When I was young, my mom would spend hours penning personal notes in each Christmas card she mailed; a practice I have tried to make my own (though some years are less successful than others). I look forward to sharing highlights of my year with people I don't speak with on a regular basis. But...have you noticed how that's begun to change? With the popularity of facebook, twitter, email, blogs and other social venues, instant updates have become de rigeur and that special quality of the Christmas card has begun to dim. We no longer have to wait an entire year for that Christmas photo to see how the kids have grown, or the bright smiles of those who no longer wear braces. We only have to click on the photo tab of our friends' facebook walls for instant access. Will Christmas cards soon become one of those "dated" traditions we tell our children about that happened "back in the day?"
Do you send out Christmas cards? Do you write personal notes in them? What about the cards you receive? Do you display them or have a special container for them? Do you keep them or toss them when the season is over?
Another tradition that seems to have fallen by the wayside, at least among those who mail me cards, is the famous (infamous?) Christmas letter. You know the one. The one, two or sometimes three page letter that details every activity, award, trip and other highlight of a family's year? It's been a couple years since I received one and, contrary to the ridicule these letters receive from comedians world-wide, I miss them. Sure, not everyone is interested in the fact that Johnny won the Pine Box Derby or Susie got a medal in track but I enjoyed these little tidbits - and I enjoyed reading about them while curled up in front of the fire with a cup of hot chocolate in one hand and your letter in the other.
What about you? Do you think traditional Christmas cards have a limited shelf life? Are we approaching the end of that life? What's your opinion of the stereotypical Christmas letter? Have you ever sent one?