Everyday Etiquette: Host a Holiday Card Party for Kids

Just like adults, children like sending their friends holiday greetings, too. A holiday card party makes it all the more fun and festive. It's a great way to show our children the importance of staying connected to "far away" friends, close friends and family they may or may not see often. A nice alternative would be to make Everyday Etiquette: Raising civilized children in an uncivilized world by Diane Gottsman cards to take to a nursing home.

This type of party does take some planning:

  • Several months in advance, collect magazines. The day of the party children can select and cut out pictures to glue on the card.
  • Ask parents to send the addresses of five people that their child would like to send cards to.
  • Have construction paper, crayons, glue, glitter, stickers and assorted art supplies available.
  • Make sure each child signs his or her name to each card that they intend to send.
  • Envelopes and stamps should be available, as well as parent volunteers to help address the envelopes.

A few extra tips for mom:

  • For family and close friends, always personalize your cards with a little note and sign it with your first name, even if the card is preprinted.
  • Traditionally, the family signature should begin with dad's name, then mom's and then the children's names. It is also appropriate to say "Larry, Susan and children," however, that's not as personal.
  • When sending a card to family or close friends, it's a nice gesture to mention the children by name.
  • When sending a card to a couple with two different last names, address the card to "Larry Booth and Susan Adams."

Happy holidays.

Diane Gottsman is a nationally recognized etiquette and protocol expert who leads programs for children as well as adults. To read her previous columns, visit the Etiquette Archives.