Sunday, December 20, 2009

Fun Monday - Holiday Mail

As the holidays close in on us, Faye at Summit Musings has graciously offered to be our host this week:

Your assignment, should you decide to play, is to share some of your favorite holiday mail that you've received this year. Possible categories:

Best All Around Card
Most Meaningful Message
Best Kid/Pet Holiday Photo
Best Family Newsletter
Most Humorous Card

Most of the people I know aren't doing the holiday newsletter. In fact, most people I know aren't doing Christmas cards at all. We keep up with each other on such a daily basis through FaceBook or blogs or even email that a card seems a bit superflous. But there are exceptions, of which I wish to be one.

My grandfather's second wife was a great writer of what she called encyclicals. They were somewhat rambling accounts of life that came once every three or four months. But she really shone for the Christmas Encyclical! I always looked forward to receiving this amazing piece of mail. She died a few years back and the encyclical died with her... but all hope of holiday newsletter is not gone, for her daughter (my Aunt Lucy) and her husband Kollyn do a lovely letter every year. Like mine, their lives are incredibly busy and the holiday letter rarely makes it stateside until after Christmas has come and gone, but its advent reminds me that the Christmas spirit is here always if you just remember to look for it. And it's full of news of their lives (and their daughters') for the past year. This is how I keep up with that side of the family. If it weren't for this yearly letter, I would know very little of what was happening with the family in England.

My grandmother isn't a big fan of Christmas and prefers to avoid all the commercialism to celebrate the day quietly at home or perhaps up the mountain with her brother. She does, however, send out gorgeous Christmas cards to a select few, usually with a very short letter enclosed.

Card from Jocelyn

Many cards from across the pond feature lovely little robin red-breasts in snow and are quite charming. But this year, Grandma went in a different direction. This particular picture reminds her and my father quite strongly of the farm up the mountain where they lived. My father's last Christmas in Wales was much like this. Every year, I look forward to the day when the little card with the Royal Mail stamp arrives in my mailbox, and I settle down with a nice cup of tea and savor the card and the letter enclosed.

I wish travel wasn't so expensive or complicated. I would love to go to Wales and spend a Christmas with her. As it is, I don't know when or even if I will ever see her again. I treasure these brief contacts on paper.

And now, if you will excuse me, I have my own letter to write. Cards will go out late (again) this year, probably AFTER Christmas has come and gone, but I have every intention of getting them out.

Check my sidebar for next week's host (Gattina). I'm going to keep a current side bar of who's hosting and what the topic is, so if you're ever lost and can't figure out who's doing it on any given week, swing by here. If there's a host, it'll be there!


Sandy said...

What a lovely card and how nice that you still have your Grandma.

Thanks, also, for the new sidebar listing. I had lost track. Hopefully, I will be able to play next week.

gayle said...

I too love the letters and newsletters. Can't seem to get in the mood or find the time this year. I have never sent them late but this may be the year. I received a Christmas card for the first time from my nephew and a letter. It really touched my heart!!

Jan n Jer said...

I enjoy the Christmas news letter also.. but havent received one yet this year. A few of my friends are sending out New years cards instead of Christmas. It gives them more time. Don't know how I feel about that new trend! Merry Christmas to you n yours Sayre!

Faye said...

I'm sure you keep these beautiful cards from year to year, Sayre? And, how invaluable those encyclicals will be when you decide to write your memoirs! Can you translate the Welsh for us on this card?

Like you, I don't mind if the cards don't go out before Christmas just so long as they get on their way by early January. I hope you and your family have a healthy and happy Christmas and New Year, Sayre.

Sandcastle Momma said...

I can just imagine how excited you were when you received those letters. It's too bad that letter writing seems to be a lost art.

The Church Lady said...

That is a beautiful card, Sayre. Does it say Merry Christmas on the front?

I used to write a newsletter to my family, but I have not done one in years. I will stick to sending cards every year.

Have a wonderful Christmas with your family!