Thursday, January 06, 2011

A Bowl Full of Love!

One of the things I love the most about December is going to the mailbox each day and pulling out stacks of gorgeous Christmas cards! Sometimes the mailbox love even continues into January, like yesterday when we got FIVE more beautiful cards! Totally made my day!

Our family opted out of sending cards this year. We operate on a cash budget around here, and after sending our middle-schoolers to Wyldlife Snow Camp and repairing our furnace and Christmas and a family ski-trip to Winter Park and a new refrigerator, it just wasn't in the cards for us (that pun was totally intended) in December. If you're thinking that sending a few cards isn't that expensive, you're right, but we've never been able to send "just a few". Our mailing list is ginormous and having a ginormous mailing list means that costs quickly add up.

The funny thing was that John and I were both super sad about not sending them. Especially as we began to hear from friend after friend after friend. I know we could have sent a free electronic card but to me there is no comparison between looking at something on a screen and holding the real deal in your hand. (Which is why I don't think I could ever really love a Kindle or a Nook.)

It didn't take us long to decide we'd send cards (Valentine's Day or Happy Easter or May Day) once our cash reserve recovers from the last month. If you missed our photo card and letter this year, please know we didn't drop you from our list. We'd never do that. We're just a little late, and late is better than never, right?

I took all of our cards down this morning and counted them...our rate of return on the number of cards we send is amazing! 

My kitchen table has looked so bare after putting our Advent wreath away so on impulse I put all of our cards in my favorite wooden bowl and made a new centerpiece--one of family and friends! It's a bowl full of love, really. We're so thankful for each and every one of you that is a part of our lives. We are abundantly blessed.
* I don't usually choose favorites, but my favorite photo card this year was from my friend, Kendall. Her husband is one of the coaches for a certain Big 12 team and ESPN's Game Day chose to broadcast from their campus back in the late fall. The pic they sent is of their beautiful family behind the Game Day desk. I love it because it's so unique! And so perfect for that football family!!! 

*I'm not a pack-rat. I am extremely particular with the memorabilia I save, but I have a super hard time throwing away old Christmas cards!!! Anyone else?

19 comments:

Lindsay said...

Hi Mer...

I didn't get my cards out this year either... No excuse for me but sheer laziness. I may get a letter out before long. Actually the memorable stuff came after the holiday. Getting snowed in during the break was super! MA was wonderful and being snowed in was totally unexpected.

Jennifer said...

I think your bowl full of love is priceless. I, too love the Christmas cards we receive....I currently have them on the back of the front door. It it hard to take them down. I like your idea. Thanks for your sweet comment,also:)

Elizabeth said...

Love the bowl! I hope you got our card. I definitely missed receiving one from you, but i think a May Day card would be just as fun.

*I've saved all of our Christmas cards for years. There are too many special ones to throw them away.

Virginia said...

I bought a tree shaped thingy this year that holds cards and we enjoyed them so much. When we took it down we looked at the names on each once again. They are packed away with decorations, and will be enjoyed again next year when we get the things out. A lady in town gathers signed cards with no envelopes and takes them to the nursing homes where they are read to residents. If the cards don't contain personal messages or pics, I will use my old cards for that program next year.

Carpool Queen said...

I haven't sent cards in a couple of years. Part of it is Facebook - I feel like I'm in more constant contact with people and they know what's going on with us, and part of it is because it got to be an issue when family members said "Why didn't you send a card to (insert a name of their friends)?"

Too much pressure :)

Amber said...

I loved Kendall's card, too.

I think it was my favorite this year, also!!

Angela said...

Meredith, that is so funny. I always display my cards in my house, but this year I put them all in a pretty bowl on the coffee table. I think we'll stick with that plan next year, too.

Sami said...

LOVE the bowl idea. So much I may have to do it...as soon as I take the gold ornaments out of it...

Ginny said...

Last year we displayed the cards in our house on a ribbon. We attached them with clothespins. This year, we have an active toddler, so we placed the cards in a basket. This weekend I will take the picture cards and put them in our Christmas Card scrapbook. My husband has a file for the Christmas letters we receive. It's our third Christmas, but it is fun to already see changes in kids as they mature. :-)

Ginger@From The Cocoon said...

It must've been a year for the bowls...I put mine in a bowl on my kitchen table this year too :)...and like many, I didn't send any cards this year. I hated it. I felt guilty. But..I couldn't justify the cost so close to the wedding...so I've already started on my Christmas cards for next year :)

Melissa Stover said...

i don't throw mine away. i have a christmas card album where i store all my old christmas cards. we love looking through it every year at christmas and seeing how our friends have changed.

Kellie said...

I too have folders that go back YEARS of Christmas cards...I like reading some of the ideas of others here!

And I am glad that you are sending out cards...secretly I was sad when you said you werent doing cards this year!

Lauren said...

Awwww, I see half of my face!!!!! Ha!!! Better cut out Taco from the card for the kids, bwahaha!!!! :)

mel @ the larson lingo said...

I TOTALLY have a hard time throwing away Christmas cards (especially ones from friends that I either made the card for OR took their Christmas photos). All our Christmas stuff came down on the 27th, but I also just put all the cards in a bowl in my living room....I just can't toss them yet!

JenB said...

A friend of mine keeps cards in a bowl and they pray for a different family every day and jot down the date on the back. It was neat to go over and see a Thank You note I'd sent her in the bowl and sure enough, on the back were a few dates that she'd prayed for me. Such a neat idea.

Kecia said...

Mine are in the wooden bowl we put answered prayers in! (Boy does that look funny in print) And yes, I have a very hard time throwing Christmas cards away. So I don't. We are going to make another prayer book out of the photos we got, and save the pictures from the traditional cards to make an ABC book for some friends with pre-schoolers. Since we have 3 of them now. (ABC books, not preschoolers.)

Jennifer said...

Mer........love the bowl idea! I have a friend that keeps a small basket on the table of the entry of their house and keep their cards in to enjoy. I have a sleigh that I use on my fireplace that displays them. I don't get to look at them as often so I may just borrow the bowl idea too. :)

I didn't do cards this year either. I did send one to our parents but that was it. I tried to get family pictures for several weeks and the weather wasn't working with me, so finally I just said no. LOL You are right though it's hard to justify the amount when you've spent on other things. However, I am already planning on getting pictures together for the summer and maybe either doing a Thanksgiving card or a New Years' card for this year. :)

Happy New Year!!

Moriah @ Please Pass the Salt said...

I just changed my profile photo so I'm totally cheating and seeing what it looks like posted. ;) You know I love Christmas cards! My mom foot the bill this year, for obvious reasons. ha (However, we REALLY trimmed down our list. Theirs is HUGE. Y'all should compare.)

Stephanie's Mommy Brain said...

I stopped sending Christmas cards after Ben was born. I should mention that by his first Christmas I was pregnant with Ellie and not feeling up to Christmas cards. Every year I think I'll send them again but never do. I never know what to do with the picture cards. I hate to throw them out but there's only so much stuff a person can hold onto.