I’ve done a spot of wrapping and card writing this evening. Not very much – just the things that need to be sent abroad. I’ve got cards and small packages that will be zipping to various points around the globe this Christmas. As the post has been disrupted with strikes and what-not I thought I might as well get on the case. I won’t actually be posting them just yet but I wanted to get it done as the next week is going to be pretty busy.
I had a rummage in my little cupboard where I keep stationery and bits and pieces and found a few Christmas cards and quite a lot of gift tags left over from last year. Score! However, I still had to buy more today as I remember Husband getting in a panic last year after getting a flood of last minute cards through work and having to dash out and buy a box. I managed to get a pack of 40 from Tesco for just £1.97 which should do the trick. We’ve got plenty now – enough to keep some over for next year which will be good. I had also forgotten about an unopened roll of Christmas wrapping paper that I bought in the Woolworths closing down sale. I bought a roll last week so I should have plenty to get me through this year.
In a further fit of trying to be both thrifty and organised, I’ve written a Chrsitmas card list. In previous years I have posted (rather than hand delivered) a large number of my cards. However, this year I have tried to work out who really needs to have their cards posted and who I can deliver them to myself or with the help of others. Several members of my family all live in the same town. I know that between Mum and Gran they will be seeing our other relatives before I will, so I’ll be sending my cards and gifts over on their next visit. I had also got into a weird habit with some friends and neighbours who have second homes in the same town as me; I’d been posting their cards to their main homes in case they didn’t get them in time! The other day I re-read ‘How I lived a Year on a Pound a Day’ and paused on the section where the author described taking a walk around the city she lived and her home town delivering cards by hand. This made me realise how wasteful I had actually been in the past. Since I already have my cards I can deliver them in plenty of time so that everyone gets theirs before Christmas. I hand deliver them to plenty of other friends. I just need to make sure that the ones going to second homes get delivered a bit sooner. Frankly, I could use the exercise! Having scanned through my list I realised that (aside from the things being posted abroad which will need to be weighed anyway) I only needed to buy 4 stamps. And here’s another thing. I always used to send things first class. Why? I don’t know. It’s not like it is an urgent form of communication, is it? I went to the post office on my lunch break and bought 6 festive, second-class stamps. I bought 6 because a) I’m bound to have forgotten someone and b) it’s not as though they won’t get used at some point if I haven’t.
None of these things (getting cards and wrapping paper on sale, hand delivering a few extra cards to save on stamps etc) add up to giant savings. However, they save enough that I find them worthwhile. I see it as part of learning to be a little bit more resourceful and a little less wasteful!