Christmas cards are coming, and why a goat is not just for Christmas

Our slightly mad Christmas tree

Sorry I haven’t posted recently. I’ve been pretty busy and I’ve got a bit bogged down writing my Christmas cards. This is usually a quick and efficient exercise but this year it has been a much bigger operation because I decided I should include some written personalised messages rather than just sign the card. I tried adding things to my cards such as ‘Hope you are keeping well’ etc. but it looked a bit crass – and what if they are not well? They won’t thank me for that little addition. So I embarked on writing – in effect – a letter.

Why? Because I haven’t seen and spoken to seen some family, friends and ex-work colleagues as much this year thanks to Covid 19 and I have some catching up to do. Its fair to say I have avoided contact with people to a degree out of fear of entering into depressing conversations about how Covid and related crises have conspired to take the pleasure out of life and to stop us doing things and going places (as we are not all senior politicians or advisors).

So, I thought sending a personal note with my cards would be nice and would make it easier to renew more personal contact in the New Year. Soon after I started, I discovered my handwriting, which used to be pretty neat, now closely resembles a doctor’s signature on a prescription. I am so unused to using handwriting these days that my pen can suddenly fly in any direction and invent a new letter or character. After writing a few, I had to resort to typed notes and follow up e-mails. Although satisfied I might have found the right words, looking at a few paragraphs of typed text led me to wonder if I should decorate them with a Christmassy picture or photograph. This only increased the pressure and the amount of time it has taken me to get them done.

Knowing my audience, I’m sure my efforts will be appreciated or even reciprocated. As yet, most people I know have not joined the ‘I’ve stopped sending Christmas cards’ brigade. If they had, I suppose this would save me a lot of time and expense but that is not the point. Those people may claim that not sending cards will reduce their carbon footprint but I think that is a spurious claim. The Greta Thunbergs of this world might think this is a terrible loss of trees but I don’t see how a few cards made from recycled paper sent to those we care about and think of at Christmas will destroy the planet.

Others may wish to donate the money they would have spent on cards to sponsor a goat in Africa – and that’s up to them. But I think those people have lost the spirit of Christmas and are lazy. Most of us can afford to give some money to charity at any time of the year and it is easy to find cards that donate something to charities. Spend less on your iPad or the Christmas food you will end up throwing in the bin and do both. If someone on my list says they are not sending cards in order to give to charity, I’ll send them a card anyway and if they give me the goat’s address I’ll send it one too.

So, click a button and send an e-card via social media if you must, but I like something more physical, personal and traditional.

Author: Paul

I am a retired, married bloke, dad and grandad - growing old with attitude.

3 thoughts on “Christmas cards are coming, and why a goat is not just for Christmas”

  1. I’m not good at Christmas cards either, Paul, and suffer the same affliction with handwriting. But they are all done, so I can relax for another year knowing that no goats were harmed in the process. Hope you can relax now – and it’s great to see a post on WordPress from you!


  2. I agree that sending cards and writing letters at Christmas is a good idea. It shows people that you are thinking of them and care for them. A goat for a village in Africa is not a substitute.

    Liked by 1 person

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