A version of this post appeared back in 2010. I have repeated it here, with minor tweaks!
I remember both my Mum and Grandmother sending cards, but not how many or what happened to them. I have a few old cards, perhaps the last one received from a particular relative, or those with a photograph or letter. Any that my Grandmother received I now have. I always keep the card given to me by family members and special friends and mark on the back the year received. I have every card my husband has given me.
Currently they are in a box packed away in a box awaiting scanning and archiving. I can’t really remember where they were displayed, I suspect the mantle piece as that is where I have mine and on the dresser and other furniture in our lounge.
I probably started sending cards when I as about 12 or 13. Mainly to school friends, but when I left home and then subsequently married, to family members. In many cases a Christmas card is the only contact we have, which is a shame.
When we first set up home together and started sending cards as a couple I asked for Stuart’s card list. He looked at me blankly and said he only sent about 6 cards, I was amazed, that meant the other 60 or so were mine! Since then I have written all the cards and letters and Stuart’s list has not really got any bigger. My list has reduced substantially in the last eight years or so. I keep the email letters and file these with letters I receive, along with any letters and cards that arrive in the mail.
I usually aim to send my cards out early December, but each year I seem to get later and later. The overseas ones always go first and eventually the rest as the final posting date looms. As I write this the first of our 2017 cards has arrived today, from the husband of my cousin who passed away two years ago.
At the end of the 1980’s I bought a card booklet, with the details of card and present and address. The book was set up for about 10 years. At the end of the 10 years I looked around for another book similar but no one seems to sell them any more. For years I had a bit of paper in my Christmas card box and each year tick or highlight in a pen to say that I sent the card. The scrappy piece of paper was likeable, but I now just put the list in my notebook which I index and check the previous year’s list so I can check I have not missed anyone from the list by accident. I usually buy Charity cards apart from ones that I send to close relatives. I tend to go for the Charities whose good cause has touched our family life, mainly Cancer Research as many of my family have suffered in this way, but also I support the British Polio Fellowship in memory of my late Mum.
This photograph is of my Great Grandmother, Annie Prudence Butcher nee Harris,which was sent as her Christmas Card in 1955. The picture was taken in Guildford Surrey England in the prefab house the family lived in after the War. Judging by the clothes APH, as she is affectionately known, had this taken during September to October, probably of that year.
The photo was certainly sent to her children, I have my Grandfather’s copy George Butcher (1908-1974) and I know of at least one cousin who has his father’s copy.
Do you have a copy in your photo collection? If so please get in touch.