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Vacations are such a treasured time, a chance to break away from routines, discover new places, recharge and make meaningful memories with family and friends. But when we’re not traveling with the ones we love, it can sometimes be challenging to stay connected as our days carry us from one sweet escape to the next.

We’ve created this beautiful collection of free, downloadable postcards to make it quick and easy to keep in touch with loved ones whenever you’re on vacation. Designed in a standard 6×4 size, they can be printed at home on blank postcard paper, at a local commercial printer or using any online printing service.

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Not sure what to say?

Here are a few pointers to let them know you miss them while sharing your time away.

Write about a memorable vacation moment you know the recipient would have enjoyed or a sight they would have appreciated to create a sense of connection.

Discovered a new interest that could make for a fun future outing? Let them know how much you’re looking forward to sharing it with them.

Let the recipient know you’re simply thinking of them with a smile and are grateful to have them in your life.

Share a wish for fun, for a beautiful day or for anything going on in their lives that you’d like to acknowledge.

 

Click here to brighten someone’s day with these free downloads, featuring our lovely hand lettering and art.

Saying “I love you” is a beautiful part of every relationship, but there are other ways to express love. In this lovely story, Gena speaks about how she and her husband Jeb connect without spoken words. They often do this while parenting and alone at the end of a day – with a shared look or thoughtful gesture…or simply shared awareness and appreciation for each other.

When you cherish your relationship, isn’t it worth a little extra effort so it continues to flourish and grow? Why not connect with a smile or a hug, or surprise them by leaving our sweet “Tiny Cheers” with their messages of kindness in a place where you know they’ll find it. It’s a simple investment in the two of you that’s certain to reap beautiful rewards.

https://www.kathydavis.com/love/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/IRL-GENA.mp3

 

When there’s a wedding in the family, no one really wants the big day to end. That was especially true for Jackie on the weekend of her sister Karen’s wedding. Jackie recalls how she and all five of her sisters managed to keep the wonderful memories alive by connecting through text messages and sharing photos. They continued to reminisce about all the little moments that made their sister Karen’s wedding weekend unforgettable – and strengthened their already strong bonds with one another.

When you have an event or even a moment worth remembering, the best way to help preserve it is to keep in touch with the ones who mean the most. Whether it’s through text messages or phone calls, cards or letters, coffee dates or walks together, the more you share about such moments, the more indelibly etched in your memory they become…and the closer you feel to each other.

https://www.kathydavis.com/love/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/IRL-JACKIE.mp3

 

For all the joys, sorrows, dreams and adventures you’ve shared, let her know her friendship’s irreplaceable with this lovely art print.→ Read more

For many of us, our moms have influenced a big part of who we are. Although we may not appreciate the lessons they teach us until later in life, that wisdom often becomes our compass, guiding us in our decisions and how we move through the world. Erin’s mom taught her so much about bravery and navigating change, and in this moving video, she thanks her for being her inspiration.

If you’d like to share your gratitude and appreciation with your mom, or anyone else you cherish, a video message is a wonderful way to do so. It’s especially sweet when it comes as a surprise!

Tell her what she means to you. Share a memory or lesson that’s impacted you. Acknowledge the reasons you admire her. Whatever you say is sure to create a beautiful moment between the two of you, as long as it comes from the heart.

Some of our favorite memories are often the ones we make with our parents. From the sweet joys of childhood to the moments we share in the friendship found as adults, these are the memories that live in our hearts. Naila reflects on some of those moments in this inspiring video tribute to her mom — who also happens to be her role model.

If you love spending time with your mom, let her know how much that means to you. Share the reasons you admire her and remind her that no matter her own struggles and challenges in life, she is and will always be your one amazing mom.

Take a moment the next time you’re together to let her know. Leave a note where she’ll find it. Or share your thoughts in a video message. However you choose to celebrate the gift that she is, it’s sure to make her day.

We all want to feel like we belong, in our circles of family and friends, in our neighborhoods and communities. To know we have a place where we are accepted for who we are. That sense of belonging is especially meaningful to Perrin, who was adopted from South Korea as a baby. In this moving video, she thanks her mom for loving her unconditionally — and giving her the home she was always meant to have.

There are so many ways our parents express their love, support and encouragement throughout our lives.

Let them know their efforts haven’t gone unnoticed. Share some of the ways their love has helped you to be more comfortable in your own skin, take on life’s challenges or pursue your dreams. A video message is a keepsake they’ll cherish but however you share your gratitude will bring happiness to their hearts.

 

Sometimes asking the tough questions, having the challenging conversations with our partners — those are the moments that help us to realize just how strong our relationship is. For Cassie, there’s something both empowering and reassuring about knowing she and her wife Emily will always have each other’s backs. In this sweet video, she thanks Emily and their daughter Mahalia for being the amazing women in her life.

If there’s a quality in your partner that’s helped you to become stronger, braver or more confident, or a moment in your relationship that’s been the most defining for you, let your loved one know.

Tell them in a surprise video message. Write a letter or a card. Share how you feel in a quiet moment between just the two of you. It doesn’t matter how you say it. It’s sharing your love and appreciation that counts.

 

Greeting cards are a great vehicle to help us express how we feel to the special people in our lives. The card is even sweeter and more personal when we add a few words of our own to tell them how much they mean to us. Let’s say you’ve found the perfect card for a friend’s birthday. You want to write a little something extra in the space at the end, but suddenly that space is looking rather large, and you’re wondering how you’re going to fill it.

Relax! You don’t have to completely fill the space. The mere fact that you’re taking the time to write a few words earns you “extra credit.” Here are a few ideas to consider – beyond “XOXO” – as you take pen in hand and confront that space.

Cards for Mom/Dad/Parents
Consider writing something specific about why they’re so special to you. Think back to something they’ve done for you recently and thank them for it.

– “Thanks, Mom, for helping me with ______. Love you!”
– “Nobody makes my fave pancakes like you, Dad! Love ya!”
– “Mom & Dad, thanks for always being available to help with the kids. Love you lots.”

Cards for Romantic Relationships – Husband, Wife, Partner, Boyfriend or Girlfriend
Mention something only the two of you would understand, using a pet name, referencing an inside joke, or complimenting them.

– “You’re the one who really gets me. I love remembering when we fell in love!”
– “I can’t wait to spend some special alone time with you!”

Blended family – “Mom,” “Dad,” or kids
It’s always nice to acknowledge your family members for the unique role they play in your life.

– From one parental figure to the other: “So glad we’re in this together” or “Glad we’re family!”
– From a parental figure to the kids: “You’re so considerate! I love how you______________ .” or “You’re so dependable! I can always count on you to __________.”

No matter who your recipient is, it’s important to remember it’s the thought that matters – especially in this era of digital communications, when people truly value receiving greeting cards. So don’t stress about it. Just have fun, and write from your heart.

We all know quality family time is important. Those moments when we’re together, sharing an experience, reminiscing and telling stories, or participating in a favorite tradition, make for some of our sweetest memories.

Yet as technology has become a more pervasive and distracting presence in our lives, it can definitely impact the quality of the time we spend together. As parents, being truly present with our children is essential, not only for the sake of our relationship with them but for their well-being. Making the most of each moment where you’re fully engaged in an activity together allows your kids to feel that they’re loved, that they matter, that they have a supportive place to share their thoughts and feelings. And these moments all add up to happier, healthier kids.

When you carve out time to simply be together as a family, that’s an expression of love that often speaks louder than words. And when you completely unplug, that deepens the joy that you’ll share.

Here are a few suggestions for making your quality time together count.

 

 

Be playful and creative
From board games and puzzles to scavenger hunts and craft projects, there’s a world of fun available beyond our screens. Build an obstacle course in the backyard, bake a favorite family recipe or hold your own paint party. You could even try something new together, like learning to juggle or to perform basic magic tricks.

 

 

Read together
Take time to read aloud to your kids or to sit quietly side by side lost in your favorite books. Family visits to the local library can also open up new horizons, inspire conversations on a world of subjects and foster appreciation for these vital public spaces.

 

 


Perform community service
Schedule family days to help out in your community. Look for specific volunteer opportunities like park clean-ups, animal rescue fundraisers, or food pantry events or contact an organization that supports a cause you care about to see what opportunities they offer. You can even initiate your own projects such as creating care package for the homeless or writing thank-you notes to your local firefighters and police officers.

Contributor: William Lessa is a family therapist and  former president of the executive board for The Center for Parenting Education.” 

Our parents make so many sacrifices to provide us with a happy and healthy childhood and to help us fulfill our potential. All those times of juggling and rearranging schedules to be there for the moments that mattered to us, all those dreams and plans they put on the back burner — they might think we never noticed. But in this touching video tribute to his mom, Wendell lets her know just how grateful he is for her steadfast presence, and truthful guidance, in his life.

Sometimes, it’s the constant, everyday expressions of love and appreciation that are the easiest to take for granted. All the more reason to let those we cherish know we see and value everything they do for us.

Acknowledge their sacrifices. Thank them for their thoughtfulness. Express how they’ve helped shape the person you are. You don’t have to do it in a video but a wonderful way to share a message they can turn to again and again to feel your love and gratitude.

 

The women who mean the most to us inspire us for so many reasons. They’re models of strength and determination, courage and generosity, wisdom and support. We love them, wholeheartedly, for all they bring to our lives. This beautiful video tribute captures the many roles our moms, our wives, our daughters, sisters and grandmothers play — and thanks all of these special women for filling us up with so much happiness and love.

May it inspire you to share your heart with a woman you cherish. Let her know why she’s your biggest inspiration. Share the ways she’s helped you to grow. Recall a memory or moment that always makes you smile. Tell her why there’s no greater gift than having her love in your life.

Some of us are just natural gift-givers, affirming how much someone means to us with every present that shows we really know and appreciate them. And some of us, despite our best intentions and caring, struggle every time a special celebration looms.

But with a little advanced planning and extra attention, you, too, can be the giver of an ultra-thoughtful, wow-worthy gift.

Follow these tips to take the stress out of gift-giving for birthdays, holidays and other special occasions.

Pay attention to clues
Whenever you’re around the recipient, watch and listen for the things they love. Are they drawn to dragonflies? Is turquoise their favorite color? Does the scent of lavender conjure up instant relaxation? Keep track of such clues to take the guesswork out of making that special purchase.

Expand your reach
If you’re not around the recipient enough to pick up on any clues they might drop, reach out to a best friend or family member who may be more intimately familiar with their tastes and interests. And don’t forget social media: a Pinterest board or Instagram account can be fabulous places to learn what’s captured their attention.

Offer your services
Can you organize a home office, wash the car, or babysit the kids for two hours so your loved one can have some quiet to themselves? Offering a gift of your skills, time or talents is not only an expression of caring it helps the recipient feel better about themselves and some aspect of their lives.

Give the gift of experience.
A museum membership, a spa day or theater tickets all make memorable gifts that encourage spending time together. Similarly, choosing an activity the recipient’s always wanted to explore is a wonderful way to support a goal while enhancing your relationship.

So you’re throwing a party for someone special, but you want to make it really unforgettable without going overboard and over budget. What can you do? According to event designer, Sarah Reese, no matter what the occasion – birthday, shower, retirement, going away or any life event – it can be so much more memorable and personal if the details relate to the preferences and passions of the guest of honor. “Think about what makes them unique,” Sarah says. “Why are we celebrating them? What qualities about them make the rest of the world smile?”

 

Similarly, consider what’s their favorite color? Flower? Travel destination? Hobby? Book? Quote or saying? Combine those elements and weave them into a celebration that tells their story.

Start with their favorite colors, and plan to incorporate them throughout. For instance, a little food coloring can go a long way to personalizing the frosting on home made cupcakes, cookies or cakes with they love.
Create a welcome sign that highlights their favorite things or most adored qualities.

Make the tables and wall decor reflect the guest of honor’s personality. Do they love to read? How about a banner decorated with book jackets? Do they live for the beach? Consider a table scape with tropical decorations…pineapples, palm trees, sun icons and colorful cocktail umbrellas. For favors – try making a message in a bottle for each attendee.

 

 

Did they come of age in another era? If their youth was spent in the 1950s, for instance, look for nostalgic touches…juke boxes and other retro diner or soda fountain icons. For the ‘70s, consider the festive touch of a disco mirror ball.

The centerpiece can also reflect the guest of honor. If they’re adventurous, create a fabulous hot-air balloon display with a basket at its base. If they’re a gardener, straw hats adorned with flowers can make beautiful centerpieces.

Fill goodie bags with their favorite treat – maybe it’s chocolate chip cookies or a special chocolate or nostalgic candy from childhood.

And don’t forget a guest book. It can become a keepsake the guest of honor will treasure forever. If they like music, for instance, guests could sign old vinyl records with metallic sharpies. If they love balloons, have each guest write a message on a slip of paper and insert it into a balloon that will be inflated…and then popped toward the end of the party so the message can be read aloud.

 

So many days can feel like a series of ordinary moments strung together. But in the midst of our routines and busyness, life gives us countless reasons, big and small, to celebrate. Often they involve an event, from the everyday joy of a meal shared with family to the arrival of long-awaited good news. But when we think about those moments, what makes them so memorable are the people at the heart of them all — and the words we use to let them know how much they mean to us. This inspiring video reminds us that being there for the ones we love, with support, with appreciation, with caring, takes so little time. Yet when woven into the fabric of our days, these are the threads that sustain and uplift us, and keep us forever in each other’s hearts.

 

 

Take a moment today to let someone you love know you’re thinking about them. Reach out to say “I miss you,” acknowledge something important that’s going on in their lives, share a memory you know will make them laugh. We promise: you’ll both be gifted with a fuller, more grateful heart.

Few moments are more satisfying for a parent than to see their adult children enjoying each other’s company and genuinely caring about each other. Fostering such relationships begins early on. Alan Kay of Asheville, NC, understands this and because he is passionate about helping others to do the same, he founded the Better Dads Festival. The annual celebration of fatherhood is a chance for men and women to connect with each other as they explore what it means to create the kind of communities where they want to live and raise their kids.

 

 

All three of Alan’s own children are involved with the festival, from coordinating its social media, to developing its website and helping out onsite. Their support is no surprise, considering the relationship they share not only with him, but with each other.

 

“There are moments when all three of my kids are together and they’re talking among themselves and sitting in a relaxed way and sharing with each other and being curious about each other’s lives. I can step back and look at that, and it makes me so proud,” Kay says. “Seeing my kids loving one another and being supportive of one another warms my heart like nothing else. It’s really very sweet.

 

To create close-knit relationships in your family, why not start a project with your kids? It can be something as simple as baking cookies or something bigger like creating a garden or painting a room. Whatever the scope, it’s a wonderful way to connect while they’re young, and it just may blossom into life-long closeness for all of you.