W e definitely learned the hard way last year with our Christmas cards (read all about that fiasco here). That’s why those were Christmas Cards 101. It was like Grace was taking the beginner course and did everything as inefficiently as possible, walking up hill both ways.

This year, I was DETERMINED for our cards to go smoother. And they did!

I still had visions of putting our own touch on them (i.e. they HAD to have folk-art somewhere). For the longest time, I wanted to have some quirky, fun accordion fold type booklet that told the story of our year. Then, the Ghost of Christmas Past came to me and whispered, “remember last year? Accordion folded cards sound like a re-mix of 2013…” and I quickly came to my senses.

My sister suggested I think about postcards from moo.com.

(He’s really not trying to be rude, just looking out for me.)

Lo and behold, they actually had a template that I thought could work – it had 4 rows of 3 square boxes…very Instagram-ish. This was perfect because I wanted to divide up our year into three parts between our time in New Orleans, Vermont, and Miami. The fourth row added a space for a handwritten (but totally digital) message. I quickly sketched out my plan:

Then I sat down to the business of creating each hand drawn block and finding two photos from each place we’ve lived this year.

I made sure the size of the drawings would fully fill up a cropped square image.
Next, I wrote our handwritten message for the bottom three squares. I love seeing people’s handwriting. Even if it’s just a photocopy or a printed copy of the real thing, I savor it.

Don’t worry, Graham is just still tired from LAST year’s cards, not these ones.

And that was it! I inserted my hand drawn/handwritten images into the website template along with our photos from the year and hit “order.”

This took me one relaxed afternoon and evening, spending some quality time with my notebook, iPhone camera, and pastels. Already 10 times more manageable than our manic venture to the community printshop last year. Then we waited in blissful suspense as moo.com did all the work.

Come back tomorrow Click here and I’ll share the finished product along with the calligraphy adventures that happened for the addresses! (Spoiler alert: we’re really happy with how they turned out and even happier that they were drama-free.)