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Thread: FORT Koffee Klatch

  1. #1421
    FORT Fogey Brandy's Avatar
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    ^ That is a very nice gesture mrd.

    This year I probably will not send many Christmas cards. It's not as much about crossing people off our list...well, yes it is. But not because of who sends us a card. My list isn't that long anyway, and I always just sent to who I wanted to send to. If it were up towards 100 cards, I'd sure whittle it down based upon who seemed to really not care about getting one.

    Some years I'd buy blank cards at an art store and draw Christmas or holiday scenes, for close family members (only) as I never seemed to start early. And so I'd have limited time to finish them in. But most years I'd buy various boxed cards, a few single cards, and either decorate the envelope with stickers or draw something like a snowflake, sled, Santa, snowman etc., in gold or silver metallic pen on the envelope. Depending upon how much time I had that year to do it.

    This year our list will be really small. Family fallings-out and what-not. Hubby already did not want to send ANY cards last year. What we sent instead was a family genealogy-related project I'd worked months on. No one said a word to me. If someone had looked up one of my long lost ancestors I'd wondered about and sent their birth cert. from the old country etc., I'd have at least said something. (No that still isn't the reason they're not on our list this yr. It's a lot of things like that and much bigger. Eventually you just say "uncle".)

    This year I will send to a few people we are in contact with, some close family and that's that. I don't mind, as there is a wonderful stationery store near us, and this way I can buy each a prettier card than if I sent twice as many out. Many cards they sell are hand crafted with various materials to decorate them. Much better than I could make! Maybe I will make an angel post card to stick into each envelope, I did that one year. But I really never know if those are liked/wanted, or not (Most people never say - anyone notice that? An aunt never said but when I visited her later, said "Why didn't you make me an angel card this year?" ). So again it comes to time and whim pretty much. Lol.

    I always try to write at least a line or two in the card - but I don't mind if people just sign their names. A lot of people I know say they can never think what to say, have too many cards to write out, and so forth. Like others, I love the family photos as well. The 'newsletters' - depends on the tone. If it's to exaggerate and so on, I don't enjoy it so much. My half-brother is a minister though and sends out news about their congregation and different charity things done that year etc. It's nice to read about.
    Last edited by Brandy; 10-18-2006 at 01:08 PM.

  2. #1422
    all hot air Ana Bannana's Avatar
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    Christmas/Holiday cards -
    I really do enjoy sending cards. As I address each card, it helps me to remember the person/family that the card is going to. I try to write a line or two with a specific wish for the individual. Every year, we would get our family pic done and enclose them in the card. One year, I skipped the pic and got so many phone call from people wondering if I had forgotten to enclose the picture, that now, I feel obligated to do it. My sons are 19 and (almost)17, so getting them in a picture is kind of tough.

    I do however agree with Mudah regarding those STUPID letters. Last year, I received one that was a standard sizes sheet of paper. On one side was a collage of snapshots copied, and the other side was the long "my family is so fabulous and don't you wish you were us" letter. Turns out, the letter was from my brothers x wife, whom we had not seen since she high tailed it out of town with the next door neighbor dude. I still do not know why I was "lucky" enough to receive the letter. Not one other family member was gifted, but they all got a pretty good laugh at my prize.

  3. #1423
    FORT Fogey misskitty's Avatar
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    I only send out a very few Christmas cards now. I used to send out more but rarely got one in return (I know that's not really the point). Some friends I had always enjoyed hearing from me but never let me know, and never replied. So I thought they had other priorities and didn't continue.

    I always send a card to friends who live out of the city. My mom has always sent cards with a family update and sometimes a photo. They were always hand-written and lengthy. She would receive the same. Christmas was always the time that they stopped and took the time to really write about their busy year.

    I also don't like the massive mail-out type of print-out letter, but it's better than nothing. At least I made the list.

    I find Xmas cards fairly expensive and some just don't seem appropriate for everyone. My one set of aunt/uncles/cousins strongly revolted against Xmas cards and all the Xmas paraphernalia last year citing massive marketing and the loss of the true meaning of the holidays. They requested no cards and advised they will no longer send them out.

    One should do what makes them happy. Not what they are expected or directed to go. Whether that's a card, letter, photo, e-mail or phone call. Or in some instances, nothing.
    Live simply ~ Love generously~ Care deeply~ Speak kindly

  4. #1424
    FORT Fogey cricketeen's Avatar
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    I hate to start a new thread for this question, and I just know my fort friends will come through here !
    I am so disillusioned. I thought my kids enjoyed searching for and cutting down a live tree each year, but they both informed me that they hate going out in the cold and tramping around, and neither of them is all that crazy about the scent of a fresh-cut tree . SO
    We are looking at artificial Christmas trees and can't decide between pre-lit or not. Does anyone have enough experience to say if the lights stay put year after year, or do they tend to slip off after a couple of assemblies? I'd hate to buy one solely to avoid re-stringing the lights only to find myself stuck with the job again in 4 or 5 years because the strands didn't stay put.
    It appears that they come apart in 3 sections as opposed to individual branches that can be smashed down. Do they take up more storage than an un-lit tree?
    Is it easy enough to add lights? I sometimes like to change things up a bit, adding the big old-fashioned lights, or colored mini-lights, or faceted bulbs, etc...
    Lastly, are they stable? The boys may be getting older, but still forget themselves and seem to lack spatial awareness
    Thanks for your help!
    "If everything seems under control, you're just not going fast enough." - Mario Andretti

  5. #1425
    Just Forting Around roseskid's Avatar
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    Cricketeen, unfortunately I don't have answers to your questions, but I'll be anticipating the responses you get because Mr. Rose and I would love to finally change from live to artificial tree. Now that our daughter is 2,000 miles away for college, we're not that excited about the mess of a real tree, and there are so many beautiful fake ones now. I've also wondered about pre-lit trees, so I hope you get lots of replies. I know some folks hate the idea of artificial trees, and I always swore I'd never go that route, but I'm more than ready now.
    Love The Bachelor? Catch the recap for this season's sacrificial lamb lucky guy here in Episode 1, Episode 2, Episode 3, Episode 4, Episode 5, Episode 6 and Episode 7.

  6. #1426
    Wonky snarkmistress Lucy's Avatar
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    Oh, I love the smell of a real Christmas tree. I have a fake one my mother bought me, but since I always go to her house for Christmas I've never actually used it. Shhh.
    But, if you're going to get a fake tree, but miss the real-tree smell, Yankee sells a mistletoe candle that smells just like a Christmas tree. I just burn that at Christmas, rather than fool with putting up a tree just for me.
    It's such a fine line between stupid, and clever. -- David St. Hubbins

  7. #1427
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered prhoshay's Avatar
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    Yankee also has a 'Christmas Wreath' candle that I think is undeniable, as far as a live tree scent. I haven't had a live tree in years, but I'm seldom without my Yankee Christmas Wreath!
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  8. #1428
    Endlessly ShrinkingViolet's Avatar
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    We've had an artificial tree for years due to kid's allergies that made them sick every Christmas break. My older son was heartbroken when we switched, but he got over it.

    We bought a pre-lit one about four years ago. We bought a fairly expensive one that looks "real." It works beautifully and does come in three pieces. The lights are wrapped around each branch, so the distribution is pretty even, and you don't see hanging wires as you do on the stringed ones you put on yourself. The lights don't shift around after repeated use--so far, and I don't see how they could. I'm sure you could add some more of your own. The only thing would be to watch the electrical load so you don't burn the house down.

    We've never had any problem putting the tree up or down (of course, I don't do the actual work, I just supervise ), and it doesn't take anymore space than a regular artificial one would for storage.

    I don't find any tree stable when fully loaded with decorations. My husband puts some nylon string around the tree and attaches it to the wall because we've had too many trees (live and artificial tip over). Using the nylon attachment, it not visible that it's anchored down. The artificial tree will be much lighter than a real one would be. If you had really thick carpet, I would put something hard and flat underneath it (to be covered with a tree skirt) to give even greater stability.

    We're quite happy with ours.

    This is how the lights wrap around a branch:


  9. #1429
    FORT Fogey Muduh's Avatar
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    My son and DIL ought an expensive, prelit tree about three years ago. Several of the lights went out before that year was up. The next two years, more lights out. We never could find the offending light so that we could replace. it. I do think that he has replaced some fuses or something, too. He plans to throw it away and get a plain artificial one since I have enough lights for us, him, and half of Fort. Only problem is that he likes clear lights and all I ever buy, or ever will, are multicolor ones. I figure that beggars cant be choosers.

  10. #1430
    FORT Fogey Brandy's Avatar
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    Hubby's bachelor tree was a four footer with lights already on it. He'd had it for some time and the lights were still in place and they still lit up just fine. We don't have kids, so I don't know about children's safety around one...but I'd keep any kids small enough not to know better, away from any Christmas tree.

    Like any fake tree, it's kind of lightweight. Probably tips over fairly easily. We had it on a table top anyway (in the corner, with a cloth over it).

    If you plan on changing the lights in the future I'd get a plain, fake tree. Then you can do whatever you want.

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