You may or may not know that themed Christmas cards are a family tradition of ours. My husband and I started doing them the first year we were married and we’ve been doing it ever since. Now that we have kids, it has become a family tradition that we all get in to! And this year’s card was the best one yet!
A few years ago I started a blog, In a Few Years Our Kids Will Hate Us, to share all of our past card ideas. Although I haven’t updated it in a few years, you can check out the early years of our Christmas cards on that site. If you don’t do anything else, scroll ALL the way back to year 3, where we wrote and recorded our own song and made a video to go along with it. That was pretty ambitious to say the least and I was worried we’d feel like we had to top that each year. Luckily, that hasn’t been the case. With an Italian last name and a love of pizza, this year’s card theme just seemed perfect. And the fact that we got to support a local small business made it even better! May I introduce Garofalow’s Pizza. We wanted it to look like a mailer you would get in your mailbox and even had the addresses printed as So and So Family, or current resident. Although we checked with the post office ahead of time on sizing, this card did not go out smoothly. At all. They had to be hand sorted which meant it took a lot longer to process. And it’s pretty clear that the Post Office now hates us. And if people did actually receive one, we had reports of them almost throwing them out with the junk mail. We didn’t consider that a failure at all. It’s all part of the fun! Although, next year, we’ll probably go back to envelopes. Our local pizza place, Square One, is awesome. Being family owned, we knew they might be receptive to the idea of letting us shoot our card there. They were SO great to work with. They basically opened up their restaurant to us and allowed us to create this cherished family memory there. And we got to eat pizza after the shoot was done. Winning! My FAVORITE part of the card was that Square One let us put a coupon on it! HOW COOL IS THAT! Although many people said they wouldn’t use it because they didn’t want to have to turn in the card. :)
Sometimes our Christmas card shoots are pretty basic. This year, because we were working with a restaurant that would be open for business during our shoot, my husband put together story boards to make sure that everyone knew what was expected. But if you look closely you’ll see that my husband’s humor clearly shines through as one of my inspiration shots is of a centaur type figure….Oh yeah, and we had a legit photographer. Every year we work with a photographer, either at home or in a studio, but this was the first time we had lights and such on location. Derrick was awesome and got the vision and also knew how to work with kids which was fantastic! As I wanted to make this as easy on the restaurant as possible, I kind of freaked out about the debacle that was our Christmas card shoot. But everything went really smoothly! And I kind of want to own my own restaurant now…The kids had SO much fun shooting this card. Sometimes they would like a little more input in the direction of the Christmas cards, but they are usually good sports about following the plan. And the fact that this one got to wear a fake mustache AND go in the kitchen was HUGE! And then he got to make his own pizza…mind blown! My husband fit right in with the kitchen staff and I’m wondering if I should install a pizza oven at home so he’ll cook more.
This kid was ALL about wearing his suit in his maitre d’ roll. I was sweaty over this shot since that pizza really wanted to slide right off the pan…We are so thankful to Derrick Busch for playing along with us this year. Not only do we get to make fun family Christmas cards, that have become a tradition not only for us, but for those on our list, but I always end up with the most amazing family photos.And when the shoot was done, I totally needed a drink. Sometimes creating our Christmas cards is near divorce inducing. But his year’s went off without a hitch! I wonder what we’ll do next year…And we LOVED getting texts with people using our coupon!
If you haven’t been to Square One yet, you need to go! You can read about the girl’s night out they hosted for me here.
5789 Alton Pkwy, Irvine, CA 92618
Also thank you to Direct Edge Media, who prints our cards every year and Johannes for designing the card!
Printing: Direct Edge Media
Photography: Derrick Busch
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Birthday T-Shirt Tradition
Special Day Terrarium