10 steps to simplify sending out your holiday cards with Tiny Prints

Back when we were kids, specifically in the 90’s, my mother would get christmas cards by the droves! We would have a trash bag filled with cards that we would have to sort through and then choose how long was appropriate for keeping said cards.

More recently, holiday cards have become more personal with photos, or e-cards with their animation and what not.

I for one did not think that I would EVER send out holiday cards. In my mind it was something that older women aka “moms” did. Makes sense that I started sending out cards once I became a mom myself.

So for those of you who are considering sending out Holiday cards, (Birth Announcements, Birthday Invitations and plenty other papered goods) I honestly recommend Tiny Prints.

I was able to partner with Tiny Prints again this year in order to be able to send the BEST Christmas Cards. We got so many compliments on our cards that we received phone calls and texts saying how great they were. It was also great to see our last years cards when we went to go visit a few of our friends over our holiday break!

Tiny Prints allows med to customize my cards with some of the most beautiful and luxurious cards that I have seen out there.

This was the design that we went with this year. It opens in the center and your personal photos are the center focus of this design. You can customize the color of the words and the message inside.

With an easy to use gallery feature you can preview what your card will look like as you search through the site to pick your favorites.

The best part about Tiny Prints to me is the coordinating accessories.

The card selection is great, but one thing that I love is that I could customize every part of this card down to the liner of the envelope!

I chose a one photo option for the liner of my envelope which is a silver shimmer.

You will have to assemble these but it was so easy, I did it while laying in bed one night watching tv.

 

This is what it looked like when you stuff the card into the envelope! Pretty impressive huh?

In addition to the envelope liners we chose to do personalized stamps. If you are going to pay for postage why not make it pretty postage! The final accessory to this holiday card set was the return address label that wrapped towards the back to seal the envelope.

All made super duper easy by Tiny Prints.

So if you want to create your own personalized holiday card or card for any upcoming event as they have paper goods to meet every need – see future post about Gracie’s 3rd Birthday – then check out http://www.tinyprints.com to get started.

Need some tips to get you started ?

Here are 10 steps to simplifying sending out your very own Holiday Cards:

1. Chose a color palette for your family’s attire. When in doubt search Pinterest for some inspiration. The previous years I stuck with Red as an accent because it reminded me of Christmas, but when paying for pictures, I soon realized that I want to use them for more than Christmas or Holiday posts so I went with a color that didn’t overtly scream HOLIDAY!

2. You do not have to do the matchy matchy thing. Gone are the days where you have to stress out over finding the exact same outfit in multiple sizes. Try to pick outfits that compliment each other, versus match each other. Again, you can go to Pinterest for help with this as well.

3. Pick a photographer whose work you love! Now whether you hire someone or you decide to set up your camera with a timer on it, make sure that its a finished product that you love. That way when you see it printed over and over, you won’t hate it and feel regret that you wasted all of the effort.

Make sure that if you take the pictures yourself that they are of a high quality because nothing is worse than ending up with a blurry card.

4. A way to save money: If you decide to go with a professional photog, look for the times where they are offering mini-sessions. That is when a photographer make pick 2-3 days to book multiple clients back to back, with shorter session times at a reduced rate. You get in, get out and with great pictures that you can then save for your cards later on.

5. Pick a time when your children usually cooperate: preferably after they have been fed or had a nap. We missed the nap window rushing and needless to say, my daughter was NOT the most cooperative towards the end. She refused to stand in grass, walk on sidewalks, wave or smile. I mean really! so in the end, we gave her a cell phone and took that photo you see of use walking away.

6. Do not think you have to pick the perfectly posed photos for your card. Pick the ones that you love and shows the personality of your family. In one of our pictures, you see me holding my uncooperative child having a conversation with my husband while my dress is slightly hiked up — But thats us!

7. Chose Tiny Prints for your Holiday Card. Make sure that you pick a company who will print to the quality that you are paying for. You have spent money and energy on outfits, wrangling your kids and photographers and you do not want a thin, flimsy piece of a card. Quality is best!

8. Make an Excel sheet of your friends and family’s addresses. Nothing worse then scrolling through your phone not having any addresses for the persons that you want to send cards to. If you have your list of addresses and names on hand, it leads to my tip number 8.

9. Take advantage of letting Tiny Prints address the envelopes for you! That means the only thing that you have to do is stuff, place your personalized stamp on it and place in your mailbox out front! It gets no easier than that!

10. Order Early! Yes, I know the holidays have passed, but that just means you can get a really early start on next year’s cards!

 Disclaimer: I was compensated for this post in the form of free product from Tiny Prints in exchange for a blog post. However, photos and thoughts about the experience are all my own. Affiliate links are in this post.

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Twenty/Sixteen

 

Yes.

It is true, that I had not posted a single thing in 2016.

What happened?Life. I know you may have seen a lot of people post about how tough 2016 was for them. And although it appeared that it was all sunshine for me in 2016 – if you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, but the reality is 2016 was so emotionally taxing that I could not even get my thoughts together to blog.

Work and Commute to D.C. was stressful in it’s own way. 

My child was entering the terrible twos. 

My sister was randomly taken to the ER (Thank GOD for her angel)

My mother was in the hospital early January (but she is doing just fine now)

My father suffered through his own seasonal sickness. 

My little cousin was murdered on the campus of Morgan State University, while attending school. Finding out at work was a bit taxing – and even though I took not one day off, because I was there I was still expected to do my job and in no way did I feel like dealing with criminals or coworkers- to be honest. No one in my family had ever been killed, not even tragically. We all die of old age. It was a shock. 

My child was officially diagnosed with Asthma (praying she outgrows it)

I had started taking natural hair clients out of my home as a second source of income. and thank you Jesus that I stay booked!

My husband was in prayer constantly about his job with came with its own emotions at home.…. and now we live in Dallas, Texas!———- 

April 2016, in a sudden faith move, my husband came to me and said he felt strongly that he needed to go to the International Pastor’s and Leaders Conference hosted by Bishop T.D. Jakes in Orlando. I have been a part of my husband’s life long enough to know that if he felt like God was calling him to go somewhere that I need not argue. So in a last minute decision, we decided to go to Orlando with Gracie in tow.

I got there a day after he did because I didn’t have the leave to take off, but I made it just in time. We went to the worship services and workshops and sat in the very back. Much different then the previous year when we were there. Last year we were in the VIP section because my mother was a guest presenter. This time, we went for us!

We sat in the back because we didn’t want Gracie to disturb anyone — yes we were the only ones with our child with us, and usually always the only ones with our child, but we had no other place to take her. We just wanted to be in the room. She was quiet and we got just what we needed. While there, I went to a workshop called Girl Talk with my sisters in the ministry Sarah Jakes-Roberts,  Cora Jakes Coleman and First Lady Serita Jakes.

And while they were preaching about women and our struggles to have it all or have it at all, God spoke to me as clear as day and had a Word for my husband. (Side note: I know some may be asking as they read this how do you know that God is speaking – but lets just say if a thought overtakes you and it is confirmed through prayer and strangers then yep God said it. He will say it more then once.) But in that moment, while sitting there listening to the sermon and reflecting about how God comes through even in the last minute, God told me that my husband would be offered a job exactly where he is now and that it would happen fast and that when it happens, I will have to be obedient and quit my job because it would be tied to my own destiny.

QUIT MY JOB!? My good government job. Thank God for faith!

I shared this with my husband with a bit of hesitation because speaking prophetically is something that is a fortunate gift however, its something that comes with great trepidation.

Well, just as God said – literally the very next day, he was offered a potential opportunity. By the end of the next week he was offered an in person interview. Within the first meeting he was hired. Within two weeks, we packed out entire house into a POD and moved to Dallas, Texas because we KNEW this was what God said would happen.I gave 30 days notice and left my job in faith that I would be where I needed to be. I informed all of my clients that I was moving and closed that chapter. My child was offered free school for the summer from an awesome church and everything was lining up perfect.

Back in January, before the conference, we were driving around Dallas, Texas (as we were secretly in town to be with my mom) we both said, “hmm, we could live here.” Not knowing we were putting in the atmosphere the very thing that would happen within 6 months!My husbands last day at his old job was a Sunday and he was at his new job that Wednesday.He hit the ground running and has not stopped since.

God truly took us from the back of that arena at the International Pastors and Leaders Conference, where we sowed in faith for a change, not knowing that within days my husband would now be a part of the music staff of The Potters House of Dallas.

Our lives have truly been in a whirlwind. I left my job and went to work for the AME Church General Conference which is a highly stressful week of production work.I produced a live television production. Did I mention it was LIVE! Talk about STRESS!!!!!!Trying to keep people on time in a room that holds 10,000 people is hard!

In addition, I again ran Lead on a major Presidential candidate coming to visit the Conference, which requires details I can not really share. But I was able to work with such a great advance team from the Hilary Clinton campaign that it was one of the smoothest yet.

From there, it was job searching. and job searching. and job searching. sigh.So, then my mother was in need of some extra help within her office with a number of projects.As much as I fought the idea of working for her because we truly do not believe in nepotism in the Murphy family, but you MUST earn your stripes, I took the job. Needless to say, it has turned out to be the best thing for me and my family in this transitional season. So for the last six months, we have been adjusting to

a new city

a new house

selling our house

getting our daughter settled in a new school

looking for yet another new school

traveling for work(because my job takes me out of town every other week from Sept – Dec)and for play 

shipping our cars

trading in the hybrid

getting a truck (because everyone in Dallas drives one)

adjusting to multi-generational living aka living with my parents again

joining a new church

trying to find my place in ministry

producing God’s Leading Ladies at The Potters House (talk about a God move)

being a wife

getting a year older

preaching, teaching 

working on freelance projects

taking family vacations 

vision casting

teaching workshops

ordaining 

praying and then some!

I have lived out of suitcases since I moved to Dallas because there was some where I always had to be.

But I made it!and if you have read this far, so have you!

2016! its over.

and I have much more to share with you!

So guess who’s bizzack!2017! here we come!

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