See the World’s First Mass-Produced Christmas Card

Library of Congress
Library of Congress

Many of the traditions that have become synonymous with Christmas—like stockings, evergreen trees, and a red-suited Santa—have only been around for a couple centuries or less. One of the most pervasive customs among people who celebrate the holiday is the obligatory Christmas card. Whether you love getting the flood of mail at the end of the year or dread it, you have Henry Cole to thank for sending the first commercial Christmas card.

According to the Library of Congress, Cole was a British civil servant born in 1808. It was customary in the 19th century to send letters to loved ones around Christmas, and by the time Cole had reached his 30s, he was sick of the practice. Looking to save time and energy during the holidays, he asked his friend and illustrator John Callcott Horsley to help him create a shortcut.

Horsley's answer to Cole's problem was an illustration of a happy family bearing the message “A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to You.” At the top of the card, there was a blank line to fill with the name of the recipient, and one at the bottom for that of the sender. The image could be reprinted thousands of times. Now, instead of writing personalized letters until his hands started to cramp, all Cole had to do was jot down some names before slipping his season's greetings into their envelopes.

It turned out that many people shared Cole's gripes about holiday-letter writing. They wanted in on his idea, and the card grew from personal holiday hack to the first mass-produced Christmas card ever made. Cards were sold for a shilling apiece, or about 12 times the cost of postage.

Holidays cards are more popular today than ever before. Americans send about 2 billion of them every year. Of course, now that letter-writing has been replaced by phone calls, texts, emails, and social media, the tradition is considered by many to be more of a chore than a convenience.

Amazon's Under-the-Radar Coupon Page Features Deals on Home Goods, Electronics, and Groceries

Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0
Stock Catalog, Flickr // CC BY 2.0

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Now that Prime Day is over, and with Black Friday and Cyber Monday still a few weeks away, online deals may seem harder to come by. And while it can be a hassle to scour the internet for promo codes, buy-one-get-one deals, and flash sales, Amazon actually has an extensive coupon page you might not know about that features deals to look through every day.

As pointed out by People, the coupon page breaks deals down by categories, like electronics, home & kitchen, and groceries (the coupons even work with SNAP benefits). Since most of the deals revolve around the essentials, it's easy to stock up on items like Cottonelle toilet paper, Tide Pods, Cascade dishwasher detergent, and a 50 pack of surgical masks whenever you're running low.

But the low prices don't just stop at necessities. If you’re looking for the best deal on headphones, all you have to do is go to the electronics coupon page and it will bring up a deal on these COWIN E7 PRO noise-canceling headphones, which are now $80, thanks to a $10 coupon you could have missed.

Alternatively, if you are looking for deals on specific brands, you can search for their coupons from the page. So if you've had your eye on the Homall S-Racer gaming chair, you’ll find there's currently a coupon that saves you 5 percent, thanks to a simple search.

To discover all the deals you have been missing out on, head over to the Amazon Coupons page.

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Grab an Exclusive Star Wars Enamel Pin Advent Calendar Before They Sell Out

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We've already seen unique Advent calendars filled with beauty samples, Harry Potter figurines, and cat food this year, so it's only natural for Star Wars to get in on the action, too. And in addition to a new LEGO Star Wars Advent calendar hitting shelves, Toynk has an exclusive calendar that caters to serious collectors. This one features 24 beautiful enamel pins of characters like Darth Vader, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, Emperor Palpatine, and plenty more that fans can uncover in the lead-up to Christmas. The calendar is currently available for pre-order for $110.

Toynk

Don't expect these to stick around too long, though. Only 1000 of the calendars will be produced, and each will come with a certificate of authenticity. While all the Star Wars favorites are here, some pins are holiday-themed, so don't be surprised to see BB-8 and C-3PO wearing Santa Claus hats to mark the occasion. Each enamel pin measures 1 to 3 inches long and is housed in a holiday-themed calendar box.

The Advent calendar is now available for pre-order and will be released on November 15. If you are interested in pre-ordering, head over to Toynk.

Related: Celebrate Season 2 of The Mandalorian With These 10 Products

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