Giving Thanks Past Thanksgiving

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Giving Thanks Past Thanksgiving - A daily challenge in December

This fall my husband coached our son’s hockey team. He did this last season as well. Typically at the end of the season, the team mom will collect funds to give the coach a gift. I knew that FishPapa wouldn’t want me to do that. He’s a pretty understated kind of guy who doesn’t make a big fuss over himself. He definitely wouldn’t want me to hit people up for money for him.

The season ended, and life continued as normal. Or as normal as it can be for our family. But, then….

One of the hockey moms dropped by this weekend with a card. She had gone to the work of contacting all the parents, collecting money, and buying him a gift. She brought me flowers! I didn’t do anything! I just live here.

Anyway, it was the thought and the extra effort on her part and that of the other families that really spoke to me. Such a great example of gratitude and thanks, when they didn’t have to. The hockey season is over.

Saying thanks

Years ago I sent out 100+ Christmas cards, usually of the brag variety, often handmade because that’s all we could afford. I gave it up during the debt years. It was just too costly. Once the debts were gone, I found that creating them and getting them sent depleted other resources I had. Like the mental ones.

And I was discouraged when folks didn’t write back.

Giving Thanks Past Thanksgiving - A daily challenge in December

This year I’ve got the idea to send thank you cards, instead.

Don’t hold me to it! Sadly, I come up with all kinds of great ideas that never see the light of day. But, this week I got a start. Hallmark sent me a range of Christmas greeting cards, from funny to serious to a little bit sappy. I’m having fun matching each card to the people I love.

And then writing a card. Not a braggadocious-here’s-what-we-did kind of card, but a thank-you-for-what-you-did-for-me kind of card.

This approach turns the Christmas greeting card on its head. At least for me. If I’m thanking someone, I certainly won’t be expecting something in return. So it matters not if I receive zero cards back. Not in the least.

Being generous

As you know, I tend to lean toward Scrooge and Grinch. It’s always good for me to flex my giving muscle. I love it that some of the cards have a spot that you have to fill with something. Well, okay, I didn’t love it at first, but I do now that I’m warming to the idea.

My brother, emotionally and physically invested in the LA Sheriffs Academy, is getting a little “instant happiness” later this week. 😉

Giving Thanks Past Thanksgiving - A daily challenge in December

I’m going to shoot for one a day in December. So far, I’ve sent three physical cards and an e-card for Starbucks.

Oh, I hope that I can pull this off. I’ll keep you posted. I think I’m gonna have to buy more cards…. (You can find a variety of Hallmark coupons and specials here. And there’s a great coupon for $5 off a $10 purchase. Score!)

Who can you thank this season?

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Disclosure: I have been compensated by Hallmark for my time spent writing. All opinions are my own.

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  1. I LOVEEEEEE this. I am on a mission to being back the Christmas card. When I was a little girl my mom (a single mother of 3) sent out about 50 or so Christmas cards. She would handwrite a message of two or three lines to 3 or 4 paragraphs in each one. It ranged from the “miss you and cant wait to see you” variety to the “thank you for teaching my daughters” variety and everything in between. I have lived on my own 7 years, and every year I at least send out 10 Christmas cards. I take my time to handwrite a note in each one. This year I sent out 25. I normally only get 5 or so back, but I don’t care. I LOVE Christmas cards.

  2. I’ve been saying thank you in my cards for a few years, it’s made a big shift in my thinking when I got upset about getting nothing back, and it feels great to say thank you to my friends