Here are a few of my favorites.
Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla: I've barely put the Halloween costumes away and holiday lights are popping up all over the neighborhood. So now I'm sweating over my holiday cards. I'm torn over sending cards anyway. Isn't it better for the environment to send an e-card? I read an article in "The Economist" that argued the mail service is going to be in even bigger debt if we all send e-cards. (Don't get excited -- I knocked over some magazines at someone else's house and it fell open to that page.)
I never sent out cards when I was single. The year I got married, I sent out a picture card with a wedding photo. Then there were the vacation photo years, then the local family photo years, and now the vacation family photos. I like a photo card with a picture of the whole family, not just the kids. Children are strategically placed to cover any extra parental pounds. If we could drape a child over my husband's receding hairline, we would.
I generally get my holiday photo cards at Costco. They have a nice selection, you can order in-store or online, and I find the quality at my local Costco to be very good. For the number of cards I order, the cost is $.25 each, plus tax, which includes the envelope.
I found I just missed a fantastic Sam's Club deal for 100 photo cards for $15, so keep on the lookout for something similar. Walmart's photo cards are $.28 apiece and are slightly smaller. This site shows some online choices and provides coupons for them.
The most economical option, however, may be to make your own. Get 4x6 photos printed for as little as $.10 a piece and get creative with cardstock. Or do something fancy on the computer -- here are some templates. Everyone loves something homemade. It appeals to the "Little House on the Prairie" in all of us.
Don't go too far, though. I wouldn't recommend handing out any oranges as Christmas gifts ...
A former state deputy attorney general and current stay-at-home mom, Recession Mama Michele Ashamalla has three kids and ten years of experience stretching one salary to cover the necessities and more. She's all about saving money whenever you can, so you have it to spend on whatever you want!