.
I have never sent Christmas cards and I never will. It’s just another thing for me to worry about this time of year. Personal choice. Thanks for sharing.
I actually feel that Christmas cards are making a comeback in popularity with moms our age. Facebook is so huge now I don’t know too many people who really share every little detail about their lives and families on there…..or who actually sit down and take the time to read all that about everybody else. Getting a Christmas card in the mail makes my day. I like to think that those who get one from me are cheered by it as well. And isn’t Christmas about spreading joy and cheer? Also, I can’t imagine how many Christmas cards you were sending out if it cost you $100. It’s never cost me more than $20-$30 for over 50, stamps and all.
how can it cost you only $20 – $30 for 50 stamps AND cards? Stamps are 49 cents each now – stamps alone for 50 cards is just under $25 – so you can get 50 cards for $5? That’s awesome! I’d love for you to teach me how =)
Can’t say I fully agree with this article-not the part about choosing to not send out Christmas cards (more power to ya) but just that this article was written in the first place . There have been plenty of people who have skipped handing out Christmas cards, myself included, but I didn’t make a big announcement about it. It just seems like you might have been trying to get some attention for your choice? Obviously I don’t know you and I highly doubt that is the real reason, but the article does kind of come across like that.
Totally entitled to your opinion. I wrote it in about 20 – 30 minutes one night after my husband and I had a conversation about whether I should order some cards and what might be a better use of that $$. I felt it was a relevant topic as it is a conversation I have had with other friends and I saw several people on facebook kind of complaining about not having enough time to get their Christmas cards done and another person who was complaining about how expensive stamps were and it was eating into her Christmas budget. I obviously could have just shared privately on my personal facebook page that I was not sending out Christmas cards and why, but I thought it might be something people would read and feel ‘ok’ about dropping cards this year too – and many many people have told me just that. It was kind of just to get a conversation going, I thought it might get a little attention, I had no idea it would get the attention it would. =)
Thanks for clarifying. Like I said I doubted that was the reason. Sorry so many people have been so awful to you. I hope I didn’t come across as being that way. Merry Christmas!
no not at all! =) Merry Christmas to you too! =)
You took the thoughts right out of my head & put them in computer writing! Some people have looked at me so Scroogish when I said I was not doing cards this year. Others have told me it’s not too late, you can still do them! My kids are 5 & 2 and I would rather be playing than designing cards or shopping! 🙂 Thanks for sharing!
You are not a scrooge for not sending cards! Love on those kiddies while they still are little! Have a great holiday season! Maybe next year, maybe not – either way – I understand! =)
Enjoyed your article and the picture of your family. Precious family. What I like best was your comment about focusing on FAITH and FAMILY. I have always spent sooooo much time decorating for Christmas, but not this year. Just enjoying the Advent season, and focusing, not so much on all the trimmings, but on the real reason for the season, that God loved us all so much that He sent His son, Jesus, so that we would have life, real life. God bless you and have a Very Merry Christmas!
I also have given up on Christmas cards, but at the end of January in the doldrums of winter I put together a “Valentine” of sorts and send it out instead. I like the idea of receiving a piece of mail that isn’t a bill and it’s a much less stressful time when there are necessarily so many demands on your time.
I send cards because most of our family live away and I want them to know I love and care for them. I am not worried if they don’t send me one. I don’t believe in a card for a card or a gift for a gift it is entirely personal choice Christmas is a time for loving and giving I would much rather givethan receive entirely my personal choice have a lovely time with your family very precious moments and you don’t have to explain. X
I think it’s awesome that you have let go of Christmas cards, for now anyway. Relish the season, enjoy your kids while they are still kids, be in the moment and who cares what other people think! Life is too short to spend it on cards and snail mail. Technology gives you permission to take a piece of your life back and put that time to a worthy cause, your family, right where it should be. Merry Christmas!
This makes so much sense especially since the cards we ordered from Costco are so dark, they are embarrassing to send. I cringe as I stuff the envelopes!!
Love a card as a lonely Senior, BUT loathe the over-the-top happy, wealthy sounding Newsletters. Those I could do without. Makes me feel worse that I have nothing like that in my life. Someday I am sending out an UN-Christmas newsletter with the TRUTH in it….
I disagree Kate
Sadly the art of Christmas Card sending has been lost. Yes its costly (geesh I just spent nearly $26 AUD to send 10 cards to the UK from Oz) Then my local cards within Oz are 65ents each and I sent about 20 or so
I wrote about this very thing recently on my fb page. Many people agree with your philosophy and many agree with the way I still see it… That the handwritten card that takes time and effort says a lot more about us as people in this busy sad tragedy filled world Its the little things….
Last year I moved and didn’t send cards. It didn’t make me feel great.
This year I sent them out and have received many comments “oh thanks for your card but don’t be offended we don’t do that now”
I’m still contemplating if I’m offended or not ….lol
i’m sorry that you feel like you need to explain yourself! I don’t mean this in an offensive way at all…but who cares if you don’t want to send cards? It’s definitely not a requirement, I’m positive it doesn’t add to (or take away from) your kids Christmas experience. If you don’t like doing it, I think it’s a great decision! Growing up, Christmas letters were the big thing, and I only remember my mom doing them a couple of years. She just didn’t like doing it. I on the other hand LOVE doing it! So far I haven’t had any trouble finding good deals (50 for $5 this year!). I’m not sure I will always do it, but for now I’m in! I hope you are having a merry Christmas season!
Definitely good points! I send out cards wondering who wishes they wouldn’t get the info letter, knowing some love it. But mostly because I know the older generation still treasure it and haven’t a clue about facebook. I do have to say, my teens are only excited about the mail during the holidays and are the first to tear into the cards and read the letters. I’m strange I know, but I keep all the photo cards from past years on a ring on the coffee table and each year it is brought out, the kids pour over and laugh at their cousins and friends pictures from years ago.Crazy!
I feel judged now for wanting to send out cards to my much loved family and friends. Oh wait, I do have the money, time and they don’t know it all. They seem to like it, so on goes one of my favorite traditions.
Hi Tina ~ Why do you feel judged? Not at all my intention. Merry Christmas!
This is a great idea that I was already trying to do with sending out cards every other year and posting on fb the others until my mother inlaw picked up on that one year instead of using our own camera to take a pic in a Christmas setting we went to a studio now the past 3 years she has insisted on dragging everyone to the mall to get a family picture..So many people that the placement and pricing has been ridiculous… So we are back on a fb pic post this year and staying there for a while. Just fyi though all the typing of your article and updates and then replies could have been more time with your family. So both writing christmas cards and then writing about why you arent doing them is just weird.
thanks for the time management tips – this blog is my job and I have it worked out to work on it during times that my kids are at school/ a friends house/ in bed so this post did not take anything away from my family. I have to maintain my website either way but Christmas cards would have been an additional few hours (and $$) – so instead we donated that $$ to a charity =) I can see how someone could be confused by it though – Merry Christmas!
I have teenage boys who aren’t going to pose for a Christmas pic. No one wants those brag letters or Christmas card pics. They get put away or into the trash at my house.
this makes me so sad. One of my favorite things about Christmas is Christmas cards even if it’s just a cheap one from the dollar tree it just lets everyone know that you’re wishing them a wonderful holiday and that you took the time out to think of them during this very special time. Yes writing the cards out buying the scene for mailing them is a little time-consuming and expensive but there should be no price tag when it comes to showing someone how much you mean to them and what better way to show that then by sending them a Christmas card. It is a forgotten tradition next to sending someone a thank you card. I will send them out for as long as I can.
That is a very good point Megan – you can purchase a pack of cheap cards to cut down on costs.
As I mentioned in my comment above its becoming a “lost art” people are too busy doing everything else to sit down and take the time to do things like this.
For me its something that requires a quiet mind and patience. Because to write 20-30 cards or more ! does take patience. I still think receiving a hand written card is better than texts. To be honest even a phone call would be better !. People have stopped phoning each other too. That is also a lost art! Before Mobiles phones and the internet people would ring each other and write Christmas cards and invitations !
The personal touch has long gone
I received this article as a re-post on Facebook. And wrote my own comments to FB friends. I also read down the comments here, many of whom agree with you—-but, thankfully, not all. One recent comment says “there should be no price tag when it comes to showing someone how much you mean to them and what better way to show that then by sending them a Christmas card. It is a forgotten tradition next to sending someone a thank you card.” How true. How sad. If you don’t want to do cards, DON’T but forget the silly excuses.
As a tip to those who would like to DO cards, but are financially limited, next week the after-Christmas sales begin. There’s your chance to purchase holiday cards at rock-bottom prices for 2015. And stock up on Forever stamps so you’ll never have to deal with postage price increases. If you want to send photos, take a snapshot and get copies made at Walgreens for 12 cents each.
I remember a time when the large city I grew up in had TWO mail deliveries every day during the Christmas season to accommodate holiday card sending. Folks strung cards on ribbons and decorated their rooms with them, or used them as ornaments on their trees. It was a wonderful tradition that has gone by the wayside. Even those who didn’t send cards welcomed the ones sent to them.
You can’t string an internet blog post on a ribbon, or set it atop your mantel. You can’t let people who care about you know that you’re doing OK if they don’t DO computers.
So, if you’re still feeling guilty about not sending a Christmas card to Aunt Sue, or Great Uncle Will, or that teacher of yours who spent so much time tutoring you, or Mr. and Mrs. Jones who lived next door and gave you cookies each holiday, there’s still time for a New Year’s card. And the pre-holiday rush shouldn’t interfere. Just sayin……
(Not being a computer whiz, I have to ask: How does one make a living doing a personal blog?)
certainly people have different opinions – even with inexpensive cards 49 cents a piece to stamp does add up. I often have received cards for free, but it wasn’t just the cards themselves.
we made cards for the neighbors as well as for a few older family members – the kids made personal cards for their teachers as well as pumpkin muffins for our neighbors – I meant the mass 50 ish cards that go out to friends/family that are around our age wasn’t gonna happen.
There are lots of ways to make $$ on a blog including a personal blog – but this isn’t a personal blog, I do have a family section that sometimes has my personal stories, but for the most part there is very little personal about it. Someday I may address how to make full time income blogging, as many people ask – but so much information about how to do that is already out there on google so I feel like I would just be restating info already available – someday if I have a lull I might. This particular post is not sponsored, but I do have ads on my sidebar and below and I get paid based on traffic – the irony is that the traffic associated with this post alone (that took 20 – 30 minutes to write) could have paid for very nice Christmas cards several times over – that is not typical for a post, but as you can see – this post caught the eye of quite a few more people than most of my posts do. I wish you a very Merry Christmas.
Oh, and adding one more point. Charitable giving shouldn’t be an “instead of” option. Nor should it be something people brag about. It should be a routine part of the holiday season, no matter which holiday you celebrate—and even if you don’t celebrate any. Again, just sayin….
ew – do you even know me? #sassypants
Talk about things being blown out of proportion, yikes! As a graphic designer and a printing professional, I love Christmas cards! Especially the Christmas cards that are handmade, have a family/pet photo, or a short but sweet handwritten note from the sender. Those are the ones I get excited for and tuck away to look at years later. However, they are just cards. Paper and ink. And all this judgment flooding the comments over something as petty as paper and ink seems so silly. Perhaps we all just need to take a step back and remember the reason for the season 🙂 I’m pretty sure the celebration of Jesus’s life can and will go on even if a single Christmas card isn’t sent!!
That is all I am sayin’ Alison! 😉 Let’s all just be joyful and remember the true reason for the season and be a wee bit more loving to each other (even give mercy to us terrible non card senders 😉 ) Have a Merry Christmas Alison! =)
I quit sending cards about ten year ago when we built a new house and had a new baby. My husband and I are both teachers who have final exams the week before Christmas every year, and December also holds 2 family birthdays and our anniversary. He really complained when I quit sending cards because he really enjoys the cards. I nicely suggested that he do it for awhile. (He has beautiful handwriting.) It must not have been important enough for HIM to do because he has never bothered to send any. A mean little part of me always wonders why I would bother to send a card to someone I haven’t seen in a year anyway? (All our friends/family live fairly nearby.) We still get enough cards to cover the back of both our front doors, where we put them up for everyone to see and enjoy.
My point? Everyone needs to do what makes them happy… I need those extra hours of sleep more than the cards I don’t care about even a little bit. Otherwise my migraines flare up and my holidays are ruined.
We do, however, visit friends and family over the break as we can, some we haven’t seen in months. We don’t bring cards, we don’t bake cookies, we just stop in to visit for an hour and catch up like people used to do before everything went digital. It doesn’t cost anything, it isn’t fattening, but we enjoy it and our son gets to spend time with the people we grew up with and know from our childhoods and people who might not be with us next year.
3 reasons I think your excuses are lame….1. Cost-you literally just said the people you care about most in this world aren’t worth less than $1 to send a card to. 2. Time-you had time to write a long blog about not sending cards but not to send the cards. 3. No matter how much you wish it to be, FB, email and electronic video cards just are a rather poor substitution for the real thing. I’m going to say what no one else is…no one wants your electronic Christmas card. There’s something totally special about “real” mail. I get it if you didn’t get to Christmas cards this year, and I’m not even mad. But please know that making excuses like this is just kind of sad. Everyone has their own way of spreading cheer and showing others they care…if cards aren’t your thing, so be it. Own it. Stop pawning off your guilt over not sending out cards to everyone so they have a lame excuse, too.
Well Merry Christmas to you too Corri! These aren’t excuses because I don’t think I need to be excused – just giving my reasons. As stated before – I have to blog bc it is my job and this actually only took me about 20 -30 minutes – cards take a lot more time than that. And to say ‘nobody’ wants something is fairly presumptuous of you – how do you know what everyone / nobody wants? Are you a wizard? Anyway – I totally own it – and thank you for being one of the tens of thousands who stopped by this week just to read this silly little post that according to you is lame. Cheers!
I just LOVE to send and receive cards! I think it’s one of the most fun parts of the wonderful Christmas season. I think about it most of the year and set aside special time that I really enjoy to create and send them. I really enjoy taping each one we receive on our fridge and thinking about loved ones around the world. There are so many fun traditions that center around the birth of our Savior. Sending thoughtful, loving greetings is something that I think makes Christmas so special for our circle of friends and family. I wish more people could enjoy it like we can.
I think you are onto something – I feel I got far less cards in the mail this year. And lots via email. It doesn’t matter how it’s sent – just nice to hear from people and see updated pics of families we don’t get to see often enough!
Every time I click around your blog, I come across this post. I love it. This is real life.
I send out digital via email. 🙂 I make them in Photoshop or Canva, that way it’s free. hehe My parents print them out and give to my grandmother as she doesn’t have internet or a pc. 🙂
we do the same – the older generation gets real cards – and everyone else gets a ‘merry christmas’ on facebook – done and done 😉
I agree. I don’t send Christmas cards out either. I can see everything on facebook. Most of the Christmas cards we get just get thrown in the garbage.
that’s all i am sayin’ – and NOTHING really wrong with it – but if I was going to cut something that year in particular it was going to be the big Christmas card list – we did it just for the far away family and a couple friends – but not the 50 – 100 cards it was in years past – and I think the environment thanks us too 😉
I send Christmas cards every year. It means very much to me, and I like to think, to the people who receive them. I choose them carefully and get out my calligraphy pens and stickers to make them special. I’ve heard from some of my friends who say they truly appreciate the time and the sentiment I put into them, and some even say they look forward to getting their card from me in their mailbox.
I don’t think the cost (dollar-wise) is too much, if, as others have said, you buy cards at reduced prices and the cost of stamps is minimal — less than your monthly mobile phone bill. Spread out over the entire year, it comes to very little. I understand when time commitments and upheaval get in the way, but hopefully you will someday rethink sending them when your life is more settled. Peace to your family this holiday season.
thank you for sharing!
I’m sadder every year at getting fewer cards. I absolutely love cards, always have. To the extent that ten years ago I got interested in designing and making my own. People think they are little works of art. But I’m like the shoemaker’s children, I get very few. It is so nice to display them and enjoy them for the whole season, but we now get ten or less and sometimes I’m embarrassed to display so few. Yes, people are busy, but I was still working when I taught myself to make cards. Now I’m 65 and busy in a different way, as my husband is disabled. But I still work on cards throughout the summer and get them in the mail the first week in December.
It’s difficult realizing that the things I love are now considered an anachronistic habit by many people. I remember helping my mother with the cards as a young girl and how many our family received. It was so nice.
I just feel everyone should give Christmas cards. It’s the right thing to do. It’s such a selfless act. It’s makes people happy! You can get a box of very nice Christmas cards at the dollar store! You don’ t have to spend a ton of money. It’s simply the thought!
hi! thank you for sharing your opinion My reasons were not just financial – but that is a great tip!
Your point would have come across a lot better if you hadn’t taken the defensive “F*ck you if you don’t like it” tone.
I don’t think that is my tone at all…..
I totally agree Jenny! Her tone was that!
Well you really got worked up there, feel free to project any tone you choose – you have a very Merry Christmas. Don’t let this bother you too much. Send cards or don’t – just have a cheery disposition! Blessings to you and yours!
I respect your decision and it is yours to make. For me, I do love sending and receiving those Christmas cards. It’s like people just stopped wanting to send them so I must be unusual. The written word holds some sort of special feeling for me so those cards, especially the ones that wrote a sentence or two, mean something to me. I have resorted to joining a group that sends one another cards. I string ribbon across the living room and hang my cards from it and as I walk by them every day I think of the person that took the time to reach out and know they understand because they feel the same way. I’m older now, my better half is 86 and a Korean War veteran with asbestos in his lungs. We don’t get out. Those cards mean a lot to us. Maybe if you know someone that you suspect would really love to have a card, think about sending one?
I completely understand! We do send a small handful of cards (less than 10) to folks far away that we know appreciate them. We just don’t do 50+ cards anymore like we used to. I promise we send one to my Grandpa (and a few others!) – Merry almost Christmas – thanks for visiting our little site!
Every year I dread doing the Christmas cards. It feels like homework and I put if off until the last minute. I thank you for your blog. It has helped me make the decision, after 27 years, to not send out cards except to my sisters and 2 lifelong friends (my parents have passed). Whew! I feel so much better already. My goodness, you have received some really rude and unnecessary comments on this blog post!
Good for you! Yes, and believe it or not – I deleted the really hateful comments – people have a lot of opinions about Christmas cards – haha!
The number of Christmas cards this year from my husband of 67 years and me will be fewer than in the past. I have very shaky hands along with several chronic physical ailments, so that’s the main reason. At our age we get more returned cards each year, probably because the senders have died or have dementia. Of course, I do send to relatives (with checks inside) and very close friends, but there are very few of them left. Last year we received just a few Christmas cards, so I don’t feel guilty cutting back – just sad!
I feel a little sad too – but I hope that we are keeping in touch still, just in a different way.
It’s all I can do to trim a tree and put up Christmas decorations. This year we probably will be alone for the first time in 67 years so no one will see them anyway. When all these activities become literally painful, it is wise to say “enough!”
I love sending Christmas cards. Big but though – I make them during the year and find it relaxing. They are like little gifts and people tell me they save them and use them as decorations. This year I made little shadow boxes that fold flat. We have never done the picture thing – it sounds very stressful!
Maybe for a change of pace, you could focus on those you send cards to. Maybe you could wish them well and perhaps inquire how they are doing. Maybe you could offer an act of service that might help another person in this difficult time.
Just a thought.
Hey Chris – maybe read the whole post and realize we did that. Also, maybe check out our Grinch lawn display and see the act of service we used it for (not just entertainment but a fundraiser for our community food bank) – I don’t need to write cards and mail them to do good things for the community. I sent a card to my kid’s Nana and my Grand dad – that is it. I stand by that decision.
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Oh I sooo do not want to do cards this year. I’ll post on Facebook and Instagram. Except for the older relatives who I know appreciate them. But there’s only half dozen of them still alive so I will do a few joyfully. When it comes to cards or gifts for birthday and holidays I always say do what you want with consideration for the people who always think of you and yours!
I haven’t sent cards for so long I can’t remember the last time I did. I haven’t even holiday shopped in a decade. So when I came across this title I was interested why someone else felt the same way about Christmas cards as I did. But your story was overly long and sounded like you were afraid you might leave something out about why you hate doing cards so you went on and on. So you know, other people are busy too. You could have said what did in 100 words max.
hey there! My longest articles get the most traffic – that is one of the ways SEO works. I tend to lengthen by adding in something more than one person has taken the time to write to me or comment about. I figure that if I write about it – even more people who are searching it will find it – and they always do. The ad revenue from this article alone during November and December pays for most of our Christmas presents. If it was 100 words it simply wouldn’t get the google traffic.
Thank you very much for checking out my article and for taking the time to share your thoughts!
Question to those who love Christmas cards: Do you write a card because you really enjoy doing it, and have no expectations? If you happen to have a friend who is not into it, will you end that friendship because he/she does not reciprocate your gesture,.. or continue the friendship ? Depending on your answer, sending cards may or may not be a selfless act. Personally, I hate obligations, expectations. If I write a card or give a gift, I don’t expect anything back, otherwise it’s just an exchange.
I’ve been giving this a lot of thought, lately. So I Googled around to see how others might feel. I used to enjoy sending and receiving cards, but no longer. As a child I loved opening the dozens of beautiful cards when they arrived, and as a young professional, I’d find the time to write a small, personal note to each recipient. Just a few lines. Family members would get a photo of my little girl tucked inside. Now, it seems even Christmas cards have become a self promotion. Why would I want a card loaded with images I’ve already seen on Facebook? With a generic Happy Holidays? So impersonal. I toss them immediately. I also find it interesting that so many lament they don’t have time for a photo shoot, or creating their own photo. As if this is the point of the holidays. How about a seasonal image? A deer? A forest covered in snow? And if you’re devout, an image of the Madonna and Child? The incessant co-opting of every event into a ‘look at me, look at us’ experience depresses me. Again, as a child, the family photo was a rarity. And appreciated, as they were from people we rarely saw, and we got to enjoy how the family was growing. Please, if you’re going to send me a photo of you, or you and your family, take me off the list. It’s wasted. The holidays are about connection, and for many – the celebration of a child born in Bethlehem. It’s not about you in a bikini in the Bahamas drinking pina coladas. Spare me.
I had to stop at “you don’t pay my bills so I will not be moved”. If that’s the metric we base our actions on, this would be a pretty sad society.
You’re entitled to your personal preferences, but the whiny bitterness in this post is offputting.
You read this and posted a response in April – what an odd way to spend your Spring day. I haven’t republished or shared it in months; you went looking for it – so if you found it off putting… you were looking for something to be mad at – I didn’t serve it to you. This post gets thousands of views a day November – December because people are guilt-ed into one more thing to do during the holidays. I didn’t whine at all – I explained my boundary (and monetized it). I get dozens of comments and direct messages thanking me for the validation to make their holiday season a little less stressful…. I also get some push back from people who feel the need to tell me they don’t like how I spend my energy. You are heard. Anyways – you have an excellent day – thanks for stopping by!
Gee, I’m disappointed in most of you. The cost of Christmas cards is a minimal investment in making a personal, hand-written connection with people you care about but with whom you seldom communicate. Not all of us want to participate in heavily surveilled social media posts as there are several very good and well researched reasons why we ALL should NOT participate in them. In addition, If you’re too busy to sit down once a year and write out a few personal greetings to important loved ones and friends, then you need to reassess your priorities. That three hours it takes to write out cards really destroys your December schedule, does it? People seem to somehow find the money for expensive vacations, costly cameras, designer purses, and overpriced concert tickets–but you can’t put out $50.00 to send out a few cards once a year? Really??? Unless you’re too old, you’re disabled, or really, really poor, you can do it and it’s a very meaningful tradition. Stop being cheap, cold, lazy, and too media-obsessed! If you don’t send out cards, I say you’re a shameless, heartless, Scrooge! We’re losing so much our American culture. Do you have to destroy this tradition, too? Kate, and others of you, your reasons seem rather small and silly, and I am embarrassed by your reasoning. Merry Christmas, though, and my sincere wishes that you have a more prosperous year in 2023 with more time to invest in people non-electronically.
1 – thank you for coming to my page – visiting makes me money! Cha-ching!
2 – I don’t know you – and I’ve got decent boundaries, so the disappointment of a stranger means literally 0 to me – actually – the fact that you were disappointed enough to take the time to leave a comment (which makes me money) – low key kinda makes me feel like I took your power. LOLZ.
3 – If YOU want to take the time to write cards – that is WONDERFUL – please enjoy. As I said, I LOVE receiving cards. Sending cards and making sure I get to everyone creates a lot of unneeded stress in OUR house and I just shared why I chose this boundary.
4 – Reminder – I get PAID to write about card companies – it costs me ZERO dollars to send cards if I want to. It isn’t really about the money for us, but it is for many others.
5 – Your projection about how people spend their money shows again your complete lack of boundaries – who are you to tell people how to spend their money?
6 – Again – none of your business how we spend our money BUT – almost every vacation you see on this site was hosted (this is a fairly large family blog and many family friendly venues hosted us -as is disclosed on every post) – I do not and never have owned a designer purse other than one I purchased for $5 at an estate sale. My costly camera is my iPhone which is a tax write off due to the nature of my business.
7 – I am not old, disabled, or ‘really, really poor’ – but as I stated – I have three kids and we really want to be present with them rather than send a card to people who have not been in touch with us otherwise this year – I choose my kids over strangers.
8 – “meaningful tradition” – as stated – what might be meaningful to YOU might not be meaningful to others. Sending cards is REALLY meaningful to some – and they should do that – but if what is meaningful to YOU is someone else doing something for you…. that is a you thing – talk to your therapist about that. You don’t get to dictate to ANYONE else what is meaningful to them.
9 – “American Culture”? – You know that holiday cards is not a strictly American thing, right? Silly goose.
10. Cheap and cold? That isn’t me. I’m hanging out with my kids and doing other things in the community.
11. Media obsessed – I mean… I’m not the one leaving long winded rants on someone else’s blog (again – THANK YOU FOR COMING BECAUSE IT MADE ME MONEY! I hope with EVERYTHING inside me that you shared this post with others and also that you come back and rant some more! I will take my kids out for a treat with the money!)
12 – You say I am shameless and heartless for not sending out cards? I mean…. maybe you are shameless and heartless for having nothing better to do but search about people who don’t send cards and then rage on them – like, don’t you have anything better to do, Deborah?
13 – Do you think you yelling at me is gonna like – shame me into sending you a card? If you have kids, I bet they don’t talk to you…. maybe that is why you are ranting at me? Again, therapy – check your benefits. Good 2023 goal maybe.
14 – I will lose 0 sleep over a ranty lady named Deborah being ’embarrassed by your reasoning’….. and you really shouldn’t be embarrassed for me – this opinion of mine is absolutely NO reflection on you.
15 – Your “Merry Christmas, though” after telling me you are embarrassed and I am a Scrooge – is really the chef’s kiss of “Boomer Rant” though – just so on brand. Wait, is this my mom? I could check the IP. Not worth my time, but again, I’m guessing you have a difficult relationship with people you birthed and like – this isn’t the way to make it better, sis.
16 – Last year was our most prosperous year ever, and the year I wrote this – almost a decade ago was also a really good financial year. It doesn’t really have anything to do with the money…. and I will not.
17 – To conclude – your rant gave me a laugh AND money – I will not be using that money on sending physical cards but maybe I will treat myself to a designer purse – but seriously tho – therapy, sis…. I hope you have a healthier 2023 and maybe you can spend that week between Christmas and New Year with people instead of yelling at strangers on the interwebs. Be best!