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February 11, 2013



My holiday mailings SOOOO did not go as planned! The umpteen packages went off all right -- there are only about a half-dozen Christmas presents that never got mailed (ha!), but the cards are another story. I carried my 200 envelopes to India on a business trip in late November, thinking I would have plenty of free evenings to address and decorate and afix postage. Nope - that didn't work out so well. I brought home those same 200 envelopes in their same pristine condition. I finally found time to address and write them on another flight -- to JFK this time, en route to London for Christmas. Somehow I managed to complete 150 cards in a 4.5 flight, including personalized messages! I was a girl-with-a-mission, obviously. Only to be foiled by the JFK airport. Not a postbox to be found, much to my dismay. And every Customer Service Agent I asked said the same thing: no postboxes, no post office anywhere at JFK. I was fuming! My Christmas cards -- already to be mailed this time -- made a second international trip, to England. They were finally mailed on December 31st when I landed back in the US.

What a year! (And if your math is good and you're wondering about those other 50 envelopes... yeah, those people, um, got, uh, bumped to next year. {sigh})

Sauni-Rae Dain

At least you, Donovan, and CMN both got things sent. It is February, no, the MIDDLE of February,and I can say I did not get anything sent. I have plenty of partial letters written, planned.... but nothing sent. Perhaps I should just start now for next year.


I think I sent out about 20 or so Christmas cards (I'm slowly growing my mailing list, since I don't send a card with my mom anymore) and I didn't have too many issues. I think I just sent them out later than I intended to. Usually, the cards I send are a mix of leftovers from the previous year and new ones I might pick out specifically for certain people.

I'm not sure if I would make them myself, although I have considered having some printed from photos I take. I do think it's a shame that most people don't seem to send out cards; the amount I receive is always significantly less than I send.


I buy most of my Christmas cards at Goodwill - great quirky selection and cheap. The few I manage to make go to other card makers who will appreciate them or I donate them to Operation Write Home (cards made for soldiers to write home on).


my holiday card was definitely a process. i spent at least 2-3 weeks on and off perfecting the design of the card, mainly the typography. luckily i was working at the stationery store then and could print comps and such to test it out. i handmade the envelopes and liners and i used hot glue gun wax seals which made it go faster. overall i was really happy with the holiday card i made this year. i try to make it special and even a little bit unexpected. i also need to be better about having everyone's addresses.

Melissa of craftgasm

My list is about 130 people. I usually send a mix of thrift store finds (where I get some awesome cards sometimes) and cards I buy 50%+ off after Christmas and save in my decorations box every January. This year I made six of them because I hosted a holiday mail-making party, but I saved them for people who I knew would appreciate that it was handmade. I try to match the pre-made ones with people's beliefs and personalities, and I write at least a short note in each of them.

Then I decorate the envelopes like crazy with washi and deco tape, labels, and collaging, if I don't make the envelope myself from a holiday-themed catalog or photography book. :)

A few that came back to me (people can move without sending a "new address" card? DOES NOT COMPUTE!) had the collaging look a little roughed up in the sorting machines, but they also had to travel twice as far as usual to make the round trip. I patched them up and forwarded them again, but don't know how they fared.


I'm confused. the Olathe post actually mails things too? I looked at their website and couldn't find anything about it. Do you use us postage or buy the postage Olathe makes? Please enlighten me!

Donovan Beeson

This blog entry should tell you all about it Emilie! The short answer is yes, they do remailings: http://16sparrows.typepad.com/letterwritersalliance/2012/10/olathe-postes-special-cancellations-for-the-holidays.html


Thanks so much Donovan!


For the first time in our 20(this August) years of marriage my husband took a huge interest in 2011. It was so fun to be doing it together and have him be excited about it and want to be really thorough, making sure to send something to EVERYBODY we know on three continents! Husbands, go figure, they're full of surprises!


Whoops, I meant to ad that he came to the 2012 project with the same enthusiasm! In fact he's already coming up with custom printing ideas for 2013!

Marti Schrock

I think I am becoming a bad sender, too. I have been getting lots of mail returned; even recently, a letter to my mother-in-law with an insuffient address. It was all there, by my eyes, & I send her a letter every Monday. This was nothing new, yet, the piece was returned. No worries - I'll keep creating & sending fun mail!


Celebrating the Lunar New Year allows me to send my holiday cards well into February! This is helpful when I've run late on Christmas and New Year's cards, but it does mean that I don't get to sending any out for Valentine's Day. In years past I have often handmade my own cards and included individual messages (it's the one significant correspondence I'll send out to many people in a year, so why not?), but this year I mailed store-bought cards and concentrated more on lettering simple messages and prettying up envelopes. It was a different sort of creativity, and I think I'll do the same for Christmas 2013.

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