Marking Your Making:

Conceptionday Cards Celebrate the Gift of Life in a Fun Way, with Educational Significance

By Holly Smith, Advisor, NRLC Field Coordinator

You may recall from your college anthropology course that some cultures celebrate a person's life on the date nine months before their birthday, rather than on the day they were actually born. This is a tradition that Dr. Keith Scheinblum, an ophthalmologist in New York City, would like to see recognized and put to good use in the United States as well.

When Dr. Scheinblum was doing his OB/GYN rotation during medical school, he learned how to calculate the date of his own conception. "In the process, he also discovered a great new reason to party!" his company's brochure explains.

He combined his creativity, and the type of wheel obstetricians use to determine a baby's due date, and Conceptionday cards were born. Conceptionday, a division of DreamLogic, Inc. is now trademarked and the Conceptionday card is patented.

And word is getting out. Conceptionday cards have received national news coverage on ABC WorldNews. They've also been noticed in many trade magazines, including Greetings, Etc., the #1 trade magazine for the stationery industry.

Happy Conceptionday cards were not only a hit with pro-lifers at NRLC 2004, but also with attendees of the National Stationery Show in NYC where the "response was outstanding," according to Scheinblum. "Everyone loved the idea. And it wasn't just appealing to people who were pro-life, so it was nice to subtly get our message to them as well."

Scheinblum's creative energy is not only behind the Conceptionday concept, but each card's message as well. Using his own ideas, and input from family and friends, he successfully met his goal of "hitting the whole spectrum" with his first batch of original cards. Every card features an interactive, spinning wheel to determine the recipient's Conceptionday with cute, funny, or sentimental messages and illustrations appropriate to all age groups.

For example, one card features colorfully wrapped birthday gifts on the front and the wheel on the inside. The message, "On Your Birthday you get presents but today you got the gift of a lifetime. Happy Conceptionday!" For those perpetually late sending birthday cards, like me, you can give one that reads, "This card may be late for your birthday, but at least it's early for your Conceptionday! Happy Conceptionday! (and by the way, Happy Belated Birthday!)"

A teenager might like one with the wheel on the front and the words, "The odds of your being conceived on this day were 1 in 1,000,000" followed by an uncountable number of zeroes, and "and you say you're not lucky! Happy Conceptionday!" on the inside.

The tri-fold one that reads, "Of all God's many miracles, perhaps the most amazing is the Creation of Life Today is your Conceptionday, the anniversary of the day you were conceivedTake a moment to appreciate the miracle of life - - as we appreciate the miracle of having you in our lives. Happy Conceptionday with love," was a hit with parents and grandparents at the National Right to Life convention last month.

Conceptionday cards can be a money-maker for your chapter. If a local, teen, or college right-to-life chapter wanted to sell Conceptionday cards as a fundraiser, Scheinblum would definitely be willing to work with them by offering significant discounts on cards and structuring a program that works for the group, whether that means taking advance orders or ordering a bulk supply.

Because Conceptionday cards have an educational "icing-on-the-cake" quality of encouraging people to recognize and celebrate life before birth, it would be worthwhile for local pro-lifers to find ways to promote Conceptionday celebrations and card-giving. Perhaps you know of small business owners who are pro-life and would proudly sell cards and party items celebrating Conceptionday.

As a businessman and a practicing physician, Scheinblum recognizes that the "potential is amazing. People love the idea, but we need to maximize the idea." Several local Hallmark stores agreed to carry some Conceptionday cards, and even though they weren't displayed with the other cards and didn't feature an attention-grabbing sign, they all sold.

As an independent cardmaker, Scheinblum said it is difficult to distribute on a large scale. He would love to find a card company that likes the idea and can develop many more cards to market and distribute.

"People are looking for things to celebrate," observed Scheinblum, whose "actual goal is for people to celebrate their conception day like they celebrate their birthdays. Since everyone has a Conceptionday, even if a small percentage that celebrate their birthdays celebrate their Conceptionday, that would be huge!" In order to facilitate the Conceptionday celebrations, party supplies, decorations, favors, and t-shirts have all been trademarked for future development.

Another angle Conceptionday has begun to explore is designing birthday cards with wheels for people to determine their conception day. That way, people shopping for birthday cards would easily find them and the giver and recipient would both be exposed to the Conceptionday idea. Down the road, Conceptionday cards could be made without the wheels because, by then, it will be a household term and everyone will know their own.

What better way to celebrate each person's life than by marking their Conceptionday? Down the road, you will hopefully be able to walk into your own local stationery store and pick out a Conceptionday card for a loved one, but in the meantime, you can get more information or order through the web site, by sending an e-mail to [email protected] or by calling (888) 506-1011.

Feel free to email me at [email protected] or to call me at (202) 626-8809 with and questions, comments, or ideas for articles.