When Matt was about to deploy I knew I wanted to keep up with writing birthday cards to friends and family that I love. However, I knew my limitations and was about to embark on a 15 month journey as a solo-mom, homeschooling two kids with one in preschool. Afraid that I’d neglect this simple act of love, I bought a large box of cards and sat down one night with a bunch of “Forever” stamps and my address book. I wrote everyone I was close to a birthday note, addressed and stamped the cards, but left them unsealed.
On each card I placed a post-it note with the person’s name, their actual birthdate, and then the date I wanted to have the card in the mail by. I then put these written, addressed, stamped, but unsealed cards in a box in order of the birthdays that were about to come. Every few days I’d flip through the cards and remove the envelopes that were due to be mailed and place them in the mailbox.
Because they were unsealed I could go in and write something else if I wanted, something that I hadn’t known I would want to add to the note, back on that night I prepared all the cards. I haven’t been this good about writing birthday cards since… I might just take this advice of my own once again!
Note: If I was not certain the person was going to still be at their current address by their birthday, which is quite possible considering the nomadic friends I tend to make, I left their name and address off the actual envelope, writing it on the post-it attached to the front. When their birthday rolled around I usually knew if the person had moved or not. If so, I’d contact them for the new address. If not, I had the original address already prepared on the post-it note.
If you want to be more proactive about writing notes, there’s nothing wrong with preparing multiple cards at once, and then sending them out at later dates. When something is important to you, you will find the time to get it done, even if it’s way ahead of time.