Friday, May 2, 2008

Sending Cards and Thank You Notes

For those paying attention, you’ll notice I added “Blogging in timely fashion,” to my list of things I suck at. Just so you know I’m aware I have a problem. It’s not just blogging however. It’s doing anything on or before a timeline. This includes sending cards.

If you’ve given me a gift in the last 10 years (well...ever) and I haven’t sent a thank you, let me do that now.

Thank you so much!

If you’ve sent my children a present, card or check for their birthday or any gift-giving holiday and you have yet to receive a thank you, then for my children I say,
Thank you very much!

It’s not that we are an ungrateful bunch, on the contrary, I know (and I tell my children) how blessed we are and how we should be grateful grateful grateful everyday for simply living in our home, but for some reason I simply cannot get it together enough to send cards of thanks. In fact, my daughter has just finished her thank you’s from her birthday party in February. While they are written, they are currently sitting on the back of the hutch. I have not sent my thank you’s for the donations that were made to the MS society for the walk I completed. And I’m sure there are a few baby presents I received when the baby was born that slid under the radar and now my daughter is going on one and I can tell you, a card is not coming.

It’s not just thank-you’s I have trouble with. Sending cards of any type is truly an issue for me. My sister’s birthday was three weeks ago, her daughters birthday is Saturday and although it’s been on the calendar since January, have I sent either one a card? Of course not.

I’m not sure why I bother to write birthday’s, anniversaries, and whatnot on my calendar since those reminders only serve to remind me what I’ve missed. I look at my calendar every day at least twice. It takes that much for me to keep up with what the kids are doing. How do I continue to get myself into these situations? You ask. How the hell hard is it to slap a stamp on an envelope put it in the mail and be done? Here’s a brief example of my thought process. So you know, C=calendar and TB=thought bubble. Mine of course.

I stand in front of the calendar on Monday.
C: 10:00 home cleaning estimate; Girl Scouts
TB: crapcrapcrap. I didn’t clean the house enough for the cleaning lady she’ll probably think I’m a slob dammit I have to plan for Girl Scouts what are we going to do oh Mimes might be fun [glancing ahead in the week] it’s a busy week will I even have time for a nap I don’t think so, oh my sister’s birthday is on Thursday I have to remember to send her a card.

I stand in front of the calendar on Tuesday.
C: Teddy Bear Picnic 2:00-3:00 daughter’s class, bring snacks, blanket; Karate 4:30-5:00; Baseball practice 5:00
TB: crapcrapcrap. I didn’t get anything for the teddy bear picnic, maybe I’ll have time to make cookies who am I kidding don’t forget the blanket is the camera battery even charged I don’t think so dammit. Karate and baseball practice start at the same time how can I be two places at once I wish my husband were home well someone won’t be going to something maybe I can get the neighbor to take my daughter to Karate [glancing ahead in the week] in-laws coming tomorrow still haven’t cleaned the lower level for them, oh and I need to get a card in the mail today for my sister’s birthday.

C: Mom & Dad in-law arrive 3:15-Providence
TB: plan on having house all cleaned by 10:00 a.m.,will go to buy a card for my sister, get it in the mail then maybe it will only be a day (or two) late. I can apologize for that I need to find someone to get the kids off the bus so I can get mom and dad from the airport I still need to finish the laundry before they get here, what will we be eating for dinner I can’t stand making dinner maybe we’ll go out get a card get a card get a card.

C: Sister birthday; Karate 4:30-5:00.
TB: dammit dammit dammit. Didn’t send sister a card make sure that I call her today and apologize for not sending a card, cleaned all day yesterday and still was late picking mom and dad up, I didn't pick up a card yet well screw the card because now it's late and since it's late I might as well not send it...

And then all the family arrived for the baby’s baptism and the next week the kids were off from school, and now it’s May and my neice’s birthday is tomorrow and while she is only turning two, have I sent anything yet? Right. You know the answer.

In fact I was talking to my neighbor the other day who was relating to me that a mutual acquaintance had had a tragedy in her family. While we both don’t know the woman all that well, a card or thoughtful note would have been nice, so I said to my friend, “It is my intention to send a card.” That was a few weeks ago and now it just seems weird to send one.

I was so late on my Christmas letters, but had already printed the pictures, that I sent out Merry Spring letters instead. Those went out in March.

My other niece and nephew had birthday’s in February and March. It was my intention to take them to Build-A-Bear while I back visiting so we could have some bonding time and celebrate together. Well, family tragedy trumped the birthday event plans, and now it’s May and have I sent them gift cards to Build-A-Bear? Have they received anything from sorry ol’ Aunt Rachel? Nothing. Nada. Zip. "Sucking as an Aunt" --add it to the list.

We still haven’t had my son’s birthday party. His birthday was in April and we’re planning on having it towards the end of May, but it requires me to send out invitations. They're on the hutch, but they remain blank

I need to enroll my daughter in day camp for a week this summer. The forms are filled out. The check is written. The doctor has signed her off in good health. The envelope is sitting on the back of my hutch.

I mailed the last of the Christmas presents to family at the end of February. They were family calendars with our pictures. Family was never able to use the first two months. I’m just happy the calendars aren’t on the back of the hutch anymore.

Maybe I need to get rid of my hutch.

According to the latest wedding etiquette, brides and grooms have three months to send out all their thank you notes. Now this is something I might be able to accomplish.

If I had a three month window for all cards and correspondence, I may actually be more successful in sending things off. Another option would be to just send everyone a package containing a year’s worth of greetings: Christmas, birthday, anniversary, Easter, what-have-you. Then I would only need to get one thing in the mail per family. That idea might actually work.

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