10 Ways to Spread the Love with Creativity

One of the many ways you can put your creative abilities to good use, is by brightening up someone else's day. This is a great thing to do because it a) encourages you to create, and b) makes someone else happy at the same time. You can't go wrong. Here are ten simple ideas to show some love:

1.) Make a greeting card. Depending on how much you'd like to spend on supplies, making your own greeting cards may save you money over the long run. These are fun to do, simple to make, and you can customize them to say anything you want. Instead of spending thirty minutes at the drugstore searching for a message that only half says what you mean, spend ten minutes putting together a quick card with some solid or patterned paper, markers, stickers, and pretty much whatever else you want to use.

2.) Use sewing skills to make blankets or clothes for someone in need. If you knit, crochet, or otherwise craft fabric, you can use these skills to make blankets for soldiers, baby clothes for less fortunate mothers, or maybe a scarf for someone who could not afford one. There are tons of great organizations that donate these, especially as gifts for soldiers. Check them out!

3.) Put together a get well basket. If you know someone who is sick, or in the hospital, hand-make a small gift basket that includes items they might love to have...Dry shampoo, slippers, or hot cocoa mix just to name a few. You can put these into a basket decorated with ribbons or covered with colored shrink wrap. Small things are often the most appreciated.

4.) Make a mini photo album. For a birthday, or other holiday, put together a mini photo album for someone. I recently made my mother a mini scrap-book of her favorite Christmas traditions, and she truly loves it. Other ideas might be someone's year in review, a special event together, or a compilation of birthday memories. With a little thinking, the possibilities for a mini album are nearly endless.

5.) Put together a scrap-book page. Instead of an entire album, create one page dedicated to that person, and what they mean to you. You can place important photos on the page, along with some journaling of why they are so special to you, and to others around them. I made one page for each of my parents and grandparents as my wedding gift to them, and gifted them in a simple frame.

6.) Write a poem, letter, or a song. If you are talented in the world of words, try putting together one of the above. Do you play a musical instrument? Sometimes music is so expressive that no words are needed. You can compose a short piece that evokes the emotions you want to convey.

7.) Keep a journal. This is a great idea for a significant other. Without telling them, start a journal of your activities or days together. You can write down things you did, funny things that were said, or just the moments you want to remember. At the end of six months, a year, or whatever feels right to you, give it to them as a gift. You can included pictures or other memorabilia that you keep throughout the time. Reminiscing over happy times you had together will be a wonderful way to surprise them with something special.

8.) Make a "reasons" jar. This is something I have done for a few special members of my family. I write out 50-100 reasons that they are so wonderful, special memories, or other things I want them to know, and cut them into strips. I then fold these strips up and place them all into a decorative jar. The recipient has a great time pulling out one piece of paper a day, or reading them all at once. Sometimes people can't even think of ten things they love about themselves, so when someone else tells them how great they are, it can truly touch their heart.

9.) Paint a picture. Painting can take a lot of intense work and time. This is why giving the gift of a painting or drawing can be so welcome. You can paint or draw a portrait of them, or of something they really love such as a favorite pet, or a special place they love to visit.

10.) Take a picture. If you aren't good at drawing or painting, take a picture! This sounds simple, but the right picture can have a huge impact. You can use the same subject suggestions as above, and even have them matted and framed for a special place in their home. If you're especially good at photography, offer a photo shoot as a gift. Most people love the chance to have a few special photos taken of them, their loved ones, or a special occasion.

These are just a few quick suggestions to get your juices flowing. There are tons of great, creative things you can gift that don't take a lot of time or effort, but are always appreciated by the receiver.

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