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Meghan Markle, Prince Harry and Archie release first US Christmas card

The Sussexes will celebrate their first Christmas together in the US

Danielle Stacey

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have released a festive family card with their 18-month-old son Archie as they prepare to celebrate their first Christmas together in the US.

The card, which was shared to the Mayhew charity's social media accounts, features an artistic rendering of the family as they pose in the garden of their California home. 

SEE: 12 adorable photos of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's son Archie

On the organisation's website, a statement from the Duchess reads: "This year we, as a family, have made donations to several charities with you in mind.

"From a local California organisation that helps families transition out of homelessness, to two of our U.K. patronages: one that supports animal and community welfare, and the other, a memorial fund for a cherished friend that helps to educate children and fight poverty in Uganda, we have honoured their work on behalf of all of us."

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WATCH: Meghan Markle appears in 2012 Christmas video alongside Hugh Jackman and Olivia Newton-John

On the card, Meghan, 39, was pictured in a white shirt and jeans, and her husband Prince Harry also wore jeans and a casual top.

MORE: Meghan Markle's exciting new venture revealed after Oprah Winfrey's Christmas gift

MORE: Prince Harry and Meghan Markle's family Christmas could be surprisingly frugal

Young Archie, dressed similarly casually, was held by his dad as his mum reached an arm out to him, and the family's two pet dogs were in the front of the frame.

The text on the card read: "Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year." 

The drawing is based on a photo of the family taken by Meghan's mum, Doria Ragland

A spokesperson for the family said: "The original photo of the family was taken at their home earlier this month by The Duchess’s mother.

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The couple's card is based on a photo by Meghan's mother

"The small Christmas tree, including the homemade ornaments and other decorations, were selected by Archie, and the tree will be replanted after the holidays."

Fans were quick to react to the image - delighted with what they saw. "What a beautiful family!" wrote one follower. "OMG the red hair!" replied another, referencing Archie's locks which haven't been seen in colour before. "Look at Archie's red hair," added one thrilled observer. "Congratulations @themayhew, you deserve this card."

It's the first time the tot has been pictured publicly since his first birthday in May, when the Sussexes released a sweet video of the Duchess reading Duck! Rabbit! to their son, in support of a Save The Children campaign.

Harry and Meghan stepped back from royal duties in March, after releasing a statement in early January about their plans to become financially independent. 

After carrying out their last engagements in the UK, the Sussexes moved to the US, settling in their new home in Montecito, Santa Barbara in July.

The couple recently launched their website for their forthcoming charitable organisation Archewell, and it was confirmed in the summer that Harry and Meghan have set up their own production company and signed a deal with Netflix.

The Sussexes are also launching their own podcast series Archewell Audio with Spotify and teased a preview with fans last week. 

Last year, the couple released another very sweet picture for their 2019 Christmas card - this time Archie was right in the middle and taking the stage!

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Harry and Meghan's first Christmas card with Archie (Photo: Janina Gavankar)

On that occasion the couple were drawing attention to the Queen's Commonwealth Trust, who were the first people to share the card, being sent out by their patrons. 

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