family pictures + holiday cards

It is that time of year when we actually enjoy receiving mail because it isn’t typical mail…bills and junk mail.  Instead, we love opening the envelopes to see the pretty and festive holiday cards that are sent to our houses!

My whole family (yes, even my hubby) looks forward to seeing the cards that are sent from friends and family, near and far!  It is fun to “catch up” with people we don’t see on a regular basis.  Holiday cards have come so far with the age of digital photography.  As a result, there are so many creative choices for cards these days.

I began thinking about our holiday card back in the summer.  I knew I wanted to have some family pictures taken before Audrey left for college (it had been a few years, maybe more than a few, since we had some taken).  So in between Audrey having her wisdom teeth removed, vacation plans, a business trip for my husband, and packing for college…we were able to schedule a time to have pictures taken!  And then ironically, our orthodontist surprised Grace and removed her braces the following day…you can imagine how she felt about wanting to retake the pictures without her sparkly smile!!

If you are like me, coordinating outfits for family pictures can be stressful!  I have three daughters with three different styles, and getting them to agree on something can be pure torture.  My husband is usually a good sport about this sort of thing, but I knew he didn’t want anything too “girly.”


We (and I say “we” because I had to get everyone on board with the idea) decided to go with shades of blue, white, and pops of coral!


The inspiration started with Claire’s white sundress with the coral tassel sleeves.  I added her metallic gold gladiator sandals and a navy blue bangle bracelet to complete the outfit.


Audrey wore this blue and white striped off-the-shoulder dress…along with cork wedges, a gold necklace with blue tassels, and a coral bracelet.


Grace chose a navy blue dress, coral sandals, and a white statement necklace.


I wore white jeans with a denim tunic shirt.  My accessories included blue gingham espadrille wedges and a coral statement necklace.


And for Phillip…he wore a white button-down shirt with blue lobster-printed shorts.  Happily, NO PINK for him!

So off we went to meet our photographer for some “urban inspired” pictures in downtown Toledo…



Now back to those cards…I’ve used the website, Minted, for our cards the past few years and I’ve always been pleased.  I started looking at all their holiday choices earlier this fall when I received the images from our photo session with Julie Trust, our photographer.  She captured so many great moments on film that I just couldn’t narrow it down to one picture!

So we created a BOOK, or booklette cards, as they are called on their website.  I really liked this option for a card because it allowed space for all those pictures, plus room to share updates on our family happenings in 2016.  So I spent some time “designing” our card using their template…




There were so many options as far as card colors, placement of pictures and text, size of pictures, border colors, envelope linings, etc. It took some time to design them so when I finally hit the submit button, I couldn’t wait to see the finished product!


One more thing I love about this company is that they will print the recipient addresses, as well as the return address, on your envelopes!  It even matches the font used on my cards!  I know the envelopes end up in the trash, but how fun is it to receive that in your mailbox…





I love staying connected with friends and family, so giving and receiving holiday cards is always one of my favorite parts of the season!


If you are in Toledo and looking for a local photographer, I highly recommend Julie Trust.  She made our photo session so easy…we didn’t even realize that an hour of time had passed.  And go check out the Minted website for cards, if you haven’t already!


3 thoughts on “family pictures + holiday cards

  1. Thank you for the mention. Love this post and especially you’re holiday card! You did all the work and made my job easy!! I’m now obsessed with your holiday booklette cards! 😊👍🏻

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