Go check your mail.

You didn’t get a Christmas card from me.  Again.  I know–you sent me one like you do every year.  Now that you know yours isn’t on the way, you probably regret being so nice all year.

Truth is, I feel a little guilty.  Years back, I perfected Defensive Card Mode.  I’d keep a box of cards near the door to send when your holiday wishes arrived.  You’d think they crossed in the mail.

I’ve tried to do Offensive Card Mode.  I wrote cards during Halloween or the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.  I wanted to send them early so you could feel guilty yours was late.  It didn’t work.  I never finished.  You can’t read my writing anyway so I wouldn’t get credit for the card.

The problem–I love letters.  I love writing and receiving them.  I always try to say something personal.  It gets long.  I lose focus.  The cards stack up in a pile unmailed.  This is why I love email–all the fun of a letter but the convenience of legibility and speed.  You email haters are doing it wrong.  Email’s an art.  A conversation.  A letter that doesn’t need a week to arrive…

Unlike my cards–which remain lost in decoration boxes long after the year expires.

Lindsey and Allison–I found your card from last year.  Want it?  I think it’s done…

I’ve tried everything–written cards alphabetically, reverse alphabetically.  I’ve tried to write them and send them out that day.  It never works.  Either I do half the alphabet and stop, or send the same five people ten cards each because I forgot whose I sent.

But I did think of you and smile.  I promise!

A couple of years ago I prioritized cards by religion.  I wanted my non-Christian friends to feel the love, holiday spirit, and American consumerism the rest of us experience instead of being annoyed that their boss doesn’t want to give them time off for their holiday because it’s about God not shopping.

Even that didn’t work.  Those cards are in The Pile, too.  Luckily, because Hindus, Muslims, and Jews don’t care much about Christmas, nobody noticed and got mad, and my Witness friends don’t want a card at all, so they’re the easiest holiday friends of anyone.

This year I’m right on schedule to forget the cards and leave presents unsent.  I got a beautiful card from my sister-in-law who has three boys and a job and still makes thoughtfulness a priority.  Somehow she coordinated the whole family for a picture where not one boy’s picking a nostril and everyone’s face is clean.  I can’t even get Declan to pose with a smile.

There’s no excuse.  I have to dig deeper to get these things done…

Thankfully, Amazon saves me on the gift end, and I think this year, Christmas tweets will pull me out of the Great Card Catastrophe.  After you get your holiday tweet, you’ll think I’m cutting-edge, not behind. It’s all in the marketing.

You probably don’t want my gluten-free shortbread cookies anyway.  I bet you’d be willing to accept a holiday Tweet–less clutter to clean and recycle after the season’s done.

If not, I’ll go through the box of unsent cards.  Surely, I’ve collected a full set by now… If not, I’ll stick a label over a really old one from someone I never see and it can be yours.

Meanwhile, know that I love you, and appreciate the gift of our connection.  As a writer, it’s a gift.  As a human being, connection weaves the fabric from which we build our lives.  There is nothing more important than that.

Whether you get your card or gift on time or not, may you be blessed this New Year.  May you receive what you need in terms of goodness, compassion, and love.  I am grateful for you.

Blessings for this coming year and forever!

And if you’re really in need of a last-minute gift for someone you love you can send the audiobook or Kindle of my book, Don’t Sniff the Glue: A Teacher’s Misadventures in Education Reform, give to Jodi’s Swanson’s Women of Strength Kickstarter in honor of an important person in your life, read Claudia’s Become an Idea Machine to get your life back in creative mode or send this amazing Psychedelic Salad kit with not one single mushroom available on Amazon.

If none of those work for you, send me a note at dawn(at)cafecasey.com and I will personally send you a last-minute gift recommendation and my best wishes for the holiday season.




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