Saturday, November 25, 2006


I bought some Christmas cards at the "religious" shop along the road this morning and, while I was at it, also purchased this tome which will tell me, day by day, all about the lives of the saints. I'm not Catholic or even religious. It's just that I think that, as I am living in a Catholic country, I should absorb as much as I can about that side of the culture, too. I had a long chat with the shop owner and we agreed that the book must have necessitated a fair amount of research as there is a reproduction of a painting of each saint and these cannot have been easy to find in all cases. Some readers may not be aware that people here are much more likely to celebrate their onomastico or "name day" [the day of the saint they are named after] than their birthdays. For those of you who are interested, I have learnt that today is the day of St. Catherine of Alexandria.
Christmas cards are quite expensive here as you have to buy them singly [in Britain you can just get a boxful at the supermarket for about £1.99 - or has the price gone up?] and the only charity cards available are UNICEF ones which you have to purchase at the post office. Needless to say, I am not queueing in that dreadful place to buy them!
I can't get over, either, how miserable the Italians are regarding Christmas cards: on the whole, they just don't bother, preferring to ring their acquaintances to offer the compliments of the season. Now there's something I miss: sitting by the fire on a cold, British evening and writing my Christmas cards! My "to send to Britain" list is considerably reduced this year as I have ruthlessly crossed out all the people who didn't send me a card from there last year, including a friend who gave birth on 24th December. A little thing like that is no excuse, honey, as if you were going to send a card to Italy, you'd have had to do it before that date! I, as you see, am not miserable at all and am full of charity and Christmas spirit!


Anonymous said...

Greetings Welshcakes!

You're closer than you think to those of "like minds" via the internet! You're reading comments from [me - Kathy] a Polish lady married to a Frenchman [Bob] who has 2 grown boys Chris [26] and Matt[19] who were originally from Peru... I write Saints profiles for a Podcast called the Saintcast - which you may enjoy listening to. The website is, and you can also find them at -- the starquest production network. Paul Camarata is a neurosurgeon from Kansas, and produces the show. It's interesting, I found you because I was searching for Saint info today and your blog popped up on the search! Interesting. I too love to make writing my cards a personal event - so I say brew up the tea girl and snuggle up and go for it. Also, I wonder if you'd be interested in another site where you could order cards online -- - she's an amazing artist and her cards are lovely [produced from her paintings]Mother and Child [4 different views]for 2006, along with an Angel card - but all can be ordered in packages of 12 if I remember right.

Would love to know the title of the book you picked up... e-mail me if you like at

So enjoyed your postings,
God Bless,

Anonymous said...

Maybe there's a market here for you to sell Christmas cards in boxes. It must be expensive buying them individually. I understand that Christmas is also celebrate on the 24th, rather than the 25th.

If you send me your address, I pop a card in the post to you of a snowy English scene, just to make you homesick.

Anonymous said...

Our Christmas cards have been reduced to my two brothers and thier wives, and a couple of aunts. Lost contact with lots of folks and some have passed away.

Liz Hinds said...

When is Saint Elizabeth's Day? Can I celebrate that as well as my birthday?!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, Ellee. The main celebration is Xmas Eve here but the 25th is also celebrated. I'm going to write about all that nearer the time. I'd like a snowy scene card - thanks - will do.
Hi, Steve. I suppose that's the way of things, sadly.
Liz, I have looked it up and you have a choice of 3 days: 5th November is the day of Elizabeth, the cousin of Mary, 4th July is the day of St Elizabeth of Portugal and 17th November that of St Elizabeth of Hungary. Yes, you can celebrate your name day as well as your birthday and you get presents, too! I'd celebrate all 4 if I were you!

Maria said...

I love the idea of real letter writing and Christmas card sending. It is so amazing receiving mail that is something else besides a bill or another piece of junk! I can't imagine having to buy cards like that.. I am sure it adds up to something eally expensive. Have you ried looking online to purchase them maybe you could get a box set for a lot less. Anyway.. if you send me your adress I would happily mail you one from here in America. My regular e-mail adress is Feel free to say hello anytime! For now, be well ~M

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Hi, M. I agree it's so nice to get not-junk mail! Will be contacting you in a minute. Glad you had a good Thanksgiving.

Ballpoint Wren said...


When I got crazed with everyday life, I stopped sending out cards. I started up again about 3 years ago... but last year I waited too long and this year is a little iffy, too!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Kathy, yours was one of the comments that went missing and I only found it this week! I'm so sorry! Thanks for all the infpormation. I will look at the sites and I'm going to email you now. Auguri.


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