Tips for the Most Correct Christmas Card Ever!

According to every store I walk into, Christmastime is creeping up on us faster than ever. My favorite band released its latest Christmas album at the end of October. For some, this means feverish shopping. For others, it means designing a holiday card and getting ready to mortgage the house to buy stamps.

It’s Christmas Card Time!

Hi, my name is Mary. I’m a Genesee County Moms Blog contributor, and I am a grammar, punctuation, and spelling fanatic.

{This is where Grammar, Punctuation, and Spelling Fanatics Anonymous members chorus back with, “Hi, Mary!”}

I know I’m not the only one who cringes when they see things on billboards, on restaurant menus, on television, and sometimes – gasp! – on Christmas cards. So here is my handy guide to making your Christmas card grammatically, punctuationally, and spelling-ly correct. {Although, hopefully you can spell your names!}

No Apostrophe Needed!

My biggest pet peeve is that stinking apostrophe. I don’t know where it came from, except maybe when people write “CD’s” — but it’s not necessary in a name.

When pluralizing a normal word, do you write the following? “The bear’s are very nosy.” Of course not! Do you write, “The fly’s are buzzing and are totally annoying”? Nope. If your family name is Smith, you do not sign your Christmas card, “The Smith’s.” {Who is The Smith? And what is it that belongs to him?} You simply write “The Smiths.”

  • If your family name ends with an S or another letter that customarily isn’t followed only by an S when pluralizing it, you add -es.
  • The Fox family becomes “The Foxes.”
  • The Adams family {snap snap!} becomes “The Adamses.”
  • The Jacques family may balk at writing “The Jacqueses” and opt instead for “The Jacques Family.”
  • And if you are confused as can be with all of this, perhaps you should opt for the old standby as well: The Kardashian Family. The Trump Family. The Jonas Family. The Mathers Family. The Lannister Family.

Here are a few other examples that you may recognize:

But the Comma is Your Friend!

While AP rules have allowed my friend the Oxford comma to be neglected since my days in English class, a recent court ruling deemed it necessary. And if a court of law approves of that poor, unappreciated comma, shouldn’t your Christmas card?

For those of you who aren’t card-carrying members of the Oxford Comma Fan Club {don’t feel bad; I just made that up}, here is a quick run-down:

If you are listing the names of your family members and you have more than two people, you need the Oxford comma. See the beautiful cards above for examples. If Peter and Aunt May are sending out cards, they need zero commas. If Daenerys is listing her dragons, they are “Drogon, Rhaegal, and Viserion.” Do you see that charming little comma after the second item and before the “and”? That’s the Oxford comma!

So if you, your husband, and any amount of children are listed on your Christmas card, please follow this example:

Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, and Blitzen

I’m not bashing your Christmas cards.

I’m really not calling out anyone for Christmas cards here. I love every one that shows up in my mailbox, regardless of what is written on it, because I love the people who send them.

The purpose of this article is to help you out if you look at Shutterfly to design your holiday card and you break into a sweat. If it’s either imitate the examples on the design website or look at this post, please go with this post!

Do you send out Christmas cards? Hanukkah cards? New Years cards?

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