I love Christmas! I love the story of the birth of Jesus, the celebration of light coming to the world in the darkest season of the year, a time set aside for the greeting of family and friends. Gifts are not my big focus although I enjoy wrapping gifts a lot. I love the feasts, the gathering around tables and all the seasonal goodies: cookies, spiced cider, egg nog, fruit cakes, gingrbread.... For me, it's not Christmas without a tree--a real one that fills the house with the scent of fir. Maybe most of all, I love the cards. Yes, I even love the infamous Christmas letters. I want to see pictures. (I'm always just a bit miffed when my friends send pics of "the cutest children/grandkids in the world" and don't include one of themselves. They are afterall the friends we know and love.) Pictured are 18 of the cards that David & I have sent through the years.
I used to have one of every card we had sent since our marriage in 1971, but the mice-in-the-attic disaster of a few years ago caused me to lose some of the earliest. I noticed patterns: the earliest cards were cardinals, then we went through a spell of Christmas trees decorated with birds and wild life, then there are all the rabbit cards from the house bunny years. Wise men have been a frequent motif. David always wants blue cards; I want deep red and gold.
A decade or so ago when my arthritis made it difficult to write, we began to order our cards pre-printed and used the computer to print lables. For the past 5 years at least, we have ordered our cards from cardsdirect.com and we get to choose the verse as well as the design. In early September we selected our custom verse, scriptures from Hosea and Isaiah: May you obtain joy and gladness and may sorrow & sighing flee away. Arise! Shine! The Light has come.
Our Christmas letter is written and I've started the mailing process. The average household sends about 30 cards; we ordered 125. We'll have cards left-over if I run out of time or I'll have to send left-overs from previous years if I keep thinking of people to add and find the time to act on my thoughts. No matter how many cards make it into the mailbox, we'll always feel like we missed someone we really want to wish, Merry Christmas & God bless you in the coming year.