December 17, 2014 § 3 Comments
Every year for the holidays I gather paper and glue and cardboard and ribbons and pens and envelopes and paintbrushes and colored pencils and try to design something beautiful and memorable to send to the people I adore and love most in this world. I raise the bar every year, trying to outdo the design from the Christmas before. This translates into more time designing and writing and an increase in money spent.
For several weeks I’ve been churning out cards — 90 of them so far — without giving a second thought to the expense of sending them. Alas, that should have been my first consideration, for when I went to the post office last week to get an estimate of the cost, I discovered I was waaaaaay off. I thought postage would be $0.60 or $0.70, maybe $0.90, for each card at the most. Nope. $2.32. Times 90-100. Ick.
So for several days I put card making and sending on hold, feeling sorry for myself and my inability to properly calculate postage at the outset of a project.
But as hard as I try to get my Scrooge on, I just can’t do it.
When I got home from work today, I dumped the whole bag of unsigned cards on a chair, stood over the pile, and stared at it in wonder. (And then took a few photos.) All that work. All that color. All that love cut and glued and folded into something that’s meant to bring cheer. I can’t let them sit here unwritten. They must go out. But they will go forth into that snowy night slowly, for I have wasted precious time and they will not all be delivered by Christmas Eve (but perhaps by New Year’s Day).
So take a tip from me, possums. Plan accordingly. Make a budget. Stick to it. Stifle perfectionism. Don’t make your own holiday cards year after year. Buy an iPad (or two) and a bottle (or three) of bubbly instead.
December 2, 2014 § 3 Comments
It takes me a good 45-60 minutes to make one of my annual holiday cards. That includes cutting out the cardboard, paper, and ribbon; gluing the paper to the cardboard; assembling the card; handwriting a personal note; hand-addressing the envelope; and sending it on its way. Because of the thickness of my cards, I also make several trips to the post office to stand in long lines and make sure I have the right amount of postage on each.
Today I laid out all the tools and materials I use to create one card. Below is a picture of everything and a few photos of the finished product, including the two sides. This year’s card is a play on an accordion and Jacob’s Ladder book structure, and will have writing on both sides, as the back cover flips to become the front. When folded, the card is about three-quarters of an inch thick.