11.27.2012

Our Holiday Card And A (Big) Minted Giveaway


Holiday cards and I have a sketchy history. First there was my less than stellar track record when it came to, well, sending them out at all (due to my general slackerdom about the entire enterprise). I got better about "the sending," but then I found myself grappling with the issue of "what" to send. This year, feeling confident that I'd overcome both laziness and indecision, I was sure I'd finally beat my holiday card conundrum once and for all.

But then Bryan refused to take a family photo. Ok, that's a slight exaggeration, but he really, really didn't want to take one.

I don't want to give you guys the wrong idea... Bryan isn't against family photos in principle. Quite the contrary, the man has never met a moment he didn't deem photo-worthy. He wields a camera like an appendage. But he doesn't like forced gaiety (i.e. posed family photos for a yearly holiday card).

And given that amidst the hundreds of photos snapped of our various family members over the past year, there isn't a single one of the entire family, together, I was officially faced with the third consecutive year of holiday card angst.

But you have to pick your battles friends (and really, nothing good ever comes of a forced family photo), so I spared my crew the pain, didn't gripe or cajole (or inflict a massive guilt trip on the hubs), snatched our most recent family photo booth pic off the pantry door (where all the family photo booth snaps happily reside), and, in the words of the great Tim Gunn, "made it work."

The result is that action above, created on Minted (my go-to for holiday cards) using the lovely "Be Joyful" design.

And as consolation for subjecting you to the 3rd Annual Taylor Family Holiday Card Saga, (and because the lovely folks at Minted are so kind), one of you guys can get in on the Minted goodness.

Just leave a comment on this post sharing a snippet of your own holiday card adventures by tomorrow (Wednesday) evening at midnight CT, and I'll pick one of you to receive 150 free personalized holiday cards courtesy of Minted.

I'll announce the winner on Thursday. (I'll also be revealing the gallery wall I created for my Minted "Take Art to Heart" project with Caitlin and Erin on Thursday... It's a Minted week friends.)

Good luck!

59 comments:

Livyb said...

Love those photos! Sweet snapshots are always better! Way to go on kicking the holiday card angst to the curb!

leenie said...

yours look so lovely! minted cards are always great-- what a good giveaway!

Julz said...

When my girls were young we would pose them each year in a large basket. As they got older the basket was left behind. Now they are in college and cards just don't seem the same without pictures of the kids. My oldest thought it might be a good idea to resurrect the basket in some way this year, but they won't be home in time to take picts for a card.

Nadya Sagner said...

Love Minted! We've used them for the past three years too. And we don't have a single decent family photo either.

Shannon said...

Love Minted, we used them last year. Things were easy when my son was still a little baby and would just lay there and look cute. Now he's an active toddler who HATES posed family photos. I'll probably end up sending out a candid one of just him.

On a side note, does anyone remember Olan Mills? Oh man, so many terrible staged photos came out of that place..

Shannon said...

Love Minted, we used them last year. Things were easy when my son was still a little baby and would just lay there and look cute. Now he's an active toddler who HATES posed family photos. I'll probably end up sending out a candid one of just him.

On a side note, does anyone remember Olan Mills? Oh man, so many terrible staged photos came out of that place..

Rachael Hardison said...

oooh i love minted! my husband & i just found out we are moving during the holidays. rough! so this would help with cards for sure! :)

thanks for the chance!

Jeanie Griswold said...

Genius!

Kelly said...

For a couple of years, I had my kids in color-coordinated pj's for our cards. (Just the kids in the card...otherwise, that would be a little creepy.) I spend a good amount of time & money driving around at the last minute, trying to track down those pj's in the right size & color!

Kristen said...

Out of laziness, out of lack-of-photo-ness, out of time....I have not sent holiday cards even once since my daughter was born...SIX CHRISTMAS CARD FAILURES, y'all. 'Tis time to do it up!

jane said...

I am unusually, psychotically obsessed with holiday photo cards. Every year I spend many a sleepless night pouring over every available card on the internet. I get so bummed when I get a card without a photo on it - as far as I'm concerned, that's a waste of a postage stamp. I love minted's cards, but haven't used them yet. Maybe this will be the year!

Thanks for the giveaway!

Jane

PS. I think this is my first time posting but wanted to mention that I really enjoy your blog, and I'm completely in love with your house!

nicole said...

just the other day, on the way out the door to a friends house i decided today was the day we would snap some family photos but no one would listen to my clothing suggestions to effortlessly match...so there we were a mismatch bunch trying to look cool in front of a barn...it could be a hit or a miss...i am afraid to edit those photos...in case of disappointment.

Simply Mel {Reverie} said...

i used to be on it in regards to holiday cards...now, like you, i have the battle of two strong-willed family members {and remember, there are only three of us!} who refuse to do the group shot. you've inspired me to snap away, search the archives, and create a collage of happy. free cards from minted would just be the star on top of it all!

Lacey said...

I just love holiday cards (sending and receiving)!

Stephanie said...

This is a GREAT giveaway. Holiday cards are both my favorite and most stressed about item at this time of the year. I think to much about each option, just the kids, the four of us, the dog too? All of the stress really is so silly, because each person they are sent to love whatever we come up with and cherish it just as we cherish the holiday cards we receive! Minted has wonderful designs, fingers crossed!

Finley said...

Such a cute idea! I may have to steal it as my husband feels the same as yours and the last two rounds of family photos have been atrocious. Sadly, I don't think I have 150 people to send holiday cards to!

Laura Wolfe said...

I always plan to get a good family photo during our summer vacation. But really that only leads to me to be stressed and scouting during the vacation for the perfect, candid, natural oh so happy family photo. Not a great plan. Trying to hard, not so candid and natural.

Geralis said...

I got my photos all printed but then neglected to get them to the mail. With cards this cute though I'm sure they would get sent!

curiouscovetous said...

I am currently trying to get the boyfriend to do a posed shot.. add the dog and some Christmas lights, and uh yeah... hasn't happened yet!
XO Jessica

Jane said...

I'm with Bryan on this one this year. I really hate our card. When you receive it, I know you will understand that it's been a long year. I'm letting this one go and hope to back on my game next year.

Your card is super sweet! Can't wait to hang it on our wall!

Christian said...

I love your card! I always have plans of taking a photo specifically for Christmas cards but then just end up putting something together with what we already have - type B motherhood at its best ;)

Meg S said...

I have absolutely no picture for a card yet! And there's almost no time left...I need to get on that.

amandarose said...

I have such a hate/love relationship with holiday cards. They can cause such unnecessary stress, but when you find the right card, photo, and company (minted looks like a great one), it's pure magic. I adore the card you selected. And I love the family photo booth idea.

PS.
I'm totally smitten with your blog. Your photos/images are lovely, your writing style is like no other, and your content is accessible, inspiring, and honest. Thank you!

Amanda said...

Since we had our son, holiday cards have become so much more complicated... My husband also hates the posed family picture, and is resistant to photo cards in general, but I know that people want a photo, at least of our son. Which means I always end up frantically writing on traditional cards and choosing and printing a photo to go inside. Maybe winning this would convince him that the photo card is the way to go? I love your card, and it has reminded me that I need to find a photo booth...

REBrown said...

We haven't even thought about it yet - so we're definitely in for a last minute adventure!

Sally said...

I've totally been putting it off making all sorts of excuses why we haven't taken a photo yet (also our first year with a little one so added pressure!)...need to find something to wear, where to take the photo, how to get a good shot with a tripod, etc... Might just have to find a photo booth nearby instead. :)

Janna McCalley said...

We sent them out last year for the first time. The photoshoot was a nightmare with bad weather, crying baby and hubby just not into it, but we managed to get one pic. worth using. I'm afraid to attempt a family picture again this year, but if I won, it would likely be enough motivation to try!

mominaledo said...

Thanks Joslyn!

holley said...

I send a holiday card nearly every year, anguishing over the selection and the few personal words added to each card.

In recent years, I have not managed a photo card. My sons have either been away at school or too busy to sit still. Photos of the family together or apart have been imperfect.

You've inspired me! I think that imperfect photos may be the key. Your picture pieces have more warmth and personality than a posed photograph ever could.

I think I'd like to try a photo card this year, and I'd be thrilled to win the Minted prize because.....my son needs a girlfriend.

Yes, I'm serious. Every year, my better organized co-workers send photo cards and my children eagerly inspect the cards that picture their lovely daughters. "Why", they ask, "don't you put our pictures on the card anymore?"

My youngest is the latest to go away to school. I encouraged him to concentrate on his studies this fall, but with winter break approaching, maybe it's time for some fun?

So, I'd like to follow your lead and send a photo card this holiday season. My son needs a girlfriend. (holiday card = hidden matchmaking potential?)

Holley

Suite Henry said...

I love this!

This year is the first time I will want to send out a family portrait since we welcomed our first child in June.

I usually try to get a bit crafty and I designed some birth announcements for him but I'd rather not stress over some giant project of paper. I've always loved Minted's design aesthetic.

Last year I typed and watercolour painted some simple, modern looking Christmas trees onto car stock. My husband came home and announced that they looked like a holiday Ziggy Stardust thing.
Thanks. Thanks a lot ;)

http://suitehenry.blogspot.ca/2011/12/sneak-peek-christmas-cards.html


http://suitehenry.blogspot.ca/2011/12/sneak-peek-christmas-cards-watercolour.html


Fingers crossed!


marina said...

Love your card!

Holiday adventures - trying to get my two HYPER big kids to stop doing handstands and cartwheels long enough to get a glimpse of their face, all while getting a baby to sort of smile and a hubby to want to take his pic. (I think he shares Bryan's sentiments about posed pics)

Just trying to get something this year that isn't posed, but has me looking good (vain) hubby happy and the kids semi facing forward!

How's that for adventure!

:)

Thank you!

Bree Cardiel said...

Sounds like Me- But i dont' have Kids!

my holiday card history...
two years ago I was engaged so it was easy- I just chose an engagement photo, and used a site like minted and it was done.

Last year, we got married, and with family living in vegas and the east coast there was alot of traveling- hence no extra money to spend on holiday cards.

We even have a photographer friend who said she would take a few shots of us- gratis- and it still didnt happen! Life has a way of carrying us away!

So since i've had my little family ( Husband and dog ) only one card failure!

This year, I decided to make them... to save the extra money...(blog post coming soon!)... I found an awesome pre-made pack of 40 cards for 9.99 at Michaels, some gold and black pens, and boom. Insta holiday cards- easy and affordable. Yet- I still have to get a Picture to print and incorpoarte to my wonderful creation!
This giveaway would be awesome! i could save my home made ones for next year...or birthday cards...or just simple thank you notes! :)

I abosultely love your blog!

stop by www.luxandlace.blogspot.com if you have a chance!

xo, Bree


Anna said...

Lovely, happy faces on your family card! So many holiday card photos are too posed, so this is nice. The photobooth idea does work.
My son is three years old now, and we have yet to send out family cards, so I don't have any stories to relate about holiday cards. But this would be a wonderful opportunity!

Jessica said...

my family was always horrible with christmas photos,but the hubs and I are trying to track down horrible christmas sweaters for this year.

jessicarwarfield at gmail dot com

Stephanie said...

I am due with baby#4 on Christmas Day but it looks like baby will be here a bit sooner! My husband has been begging me to figure out the card earlier than usual this year ( last year I had the extended fam stuffing, stamping and addressing the cards last minute. My dad hand wrote the addresses and I got a number of compliments on his cool handwriting!)

This year I envision part birth announcement part holiday greeting card. It is lovely in my head, but I haven't yet worked out the details.

Christa said...

I love to get the photo cards in the mail during the holidays. I cut the photos out of the cards each year and keep them in an album. It's fun to pull it out each year and see how all the kids have changed and grown! Happy Holidays!

Sara said...

Def trying to make a habit of sending one.. last year was easy, a wedding pic.. this year not so easy! Love Minted's designs!

Rachael said...

There's something I actually kind of love about the forced, obligatory family photo. Have you ever seen the book Awkward Family Photos? If you haven't, please show it to your hubs. There is magic in the awkwardness.

I always struggle with family photos because I like to think that perhaps I am a bit cuter than the camera implies, but I always try to temper my ego a bit and get in the spirit because those are some of my personal favorites. The year my son was two months old shows a beautiful backdrop of our Christmas tree. My husband and I are dressed up and sitting on a settee and Finn is all dressed up too in this ridiculous outfit that my mother-in-law dressed her boys in. Finn is hysterical in the photo, but both Tyson and I look happy and serene and there is the warm bokeh of the tree lights - The caption read: "Just another charming night with our little bundle of joy." People loved it. It was funny and it was real.

Every year our cards are a battle and every year, somehow, there is one salvageable, priceless image that makes it all worth the effort.

Fun contest!

Ashley K Photo said...

Those are adorable! I think I will be stealing your idea of the photo booth looking design!

Emily said...

LOVE the photobooth idea. I'm with your husband & hate the whole posed holiday portrait thing, but I love sending & getting family-photo xmas cards. If we can't find a picture of the whole family from the past year, in the past I've done a collage-y design with a few different photos that collectively show all of us. But this year I'm totally going photobooth! And would loooove to be able to use Minted for our cards- normally not in my price range.

Amelia said...

Love taking pics of the kiddos outside and adding some singles, and some of both together.

Julie said...

Fab idea! Noted for next year... Need to do family photo booth pics!

Simply Marilla said...

I have three boys, inculding twins, so it is almost impossible to get a decent family picture. Since there is fighting, falling, crying and silly faces I have to take individual pictures and put them on one card. However, this way when people get the card they can tell who is who.

Mrs. Battle said...

We have yet to send out a Christmas card since we got married three years ago. But now we have a little man in the house and we are sure to get one out this year. After spending a couple hours browsing the Minted website this morning, we will be using them for our holiday cards even if I don't win this giveaway...although I would love to win this giveaway...I HOPE I HOPE.

sarah said...

great idea! i'm super excited about my cards this year because i actually have a posed photo that i love...not to mention these cards may turn out to be save-the-date cards as well. that is, if we can pick a date once and for all.

Mary Jo said...

i'm 38 1/2 weeks pregnant and my husband is insisting on the newest member must be in the photo so we are still waiting to take the picture! i'm usually on top of it but this year we a re a bit delayed :)

Clara said...

Please....I just noticed that the cards I got from the photograper are crazy looking. My son just lost his top tooth (major drama and trauma over that blasted tooth) and his smile looks demented with one tooth missing and one half tooth coming in. Yuck...he says he is so embarrased and doesn't want me to send them out.

G said...

Great card ! and great idea since our hubbies sound the same in regards to "formal" family photos )and guitar playing)! Our gallery of annual state fair photo booth fun on the fridge may be my solution, too!
I still have stacks of well intended holiday cards from years past that never got sent......we even started planning New Year's cards since we are so lame on getting the holiday ones out!
Always love reading your stories...........


www.foundationvintique.com

Dora said...

Imitation is the highest form of flattery - so i am so stealing your idea for our holiday card! Love photo booth - thx Jos!

Chelsea said...

Our family has been just my husband, the dogs and I for years. We have taken photos, I have forgotten to mail them- you know. The usual. We got married in the spring, and we now want to have a kids. So... this year I really want to start documenting the fam, so I can see the changes. xo

Susan said...

What a great card - and a great giveaway (I love Minted). Let me just say I DREAD the holiday card. I can barely get both kids to look at the camera at the same time... is that asking for too much? I recommend bribery. Last year I baked cookies and they were in the oven when I took pictures and the year before I stuffed my pockets with Halloween treats. Only get the goods if I get the shot!

Bobbi Huffman said...

Love it! Much better than formal photos! :)

Unknown said...

I am also guilty of holiday day card slowpoke-edness. I always feel I've missed the momentum by the time I get around to doing it. Not this year though! With Thanksgiving coming so early, I feel I've been given a few extra days to get my act together. :)
mallorymmyers@gmail.com

Alena: Oh, Its Just Perfect! said...

Does buying the cards and actually sending them out BEFORE Christmas count as an adventure?!? :)

Fabulous giveaway!

Gina200 said...

holiday photos...let's put it this way...when we start talking about a holiday photo, my husband says "why do you want to put yourself through this year after year?" Every year I think it's going to be easier and every year it's just as hard with pushing, shoving, poking, tackling, closed eyes, srunched up noses and eyes...it just never works. I get so aggravated that no one is cooperating and annoyed that we can't get just ONE photo! So, last year I finally decided to go with the non posed photo in front of the tree - the one that we had done every year for the past ten that our kids (did I mention we only have 2) have been alive. I had a great photo that was taken on vacation in Myrtle Beach. Best photo ever and so many complements "love your card!" So, even though we don't have as fantastic a photo as last year, we're going with a photo from during the year this year... so much for tradition...

jack, lucy, finn and dot said...

my sad holiday card adventures are none. after almost 11 years of marriage i have not managed to send out cards even once. just never quite got it together in time... sad stuff. with a new baby in tow, could this actually be my year?

Modern Frills said...

My favorite holiday cards are the ones that you don't expect. We always have a family picture done but the picture I choose is usually a crazy one where one person is laughing, another is looking at the sky, etc.

That is how I want to remember the holidays:)

terryliu said...

Last year we had photos taken of my newborn son..
The photographer put a pink hat on him. I figured she would photoshop it but when we got the images they were still pink ! She had just had her own baby so I didn't say anything about it, and we went ahead and used the image on our card haha :-)

Erin said...

I've always adored Christmas cards and spent a lot of time selecting just the right one in the days when people hand-wrote personal notes. When my boys were first born our cards featured sweet close-ups celebrating their cherub-like features. Now that they're in grade school, I splurge for professional family photos from Blue Lily Photography (the traveling family of photogs) - best investment I make all year. I haven't used Minted before; their cards are beautiful. Thanks for sponsoring this sweet giveaway!