Sugarplum Dreams for All

This year, we finally sent out Christmas cards.  We have never, in point of fact, successfully mailed Christmas cards, ever in our entire married lives (or, for that matter, before we were married).  Every year since our wedding, I have purchased Christmas cards (usually I get them at the end of the previous season at 70% off, if we’re being totally honest, and save them for the next year in the same storage bin as the ornaments, so we discover them as we’re decorating).  And every year, somehow the days fly past, and I am never quite able to get the ball rolling or the list together or the darn things in the mail.

Not this year, though.  THIS year, we were fortunate enough to have the awesome Heather Ross design a card for us, and nothing lights a fire under your card-mailing behind like having someone you truly admire create an original artwork just for you.

heather ross christmas card 2013

Heather announced last September that she’d be designing a limited number of cards this year, and I immediately emailed my husband with the idea (you can now order gift certificates for commissions on Heather’s blog).  We’d both seen another Christmas card of Heather’s on a blog we read and love (you can see it here), and were really excited about the idea of having something with that same feeling for our own family.  I sent an (extended and entirely too wordy) email over to Heather describing each of the six of us, and she sketched and drafted something lovely.

This is the final result:

christmas card 2013 b

I just love it.  I love most that this is what we do every single evening, no matter where we are: after bath and teeth, we read stories together, everyone curled up on the bed, nestled amongst one another.  This is what I envisioned my family would be, before I had a family.  I wanted this kind of closeness and security and warmth for me and for my children, and I feel so grateful to have found it all.  Heather captured that emotion perfectly, and I’m so thrilled to now have this piece to frame for our home–in addition to the digital file for printing, Heather sent over two 9″ x 12″ signed prints for us to frame, and I just love them.

Christmas print with Nativity

For the cards, I sent the art over to PsPrint, and designed the whole shebang for them to put together.  These are 5″ x 7″–a little on the larger size for a holiday card.  I chose to do just a flat postcard, which seems to be the way holiday cards are heading these days, rather than the folded greeting cards of our youth.  I selected the matte recycled paper, which has this lovely weight and sheen to it, and is just the perfect medium for Heather’s soft lines.

writing Christmas cards

Naturally, I also pounced on a 65% off discount that was mailed to us late-birds at the very last possible minute so that I could capitalize on my failure to get them out earlier.

Christmas cards 2013

That’s right: in this, our inaugural card-sending year, with a custom portrait from an esteemed artist, I STILL managed to wait until December 23 to mail these puppies out.  BUT!  They are out, and I am delighted to know that the satisfaction that comes along with that is pretty filling.

Christmas packages

Our families, whom we will see on Christmas Day and the following Saturday, will receive theirs attached to their gifts, like tags.  I left room on the back of each card to write a note, and I think having a portrait of your nuclear family to share with your extended family makes something sweeter about the holidays.

Hope all of YOU sleep tonight with visions of sugarplums dancing in your heads.  Wishing all of you the joy and peace of family and full hearts this Christmas.

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