a fresh wreath hangs on our front door as a backdrop

my watercolor palette and painting “Noel”

my inspiration board

velour fabric I specially ordered

handmade bow ties I made for my older two sons

photos I took of my three boys

hand painted envelope liners

bundling up my boys’ artwork with a velour holly leaf + bakers twine


1. I love wishing my family and friends a Merry Christmas in a special way.

2. I love having a nice photo of my family or of the kids at least once a year.

3. I love saving money by taking the photo myself, having my friend take it or designing the card myself.

4. I love painting cards, especially for the holidays.

5. I love to give and receive real mail, made of paper, that arrives in a mail box. My kids do too.

6. I love an excuse to come up with a style or look for my boys, or to sew something for them which is rare. I came from a family of all girls and lots of wardrobe changes. So, any time I get to figure out a new look for my boys, who always wear the same polos and khakis- the challenge excites me!

7. It encourages my boys to make cards of their own and share their art work.

8. Creativity is what I do, so of course I am going to dedicate some time and energy into a greeting card.

9. I love to incorporate little things that are important to us during that Advent season. Last year for example, the boys sent snowflakes with the cards that they made and we included my all time favorite “O Holy Night”, which took me back to midnight Mass as a child. Every time I hear it, I actually get chills. For us, Advent and Christmas are religious celebrations, and we love to incorporate religious songs from the season. This year, we included a verse from The First Noel, that my son learned to play on the piano. The verse we chose felt relevant for looking forward from the tragic events in Connecticut that were saddening our hearts, and towards a more peaceful year for our family and our world.

10. And lastly, it is the season to give in every way possible, both big and small. I think sending a thoughtful card at Christmas time is a small gift. I love each and every card we receive and look forward to it each year.

I am sure with technology and online sharing, the amount of actual holiday cards will continue to dwindle in being sent and received. We already see each other, our kids and our updates through photos through FB and Instagram, and I am sure that contributes. But I know I will try and continue this tradition, even if I make my list shorter next year.

When I was in the middle of addressing cards, my boys sat down and created their own Christmas cards. I love them so much, and decided that I would include those for the remaining. It really brings our family a lot of joy, and they always come from a place of love.

“They looked up and saw a star, shining in the East beyond them far. And to the Earth, it gave great light and so it continued both day and night. Noel.”

How fitting that today is the feast of the Epiphany.






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