(the following conversation occurred through text.)

Friend: YOU!

Me: Me what?

Friend: You with the sneak attack cards making me all weepy!

Me: Hallmark doesn’t pay me to be pretty.

Friend: As it should be.

I can vividly remember sitting at the dining room table drawing a card for my dad. I don’t remember the details of the card although I would suspect it was for my aunt’s birthday and he had forgotten to pick up a card from the store so he was playing the old “win the family over with a hand drawn card by the kid” card. You know you’ve played it. Or been on the receiving end of it.

He came up behind me and said “You should work for Hallmark.” I’m sure every parent has dreams of their kid going on to pursue something they are wildly passionate about in childhood but in my head I thought “Yes. Yes I should work for Hallmark.”

I was always the kid (and am currently the grown up) hanging out in the card aisle. Reading every single one, buying way too many and sending them to my friends. I always liked the way someone could put into a card exactly how I felt about someone and all I had to do to express my love was sign it and stamp it. Do you remember those Hallmark commercials where the girl gets a card from her boyfriend and then drops something so she can check to see if the Hallmark crown is on the back of the card? Yeah. That was me. Well played Hallmark.

I was convinced that people who gave Hallmark cards loved you more.

Fast forward to 2009, I was sitting in my mom’s living room in New Mexico when an email came through from Hallmark asking me if I’d like to come to Kansas City to tour their facilities and meet with some of their writers. I squealed so loud I scared bats. I sobbed through a good majority of the Hallmark tour, this was my dream since I had been a little kid drawing silly handmade cards at the dining room table.

Mooshinindy. In Heaven.

(photo by Gabby Blair)

But the thing that got me the most was when our group was asked how we keep in touch with our friends.

“Email. Texts. Phone calls. Girls night out. Visits. Dinner.” were some of the answers. After we all finished answering someone from Hallmark said “None of you said send cards.”

THE HORROR. What had happened to that little girl who wandered the card aisles? Here I was in the hallowed halls of Hallmark WORLD HEADQUARTERS and I had to admit that with this digital life I lead I had forgotten about the magic of picking out a card, stamping and mailing it.

I’m pleased to say I have much improved my card sending strategy. But I have broadened my card sending repertoire to include cards from Etsy as well, because nothing says love like handmade (and Hallmark, well played 1990′s marketing campaign.)

I, along with several other bloggers were challenged to send out a stack of cards to our friends and family, while I’m sure they enjoyed opening the cards, I much more enjoyed knowing that my friends were going to know that I was thinking about them and that they had tangible evidence of me doing so.

Hallmark wants to give you the same opportunity. I have 10 packs of cards to give away to you lovely people. Cards you can send to whomever, whenever.  (winners chosen! thanks everyone!) Cards that can stand in for a giant hug when you can’t be there yourself. Cards that can make a sad friend laugh or a lonely family member feel a little less lonely. I’ll pick ten people at random from the comments left on this post.

But what I want to know is who would you send a card to right now? Or, who sent you a card or letter that made all the difference in a day (or your life) for you? For me it was a letter from my Anna. Two pages single spaced about how much our friendship has meant to her. I treasure it. And all she had to do was write it (and find a stamp, let’s be honest, that can be kind of tricky.)

While it’s the intention that matters when we tell someone how much we love them, sometimes it’s nice to do it through something tangible that can be treasured.

********


DISCLOSURE: I am working closely with Hallmark during their “Life is a Special Occasion” campaign and have been compensated to share little moments in my life that are special occasions, not for endorsing a specific product, any mention of specific products is purely voluntary and all opinions stated are my very own.

 

Comments

  1. I love cards. I love getting them and I’m trying to be better about sending them. If I had cards in front of me right now, I’d send one to a good friend I’ve sort of lost touch with and another to my grandma just to say hello.

  2. You picked the perfect week for me if I would win these. My grandfather just lost his last sibling so I would send him and my grandma a card just because, just to remind them how much I love them even though I don’t get to see them very often.
    And then a couple to close friends to let them know what they mean to me. I always love to get cards and try send notes occasionally just to say hi or I miss you.

  3. I’d send a card to my sister. After struggles with infertility, and unsuccessful attempts of IUI, she is pregnant after IVF – and she saw her little peanut’s heartbeat for the first time today. That warrants a card. I’m so DARN EXCITED (Plus! I get to be an aunt!).

  4. I LOVE to send and receive cards. We just moved cross-country and those little pieces of home mean so much to me. Now that I’m a big pregnant cryfest, I would send my cards to my family and let each of them know how very much I miss them and how much they each mean to me.

  5. I would send a funny one to a friend who’s had a pretty sucky couple of months, all around. She could use a giggle.

  6. In our quest to have a fun summer we have been planning something fun everyday…one day a week we have a snail mail day. We map out who needs letters, cards, pictures, candy etc. We have those few people that we send something to every week (missionary), & then we have those who are in need of just a pick me up. It has been one of the funnest summer activities we have done, and will continue long after summer is over.

  7. My husband and I dated long-distance for a year after we first met. Even though we talked and texted and emailed and Skyped every day, I loved picking out special cards to send him funny, or sexy, or romantic messages to let him know just how much he meant to me. Now that we’re married, I like to slip cards into his luggage when he’s traveling and give him cards to celebrate special occasions, but I still like to buy cards for “just because.” We keep all of our cards to each other in a special box my mom made for cards at our wedding reception.

  8. Way to make me all teary. Love you.

  9. I just got a letter (& picture) from my Dad’s cousin. She has some of my Great-Gram’s china and wanted to know if I would like to have it. This is special to me on two levels. First I knew my Great-Gram, she passed away at 106 when I was in college. I adored her, she was a feisty lady. :) so I would love to have something that was hers. Plus my daughter’s middle name is in honor of Gram, so this is something I could pass to her too. She also included a story about why there are only five cups to go with the pitcher instead of six. It involves my Grandpa and some shattered glass. :) that was so fun to hear about, I lost my Grandpa two years ago. All of that from a letter out of nowhere – so special to me! I love mail and I love sending cards. I think this is the coolest giveaway. Yay Hallmark!

  10. Jenny Lee says:

    I think the best card I got was from an unknown sender. I was pretty much new to the mom gig (a barely two year old and a newborn) The card was just a blank card with a handwritten message about how this person had been watching me with my children and how they thought I was doing a good job and that I was a great mom. I was struggling at the time and doubting my mothering skills. The card really helped lift my spirits and helped me to realize that I was doing ok. :)

  11. I’m practically a card hoarder, I think, in part, because I’m afraid companies will stop making them. The person I am most likely to send a card to next is my friend who will have her first child in a couple of weeks. I can’t be there with her (she lives too far away) but I can send her lots of mail to know how much I’m thinking about her and her baby.

  12. I would send a card to my bestest friends. I have two girls that mean the world to me. One is living in China right now because she has a husband that does one of those special in-demand jobs that only a few people in the world do. I miss her. She can look at my face and know what I’m thinking. We can make each other laugh like no one else. She’s the only person I’ve been able to stay up all night long talking to. My other girl friend keeps the other two of us grounded. She’s gone back to her native country in Texas. She’s the kind of woman that opens her home and heart to everyone and beats the sense back into you with her wicked humor. These two ladies are my sisters.

  13. Debbie in Memphis says:

    I would send a card to my dearest friend. Her husband was told Tuesday that he has colon cancer and it has metastasized to his liver. They won’t know more until next week and I cannot imagine how painful and scary this is. They are two of the nicest people I have ever known.

  14. I worked in a Hallmark store on campus during college. I loved reading every single card in the store and dreamed of working for Hallmark. I knew what every card said on the inside just from the front, so I always felt I was peeking into the lives of the purchaser. Anyway, I would send a mushy card to mom. She has been nannying for my niece and we have had a busy summer so we haven’t talked every day like we usually do.

  15. blessed-with-3 says:

    I would send a card to my wonderful friend Beth who is recovering from a radical surgery to rid her body of cancer. She has been an encouragement to me for years and I wish I had the words to let her know how much I admire her strength and attitude. I bet the folks at Hallmark have just the right card!

  16. I read a letter the other day, wrote by my grandpa in august 1987, just before i was conceived… telling my parents and brother about Spain and Portugal…
    it gave me a small image of what their life was like before i was even part of the picture…
    then i read another letter, after i was born… and teared up…

    i don’t write letters anymore, but i really should…

  17. I love to send just because cards, I thought of sending my grandparents a card when I saw this post.

  18. I totally still send cards. My best friend lives in Chicago and we randomly send each other funny friend lovey cards all the time. I am terrible (TERRIBLE) at the phone, so I try to hit up all my lovely friends with a card every now and then to remind them that I do love them…very, very much.

  19. mommabird2345 says:

    I would send cards to my sister, my mom, and someone I don’t know very well, but who’s had a difficult week. I know I love getting cards in the mail, so I’m sure they will too.

  20. I currently have eleventy-billion cards in my office that I have bought because I adore cards, but have yet to send out. I must give myself a good kick in the pants and find some stamps…

  21. I’d send one to my best friend, who lives way too far away from me!

  22. JachiCue says:

    My pregnant hormonal self wants to hug the world right now, but mainly I want to reconnect with my best friend. We had kids months apart, so we have been a little distant. Cards connect people :)

  23. Valerie says:

    I’d send a card to my sister in New Zealand (a new mom!) b/c she doesn’t get much mail from the States these days.

  24. I hope I’m not too late. Every year on the anniversery of my husband’s death this sweet little old lady from church sends me a card. I love that she thinks of me, and I love her words of encouragement.

  25. I send cards all the time. I have a serious etsy addiction when it comes to purchasing cards. I have two HUGE file boxes of cards to send, and yet at least once a week, I’m buying more. I’m on a first name basis with both my postwoman, and the man at the post office where I get my stamps.
    Right now I’m searching for the perfect card to send my best friend. We talk literally every day, but I’m horrible at telling her how much she means to me and how much I love her. So I’m still looking for that perfect card that says everything I can’t.

  26. I love cards….especially sending them. I would send one to my newly pregnant cousin and another to my cousin who hosted us for a week at her house. And then maybe just random cards to random people I love.

  27. I was just browsing the Hallmark cards today. There is nothing better than a good card. Love giving them and love receiving them.

  28. michelleJ says:

    Yesterday, I thought of an old friend Chris. I haven’t seen her in, oh… let’s just say 10 years-ish, when she moved her family out of state and I went off to college. I babysat her kids for years. Her son K was 15 months when I met them…. and yesterday I realized that now MY baby K is just shy of 15 months. Absolute crazy. I haven’t kept in touch as I should but a nice handwritten note from me would be a surprise.
    Oh, and another friend’s birthday is tomorrow (will be belated), and my sister’s & parents anniversaries coming up next month!!

  29. I am a greeting card whore, I have stash of cards that are ready to send out at a moments notice. I love sending them to everyone JUST BECAUSE. If I were to send a card right now it would be to my BFF, because she’s in another state and I love to send her happy hello notes!

  30. Ashley G says:

    I LOVE cards and I love adding them to my “card box” to just be able to pull out whenever the occassion arises. I’d send cards to my grandmothers, my mom, my brother and sister who are both on LDS missions, and probably a few of my dear friends who I’ve been missing lately. :)

  31. Right now? I would send a card to my mom. She doesn’t say it, but when we talk on the phone I can hear in her voice that she’s having a rough time emotionally. She needs a card.

  32. I am the world’s worst card sender. What an opportunity for me to change my ways :)

  33. One of the reasons we bought a printer was so I could print out photos and make my own cards.
    Except that I so rarely do it.
    But I really love getting cards and would love to send more, what a neat idea. Thanks.

  34. I would send a card to the two co-workers that were available at the drop of a hat to make my life easier during the hugely important workshop I just finished running!

    Glad to meet you, moosh!

  35. Sara Mc. says:

    I love sending and receiving cards! I’m super jealous you got to tour the loveliness of Hallmark. I’d send a card to my sister in FL letting her know it will all work out. And then to family/friends here in OK.

  36. I would send them to my mom – 2 hours away by car in another state, and my daughter – 18 hours away by plane in another country.

    I hate that 2 of my most favorite people in the world are living so far away from me.

    Snail mail cards are an important part of keeping in touch. A great way to let them know that I’m thinking of them, and that they’re always in my heart and thoughts.

  37. Lisa Anderson says:

    My best friend from college has somehow managed to avoid all technology. We communicate solely through cards. I owe her one even today! :) Thanks for reminding me!

  38. My 19 year old brother is currently in Army basic training, so I average two to three cards to him a week. I usually get a letter from him on Thursdays, my new favorite day of the week.

  39. I LOVE cards. I send them for holidays, birthdays and occasions and I sort of hate that no one sends me any. I mean Christmas people? Send a Christmas card!

    Have to say I’m partial to Papyrus cards! They’re handmade by someone much craftier than me.