Monday, December 10, 2018

Christmas Newsletters and Our 5 Faves

It's newsletter week.  No, not my Faith and Home Times edition (check the bottom of this post if you are interested in that one!)  No, the annual family Christmas newsletter writing week.  With ALL of our family and the majority of our friends living long distance, this is a critical part of catching up we all look forward to each year.  Print AND pictures help us 'see' each other grow and go♥️ (we don't all have/use Facebook or Instagram)

I know some of you may have already stamped and sent your yearly correspondences but I am a bit behind the game this year... and I suspect others might be as well!  So, to inspire my fellow stragglers out there and get our creative juices flowing  I thought I would share our top 5 favorite annual updates from years past!

17 Stats From 2017

... was an homage to my oldest's university graduation with double majors in business and economics.  We re-capped the ups and downs from the year, ranging between graduation travels, book publishing, formal dances, new jobs and my step-dad's cancer diagnosis along with various other in-betweens! It took one page, front + back, and family loved the details!

"The Jones Family 2008 In 150 Words or less!"
... was actually a time and money saver resulting from my husband's lay-off during the recession!!  I could fit TWO color copies on ONE page printed from my home computer!  Short, sweet and garnered many emails and phone calls from family I hadn't heard from in years.  They were desperate for more details and I loved the unexpected opportunity to catch-up!!  We broke the updates down by family member and included a favorite picture from the year of each of the kids.

Top 20 of... (year)
Inspired by popular Late-night T.V. lists of the time, we highlighted highs and lows from the year.  Similar to the 17 Stats from 2017, but different in that the top 20 list was more incremental; building to big praises from the year. It took one page, front + back and included updated pictures of the kids.

The 12 Months of Christmas
My personal favorite as we looked back at the year with the focus on pictures captioned with brief descriptions.  This letter took just ONE page (front only) and really helped all of our long distance family SEE life from the past year.  I ordered copies from the printers in quality gray scale (a small handful of color prints for grandparents, aunts and uncles) since the heavy picture load didn't print well at home (and likely cost less in ink from a printer!)

"The Jones Family By the Numbers..."
 This was an all-time extended family fave.  Years after it's issue I had relatives tell me how they STILL had their double-sided bookmark style family update tucked into favorite books/Bibles to this day!!  The idea was found in a Family Fun magazine article.  I don't remember if it was originally a 2-sided bookmark but that is what I went with (pictures on one side, stats on the other)!  I printed them on my home printer using card stock.  I think I fit 4 on a page and used a paper-cutter to separate them.  Each was mailed in regular letter envelopes with Christmas Greetings.

So now for 2018...

  • Another graduate (only one left now)
  • Adult "children" with not a ton of pictures or news to report on them.
  • Travels to highlight
  • Some interesting 'news'

Still not sure where to begin with this year's missive!!

How are you doing (or have you done) your newsletter this year?  What has been your favorite family Christmas newsletter from the years?

Merry Christmas Blessings,

In case you haven't heard, I put together a HUGE printable package for December's newsletter which I would still love to share with new subscribers!  It contains information and an array of helpful worksheets to get all the tidbits of your holiday season organized including pages for tracking names, addresses, and Christmas card correspondences by the year.

Anyone who signs up for my newsletter by December 20th will receive this month's issue which includes "The Homebody's Guide to the Christmas Season" and MORE!  Details below...

*Are you subscribed to my newsletter?  You might want to be.  Why?  Well, the newsletter contains bonus material you won't find on the website... not to mention, in those busy months when I can't get regular blog articles up, you can count on this periodical popping up in your email in-box each last Thursday with all new content!  What exactly does the newsletter contain?
  • Encouraging articles on Faith, Home(making), and Homeschool
  • Free printables under different themes each month
  • Insider info on the latest goings-ons with all things on my blog and writing related
You won't find all this great bonus material on the blog so be sure to sign up so you don't miss out!  It's Ok, hop over real quick, right there to your right, see it on my sidebar where it says, "Subscribe to my Newsletter" with a  picture of the "Faith and Home Times" logo above it?  Ok, now enter your email in the box labeled "email address" then click "Subscribe"....(don't worry, it doesn't hurt and I promise not to spam you!). You should receive a confirmation email from me.  

Also, with your new subscription, I will send you December's newsletter which includes a FREE printable Advent Bible Study and bonus PDFs to help you organize and enjoy your holidays more!

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