13 Sweet, Surprising Ways to Show Friends & Family That You Care

13 Sweet, Surprising Ways to Show Friends & Family That You Care

Your loved ones will appreciate these kind gestures as much as you’ll love doing them.


By Lorraine Allen

If you have friends or family members suffering from the winter blues, don’t wait for Valentine’s Day to show that you’re thinking about them: It only takes a few moments to do something small but meaningful. Whether it’s your own parent or spouse, your bestie, your neighbor, or your kids, you can show your thoughtfulness in some quick, fun, and even surprising ways. And no matter what sort of mood you’re in, you’re guaranteed a boost of happiness too, for making someone feel special. Here are a few sweet ideas to try:

  1. Write a “You Rock!” letter outlining positive traits or recent successes. You can send via the mail or just leave it where they can find it at home.
  2. Slip a small gift in a coat pocket or purse.
  3. Serve a favorite desert for breakfast, as a late-night treat in bed.
  4. Slip a love letter or thank-you note under his or her pillow.
  5. Write a welcome message in chalk on the stoop or driveway.
  6. Slide a funny photo of the two of you into a book your loved one is reading, or frame it and put in on his or her desk.

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  1. Do a chore without being asked (or mentioning it after!).
  2. Get tickets to a movie or show you would enjoy together for a special surprise outing.
  3. Buy a plant that’s easy to care for, or potted flowers that will last a lot longer than a bouquet.
  4. Go for a hike or scenic stroll together to give them a break, as well as the opportunity to talk or vent, if needed.
  5. Call when you know he or she won’t be able to answer, and leave a voicemail message of you singing a favorite song.
  6. Bake a cake and congratulate him or her on any recent accomplishment at all, even if it’s just getting through the last year.
  7. Make a mug with a photo of a great moment you shared, even if it was years ago.
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Do you have any surprising ways to show others how much you care about them?


Lorraine Allen is a writer and mom to one spunky first grader and one squirrel-obsessed dog. You can follow their delicious, allergy-friendly cooking adventures at @FeedingLina.

Image ©iStock.com/olandesina


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