Monday, December 24, 2012

New Years Cards

Hello everyone!! Happy holidays! I hope everyone is safe. I thought I would make a little post on Japanese New Years Card etiquette. Today I went and bought some postcards with Aki and he tutored me on the way to address New Years postcards. Postcards are the most common and are quite inexpensive. Below you can see the front side. At the top, there are spaces to add the zip code. Then, vertically, write the recipient's address. You should write it in kanji, but romaji is okay too I guess. This should be the top right hand corner of the card. If it's a long address you can simply make two columns. In the center of the card, write the name of who you are sending it to, followed with 「様」(-sama). It's polite and proper. I made a mistake and wrote my address a little high on the card, but the lower left hand corner is where the return address should be written. I was worried about running out of space, so I started higher than I should have... mine is just too high. Oh well, I suppose the effort will be applauded seeing as it's my first time. The post office in Japan has deadlines for when your New Year cards should be in the mail. If you bought special New Year ones, they should already have a label on it stating the purpose. This is because the post office will deliver them on New Year's Day. Not sooner. So this year I was told it's the 28th, but I'm popping them in the mail tomorrow to be safe.

On the backside of the card, I wrote simple messages to the receivers. I did both vertical and horizontal. I started with a standard, 「明けましておめでとうございます。」(Happy New Year). Then I wrote a short personal note. After that, I ended with 「今年もよろしくお願いします。」(Roughly, This year, please continue to regard me well?? Tough to translate it exactly...). I probably could have written more in terms of my personal notes, but I was really worried about making a mistake, so I played it safe. It's the year of the Snake! Yay, my year!! Anyway, the cards are cute.

That's all for the New Years cards. I am by no means an expert. I probably made a mistake somewhere, but this is a common New Years practice in Japan, and I wanted to do my best. I hope everyone has a happy holidays!


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