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The Efffect of September 11th on Christmas Cards

By: Debby Sibert, Tue Jul 11th, 2006

The morning of September 11th, 2001, was sunny and warm, and it started out like other mornings which had come before it - people hurried to work, kids rushed off to school, and people boarded airplanes. But, September 11th, soon became the day that changed a nation and forced the world to recognize the threat of terrorism. It was a day when 2,986 lives were brutally ended, as the rest of America watched in helpless horror.

The effects of 9/11 have dramatically changed our country and our world; a casual trip to the airport is now a strictly regulated activity, aware citizens are now our first line of defense, and our nation's borders have been tightly sealed.

On the fourth anniversary or this event, we are realizing that not only has this tragedy changed how our nation functions, but it has even trickled down to influence such things as a person's selection of a Chrismas greeting card. Design Crafters, has been selling Chirstmas and holiday greeting cards since 1996. Debby Sibert, the president of that company said, "Before September 11th, no one seemed to offer patriotic holiday cards. Patriotism seemed a sentiment reserved for holidays like Memorial Day or Independence Day. All this changed in the aftermath of September 11th, and we began to receive calls from customers asking if we sold patriotic Chrismas cards."

The tragedy of 9/11 caused great pain, but it also birthed a new sense of unity to a nation filled with people of different origins and beliefs. People began to see that, like Christmas cheer, patriotism should be celebrated the whole year through. Other custom card companies soon began to receive inquiries about patriotic Chrismas cards. Many in this business thought that this trend would end after one or two years, but September 2005 will mark the four year anniversary of the tragedy - and our Patriotic cards continue to be in popular demand.

Choosing a patriotic card does not mean that Christmas, as its own special Holday, is lessened. Card designers have created clever ways to show both one's love of Chrismas and one's patriotism. Cards featuring ornaments decorated with the stars and stripes, a snowman proudly holding a flag, or a wintry wonderland overshadowed by a waving flag high on a pole, are all ways that this is accomplished. Many of these cards still feature traditional verses which speak of love, peace, and gratitude - but some have added language which lends more to a patriotic nature. Some examples of these verses are seen below:

At this holiday season we remember and honor those who are no longer with us and cherish those who are. We wish you a world of peace.

May Peace fill the hearts of people everywhere and join all nations of the world in brotherhood

May the Spirit of the Holidays remind you of the strength and perseverance of our nation and its people

These verses are only a highlight of the changes which have been seen in the Christmas card selections available since after 9/11. As our nation enters yet another Chrismas season we are thankful for the blessings we have received, the great liberties we are privileged to, and, most especially, for the lives that have been sacrificed so that we may celebrate the Holdays in peace and love. Visit www.DesignCrafters.com for an example of these patriotic Christmas cards and a wider range of holiday cards.

About the author: Debby Sibert is the president of http://www.DesignCrafters.com, a thriving internet business since 1996. Her specialty is customizing Christmas cards for businesses and has a huge following of clients. Go to http://www.designcrafters.com for a free report on the importance of communication through greeting cards & the power of words in general.

 

 

 

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Christmas E-cards, Christmas Greeting Cards on LavaCards.com

By: Leela Poonawalha, Wed Apr 26th, 2006

(LavaCards.com) New York.

It's Christmas again ! Love, fellowship and togetherness make the Chrismas season all the more special. Christmas also means spreading the warmth of our heart into the lives of others and bringing in joy and cheers. So this Chrismas, let these special Christmas ecards show how much you cherish the presence of your loved ones in your life. Wishing you a Merry Christmas from all of us !

LavaCards.com ( http://www.lavacards.com ) today released Christmas e-cards and Greetings made in Flash and animated with colors, music and quotes for the coming holiday season.

Free Chrismas e-cards includes viz. Santa Claus, Christmas wishes, Christmas Carols, Family and Corporate greetings.

These Chrismas e-cards are available aboslutely free. Unlike other greeting card websites charing $$$, LavaCards.com lets the users send the e-cards free.

So this season, celebrate it with your friends and family by send ing free Chirstmas e-cards from http://www.lavacards.com

About LavaCards.com LavaCards.com is a free online electronic greeting cards service provider. Ecards on birthday, love, friendship, romance are provided for the users to send.

For more information visit: http://www.lavacards.com

LavaCards.com

About the author: Leela Poonawalha, PRO, LavaCards.com

 

 

 

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Card Making - Unique Ideas To Create Lasting Memories

By: Vera Raposo, Fri Feb 24th, 2006

Card making is the perfect way to express your feelings for others in a unique, creative way. Holdays, birthdays, and special occasions are preserved in our memories forever through cards and photos.

Purchasing greeting cards has traditionally been the way to express affection, excitement, sadness, and any other number of emotions. With a little creativity and thought you can create personalized cards that will leave lasting impressions on your friends and family.

Photos, textured paper, and your personal sentiments can be used to make greeting cards for all occasions. With the technology that is now available, it is easy to scan and print copies of your favorite photos and mementos and include them in your hand made greeting cards.

For holidays, you may want to create cards in unique shapes such as Christmas stockings, turkeys, hearts, pumpkins, and flags. You can include photos of previous Holdays, printed clip art from free online sources, and small reminders of any other traditions or events that are special to you and your family.

Colored paper and fabrics can be used as a unique background for your cards. It is simple to attach textured paper and printed photos to greeting cards with two-sided tape or glue. Your card making efforts may include the use of scented oils, glitter, dried flowers, and stickers in holiday shapes.

Birthday cards can become treasured gifts through the use of a photo collage, clippings from newspapers from the day the person was born, and pictures of activities or hobbies that are of interest such as sporting or musical equipment.

Your card making efforts can be as simple or as complex as you desire and you are sure to leave those who receive your handmade cards with a wonderful memory that will endure for a lifetime.

About the author: Vera Raposo has been scrapbooking since her oldest child was 5. With tons of scrapbooking tips and ideas, Vera is now sharing some of her best scrapbooking ideas for your new baby in her newsletter http://www.baby-scrapbooking.com

 

 

 

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Greeting Cards as Client Gifts

By: Meredith Gossland of lastingImpressions2.com, Sun Jun 11th, 2006

The act of giving a greeting card instead of simply sending an advertisement to a client is a very powerful tool in creating a bond between customer and business. Too often this tool is wasted by missuses, and if not done correctly it can actually breakdown the relationship.

Choosing the right card is the most important factor! This is an opportunity to make a real impression on your client. This is an opportunity to make them feel valued and appreciated. Sending a card with a picture of a rustic looking home to someone who just purchased a contemporary split level house is a wasted opportunity. Chances are the card will be glanced at and then tossed aside.

A better choice for this client might be a postcard from a modern art museum slipped into a photo frame. This turns the card into an actual gift that can be displayed or even framed and hung on the wall.

This kind of customization is time consuming but the effect on your client will pay off in referrals. The key is database segmentation and carefully compiled client records. Treating each client with care, as individuals, will help you grow your business. There are hundreds of ideas for creating "gifts" for your clients. Here are just a few examples to get your creative juices flowing.

Vets, pet groomers - Photograph your client's pet and put it in a photo frame to be sent at Cristmas.

Send greeting cards to the pet directly with a coupon for dog treats or other pet supplies from a local pet supply store.

Real Estate Agents - Photograph your clients new home. Make 20 copies, put them in photo frame cards and give them to your client as "we've moved" cards to send to their friends. (not recommended for fixer upper homes)

If your client lives at the beach send cards with ocean motifs.

Go to mapquest or yahoo maps print out the map of the immediate area of your clients new home make copies and slip into a photo frame. Mark their house's location with a happy face.

Auto Repair or custom shop Take before and after photos, slip the "before" photo into a photo card and attach the "after" picture to the inside of the card when you ask for referrals.

These are just a few examples of the power of greeting cards in making a real connection with your clients. The cost $5-$10, but the result is a card that has real meaning to the client. This kind of greeting card will generate conversation and referrals. A word of caution...be sure the photographs are close ups with the pet (no red eye please), house or car clearly visible.

About the author: Owner, Lasting Impressions 2 unique corporate gifts and greetings

 

 

 

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Greeting cards are great to give and to receive

By: Michael Sanford, Mon Aug 21st, 2006

A greeting card is an illustrated, folded card usually featuring a message of greeting or other sentiment. Although greeting cards are usually given on special occasions such as birthdays, Chirstmas or other Holidys, they are also sent on 'non-occasions' to say 'hello' or 'thank you'. Greeting cards, usually packaged with an envelope, come in a variety of styles, are manufactured and/or hand-made by hundreds of companies big and small.

Cards are great to give and to receive. Children's eyes brighten, and wives and husbands feel a great warmth when a card is received for a special occasion or just for fun. Running down to the corner market or local gift shop to find that perfect card, you scan the racks for the card. You check your watch - time is running out, because you've waited till the last minute. You pick one up and the saying is too syrupy or the card has an inappropriate picture but perfect saying. You scratch your head, thinking this isn't working, and then you notice the perfect card. You anticipate the verse inside, knowing it is going to be just what you wanted. You eagerly pick up the card. You just know it is the right one. Once opened, your anticipation is dealt a heavy blow. There isn't anything in the card. It's blank! Now you've got to work over time trying to think of the appropriate words. Usually you'll settle with something light and polite.

Cards are great to give and to receive. Children's eyes brighten, and wives and husbands feel a great warmth when a card is received for a special occasion or just for fun. Running down to the corner market or local gift shop to find that perfect card, you scan the racks for the card. You check your watch - time is running out, because you've waited till the last minute. You pick one up and the saying is too syrupy or the card has an inappropriate picture but perfect saying. You scratch your head, thinking this isn't working, and then you notice the perfect card. You anticipate the verse inside, knowing it is going to be just what you wanted. You eagerly pick up the card. You just know it is the right one. Once opened, your anticipation is dealt a heavy blow. There isn't anything in the card. It's blank! Now you've got to work over time trying to think of the appropriate words. Usually you'll settle with something light and polite. With a computer and computer crafting programs you can eliminate the rush, anticipation and the disappointment. There are plenty of ready-made cards to choose from with graphics and verses. You can even change them around if you like. Also, you can search the Internet for sayings and clip-art from clip-art sites. You can personalize your own card in the privacy of your own home, with the waste of gas, long lines and over-paying for a card that "just isn't right."

Cardmakers say the Internet hasn't been a significant force. "Despite what everybody anticipated in the beginning, e-cards haven't made that much difference," Miller said. "It's a very transient type of communication." Her group says people tend to send e-greetings to acquaintances, but once they morph into true friends, "people seem to solidify that kind of relationship with paper cards."

As with other items, the bulk of card sales has shifted to mass-market merchandisers. That, in turn, has kept sales dollars flat as those stores increasingly discount products. But cards are also growing into new venues. Bordow said Palm has found that its cards are carried by a range of nontraditional outlets: health clubs, coffee shops, delis, veterinarians, sporting-goods stores and even car washes.

The greeting card industry is fighting its way out of a long-term slump as card makers compete with deep discounts and a variety of new competitors. Major card makers have been forced to begin selling inexpensive lines in recent years as consumers began turning their backs on $4 cards.

The price of cards has increased in part because of the higher costs of paper and labor. Also, greeting cards have become more intricate during the past few years, Albertson said. Things such as specialty papers and computer chips have been employed by many card makers to enhance sales.

In 1999 Hallmark released its Warm Wishes line of cards, which sells for 99 cents. American Greetings soon followed with similar prices. Still, according to Hallmark, the less-expensive cards are not the biggest sellers. "We did extensive research to find out what customers wanted, and we found that while customers wanted low-priced cards to be an option, they did not want the other cards to disappear," said Rachel Bolton of Hallmark. Hallmark and American Greetings -- both companies sell 85 percent of the nation's greeting cards -- recently launched advertising campaigns in newspapers and on television to lure customers to their retail stores. Experts said most consumers don't value-shop during holidays such as Cristmas, Valentine's Day and Mother's Day. But price-conscious parents often find themselves shopping for more inexpensive cards or making their own for children who attend several birthday parties a month. Software programs and plain construction paper often help parents save money on such materials.

Today, there are cards for nearly every relationship, occasion, ethnicity, age group, gender and l interest. The expanding Christmas card market includes cards for motorcycle enthusiasts, depicting Santa on a Harley, instead of a sleigh; dogs and cats with reindeer antlers to appeal to pet lovers; and even a meditating Santa for those who take a more holistic approach to the Holidys. But the fastest-growing segment of the Cristmas card market are cards associated with Chirstmas but reflect cultural differences, such as cards for Ramadan, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa, said Marianne McDermott, executive vice president of the Washington-based Greeting Card Association.

For more information on ecards art please visit the ecards art resource center at ecards art Resource Center.

 

 

 

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How to Save Money with Great Gift Ideas

By: Ispas Marin, Tue Oct 18th, 2005

Want to save $1000 this year for very little effort? Gift giving is an area where impulse buying is a frequent occurrence. I was amazed to discover I was spending over $1500 or more per year for gifts. What have you spent for gifts in the last 12 months?

In my experience, gifts were last minute purchases for which money was no object. I now spend less than $500 per year for gifts. Take two hours of your life and save yourself $1000 or more per year on gift giving.

Get Prepared

Label 12 manila folders January - December. On the front of each monthly folder, write the days of the month. Next to the appropriate date on the folder, write in the occasion for which a gift and/or a card will need to be purchased. Then, write the amount of money you will spend on that gift. Inevitably, a wedding or birthday will come up that you didn't know about, so be sure you leave a little money left for these unexpected occasions.

The key is, don't exceed what you budgeted for each gift. For example, for Mother's Day, I will write $15 next to the holiday. I only allocate $400 for the known holidays and set aside $100 for the unexpected gifts such as a wedding or birth of a child. You may find that you are unable to budget $500 a year for gift giving. Just determine what you can afford and STICK WITH IT. Don't deviate from your budget.

Advance Planning

There are very real benefits to planning your gift-giving in advance. And, with a little creativity, you can bring your overall cost down substantially. Because you're prepared, you can actually enjoy the holidays. You won't feel financially strapped since you've budgeted for the gifts in advance. Since you've anticipated the gift-giving occasion, you will undoubtedly find the gifts on sale. It goes without saying, but the ideas is, NEVER PAY RETAIL - EVER!

Frugal Gift Ideas

Buy gift-wrap and greeting cards on sale, or better yet, make them yourself.

Shop for gifts all year long to get the best price. This may mean you could be buying Cristmas cards in January.

Plant an herb garden for a friend. And, while you're at it, make one for yourself too.

Treat your partner/spouse to a homemade spa. Give him/her a gift certificate announcing a full one-hour body massage and facial. This gift is easily worth over $75!

Organize personal negatives and photographs for a friend or family member. Create a scrapbook, photo books, or even Photo CDs.

Make some creative hand puppets for a child if you have mismatched socks and buttons lying around your home.

Create a care package for a friend who recently got a new job. In a box or basket put some instant coffee, tea bags, aspirin, bandages, travel size toothpaste and toothbrush, along with a coffee cup.

If the friend is a female, add some trial size products such as perfume and hair spray. If you want to increase the value of the gift, give a portable umbrella.

Design a similar package for a recent high-school graduate student who will be entering college. You may want to even provide a $5 phone card instead of an umbrella.

Buy movie tickets... a gift where one size fits all. When movie tickets are purchased in advance from movie theatres, you can usually get them at half price!

Offer to make dinner for your friends if you're a good cook.

Give a single friend or elderly family member freshly frozen dinners for a week.

Mail out holiday cards for an elderly family member. if you're computer literate, put their address book into a database so the information can easily be updated.

Make a year's worth of greeting cards and personalized stationery for someone if you're a bit crafty.

Make enough birthday cards, anniversary cards, and blank cards for a year's worth of holidays. The thoughtfulness will go a long way throughout the year.

Help someone else get organized. If the person you need to give a gift to is an entrepreneur or extremely disorganized, make a filing system for the upcoming tax year.

Purchase gift-with-purchase cosmetic/perfume specials and split the gifts. Usually the gift is nicely wrapped, generic, and valuable enough to give away for an upcoming gift in your tickler file.

Getting Organized

In a drawer or closet, place the gift giving manila files, the greeting cards, gift-wrap and purchased gifts in chronological order. This is now your tickler file and shopping list to remind you what holiday is coming up.

About the author: Gadgets, innovative products, gift ideas and unique gifts, an array of gadgets aimed at benefiting those that demand convenience, from http://www.cgets.com

 

 

 

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How to Make Sure Holiday Card Writing is Not a Chore

By: Patty Gale, Sun Jul 30th, 2006

Sending holiday cards does not have to be a tedious chore. I remember when I was little, my mom would tape all the pretty cards around a special doorframe in our house and I would love to see where they all came from. The pretty trees, stars, snowmen made it fun to see what the mail carrier would bring that day.

There is nothing more special than the smile created at the mailbox from a friend or loved one when they receive your card. It should be something that we want to do in showing those we care about that we are thinking of them, not something we feel obligated to do just because it s that time of year again.

To make sure that your holiday card writing doesn t become a chore starts with some very basic planning.

Let s face it; December is a very busy month, so the time to plan your holiday card writing can be as early as September depending on your schedule. The first thing to decide is on the list. Who do you really want to send cards to? Family, friends, close acquaintances? There are a number of Christmas card organizers available, but making your list can be as simple as going through your address book and writing the names and addresses on a plain sheet of paper.

Once you have your list together, and you know who you will be sending them to, it s time to buy holiday cards. If you didn t purchase any on sale from last year, that s o.k. just make a note that you ll do some after-Cristmas shopping this year. Holiday cards can be found for as much as 70% off the pre-Chirstmas price, so this will be a great time to stock up for next year. Keep an extra box on hand just in case there are a few last minute cards to sent.

Of course, you will also need stamps. Now that you know the number of recipients on your card list, you will know how many stamps to buy. Each year, the USPS presents a few different holiday designs to choose from. Buying them early will assure that you will be able to get the ones you like.

The next thing to ask yourself is when you want to mail your cards. This way, you can plan a day where you can take a couple of hours to sit down and write out and address your cards. I know this can be challenging, so why not do it as early as possible? There s absolutely nothing wrong with addressing holiday cards as early as October so that they are ready for you to mail.

Pick a day or an evening when it s quiet in the house. Make your favorite beverage, put on some relaxing music or even Cristmas music to gather your thoughts. It s time to gather what you need, your card list, cards, and stamps, return address labels, envelope stickers and your favorite pen.

Wear something comfortable like your favorite pajamas, grab your favorite beverage and just have a nice, relaxing time. You ll get your cards and signed and ready to go and you ll enjoy a nice quiet evening at the same time.

There is nothing more special than sending a card personally signed by you to bring a smile to those you care about. It can be fun and relaxing if you plan ahead and get organized.

About the author: Patty Gale is a successful entrepreneur who specializes in personalization and customer care for all of her clients. She exchanged her suits, hose and heels to work from home in her "jammies" and is on a mission to empower others to do the same.

She can be reached at: http://www.PattysPrettyPaper.com

 

 

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 last update: 26.10.2006 17:23

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