I do send a yearly holiday letter. I started doing it about 10 years ago simply because I wanted to write but didn’t know how or where to start. I figured my family and friends were as good of guinea pigs as any. I didn’t get responses until about the third or fourth year when I didn’t send one. I got phone calls asking “Where is my letter???” So I started sending them again and have ever since. They tell me they look forward to the letters because I tell them humorous stories about the family and life on the farm. I don’t brag about my kids but instead try to show us all as human like everybody else. I still don’t get replies from anyone but when I do see or speak to a recipient, they tell me that they have saved every one. Bringing joy to them makes it all worth while.
The other thing I have begun to do is to write a letter to each elderly relative on their birthday telling them of some fond memory that I have of them and how they have enriched my life in some way. This letter is more serious in tone than my yearly humorous one because I want to convey my feelings of how they have touched me.