I have to say that contrary to the popular phrase, ‘No one sends Christmas cards anymore’ I think most of my friends and family do. So, I wanted to add a little post about why I send Christmas cards.
1 People like receiving Christmas cards
When all we get through the letterbox these days is junk mail and bills, we all love it at Christmas time when there’s a heap of cards from the postman. It certainly cheers me up when a few cards fall on the door mat. My children equally love to be able to open lots of mail.
2 It’s an opportunity to catch up
I’m not the best at keeping in touch with friends and family. While Facebook and the like are good for these things, it is so much nicer to receive a hand written note.
3 It’s fun choosing the right card
There are so many great cards out there. Of course taking the time to hand make a card is extra special but if time doesn’t allow that there are so many lovely Christmas cards available. My favourite are our advent calendar cards as these are just that little bit different.
4 Cards help decorate the home
Glitter, sparkles and pop out bits. Beautiful flowers, snow scenes and nativity stables. All these help to make the home festive and welcoming at Christmas.
5 Christmas cards make someone feel special
Finally, I think, Christmas cards show someone they are important. The fact you’ve taken time out of your busy life to think of them and write a card speaks volumes in someone’s life.
Take time to send a few cards and help someone know they are special to you.
What was the most memorable Christmas card you received? Let us know in the comments.
We keep hearing that no one does send Christmas cards anymore. Depending on which survey you read you might think sales of Christmas cards are on the increase or they’re doomed. Well I’m not sure what to believe there but I do believe that sending cards is a great thing to do at any time of the year and Christmas is a good time to do it.
Why send Christmas Cards?
A survey by Traidcraft found that people do still send Christmas cards and there are lots of good reasons why.
Traidcraft drew up the cartoon strip below after their survey in 2015. The 2016 showed that even more people (84% compared to 77%) in that year said they preferred to receive a hand written Christmas card.
What Traidcraft and Dr John Sentamu had to say about sending cards
“What is even better is that when you buy a charity Christmas card, the benefit is multiplied. You’re not only showing friends and family you care, but you’re also supporting organisations such as Traidcraft to continue their life-changing work. It’s heartening to see that even in this social media age, charity Christmas cards are a win-win way of spreading festive cheer.”
The Archbishop of York, Dr John Sentamu, a keen social media user, is lending his support to the organisation’s call for people to put pen to paper and send personal, handwritten charity cards to their friends and family this Christmas, rather than relying on social media messaging.
Dr Sentamu said: “Perhaps more than any other time of the year, Christmas is a time when everyone should feel connected, loved and enjoy a sense of belonging.
“While social media and text messaging are great and convenient ways to stay in touch with friends and family, handwritten Christmas cards really are the best way to show someone that you’ve taken the time to think of them at this special time of year.
“Sending a Christmas card is a simple act, but it really shows you care, bringing a feeling of goodwill perfect for the season to all who receive them.”
With Thinking of You Week just around the corner I thought it might be helpful to give some ideas of people you could send your 7 cards to.
1 – Your neighbour
Let’s face it you could send all 7 cards to people in your area and light up the whole neighbourhood with smiles. A little card to say, ‘Thanks for being a great neighbour’ would be lovely don’t you think?
2 – A family member
Who is special to you in your family but you never quite tell them often enough, or maybe they’re so special that you can’t tell them too often. How they’ll smile if you pop a card through their door this week.
3 – Work colleague
Who’s having a tough time at work? Who makes the office more fun and bearable and makes coming to work worthwhile? Send them a note to let them know that work wouldn’t be the same without them.
4 – Secret admiree
Who would you like to talk to but can’t quite pluck up the courage to do so? Or maybe you don’t get the chance without someone else around all the time. Why not send a card, they’ll feel very special and it might just break the ice.
5 – Someone bereaved
Who’s lost a loved one recently, or maybe it’s an anniversary of their loved one’s death? A card to let them know they’re thought of and cared for is a nice touch, especially if it’s a bit awkward to bring it up in conversation.
6 – Your bestie
I know you see them all the time, you talk and text on the phone regularly but I bet they’d love a card from you. It would be unexpected and special.
7 – Your postman
Well why not? They deliver all your mail, be nice if they got one to take home with them wouldn’t it?
8 – The Queen
Now Britain’s longest reigning monarch I bet she’d love a card for no other reason than to say ‘thanks, thought you might like this’.
9 – A celebrity
Well, when else would you have the excuse to send a card to George Clooney/Justin Bieber/Rihanna/Shakira?
10 – ‘Thinking of You’ surprise
You could be really daring and leave a card for someone to find! Check out Share the Love Letters for more on this.
The challenge is to send 7 cards over the course of a week, I’ve given you more than 7 possibilities in case some of the ideas don’t apply or appeal to you. Go on – send some smiles!
For more reasons to send cards read my other blog about being a Mad Hatter
Help to create a wave of love, caring and happiness during this special week by harnessing the power of sending and receiving greeting cards.
It’s been scientifically proven that receiving a handwritten card makes people feel much more special than receiving instant texts, emails or Facebook messages. And it feels really good to send them too!
This is all great for everyone’s health and wellbeing.
Cognitive neuroscientist, Dr Lynda Shaw, firmly believes that receiving cards helps to stave off feelings of loneliness and isolation, increases self-esteem and even wards off the early stages of depression.
So let’s all get happy by connecting in this most meaningful way!
What do I do?
Send 7 cards during this week and encourage your friends, colleagues and their families to do the same. Feel free to give them in person or pop one through a neighbour’s letterbox too!
Write a message just to say hello,to tell someone you love them, to make them laugh, be supportive in a time of trouble, wish them better, kiss and make up, or just to say…thinking of you!
Why buy this pack?
By buying this pack you are also supporting others who need to know someone is thinking of them.
£2 from every pack bought will go directly to Hebrides Alpha Project.
At Hebrides Alpha Project, we provide a service for persons aged 18+, seeking to recover from alcohol, drug, mental health or criminal justice related problems and to assist them to become confident, responsible and valued members of the local community. We offer an abstinence based Supported Accommodation service.
For more information about Hebrides Alpha Project contact:
It makes sense that receiving a card will lift your spirits but it seems we struggle to send cards to do just that unless there is a visible physical illness. In September we have ‘Thinking Of You’ week and on October 10th it’s World Mental Health Day.
Patients rarely receive cards or flowers when they stay in a mental health unit
People should consider sending cards and gifts to friends and family suffering with mental health problems, experts say.
The Royal College of Psychiatrists said cards and gifts were a simple way to support people with mental illness.
The college even said it may aid their recovery.
It made the plea after carrying out a poll of 131 mental health patients, which showed over half did not receive any gifts or cards when they were ill.
This compared with just a third who did not get presents the last time they were physically ill.
More than eight out of 10 of the people surveyed said receiving a “get well soon” card would help their recovery.
If anything increases feelings of isolation and unworthiness just when you’re at your lowest ebb, this does
The college is launching two of its own gift cards with the greeting: “Thinking of you at this time. Hope things improve soon.”
A spokesman said existing greeting cards often had inappropriate images and words that were not suitable for a mental health problem.
Dr Peter Byrne, chair of the college’s education committee, said: “I have worked in general and psychiatric hospitals for over 20 years, and there is no greater demonstration of the hidden prejudice against people with mental illness than the bedside lockers.
“In psychiatric units, there is barely a card or any other reminder that the outside world cares.
“People often don’t know what to do or say when a friend or relative is ill with a mental health problem – so they end up doing nothing.”
Trisha Goddard, a television presenter who has spoken about her battles with depression and breast cancer, said: “When I was diagnosed with breast cancer last year, I was inundated with ‘get well soon’ cards all of which were really touching.
“If you’re thinking I only got those cards because I’m in the public eye, let me tell you this – when I lived in Australia, I was equally in the public eye and yet when news leaked out that I was in a psychiatric hospital following a breakdown, not a peep, no cards and certainly no flowers.
“If anything increases feelings of isolation and unworthiness just when you’re at your lowest ebb, this does.”
Just one family story about how the charity Together for Short Lives has helped them – if you’d like to support children’s hospices you could hold a Butterfly Tea Party in June.
Noah and Gracie
It’s hard to know where to start, so maybe the beginning is good. I was so excited when I found out I was pregnant with Noah. I’d always wanted to be a mum. Noah was born on 31 October 2006, a healthy little boy. As a parent you have so many dreams for your child, I wanted Noah to have all the things I didn’t have and so much more.
Noah developed as a normal little boy; he started to walk when he was 11 months old. But when Noah was about 13 months we noticed that his walking pattern didn’t seem quite right, he seemed to drag his left leg slightly. I explained my concerns to my health visitor and she referred Noah for an x-ray, this came back all clear. No one could explain Noah’s unsteady gait. When Noah was two and a half he had a little fall, as I picked him up to comfort him I noticed that although he was crying, his eyes had a slightly glazed look. When I went to put Noah down, he couldn’t stand on his feet and had no mobility at all. I’ll never forget that day; it would be the day I really knew something serious was wrong with Noah. Whilst Noah was on the waiting list for an MRI scan he continued to have these episodes and his walking deteriorated. One morning, as Noah tried to get out of bed he couldn’t walk at all. I took him to A&E in a panic and he was admitted for further tests. After two days in hospital the consultant asked to see us. As we walked into the room and saw two other doctors, we realised that something was wrong.
It’s amazing how your whole world can change within seconds with just a few words, the words we heard ‘Noah has a very abnormal brain scan’. The doctor explained that Noah had a condition called Leukodsytrophy, She explained that Leukodsytrophy is a life-limiting condition. I remember feeling physically sick and just sobbed and sobbed. I was seven months pregnant with my daughter at the time. We were told that there are around 40 different types of Leukodsytrophy. Noah’s tests were sent away to a specialist in Holland who diagnosed Noah with Vanishing White Matter Disease, a form of Leukodsytrophy.
Vanishing White Matter is a very rare condition which affects the white matter on the brain. It is genetic and runs in the family, and both Greg and I were carriers of the mutated gene. Symptoms generally appear in a child who has been appearing to develop fairly normal. The condition means that Noah will lose each of his abilities and will become physically disabled. A striking feature of the disease is that the symptoms get worse slowly for the most part, but there are episodes of rapid deterioration that follows an infection or mild head trauma. Noah could partially recovery following these episodes, or the episode could lead to coma and death.
We decided to have our daughter tested for the condition and were told that our beautiful little Gracie also had the same disease. As far as we know Noah and Gracie are still the only two children living in Northern Ireland with Vanishing White Matter Disease so we have to travel at times for treatment in Holland.
Although our life is not how we ever expected, we are truly blessed with Noah and Gracie in our lives.
Noah is our little Superman, a true hero to us and all who meet him, he is passionate about life and everyone who meets him comments on his infectious laugh. He is the happiest little boy I know, and even though he is ataxic at present and suffers from regular pains in his legs, he never complains. He is a joy to be around and at times puts us to shame with his ability to live life to the best of his ability.
As you can imagine it’s very difficult trying to keep a six and a half year old safe when he actually believes he is superman!
Gracie is now three years old and a little princess who also loves life. She is so affectionate and I truly believe that when she was born she was our little light, at a time that seemed very dark. She really helped us to get though.
We now just have different hopes and dreams for our children, and we will continue to trust that God will give us the strength to get though each day, because tomorrow is not guaranteed to any of us. We prefer to live one day at a time. We love Noah and Gracie with all our hearts; they have amazing strength and have touched the lives of so many people who have met them. We will never give up hope and will continue to pray for a miracle or that a cure maybe found.
No, our life is not as we imagined it to be but what we do have is faith, hope and of course an abundance of unconditional love within our family.