Need a little help planning your family holiday looks for this year’s holiday card? Don’t stress, have fun with it, and follow these simple steps for adorable family holiday looks everyone will be gushing over this holiday season!
By the way, if you’re here for the big, big, BIG news, scroll on down for the reveal!
Though you’re probably not going to want to miss the cuteness ahead …
Our Family Holiday Looks
This year, rather than fretting endlessly over what our family should wear for holiday cards, I sat down and thought about what I felt best in, and knew my kids and husband would love too! And you know what that brought me to? Oh come on, I know you can guess this one. Black, for me, and pink for the girls, obviously.
But then it sort of hit me: leopard print! A lot of it was just kismet; and my obsession with a little flair when it comes to fashion, naturally. Now I know what you’re thinking … LEOPARD PRINT?!? But ya know, that’s just it: leopard print is so me. Seriously, Jersey Shore’s got nothing on me. And I swear, we went for “tasteful leopard print,” which I’ve decided is totally a thing.
So let’s talk details!
FOR BABIES // EMMELINE
Both girls wore these adorable matching pink linen sleeved dresses that I found on Amazon. The girls’ holiday dresses are under $14, the quality is amazing, and we’ve already washed them several times and they still look good as new.
For Emme’s pop of leopard print, we actually totally lucked out and had the cutest pair of leopard tights stored away from when Scarlett was a baby that were just the perfect size for sweet Emmeline. The leopard tights were from Gymboree, they they don’t seem to carry them any longer. This pair of baby leopard tights is similar. Emme’s coat and black boots – also hand-me-downs.
And both girls wore matching Little Poppy Co. bows. If you have girls and you aren’t yet signed up for their monthly bow subscription, what are you waiting for? I can’t believe how much wear our girls get out of ALL of the bows they send, and we’ve only been signed up for a handful of months now. The bows are super high quality and always fit each season/month so well. I’ve yet to be disappointed.
FOR KIDS // SCARLETT
I love that the dresses we found come in sizes for baby, toddler, and little kids. Both girls looked SO sweet in them!
I stumbled across the cutest buttery soft leopard coat for Scarlett at TJMaxx over the Thanksgiving holiday. The exact coat is this one by C&C California, though it looks to be sold out. This Gap version is equally adorable and on sale now, and I also love this moto leopard coat version from Shein and this leopard pea coat from Carters.
Scarlett’s boots were another awesome Amazon find. I absolutely loved the leather lace-up combat meets riding boots look to them, and the fact that they arrived in two days with free Prime shipping was just an added bonus. They’re also nice and warm so they’re perfect as a pair of black winter boots for her to wear over the next few months.
FOR MOM AND DAD
I wish I could say that I put a whole lot of though into our outfits, but in true parent fashion, I barely gave our outfits a second thought. Hubby had to race home from the hospital to make it in time for our family photos before it got too dark, so what you’re looking at is his “tired doctor” uniform when he’s working out-patient.
He did stick to our black color scheme, and his black coat worked perfectly, since Emme also had on a little black coat.
As for me, black dress, thick cardigan bundled up under there because it was totally freezing the evening we took these photos, and of course, my favorite older Malene Berger leopard coat that barely gets the love and attention it deserves, so here she is, in all her glory. (Similar leopard coats here, here, here, and here.)
And my boots. I’m obsessed. They’re an older pair of Jeffrey Campbell Joe lace-up over-the-knee boots that were made for Free People. (Super similar pair here.) They make me feel like I’m a witch, in the very best possible way.
Family Photo Outfit Ideas (And How to Dress Everyone in Your Group)
Lay everything out the day before. Have everything ironed, pressed, etc., so that you’re not scrambling at the last minute. I even attached the girls hair bows to their dresses, had their tights, and everything else all together in little piles.
Take the weather into consideration. Typically, it’s cold this time of year, so if you’ll need to wear coats, try to think about how everyone’s coats will look together in a photo.
If you’re gong to buy new family outfits, think about how you could wear those outfits again to get the most out of them; for instance, can everyone wear their family outfits to a holiday party this holiday season?
Incorporate a bit of holiday style and don’t be afraid to get festive. It’s a family holiday card; it’s okay to be cheesy! If you want to throw in some tinsel or string lights or hold up a mistletoe in one picture while you kiss your partner, GO FOR IT!
Let the kids help choose their family holiday looks. For us, Scarlett’s only real request was that she get to wear something pink and twirly. Check! If the only way to get one of your kids to smile is to let them hold their favorite truck or doll, let them hold it for a few shots. If nothing else, it will be a sweet memory for years to come. “Remember that pink doll Emme wouldn’t ever put down?”
Or “how Scarlett refused to let go of her purple ball?”
How To Create Your Family Christmas Card
Okay, for starters – I repeat – don’t let holiday cards tress you out. I almost never get our family holiday cards done “on time” and wind up sending them as “new year” cards every single year. EVERY.SINGLE.YEAR.
Pro tip (“pro” for procrastinator) – if you feel like it’s getting late into the holiday season, just plan to send out New Years cards. There’s more wiggle room with the timing of a “happy new year” card, and seriously, no one will be the wiser.
We use and love Minted to create our family Christmas (err … new year) card for the holiday season each year for a lot of reasons: they have the prettiest card designs, print and ship in lightning speed (another point for us procrastinators!), and print all of the addresses – including return address – AND stamps right on your cards. SO stinkin’ easy. I just have all of our recipient’s addresses plugged into Minted, and adding any new ones is super simple.
Also, choosing templates, putting in your photos, adding in your text, etc. could not be easier. I feel like sometimes template and layout apps and sites make things more complicated than they need to be, but not with Minted.
Once you’ve designed your card, and you’re happy with the end result (they’ll even proof it for you!), they ship your cards off ASAP. We got ours in TWO DAYS. Yassssssss.
Nowwwww, I just have to get these babies stamped and out the door. Wish us luck!
And now, for some really big news …
I’ve been holding in a secret for months. Months, I tell ya. I still can’t believe it, and truthfully, even having known the news for months, hubby and I still constantly look across the room at one another with big, terrified, excited eyes, and we both know just what the other is thinking.
So here it is.
The thing I’ve been wanting to share with y’all for months.
And the big news we spilled in this year’s holiday card …
Because yep, that’s the life of a resident’s wife.
And since a picture can speak a thousand words, yep, you guessed it …
We’re moving to BOSTON!!
Yep, this June we’ll officially be New Englanders! Is that a thing?
Being in Boston, we’ll be so much closer to my parents’ house in Maine (!!!) and we’ll be living in a big-ish city again. SO much more on all of the details soon!
Thankfully, we have six-ish months to plan for the big move to Boston, and you know my planning-loving heart needs that!
And now, coming full circle here for a minute, I’m going to tell you a story about North Carolina and leopard print. When we first moved to North Carolina for Mike’s residency at Duke I felt like a total fish out of water. Honestly, I had never felt so unprepared for change before. Here I was, moving far away from a family back in Miami whom I was and still remain crazy close to, with a new baby in tow, no family for hundreds of miles, and this whole new, very Southern world of craft beer, hiking, biscuits, Lilly Pullitzer, and that Southern drawl.
I should stop by explaining that medical residency is extra weird because the way you “find out” where you’ll be moving to is through a very public “match” system, which is basically like a fine-tuned lottery held by every medical school across the country on the same day. You can imagine my anxiety when it was announced that our little family would be moving to North Carolina.
I can’t say that I was surprised, since I knew how much Mike loved Duke and everything their program had to offer for him in terms of clinical training and research; but still, hearing our fate over a microphone on a stage in front of a crowd of hundreds … it was jarring, to say the least. Couple that with the fact that you have about a month to pack up your life and move to said city, and I was definitely a bit of a panicky mess.
Fast forward to a couple of months in to our new home
We went to some kind of new resident’s get-together at a beer place. I clutched my bow-clad baby, and stayed buried in my favorite leopard coat (yes, the very leopard coat you see here, and truth be told: this may be the first time I’ve worn it since this story), and tried to come out of my shell.
Despite having a relatively public blog, I’m actually pretty shy in person, and tend to really clam up in more public settings. It’s actually something I’m always trying to work on, but I’ll admit, crowds make me wary.
Anyway; there I was, awkward and uncomfortable and smiling broadly at anyone who would look our way. Seriously, if you move a lot, you know just what I mean when I say that looking for friends to cling to in a new city can feel like your only lifeline. (And thankfully, I’ve made some incredible friends here who I am going to miss HUGELY.)
The coat. Me and my baby. Smiling like a doofus.
And over walks this middle-aged man who stops me and asks with the utmost enthusiasm, “Can I take your picture?”
Startled, I’m sure I gave him my best, “Get away from me before I pepper spray you” face. I mean, I’m a city girl, after all.
He smiled, because again, we’re in the South now, where everyone is SO FREAKING NICE, and he exclaims, “My wife would just LOVE your leopard coat! I’ve never seen a leopard coat in real life; only on the TV. And I’ve just got to get a picture of that!”
I did the only thing I could think of, nodded, and tried to smile as this strange man took my photo to memorialize a leopard coat … spotted in the wild. Sorry. I can’t help myself.
That night, on the drive back from the brew place, I cried.
It’s funny how the things that scare us in the beginning can feel so inconsequential later on. Nearly four years into living here in North Carolina, I can pretty confidently say that I am one of the few people who wears leopard print, and glitter, and so much black. I do stick out like a flamingo at a penguin party. In the summer, it’s almost comical to see me in my black dresses and cardigans when everyone else dresses practically for the summer heat.
North Carolina has rubbed off on me though.
I’ve loved every second of having our own home here. I’ve loved decorating and throwing wild, over-the-top parties, and baking to my heart’s content. I live for the seasons here; each one so distinct and beautiful. I like the person North Carolina has made me. I’m kinder, more patient, and so much better at talking to total strangers, because try getting through the grocery store in the South with a baby in tow without speaking to at least ten people. First it was Scarlett, and now Emme; babies are the life of the party in public, and living in the South means you smile real big and talk to everyone about their own babies and grand-babies. It’s a slower, happier way of living, and I dig it.
I’m sure over the next few months, I’ll talk endlessly about the South, and our temporary home here in North Carolina over these last four years, but for now, I will remind you, to wear exactly what you like for your holiday family photos, leopard print and all, because sometimes, it’s the differences that make you shine.
SHOP OUR HOLIDAY FAMILY LOOKS | CLICK LEFT & RIGHT ARROWS TO EXPLORE
IF YOU LOVED THIS POST, YOU CAN SEE MORE BEHIND-THE-SCENES OF OUR LIFE WITH TWO LITTLE ONES HERE.
And if you know anything at all about Boston, have any tips for living in a big city, want to share restaurant or family-friendly recommendations in and around Boston, have advice for making the move from a house to a tiny apartment, when and how to explain it all to the kids, etc., leave me a comment, send me an email, message me on Instagram … I’m ALL EARS!! ♥️