Wednesday, January 20, 2021

A Thrifty Dilema

I was raised to be thrifty. In past blogs I shared my father's habit of carefully using a letter opener, going around the entire envelope of letters he received, stacking the envelopes blank sides up, and stapling the stack. Those were our note pads for shopping lists and game score pads, and we had business envelope size and letter size options. My mother was also thrifty, never wasting leftover food or even the juice from the vegetables, and finding ways to recycle clothing into something new. My father and brother's slacks were just enough to make a straight skirt for me. I have inherited versions of their thriftiness. Because I quilt, it is very difficult for me to throw away fabric scraps. I do use those scraps in quilts, but I have enough fabric to make quilts into the next century!
When our mothers past away--now over a decade ago--they had boxes of unused greeting cards. Unlike today, when most of us go to the card rack to select a particular card for a particular recipient, a generation ago people bought boxes of cards--often an assortment for various occasions. Typically, they used all the birthday cards, with cards such as anniversary or congratulations unused. They would buy a new box of cards to get what they needed, and the unused cards would continue to accumulate. At our mothers' deaths, I inherited those accumulated cards. There is nothing wrong with them, except they do not look like todays' greeting cards. They are in like-new condition--except they look like they were new in the late 1900s. The messages are still appropriate. However, it is obvious that I did not go to town and select that particular card especially for the recipient. Here is my dilema: Is it an insult to send a card from decades ago that will be obvious to the person who receives it that it was not selected especially for them? What is a vintage classic vs. just something old? When does thrifty slip into cheap?!!!


Rita said...

For several reasons, I think that it is appropriate to use those cards. Thrift is not just about saving money but more about saving resources. You can be an example to people to practice thrift without shame. You may encourage others to emulate you. If there are some cards that are just too weird ( and some older style ones are) they'll be fine for writing lists. I send a lot of cards which I purchase at a thrift store for pennies each. They are usually blank so appropriate for any occasion. I hope my cards are appreciated by the recipients for the sentiments and love that I express in them. Trust yourself to be yourself.

The Blog Fodder said...

Send them. People will read what you write regardless.
When I was young I sold boxes of greeting cars door to door, traveling on the back of my old horse. It was fun and helped me make money to buy gifts, books and model airplanes.