‘Tis the season for questions about pluralization and apostrophes with last names. Here’s a handy guide to make sure your holiday punctuation is shiny and bright.

In most cases to make a name plural, you just add an s. If the name ends in s, z, ch, sh, or x add an es. No apostrophes needed!

     Merry Christmas from the Johnsons!

     Happy Holidays! Love, The Joneses

     The Kennedys are here to carol!

     To: The Foxes ~ From: The Rodriguezes

To show possession for one person, you add an apostrophe s. (Mr. Johnson’s tree is pretty.) However, if you need to show that multiple members of a family possess something, add an apostrophe after the s.

     The Johnsons’ lights are always dazzling!

     The Rodriguezes’ gift is on the table.

A few more holiday apostrophe rules to keep in mind:

  • The correct term is “Season’s Greetings!” (not Seasons Greetings).
  • When celebrating the new year, the correct greeting is “Happy New Year” and not “Happy New Year’s.”
  • However, the holiday is correctly written as New Year’s Eve, with the apostrophe. It is the same for New Year’s Day. In both cases all three words are capitalized.