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Our Family Christmas Journal

A collection of our Christmas Memories

Christmas Tree
Yes, we do use an artificial tree!
Mickey Mouse Santa Hat
Christmas 2013
Christmas Morning

I wanted to try something different with our holiday cards, so I decided on Ornament Holiday Cards  from Minted. We set the camera up on a tripod on our dock and tried (unsuccessfully, at first) to take a family picture. After a few tries (okay, about a hundred!), we finally had one photo that worked. Smiles all around, no dogs photo bombing our poses, and the kiddo looked pretty damn cute. Take that photo studios! We can do it on our own here! 🙂

One bright Christmas card, coming up!

Minted Ornament Cards

The paper quality was thick, and I loved that each card came with a ribbon to attach to the ornament. I loved how easy these were to mail out (just one stamp!), and there were many options to customize the cards.

Christmas Cheer Decor
Red Christmas Ornament
Christmas Tree Star
Santa Bass Pro Shop Blog
Christmas Eve
My mom came into town and we hit the beach. So did 1,000 other people. The weather was beautiful. It was warm, but not too hot.
It was a beautiful sunset.
After some burgers and some beers, we headed home to unwrap presents!
One of his gifts (that wasn’t a surprise) was a canvas of a picture he took of the Phillies spring training stadium in Clearwater. It’s hard to tell here, but it’s a great picture and the colors from the sunset are stunning! I also got him a whole mess of Old Navy clothes {practically enough to start a whole new wardrobe} and one of these guys:
Even the dogs get a gift.
I don’t know if it’s a fail or not. You melt Peppermints to make a plate. It wasn’t really sticky, but it wasn’t really dry either. It is VERY humid in FL so I’m sure this would’ve became a fail the minute that it was taken outside. It’s cute though!
 Christmas 2011

Can you believe there are only FOUR days until Christmas? And — I’m still waiting on some presents to be delivered! Eep! Come on Postman!
{Side note: Do you leave anything for your mailman for Christmas? Should I? I do send and receive a lot of packages. Any suggestions?}

Come on in!

Slowly adding to the gallery wall … but there’s the monster of a tree with some Christmas cards hanging on a ribbon by a clothespin.My sad poinsettia that is dying.



Some ornaments up close:
The first ornament I got for us. It has a tiny picture in the middle from 2009.

The only picture that I could find that fit in the O just right!

Last year I asked my husband to fill out this ornament. He did a good job.

We need one for this year! I tried Hallmark but all the “good” ones were already taken.


Presents under the tree. Already wrapped. I didn’t procrastinate this year!

No thanks, MOM.

Tomorrow will be just three days from Christmas. I’m excited to eat yummy food, open presents {not going to lie}, and hope that everyone likes what I got them for the holidays this year.

It’s practically November which means it’s pretty much time for the Christmas craziness. And, since you know I’m all about snail mail, Christmas cards are pretty important to me! Last year I had a great wall of cards going and I can’t wait to send {and receive!} some awesome cards this season. Shutterfly never disappoints and last year we experienced fast shipping and a high quality cutesy card. See below:

Oh Ho Ho Christmas Card
For hundreds of Christmas card designs, click here.
View the entire collection of cards.

I knew I wanted a card with all the dogs, but it’s impossible to get them to sit still… So I decided to go cheesy funny this year. Christmas Props. Dog Treats. Tripod. It worked out well. Luckily I found a card that had a perfect layout for both the picture of the humans and the pictures of the pups. 🙂

Merry Little Stripes Christmas Card
Customize your Christmas cards this holiday at Shutterfly.com.
View the entire collection of cards.

Obviously — used Shutterfly. They had super fast shipping… let’s see… The color is much more vibrant in person and not so dullsky. I ordered about 50 of these and sent them out to the same group of people that got wedding invitations and a few others we added to our list along the year!

I also ordered several watercolor cards that I sent to blog friends to spread the FL sunshine! So — you probably received one of the following three:

Santa is a pirate!

Holiday Palm Trees — our version of Christmas trees 🙂


The holiday porch in Florida!

These are all from the Caswell Galleries and they have other cards/prints as well — East Coast, West Coast, etc. I saved one of each so I could frame and make part of our holiday decor in coming years.

Even more, I ordered some cupcake cards from Vistaprint for some other special people on Swap-Bot… and even more $1 tree cards for random Christmas card swaps! I think I’ve sent out over 150 Christmas cards this year. Sheeeeesh! It didn’t feel like a lot as I was doing them since I did a few at a time, but my mailbox has sure been happy lately with all the fun Christmasy mail!

This weekend I plan to display all the cards until the New Year with a DIY I found on Pinterest. Of course. I needed something that could hold a LOT of cards. I think I found just the thing! 🙂

But, without further adieu, some outtakes from “Let’s Take a Semi-Attractive Christmas Card Picture” day:



NOT amused.

DIRTY dog. Refused to get out of dirt.



Though — this is a favorite. I got this one blown up and framed!

It seems to be a new tradition of ours to visit the beach on Christmas Eve.

A lot has changed in a year – but we made it to our little beach for our annual Christmas Eve sunset! 😉


It’s hard to believe this was us last year:

& now here we are with a baby in tow! 😉


You can’t really tell but my husband even wore the same shirt as last Christmas Eve. It’s a favorite. For sure.

I think what this holiday really reminded me of is how we no longer live in the Tampa area. I can’t really say that it is my “home” because it really isn’t anymore. My mom moved down here, we have been down here over a year now, and we started a family here. We definitely now have “roots” in the southwest Florida area. I miss Tampa/Clearwater and everyone there but I suppose I should just keep looking ahead. I can still go home and visit whenever I want – the 2 hour drive is not too ridiculous – and Cannon is getting older and might make the trip too soon. 🙂

I am curious to see how Christmas 2013 will look like!

Krystal | Sunny Sweet Days
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