The holidays will be here before you know it, and now is a great time to get organized and prepare for all the shopping, decorating, celebrating, and gift and greeting card exchanges to come. It’s much easier to organize one thing at a time, so let’s focus on annual Christmas greeting cards first.
Everyone likes to receive Christmas cards. They are a great opportunity to keep in touch with distant friends and family and perfect opportunities to send well wishes for the season to those you may see most often. Companies also find value in sending them to maintain contact and build loyalty among those with and for whom they do business.
However, it is possible to accumulate a large collection of these wonderful cards over the years. Too nice to just throw them away after the holidays when the decorations come down, many keep indefinitely. In preparation for a new batch that may start arriving in early November, take some time now to take care of those on hand.
Spell out. Gather all the Thanksgiving, holiday and Christmas cards you’ve received in the past in one place. Most will be beautiful designs with detailed prints and brightly colored foils, but see whose they are and stick with only those with sentimental meaning. Also keep those that would look great in the frame, but frame them right away instead of leaving them in the pile to review again next year. Photo cards are often a treasure, too, but there’s no need to save them if you’re not that close to those in the photo.
Re-use. Most greeting cards can be reused. Cut the faces out of the cards and use them for Christmas crafts. Cut out the designs to use as gift tags or cut and fold in half to use as thank you cards for gifts you’re likely to receive. Larger cards can be cut and folded into small gift boxes. Laminate others to use as festive placemats or coasters. Stick them on blank cards and send them back like new. With a little bit of easy creativity, the possibilities offered by these pre-received cards are endless.
Recycle. If you just don’t think your cards can be reused, put them in your recycling bin or take them to a recycling center. The paper can be reprocessed and reused to make new recycled cards for next year. You’ll be helping the environment as well as organizing your greeting card collection.
Donate. Cut or tear the personalization or signed part of the cards and donate the rest to charities that can reuse them. Many groups of children and adults would appreciate the opportunity to reuse these beautiful designs. CardsDirect sponsors a program to recycle and reuse used or surplus greeting cards for any occasion throughout the year. Received cards are sorted and organized and sent to organizations that can make use of them.
Now that you’ve successfully cleared the decks, you’re ready to organize your plans for next year’s holiday cards that you’re sure to send and receive.