My mom always wrote out Christmas cards when I was little. I loved everything about watching her do it – flawless cursive writing bloomed across the envelopes, her ever important address book out and ready and even the perforated stamps inside their wax paper like packet – all were equally alluring to me. One day, I just knew I too would lovingly and cheerfully write a personal note to each of the people I cherished, taking the time to write neatly and carefully.
Today I updated all those addresses I had sticking to my worn thin scribbled on pages I have collected through the years – I have an address book somewhere but I couldn’t tell you exactly. It felt good to look over the list and see the names of people who I cherish; families and friends that have made an impact on our lives. I took a minute to think about all that each of these families have been through – the changes, the triumphs and even the tragedies and I felt honored to be some small part of it all.
More than anything else, that is what it is about for me. Taking the time to say that we are thinking of them and rooting for them and they matter to us. Taking pictures makes me a little batty and then there’s the addressing and the rising costs of stamps…But I know what it feels like to open the mailbox and be on the receiving end of a Christmas card – it’s awesome and one of life’s little pleasures. I know that I miss seeing my both of my grandmothers’ handwritten cards as well as my great-aunt’s around Christmas time and I feel a little giddy when I spy the handiwork of some of my very favorite people. It’s one of those things that I feel just can’t be replicated by email.
My name has changed since it was part of my Mom’s signature all those years ago (and my handwriting is nowhere near as beautiful) but I hope to add to the legacy of bringing cheer and I hope my daughters will continue the tradition too. It might be old fashioned but I am okay with that. One night this week, I will sit down at the dining room table, Excel sheet in front of me, with self-sticking stamps at the ready, full of hope and best wishes for us all.