My Little Black Address Book-(Or On Transferring “People” From My “Old” Tattered Address Book)

Every year I send out Christmas cards, cards that I design and print myself and they always contain photos of my pets (my children) on them and sometimes of my pets and me.  This is to let my friends know that I am thinking about them even if I don’t visit them, haven’t visited them or called them in a long time. It is always a bit of a laborious process to update the addresses on this fairly long list for various reasons, every year no matter how hard I try I always get a couple of cards “returned to sender” due to someone having moved and I didn’t know it, or the way the address has to be written has changed, besides the adding of new friends I have made or deleting friends who have died during the year, and because SOMETIMES I just plain screwed up writing the address on the envelope – like the times (yes I have done this error more than once) in which I addressed it from me and to me (usually this is about card #50 and you would rightly think I should notice this error when I go through the cards and put the postage stamps on them to mail them that I would catch this error but NOOO, at least not always anyway!).  When I add new friends I usually start by looking up their physical addresses on the internet version of the phone book and then when that fails because they are not listed then I have to call them and get their address the old fashioned way, by asking them for it. I usually send out around forty to sixty cards every year because I try to include all of the people, the ones in my family and old and new friends, that are in my life and play an important and emotional part it as well as the ones who have been in that position in the past so are still important in my life even if it is in the memory portion of my life. I like to let these people who hold a significant place in my life as I read their names in my address list, and it is unimportant whether that memory is from current events or past ones, as they are all equally important to me in my desire to let them know that they still hold an important place in my heart and my feelings about them, even if our lives have changed to the point we don’t have time to see each other anymore that they are still important.   I want them to know I remember them at least this time once in a year, maybe it is more for me than for them but I do hear from a lot of those people that they look forward to receiving my cards and none of them ever tell me to take them off my list.  I try to keep a hand written address book up to date with all the addresses I need for my Christmas card project but there always ends up being some names missing and some that I have no idea where they moved to and it can take a lot longer than I would like to get all the addresses correct for the cards I want to send out. In spite of my best efforts I still always end up with a few that I can’t locate and then if I get lucky and they send me a card because they have moved but still like the “Christmas Card Contact” we have shared through the years (and that always reaffirms to me that my Christmas card project is a good thing to do) when I get those cards they get pulled out and added to the current card list.  Every year I think that I should call every one of the people on my card list and arrange to have lunch with them, some of them have held very special places in my life in the past, some of them used to be my best friends and every year I don’t end up calling them, not that they try either but still… It could be kind of interesting to look up all the people in the address book and go visit them during the year for old times sake, or actually I guess for new time’s sake. And every year when I don’t I always say to myself I will do it next year and next year comes and I still don’t do it. Maybe I will do it this year. Maybe someday will come and wouldn’t that make fifty or sixty interesting stories for me to tell?

My Little Black Address Book


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