Couple Recreates Friends' Christmas Card Each Year by Posing as Young Kids — See the Photos!

Carol and Michael Whalen, 68 and 72, are retired teachers in "a family of goofballs," said their son Christopher

Funny Christmas Cards
Carol and Michael Whalen. Photo: SWNS

This retired couple's sense of humor shines each Christmas when they recreate their friends' holiday cards, taking the place of children in fun holiday-themed activities.

Carol and Michael Whalen, 68 and 72, started the tradition after receiving a greeting card showing their pals' then-1-year-old son in his toy car, according to SWNS. They have been remaking the cards featuring Ryan and Samantha Dominik's adorable tots — now ages 5 and 2 — ever since.

"My wife and I received the original Christmas card, they had taken their son out to get a Christmas tree," Michael said.

Looking at the sweet photo, an idea was born.

"She said, 'You know, we ought to replicate it' — she has a red car, and I have a knit sweater," Michael said. "We just sort of reenacted the photos and it received such a warm response from our group, next year we just continued the tradition."

"It was just something that caught our attention because we have three children and we're still waiting for a grandchild," he added.

Michael thought it would be funny to act like the card themes were first his and Carol's idea.

"After we recreated the first one, I commented to the group that my idea had been plagiarized by Samantha Dominik, and this became the running gag over the course of time," he said.

Funny Christmas Cards
Ryan and Samantha Dominik's children. SWNS

The parents have roped in their eldest son Christopher, 37, who is a childhood friend of Ryan's, to take the photos for them.

"I love the tradition," said Christopher, a writer and filmmaker. "I got a real kick out of it when I first saw it.

"We're essentially family, and it was a real cute rendition for us all," he added.

Funny Christmas Cards
Ryan and Samantha Dominik's child. SWNS

Ryan, Christopher and Christopher's two siblings all grew up in the same neighborhood, with the eldest becoming the godfather to Ryan's son.

"Mike and Carol have been like parents to Ryan," said Samantha, 33, "and he has lived with them on three different occasions growing up."

"They have always played a huge role in his life, and our kids are lucky to have a third set of grandparents," she added.

Funny Christmas Cards
Michael Whalen. SWNS

In 2017, the Dominiks sent out an adorable Christmas card featuring their son dragging a tiny Christmas tree and driving his toy car.

One week later, Ryan, 37, got a text from Carol telling him to check his email — and there were the images of Michael posing as the boy outside their log cabin in Otis, Massachusetts.

Mike is pictured in a cable-knit sweater hauling a full-size Christmas tree on top of his Ford Escape.

Mom-of-two Samantha said, "We all got a huge kick out of it and we called them right away to praise their work and laugh about it."

"The rest is history!" she added. "Every year we mail our cards around Thanksgiving and we wait to see what they will respond with."

Funny Christmas Cards
Ryan and Samantha Dominik's children. SWNS

Samantha said it has become such a "fun tradition" that she keeps them in mind when selecting the photo theme each year, and Carol and Michael call up the Dominiks each Christmas to check when they will send out their cards so they have time to prepare their own.

To keep the tradition alive, the Whalen parents have worn full-length Christmas pajamas and posed wearing Christmas lights outside in the snow.

"Ryan always jokes with them that things are going to get more complicated this year, making remarks like, 'I hope you have access to a hot air balloon,'" Samantha, an office manager, said.

"I almost felt bad for making it a little more elaborate this year, and I even offered to let them borrow the cocoa stand for their recreation, but Carol was very sweetly insulted by my offer," she added.

Funny Christmas Cards
Michael and Carol Whalen. SWNS

Samantha gives the couple credit for planning "everything themselves, getting nearly identical pajamas, props, etc." — and outdoing themselves each year.

"We were so impressed that they built their own cocoa stand, but not at all surprised," she shared.

When it comes time for the big reveal, "They always send their photos to us with funny captions, such as, 'We stole their Christmas card idea,'" Samantha explains.

As for the baby of the family, it might take a few years for the hilarity of it all to sink in.

"I don't think our 2-year-old understands as much," said Ryan, "but our 5-year-old loves it as much as we do!"

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Christopher thinks that his parents, retired teachers, will remain committed to the annual stunt.

"We're a family of goofballs, so it's pretty much par for the course," he said. "I think it will go on for as long as they're alive, to be honest."

And he's optimistic that Carol and Michael might have a reason to create multiple cards each year.

Said Christopher: "Hopefully they'll have some blood-related grandchildren to do it to as well."

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