That is the question. I've only ever done one Christmas letter, it was 3 years ago for Nate's first Christmas. There were a lot of changes going on that year: Nate was born, I moved to Iowa from Chicago, I started a new job, blah blah blah....
I was thinking of doing another one this year, like an every 3 year kinda thing LOL, but I heard some DJ's this morning talking about Christmas letters and I kind of feel dumb for sending one. The 2 male DJ's suggested that most Christmas letters are to brag about your kids and the amazing things they are doing. And they are right, except I don't see it as bragging. I see it as catching all of my dear friends and family up on my interesting and imaginative son. And of course including little tidbits about myself as well!
The female DJ had a different take on them. She really enjoys getting Christmas letters. She said that she puts them up on her refrigerator and reads them over and over again. She really enjoys hearing about other families and what is going on with them throughout the year. This is when one of the male DJ's said, "That's what Facebook is for."
Maybe he has a point. Maybe Christmas letters are becoming a thing of the past, just like snail mail. Shoot we don't even have next day delivery from the Postal Service beginning next year. And who can blame them? With the way the internet and email has taken over, no one uses postal mail for anything anymore. We don't really need to. Contracts that previously needed to be mailed or delivered via courier can now be emailed and accepted with an electronic signature. Birthday cards can now be sent via email as an ecard. Bills can be emailed and paid online.
However, the one thing that should never be done online is a Christmas card. At least in my opinion anyway. Just like a love letter, a Christmas card should be sent through the mail. I just think it is more personal. But maybe this doesn't hold true for the Christmas letter. Maybe it really is ok to allow everything you update your status with on Facebook be enough.
I did like what one of the male DJ's had to say. Instead of just sending a letter that details or outlines your family's life for the past year, he and his family find something that God used or did in their lives and create a devotional out of it. They ask everyone they send it to, to find a way to do the devotional together as a family and see how it could apply to each of their lives.
So if you are one of the many receiving a Christmas card from me this year, you may or may not find a Christmas letter enclosed, but if you do, know this...I wrote it with my heart because I wanted to include you in the many things that happen throughout our year.