By Amy Kingsford
Around this time of year we all start to scour our photo stash for a family photo to grace the front of our annual Christmas card.  And around this same time…some of us come to the conclusion that the last decent photo we had taken of our family was used on last year’s Christmas card!

Now my definition of decent and yours may be quite different…but I’m usually willing to settle on a photo that we’re all in and looking in the same relative direction!  To the left, you’ll notice that one of the last suitable photos we took as a family, was in 2006–before our son was even born!  If you are like me and have managed to avoid a worthy family photo for the past 12 months (or longer…eeek!)—then here are a few ideas to help you find the perfect family photo for this year’s Christmas card!

  • Read Katrina Kennedy’s article Holiday Cards and The Family Photo! She’ll share six quick tips that will have you arranging the perfectly “imperfect” family photo in no time!
  • Skip the trip to the photographers and have a neighbor, family member or friend snap a photo of you and your family in your home or yard.  It will be quick and painless and over before you all knew it!

siblings This photo of my husband and his siblings took all of five minutes to capture!  And while it may not be perfect–in my opinion, it’s certainly Christmas card worthy!

  • Noticing a trend in your family photos—like you’re not in any of them?  Unfortunately someone has to take the pictures right?!  To remedy this, test out your camera’s self timer…or you can get creative with your current photos by piecing a couple of them together with Photoshop!
  • To take the distraction out of your family photos with busy backgrounds—or even just to bring a touch of the holidays into your average everyday photos you’ve already taken—why not try out a fun frame or photo treatment.

With this photo I added a fun Christmas light photo as an overlay to the back-ground of our everyday family photo, to give it a holiday feel.

  • Ask yourself:  “Do I really need the entire family in one photo to capture the spirit of Christmas?” Maybe like me, you’re almost 9 months pregnant and not exactly thrilled at the idea of posing for a family photo that will be immortalized on a Christmas card and sent out to 50 or so of your closest friends and family members…Or maybe the task of getting everyone in one place at one time was simply too daunting! Think about using a fun seasonal photo of your children, pets or even holiday decor.


Sometimes a child’s beautiful smile and snowflake-covered eyelashes really can say it all!


  • And finally, if all else fails and you must resolve to using a photo of a family other than your own on this year’s Seasons Greetings—I’d recommend against using the family portrait that came with the photo frame you just bought and sticking with the family that brings us all together this time each year ;)

DSCN1236Look for the perfect manger scene to photograph at your local church or holiday festivals!