Everyday Etiquette – Family Christmas Newsletters

Question:

As the holidays approach, what is your opinion of the Christmas family newsletter? Should you send one & what should be in it? I struggle with this each year.

Thank you,
Elaine

The Everyday Etiquette Answer:

Elaine,

I also struggle with the family Christmas newsletter. Each year, we get one that is in iambic pentameter and is multi-generational. Believe me, it is a chore to wade through, but I know it is sent with love from good friends.

I think these letters can be great if you stick to relevant news about immediate family. They should be upbeat; but if there has been bad news (death, divorce, severe illness or other tragedies), your good friends will want to know this also. I firmly believe that these newsletters should only be sent to people who know your family well. When writing your letter, remember that your son’s winning goal on the 5 year old soccer team and your 4 year old daughter’s dance recital are special moments to you and your husband, but may not be of great interest to the recipients of your holiday greeting. One of my favorite annual letters is filled with very few words and lots of fun pictures.

Please remember to include a warm greeting or closing to the letter. Tell your friends how special they are in your life and how often you think of them. A few key words to remember when you begin drafting the 2008 family newsletter are: warmth, brevity, relevance, humility & so on.

I hope this helps you out. Have a wonderful holiday season.

Ms. Carey

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