I send about 70 cards a year and we get about 60 back. The 10 who don't send cards are family who don't send cards to anyone but I include them anyway. My kids are little and so we usually send a family photo of DH, me and the kids. I have never written a newsletter though.
I'm really into photography, so in the past years, we've set up a photo session in my amateur studio and have used a self timer on the camera. Then, I use my Photoshop skills to make it into a 5x7 with some holiday backgrounds or clip art. This way, I can just order a ton of 5x7 photos from Winkflash or Walmart at the regular 5x7 price. A few years back, I ordered a huge supply of green 5x7 envelopes (well, whatever measurement is slighlty larger). And those envelopes have lasted several seasons. I use them for the kids' birthday party invitations too (which I also make with Photoshop). Then I do an MS Word mail merge and print address labels because my handwriting is nearly illegible unless I write at a snail's pace.
This year, I got a new job and have been working many hours. So I skipped the studio photo and just slapped in a casual photo of our family in ballcaps at a pumpkin patch. I wonder what my European friends will think of us. Maybe that we look like typical Americans with our ballcaps. Who knows.
I like receiving all the cards we get because we generally get photo cards of our friends. I have a huge corkboard that I put up in the kitchen every December specifically for pinning all the cards. I love seeing all our friends' smiling faces and seeing how their kids have grown. It makes me happy that they take the time to send us the photo cards. It's better, to me, than Facebook because I feel like my friends care about us and truly wish us good holidays, personally. And I feel happy to see all my friends, from all over the northern hemisphere (I need to make some friends south of the equator) all in one place.
At the end of the season, I keep the photo cards of the friends and family we're closest to, for keepsakes.