Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Mismatched Christmas cards

I'm a bit ahead on the Christmas card front. The guys were outside throwing a football, and I realized how great the red jackets looked against the gray day. That part was serendipity, the jackets having come from a hand-me-down bag, a thrift store and Dillard's super-clearance sale. Digital cameras made picking the perfect shot cost-free. I had forty 4 x 6 prints made for 16 cents apiece at Sam's Club. I thought about doing the 12 cents/2-day processing, but $2 more was worth getting them done in one trip.

This year I'm freeing myself from Christmas card perfectionism. Perhaps it's a regional thing, but a lot of people we know send lavish cards with professional photos of their children, professionally designed messages, even hand-lined envelopes coordinated with the artwork on the front. I usually manage a clearance sale card with a photo tucked inside. This year I only had a motley assortment of yard sale cards. I swallowed my perfectionist pride and picked one to suit each recipient. I am writing a personal note to each. I'm trying not to get caught up in the expensive idea that our family's worth is fully represented by a few sheets of paper.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

i am doing the same regarding the cards...i have a great frugal stash i got for such good prices and i have odds and ends that keep getting carried over..so i'm using them all up..and next year too...

people will be happy just to hear from you..the pick is great

celina

Alison said...

What a coincidence, Meredith, as I have just been giving myself a big talk about using a snapshot instead of a pro photo and reducing the # of cards I send to reduce the postage costs. I already have photo insert type of cards purchased on after-holiday clearance a few years back and then misplaced during our move at that same time. Anyhow, I'm with Celina, people with love to hear from you and my experience with mismatched cards (what I always end up with my almost 100 card list and refusal to buy except on clearance) is that no one notices, much less cares.

Miriam said...

Meredith,
Your photo is SUPER! You all look so cute in your Christmas reds and greens.
Although I LOVE the cutesie Chritmas cards with photos taken on a family beach vacation or with matching brother/sister outfits, I also have to remember that my family's worth is not how great our Christmas card is. (Even if I still love getting those from other people)

Susan said...

Oh amen! LOL! I so understand what you mean! This year, I'm making 4x6 digital scrapbook pages for our Christmas cards and having them printed off at Walmart. We're going to take our family picture with our beloved digital camera and we'll use that photo to make them. We're also going to have copies made in different sizes to give to the Grandparent's. This will work out much cheaper, as we only have to order what we need, and not have to get a bunch of pictures we don't need.

Rebecca said...

My plan this year is to have our photo made of us in our jammies! Won't that be a hoot! We have very elaborate Christmas cards around here too. I hear you!

Anonymous said...

Yes, you're right. It is regional!

And second, I just went through a pile of Christmas cards RECEIVED in 2005 (I make gift tags out of the fronts. Pinking shears, hole punch, baking twine or waxed twine, voila). Most everything went in the trash, i just saved a handful of photos but even some of the PHOTOS went in the trash.

I think your personal, pretty, real life/happy family solution rocks.

debbie

My Boaz's Ruth said...

I like the photos I receive in christmas cards.

I don't know if people give the same card to everyone or if my card is one of a kind, for the most part.

Don't sweat it.

Annette said...

it's a christmas card, all people care about is hearing from you...really. Those glitzy cards are nice, but who has the time or money for that all the time? :)

Just enjoy sending out the cards that you do and let the rest go. :)

Anonymous said...

I don't know if your traditions would help you do this, but, instead of cards, I send a newsletter that covers the FUNNY things during the year. For example:

Sea Star [age 10] had orthodontic xrays taken. She looked seriously at the xrays and asked Dr M, “Which one is the sweet tooth?”

It is inexpensive ... the biggest part is keeping track of the incidents in a word processor file all year long.

BTW, it's important to never ever brag in those. Don't you all hate to get the type of newsletter that talks about how wonderfully successful other people are? I'd much rather read about their toilet training woes!

Christina Holder said...

Meredith,

I love your idea! I found some great old Christmas cards with beautiful messages at some local thrift shops ... Can't wait to send them! Thanks for all your great ideas!