Saturday Open Thread– Holiday Card Edition

It’s the weekend, y’all! And I’m exhausted!

It was a marathon week of playing catch-up after last weekend’s bout with mastitis. I worked, I shopped, I cleaned, I feted DH’s birthday, and yesterday I mailed off a small mountain of Christmas cards. WHEW.

Of course I am wishy-washy and couldn’t decide on just one card design, so I ordered a couple– one folded, and one flat. I usually use Shutterfly because I like being able to use multiple pictures and customize the text inside. Here’s the end product:

With Love Chartreuse Christmas 5×7 folded card
Create beautiful photo Christmas cards at Shutterfly.com.
View the entire collection of cards.

I liked the design and color scheme; loved the fact that it was a folded card with an additional photo and text inside. The price, at $1.25 per card, was fair. My only objection was the finish. I was given a choice of matte or glossy, ordered some of each, and wasn’t blown away by either. Something about the look and feel of it just didn’t feel high-quality, although the cardstock was decently thick and the colors were nice.

Then I received an offer from Minted, a competing company, for a free order of 25 holiday photo cards. I remembered receiving a gorgeous card from one of DH’s wealthy business associates last Christmas, an actual mini photo book, and it was by Minted. So I figured what the heck, and placed an order.

The interface wasn’t quite as intuitive or user-friendly as Shutterfly’s, and production took considerably longer, as I had to wait for a designer to send me a proof to approve. And the price, at $2.88 per flat, one-sided card, was obviously much higher than Shutterfly.

But the cards? Are gorgeous. The cardstock is thick with a lovely texture. The colors are vibrant. The designs are chic and understated. They just look and feel luxe, which I guess makes sense given their higher price.

I will use Minted again for special occasions, and will continue to use Shutterfly for everyday products, like their photo calendars. Each year I give one to my parents that’s chock-full of grandkid photos, and they love it.

Who do you order your holiday cards from? Are you happy with the price and quality? Do you take special “holiday card” photos or use candids?

Please use this thread to post your holiday photos and cards!

What are you up to this weekend? Chat away!

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An idea…Mamacita, DON’T LOOK!!! UPDATE

UPDATE
Dr. Capsab has volunteered to coordinate a photo book like we made for vegas, which was super cool. I can’t remember how we did that…did we pitch in for the cost? I’ll ask capsab to post an email where you can send photos, messages, etc. If we could do that by the end of the month, she can work on in it and we can surprise Mamacita next month, when no one expects anything but bills!

Also, if you’d like to send something paper (postcard, clipping, cartoon, etc.) please email me at cynmillbeaAThotmail.com and I’ll give you my address.

Thanks for all the positive responses.

Hi all,
A Facebook posting by our Mamacita was a welcome message today. According to it, her arms and hands still hurt too much to be online much. I think she lurks a lot but can’t comment too much.


I believe she is also still struggling with her former employer. I wanted to do something small and old-fashioned to brighten her day. Remember card showers? I thought we could find cards, postcards, drawings, clippings, anything you like to let her know we’re thinking of her and to give her a nice surprise in her mailbox. I just thought of the fact that it’s the holidays and she will probably be getting a lot of mail, so we could wait until January if you all think that would be better (and more of a surprise). Also, one less thing for us to add to our to-do lists this month. I can post a reminder diary in a few weeks.

You could send everything to me and I will forward her a big envelope (or even better…a big box!). I thought of this because for the last couple of years, American fans of the British soap opera “EastEnders” have sent greetings to one of the elderly actors who used to be on the show. A woman in North Carolina befriended him and his wife, and she collects our cards and sends them a big packet. I’m told it’s one of the highlights of their holiday season, and I think it’s amazing that just a card I send with a photos of my kids (watching the show, of course) can be so meaningful and make someone so happy.

So let me know if this is something we could do and if/how you’d like to participate. Thanks, everyone!

Cindy

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Ahh, the holidays…

Boy, the holidays sure bring out the best in people, eh? My husband and I ordered pre printed holiday cards this year. I was thrilled! Hurray! All I will have to do is address and stamp – awesome! Since I do the cards myself every year this was an awesome step forward in saving time. We ordered them from National Geographic, even better, we are helping the planet.

So tonight as I sat addressing the cards and thinking…”This is so great. I am almost done and it is only the 6th of December. How cool am I.” My husband, who was watching television, leans over and says…”are WE doing a photo or a letter or something?” WE? No we are not sending a photo or a letter this year… people throw those away. I throw those away. A waste of money, paper and what about the planet? I was saving the planet with my card choice, remember? Cute penguins, polar bears and baby seals… why ruin it?”Forget it, I can see it is really stressing you out. I mean, I’ll help you.”  Like you are helping me now? By watching? I continued to address, he went to bed… and I ordered photos from snapfish. I am a sucker. Truly.

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