First, and most importantly, make it fun. It is so important to let your family’s true beauty shine. You will cherish these moments the rest of your life. When you love the photos the cards do not seem that expensive.
Here is an idea - Host a gathering (thanksgiving is a great time) of friends and/or family at a park or house (outside natural light is best). A photo party! Everyone can dress in their holiday "best" and take turns taking each family's photo. Or maybe you have a friend that is more talented with the camera and they can take them all. Either way it can be fun. Then all you have to do is load it to your favorite online photo gallery.
Second, take advantage of the group deals like Family Finds and Groupon. Check out the online photo labs for holiday sales because they are coming (or on right now). Here are some favorites Tiny Prints (starting at $.69), Color Inc Pro Lab (starting at $.29), Picaboo (starting at $.79), shutterfly (starting at $.39) and there are many more. You don’t have to hunt alone, ask your friends and/or family to join in too. Then share your finds on your favorite social networking site.
Last, stick with the flat cards. They are less expensive and easier to store. I have an album I save my favorites in from every year.
Have a joyous holiday season!!