Possessive last names make the Baby Jesus cry

A Christmas card PSA from your friendly neighborhood grammar/punctuation freak:

When signing your Christmas card/letter (or return address labels), do not sign them like so:

Merry Christmas from the Wahlund's!

If your intention is to send Christmas greetings on behalf of your entire family, then you want your last name to be plural, not possessive. For example:

Merry Christmas from the Wahlunds! means there is more than one Wahlund wishing you a Merry Christmas.

The possessive form, on the other hand, indicates that something belonging to the Wahlund family is wishing you a Merry Christmas. Merry Christmas from the Wahlund's... what? The Wahlund's cat? The Wahlund's dog? The Wahlund's thermonuclear bomb facility? 

If your last name ends with an 's' or 'z', then your best bet is to use a workaround such as, "Merry Christmas from the Glass family!" Or you could add an -es. But for the love of all that is holy and innocent, do not use an apostrophe to create a plural form of a surname. Please.

Baby Jesus will thank you.


Someone who has seen this on her received Christmas cards entirely too often this month.


  1. Ha ha, you know I love this!! A little grammatical pet peeve of mine, too! :)

  2. LOLOLOLOLOL! Glad I'm not the only nerd out there!

  3. I can't wait for the next grammar lesson! I'm so excited! Don't take a red pen to my blog. :)

  4. LOVE it - I'm kind of a grammar nerd myself, but surely not perfect. Thank goodness for people who can still decipher the English language!

  5. This is one of those mistakes you see done so often, you assume it must be right! Oops! (Although, in all fairness, both my married and maiden name end in "s". It's challenging, okay??? :))

  6. LOVE this. I can't stand when people do that!

  7. I live in Chicago.
    I'm so used to professionally done signs announcing "Don't steal. Your on camera" and "Want to loose weight?" that my head no longer feels like exploding at apostrophe abuse, which is epidemic here.
    And they say people from the South are slow...


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