I really enjoy sending notes and cards ... especially for noteworthy occasions or in times when condolences, sympathy, or encouragement are needed. But I sometimes find I don't know quite how to express myself without putting my foot in my mouth. Know what I mean?
I found the perfect resource for those times. A Perfect Word for Every Occasion by Liz Duckworth.
The book is broken down into a variety of categories: words for the grieving, illness, gratitude, birthdays, graduations, encouragement and several others. Then each category is also broken down into subsections. For example, in the encouragement chapter, she shares a personal story that helps the reader understand why a note of encouragement can mean so much to the recipient. She goes on to give some prompts to begin your note, then lists several sections of words/paragraphs you can personalize, depending on the situation -- job loss, the end of a relationship, discouragement, struggles, etc. She follows that up with noteworthy quotes and Scriptures that relate.
Duckworth also helps those of us with good intentions (but not good sense?!) know what NOT to say. Each chapter comes with a paragraph or two from the words of "Aunt Me-me", who means well, but often shoots from the hip and doesn't think about the impact her words might have. Aunt Me-me helps the 'gentle reader' not only understand what words not to use, but why -- taking the focus off self and keeping it on the note's recipient.
I especially enjoyed the section on "Words for a Changing World". With so much communication taking place online -- whether e-mail, twitter, blogs, or facebook (to name a few) -- it's easy for words to trip over themselves (and off our fingertips) without considering their impact. This chapter speaks to that issue. And of course, Aunt Me-me definitely makes an appearance here, as well!
I really enjoyed A Perfect Word for Every Occasion and know I will keep it handy with my note cards and address book for frequent future use. I highly recommend it!
Liz Duckworth is the author of critically acclaimed books such as Wildflower Living and Ragtail Remembers. With almost twenty years of experience in the Christian publishing field, Liz heads up Liz Duckworth Publishing Services. She lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado, with her husband and two sons.
Bethany House Publishers graciously provided me with a complimentary copy of A Perfect Word for Every Occasion, in exchange for my honest review.