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The Year of Kelsey in review

Our 2016 Christmas cards

Our 2016 Christmas cards! | RISING*SHINING Our 2016 Christmas cards! | RISING*SHINING

Every year I enjoy creating our family Christmas card and sending them all across the country, from San Francisco to Brooklyn, and even to Canada! I designed our cards myself again this year and I'm so happy with how they turned out.

Here are our cards in previous years: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 & 2015 (so many!).

Originally I thought I would do a collection of photos from the year like I did in our card last year. But then I remembered the awesome family picture we took together during Chris's birthday trip to Prescott. Plus the fact that our boys were really into dinosaurs this year. And so the idea of using the photo + RAWWR! was born. On the back of the card I love to include a few notes about the year and what we've been up to.

I used Adobe Photoshop Elements (and my basic design skills) to make the card. Before diving in I browse Pinterest or some of the popular Christmas card sites to get ideas for font pairings and layout. I grabbed the Grand Hotel font for free online. And then I just start tinkering and am able to pull something together over one or two evenings. A key for me is to block out time to make the card. I don't want to feel stressed and rushed. So I start to think about designing the card in early November to leave time to make it and have it delivered by early December.

As usual, I designed our card to fit on a two-sided 5 x 7 postcard and ordered a set of 100 (the postcard order is 100 minimum but I like to send lots of cards so that's okay!). In previous years I've used OvernightPrints and GotPrint. This year I used VistaPrint because they were having a great sale when I was looking to order (a bit before Thanksgiving). My order was discounted from $50 to $32.97! I get so much satisfaction from not only creating our cards but paying so much less than the typical $1 - 2/card.

For envelopes I purchased brown kraft paper envelopes at Hobby Lobby. On the back I added two strips of festive washi tape and am still using our trusty address stamp from Three Designing Women (have replaced the ink pad once in 8 years!).

If you didn't get a snail mail card from me, please consider this a virtual card from my family to yours!

Today we're off to see Rogue One with friends at Alamo Drafthouse (!!) before my family arrives and then it's holiday festivity through the next week. The best!

Wishing you a cozy weekend and a very merry Christmas if you are celebrating.