Saturday, December 4, 2010

Advent Calendar: Christmas Cards

Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories for 2010 sponsored by Geneabloggers today's prompt is:

How my parent's displayed Christmas Cards.

Did your family send cards? Did your family display the ones they received? Do you still send Christmas cards? Do you have any cards from your ancestors?

My parents did send Christmas cards, it is funny I can remember seeing them sit down with the green address book with the gold stamped around the edges of the book.  It was one with little rings in it and dividers for each letter of the alphabet.  My Dad made a list on a letter size piece of paper with the last names of who they were sending cards to and would place a check mark next to the name when the did the cards. He d rew columns on the paper and boxes for each letter of the alphabet. 

The funny thing is as clearly as I can remember the just mentioned details. I can't remember who wrote the Christmas cards.  I think it was both of them.  No card went out without a note in it.

From the picture above you can see how we displayed them in our Whitestone, New York home.  That is me with my brother George in 1950. 

I started the same tradition when I left home of sending cards to my family and friends.  I also wrote a note in each card unless it was to someone I spoke with regularly. 

Somewhere along the line I had an electric type writer and I started typing a Christmas letter.  Of course once I had my own computer in 1989 I started doing my Christmas letters by computer.  I would still send them out in a card at first, then I started sending the letter alone in a long envelope, then I started doing it every other year and now I send them electronically unless I don't have an email for some one. 

One of my favorite memories about Christmas cards were the ones from "Toots".  My Aunt Bea introduced me to Toots, and she wrote me faithfully every year after our introduction my mail.  I never had the pleasure of meeting her.

This is what my Cousin Val wrote me about her recently.  Val was lucky enough to meet her.

Her mother and Grandma Chaplin were best friends and the three Chaplin kids and Toots were like one family - Allot of the pix I have of your mom and my dad as kids have Toots in them.  She was very cool, remained single all of her life, worked for an insurance company I think Prudential in NYC.  She sent me a Christmas card every year until she died and it was always the first one I got each year.  But the most memorable thing about Toots was that she traveled all over the world in the 50's and 60's- which for the times was pretty unusual as a single woman.  As a little girl I remember receiving post cards from places like all over Europe, Australia, Japan, China.  She mostly went by cruise ship I think.  I asked her that day in 1985 what place she liked best - it was China.

Her card was always the first and one I enjoyed just because of the family connection.

Have a wonderful Christmas Season. 

1 comment:

  1. What a great picture! And I've heard of people displaying cards in venetian blinds before - but I've never seen it.