I love to wake up every morning, walk into the kitchen to make coffee, and stare at my clothesline of Christmas Cards. And every morning I feel bad for not pulling together the family photo to send ours out in time. There’s always next year.

Well, if you’re anything like me, you are waiting until the New Year to take down your Christmas decorations. (I just don’t want it to end!). It’s easy to pack away all the wrapping paper, lights, wreaths – those things are Christmas “décor.” But when I look at the beautiful cards people have sent, they have personal messages, and most of them are the family photo! It’s a fun tradition that has lasted even through the development of Facebook… people still love to send and receive cards in the mail.

Birthday cards I keep for a little while, then throw them away, but Christmas cards are special. A few years ago, I began asking around about what people do with them. Then when Facebook got big, I dedicated a post to asking the same question. This year, since I’ve been blogging and connecting with lots of people, I asked the question again on my personal page, blog page, and a homeschooling group I’m in.

Here are some of their ideas for your to consider!

1. Scrapbooking or Crafting

“I use them when scrapbooking or making scrapbook pages that I frame… but some do get trashed, the good ones I use.” – Lien N.

“My mom uses some of the nice ones for bookmarks or ornaments. She cuts them out to different shapes, etc., puts photos on them. It actually looks kinda nice.” – Riana F.

“I use Christmas cards as next year’s gift tags. Just cut out what looks like would make a pretty tag, punch a hole in the top with a paper punch, and use a ribbon to attach to the gift. Sometimes I reuse the nice, thicker cards for Christmas postcards (cut and use the front). heehee!” – Gloria U.

“Make new cards with them. Cut out the front of the card and glue it onto some card stock and construction paper folded to fit envelopes you already have.” – Kim-Erin J.

“I used to make a collage with them and have laminated for placemats. We would use them at Christmas time and enjoy comparing the family’s photos as the years progressed.” -Lori S.

“I decorate our tree with them. When it’s time to store everything, I throw them in the boxes so when I get everything out the next Christmas, I can look at how our friends have changed and grown.” -Katie H.


Here are some more cute ideas for decorating with recycled cards!

2. Create a Flip Book

“I saw a pin a few years ago and made little flip books for several years grouped together. I put them out at Christmas. Everyone LOVES to look at them and see how everyone has changed over the years.” -Tara M.


Click Here for This Design Idea!

3. Remember to Pray

I was at a friend’s house earlier this year, and on her kitchen table was a box with last year’s Christmas cards and pictures. When her family sits down to have dinner, they choose one card and pray for that family. I thought this was amazing, and many of the Facebook comments mentioned a similar idea:

“We do the flip books each year. Pull them out at Christmas time. The new book stays out all year. We keep it at the dinner table and pray for a different family each day, then flip the cards for the next day’s family.” -Stacey J.

“I cut away all the writing and make a prayer wall.” -Julie F.

“We cut out the pictures of friends and family and put magnets on the backs and put them on the fridge. The kids love playing with them and then they remember who people are when we don’t see them as regularly.” -Brittany I.

4. Make New Cards (Donate or Sell Them!)

This idea is about an organization recycling and selling new cards, but I can see a very entrepreneurial family doing this, too!

“Back when I worked full time, my division founds a charity that took old Christmas cards, used them to create new ones, then sold them as a fundraiser. We’d box up all the ones out team members got the office and ship them out.” -Jodi G.

I hope this has inspired you to make good use of your cards this year. I think my kids and I will make a flip book this year! Happy Recycling 🙂

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