About the Author

Anna is the author of A Moment of Christmas and Pumpkin Spice for Your Soul. She's worked at (in)courage since 2012, and lives in Minnesota with her husband and their four kids. Anna encourages others to look for and embrace the extraordinary moments found in their ordinary days.

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  1. Anna,
    I’m a huge hugger too! It’s very unnatural for me not to embrace people I love and care about. During this time of social distancing, I’m thankful that I have a good supply of cards on hand (the lost art of letter writing). I know how much I enjoy getting a “snail-mail” card in my mailbox and right now we can use all the pick-me-ups we can get. I send e-cards too, but my favorite is something you can touch, read, and set on your counter to enjoy and know that someone was thinking of you. I still have my array of birthday cards sitting out because they are like virtual hugs from friends and family.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

  2. I, too, am a “card keeper.” Sending and receiving cards is a tradition I cherish. It is a personal touch that to me means someone really cares. With the social distancing, I have mailed cards, emailed thoughts and called by phone. It is so important to let others know you are thinking of them, hopefully bringing a smile as they open a card or email, or answer the phone and hear a familiar voice. I can hardly wait to actually hug my family and friends.

  3. I have sent a few cards – and plan to send more! It’s a great way to hug . Also, I knitted a hat with “Hugs from here” on it to show everyone around me that they are getting a hug!!

  4. I definitely need to send more cards right now! I haven’t sent any cards yet, but I have reached out to a few friends to ask for their prayer requests and to check in on them.
    I Hope the posts from my website encourages others.
    Thanks for this beautiful reminder!

  5. I am in the learning stages of hugging. My family was not big on affection and I continued that tradition, my husband and his family are big huggers, I am slowly learning to “embrace the gift of a good hug.” One thing, I do love to do is to give cards. I work in education, and would often anymously give my colleagues cards and small gifts. During this time of isolation, I have collected addresses of my colleagues and send out two to three cards a week. I love to surprise my family with cards, I don’t live near my parents or siblings so I often send cards to let them know that they are in my thoughts and prayers. I keep every card that I receive and in times of despair, I often read them for a quick “pick me up”. Thank you for devotional today, I am sending you a huge air hug

  6. This is so aptly timed. A friend of mine stopped by the other night to drop something off for my family and I gave her the earrings I ordered for her May birthday, as they arrived early. She texted me the next day and said how bad she felt not hugging me to thank me afterwards. We both love hugs! BUT it’s the drop offs and “visits on the opposite sides of a glass door”, sending cards in the mail and sweet texts and video calls we’ve been doing that show we love each other. We will keep doing these until we can safely hug again.

  7. I have always enjoyed sending cards and receiving them. Most recently, I battled breast cancer. I received many cards from friends…old and new. I was so encouraged to know that someone was thinking of me and praying for me. Now I have made a habit of sending cards to those who are sick, shut-in or living far away. Cards as so much more personal than an email. They can be saved and read over and over again. Cards have become our hugs due to social distancing.( Dayspring cards are the best.)

  8. This month was my Mom’s 85th Birthday and I decided to send her a card I made at a friends house who invited several other women to have fun using her scrapbooking supplies she’d collected. She showed us how to use everything and it was cool to see each ladies creativity. My Mom was tickled that her card was one of a kind. I may not be able to be with her in person right now but when we send a card with a special message, we send a part of our heart.
    I love to send cards to family and friends, especially when mailing even receiving a handwritten letter is rare anymore. Who doesn’t like to open their mailbox and find something other than junk mail or a bill. For me, when I receive a card in the mail, I know that person took some extra time and attention to let me know how much they love me.

  9. I have always enjoyed encouraging people with cards and am doing more of that during this time of social distancing. It is hard not giving and receiving hugs but cards are a nice way to reach out to friends and family.

  10. This is a big one for me! I fear that when we “return to normal” that hugging will be discouraged. 🙁

    Since our MOPS group was canceled we are all sharing a New Morning Mercies mug (properly sanitized, of course). I got my surprise just the other night. It was almost like a hug from my friend, though I would have preferred a big, comforting hug. Now, it’s my turn to select someone and I just want to be able to take it to everyone.

  11. I love this! My recently retirement-now covid 19, project is to clean up my office/craft room. The things I have found and uncovered…from over twenty years of tax returns to Christmas gathering invites from 2006! But also lots of cards received for me, my now adult daughters, cards from them to their dad, so I too. Have been gathering them. As I am soon to be a first time grandma, I am boldly-in my mindThinking of how to gather these things into various journals, scrap books, etc that will have meaning for the next generation. Another retirement goal was to send more hand written thank you notes, etc. so this weekend I will arm myself with pen …and those now organized cards purchased over the years and start sending hugs!

  12. I love getting cards in the mail. I also live sending cards because I know how much they mean to the people receiving them. Alas, my stockpile of cards has been lost in a remodel so I would be tickled pink to win a set.

  13. Sending cards and letters in the mail seems to be forgotten but is making a come back! I love sending fun notes in the mail to those I love and thinking about. I also love receiving them – thanks for bringing to light a great way to communicate!

  14. I loved this article. It reminded me that we have more control than we think to show our love in different ways. I too have been sending cards and emails to touch base with friends I haven’t spoken to in a while.

  15. My kids love sending cards to people. In fact, we have a mail bag on the desk by the front door awaiting the day when international mail will again commence from our Latin American country to the world. With few intl. planes flying at the moment, the postal service is only working nationally, and oh, how we’d like to get a card to Grandma! Thank you for the giveaway!

  16. Since I was a kid, I have sent cards and letters via snail-mail. When I was 11, I had a great grandmother that I corresponded with for several years. I wish I still had those letters. There’s a bin in my closet that’s full of cards I’ve received over the years from family and friends. I love going back and seeing my grandmother’s writing. My husband’s grandmother would always include a letter. Since the beginning of the year, I have been sending out cards with a letter. I also try to include a scripture verse, bookmark, or a fancy teabag. Some of the cards are store bought, some are Dayspring, and some are ones I have made. This week I have mailed 7 cards so far. I just wish stamps didn’t cost so much. It puts a smile on my face to open the mailbox and see an envelope that’s not a bill!

  17. love this… I love and miss hugging people! Thank you ~ Back to basics… putting a stamp on an envelope and mail.. love this.

  18. I would love to receive the free cards. It has always been a joy to send cards for every possible occasion to family and friends. However, being disabled and elderly, I cannot get cards, and it is hard. I have been calling people, but it is not the same, as sending a card to let people know I am thinking of them. Thanks!

  19. I love to receive cards and I REALLY love to send cards!! Just yesterday I sent a “thankful and grateful” card to my Bible Study small group leader. Little did we know that the last time we met was truly our “last time” for this year!!
    She deserved to be thanked for her teaching and leadership.
    I love to send cards “ just. because”, no special occasion, but just because I am thinking of you and to let that person know how special they are to me!!!❤️❤️❤️

  20. I am missing hugs big time as are so many people! To send hugs I have volunteered to send hugs through the mail to several elderly individuals that our church has provided names and addresses of. Because I didn’t have cards on hand I made some through Shutterfly using photos I had taken this past year of flowers! Then I dug out some unused Easter cards and sent them an Easter wish and then ordered Pop-Up cards of bouquets from Hallmark and have sent those to hopefully provide a smile. This week I purchased cards from a young girl who was selling homemade cards and donating the money (through our church) to hospital staff! Cant wait to get those in the mail also! It is truly more blessed to give than to receive!

  21. Cards are my trademark. I love going to the store and picking out cards to send for the occasion that perfectly fit that person. I used to go to Hallmark until all of our local stores were shutdown. Out of convenience, I now look for the perfect card while grocery shopping at my favorite place. People regularly comment on the cards I send. I will never tell you to your face what I feel is so much safer shared in a writing atmosphere. I keep telling myself I will purchase cards through DaySpring. Thank you for this opportunity to win and thank you for your daily encouraging ministry day in and day out no matter what is going on in the world at that given time.

  22. I’m trying to reach out to those who may need an extra touch of encouragement. Cards are so special to me, too, and I would love to be able to share more!

  23. I, too, am doing the Covid Clutter Clean out and ran across cards from my graduation and wedding over 40 years ago! Yes, some of the names brought tears to my eyes but the memories are happy ones. I send a LOT of cards – so many that I started keeping track of what cards I send people (this only helps if I check the list before sending a card – I sent a good friend the same birthday card two years in a row. Guess it really reminded me of her!)!!

    I’m lucky enough to still hug my 15 month old grand – I go from my house to theirs and no where else… it’s a true blessing!

  24. I love sending out cards and notes. Nothing grand, just a message from the heart. Doing makes me feel connected and nothing is more exciting than getting an unexpected card in the mail. I know in this age of texting and email it’s a faster way to send my love with words, but choosing or making my own card lets me pause and really think about what to say, what feeling I want the other person to experience when they read their card.

  25. My mother was the family card sender. She was promoted to heaven last May. I’ve tried to continue her legacy but I fail miserably. I have been sharing fresh eggs from my hens and chicken I bought wholesale. I think I’ll send some cards today!

  26. Anna, I’ve always been a big card sender. I never thought of it as giving a hug, but okay. That makes sense. I’m going to keep on keeping on.

    • I consider my card sending a ministry. I have done it for years. Countless times I have heard that my cards came just when they were needed. God is so good. I like the thougjt of sending hugs!!!

  27. It has been interesting that one of the things I miss the most is hugging and physical touch is not one of my top love languages. I have a picture of myself smiling and waving at my grandson through their window. It’s my favorite right now because it sums up exactly what it looks like to love from afar. Thank you for the reminder that cards are a hug in the mail. I love snail mail and continue to bless people in this way.

  28. I have reached out to people by calling or texting them to check and see how they are doing. Also zoom meetings have been great too! I think I am going to send some cards out soon as well.

  29. I have been calling, video chatting and writing all kinds of cards to family, church family and friends. I have also recieved numerous phone calls and cards during this difficult time.We may have to stay six feet away from others but there are all kinds of loving ways to reach out and give a hug!!♡♡♡♡♡

  30. This is my love language! I’ve been sending cards to friends and family for weeks now.

  31. Do you know what has gone out the window today with all the technology big time. Letter and Card writting. To often we are too quick to send someone a text or email or email card because it is free and cheeper. But in the end it not the same and does not mean the same. Especially if it your Birthday or Christmas or you going through a rough patch. Then too often after it is read it deleted. Especially if a beautiful message. I have a beautiful letter wrote from my late Grandmother really she was call my Nanny. Plus one wrote by Sister before I got married 27 years ago this June. I still read them and especially the one from my Nanny and read her love it too me that that she express in it. Plus look at her lovely hand writting. A letter means so much more. You can go back on it. Once a text or email is deleted that the beautiful words deleted. Never to get them back again. How lovely it to get that hand written letter in the post. Sit with a cup of tea or coffee and read that lovely letter. Someone took the time to write to you. Plus we can do the same today during this Covid 19. Write a letter to someone to show them the Love of Jesus and let them know we are thinking of them keeping them in our prayers. It don’t have to anything fancy we write. Just something short and from our hearts wrote with love. To show we care. That can mean all the world to that person. No matter where they live on this side of the earth. Look at the Love Letter God had written for us by so many different people to tell his story of how much he loved us his Children. That was his word the Bible. The best letter ever wrote. So let us give the Safest Hug and Show Gods love to someone. By writing them a letter and posting it to let them know through this Covid 19 we are thinking of them. Not send them a text or email for once that can so easily be delete and then forgotten. Where as a letter can be kept and reread over and over again. Like the Best Love letter God gave us that was his word the Bible. That is best Hug God gave us. It can’t and will never be Deleted. Love today’s reading. Love Dawn Ferguson-Little xxx

  32. I am writing more cards and making more phone calls than I normally would! It’s kind of refreshing to slow down and connect with people in ways I hadn’t been lately.

  33. I love sending and receiving cards and letters the old-fashioned way. During this pandemic, I have even gotten my grandkids started sending cards to their friends. They absolutely love it! This is a forgotten treasure during the age of technology! Nothing can compare to reaching in that mailbox and pulling out a card that someone has taken the time to pen by hand!!! A hand-written card or letter is treasured! My mom still has my letters I wrote her from summer camp over 40 years ago. A hand-written card or letter is personal, it contains a piece of the person. As you state, it is a HUG!

  34. I have also sent a few cards and letters. My girls have colored some pictures for elderly family and friends and sent in the mail. And texts to let friends know I am praying for them.

  35. I love sending and receiving cards! I still write actual letters too. I have always looked forward to getting those special treats in the mail and send to others when I can. For birthdays, anniversaries, thinking of you,etc. I know many feel disconnected, lonely, etc right now. Cards are a beautiful way to show you care. They can be viewed over and over again.

  36. That’s such a great idea! I haven’t really been able to see anyone up close either, other than my immediate family. I think right now the way I’m sending hugs is by checking in with friends and trying to make sure they don’t feel like they’ve been forgotten just because we can’t physically get together anymore.

  37. I sent about 25 cards to some of our 2-3 teachers and staff this week. Other friends from church helped write more. We know how difficult this is for them to not be able to finish out the year with their students. I can’t hand-write very well, so I’m working on a “form” letter that every one seems to dislike. But I especially want to send a few out to friends who don’t do social media, especially since I didn’t send any at Christmas. I love when I get those letters to catch up each year. I have a bunch of various cards but am terrible at remembering to send them. I’m going to try harder!

  38. I love this!!! My husband & I are also sending out cards to each of our Pastor’s & their families. We also sent cards to friends whom we asked the Lord to put on our heart on who to send to. I love the stickers too & use them to decorate the envelope. You asked how many we’ve sent, well so far this month we’ve sent out 21 cards, mostly from Day Spring. I keep multiple boxes on hand so I have cards ready to send out.
    Thank you for the encouragement & I too save cards. Both of my parents are gone now but those letters are so precious to me!

    Lord bless you & sending you a big hug from California!!!
    Barbara

  39. What a great article! I love making and sending cards. I also love looking back at the cards people have sent me at special times in my life. I can’t keep them all (my husband is a pastor so we get lots of cards from church members), but there are definitely some I will never throw away because they remind me of someone special and how much they love me. (I hope people feel the same when they get my cards!)
    ~Robyn

  40. I love cards. Over the years I have told my husband that I don’t need gifts for Valentine’s Day, anniversaries or birthdays, just a nice card. There’s something heartfelt about reading another persons words to YOU, just for YOU. Growing up, I wrote to friends throughout the summer. I have boxes of old cards and letters. Maybe one day after I’m gone, someone will enjoy reading them.

  41. This box of cards is seriously the sweetest! I pulled out a birthday card just last night for a friend and it gave me (and her) such joy!

  42. I’ve been sending cards of encouragement to my teammates and friends from college — it’s hard for us to be apart this semester!

  43. My Gran lives in North Carolina, on the complete opposite side of the country from me here in California. Recently we had an interesting conversation about the different kinds of vitamins we take to stay healthy (she’s 93 and still living on her own, driving, and all-around rocking it!), so today I sent her a Swanson order with a combination of vitamins I know she already takes and some that I thought she might like to try. It’s a small but simple way to send a safe – and long distance! – hug. When I told her over the phone that I’d have it shipped to her house, she exclaimed, “Wow! It’s just like your down the street or across town, sending it to my house like that!” <3

  44. I love this idea of a card as a hug. I’ve been trying to be gentle with my children and cook good meals as “hugs.”

  45. Late birthday cards!
    Early birthday cards!!
    Grateful cards, which are always on time!!!

  46. My Grandkids and I make a big circle in front of our body to symbolize a hug with big smiles on our faces as we stop in front of their house to say hello.

  47. I like to send virtual hugs in cards. I personalize them and send them via mail or email. During these tough times I miss giving hugs to the little and the older nieces and nephews.

  48. It is a great idea to give hugs thru cards! Yes, we need hugs — to feel that we are loved!
    God gave His only Son Jesus because He loves us so much! He cares and is longing to hug us too!
    May we choose to love Him back too, by talking, expressing our gratefulness, praying to Him, and most of all trusting that He knows what is happening in our world. He is in control and He will take care of our needs. Feel God’s embrace as you invite Him today! =) XOX

  49. I’m not a hugger by nature but even I am missing hugs from friends. I just dropped a few cards in the mailbox today! And I have more to mail (but I ran out of stamps).

    I also love receiving any kind of snail mail, especially cards, I guess it’s because words of affirmation and encouragement is my love language. ❤️ I save all cards sent to me, too.

  50. I have been sending cards to my 2 grandchildren along with FaceTimeing with them. I have also sent several thinking of you cards during this “shelter in place” time. I love sending and receiving cards.
    And, I am a saver! My daughter asked why I still have cards students made when I had surgery in 2005. I told her because when I need to feel loved I look thru them and smile.

  51. On average, I send about 4 handwritten notes or greeting cards per week. During this time, I have sent more than usual. I also make frequent phone calls to 3 older ladies. For people really needing hugs, I send flowers.

  52. I actually just ordered pictures last night that i am going to send in cards to our loved ones and friends of my 6 year old daughter, just to spread love and memories and HUGS! Would love to have DaySpring cards to go with these great memories! ❤️

  53. I love sending…and receiving…cards! The card “He is Who promised is faithful” caught me eye as my husband is in treatment right now for cancer. God is indeed faithful in every circumstance of life. Walking to the mailbox is a blessing to find cards from friends and family to remind us that we are not forgotten. God knows and cares.

  54. Thank you for the encouragement to get in touch by mail. Cards are Such a nice way to let people know you are thinking of them. I sent out more Easter cards than usual and plan to send Mother’s Day cards. On one of my few voyages out I bought stamps (should have bought more) to encourage me to send out more cards. God bless.

  55. I’m a hugger myself, so it’s challenging not hugging people or having others to our homes. My Bible Study group gives “hugs” through encouraging text messages, Bible verses, & funny memes to keep us moving forward.

    Our family is also sending encouraging text messages daily so we all know that we are loved even from a “safe distance.”

  56. Anna,

    I have sent two cards so far. One to a friend just starting chemo in her 70s. One to my sweet pastor & his wife. They sent out (actually wife did it) Easter cards. I thanked them for taking time to record messages & put them on Face Book for us. I am having a hard time not hugging or shaking hands. It is truly hard at work wanting to hug patients. I just do fist bumps or elbow touches. Everyone needs a hug now & then. I know that in this time more people need hugs than ever. Being alone especially in hospitals, nursing homes or assisted living is super hard on the elderly. Most don’t understand why no one is visiting. Yesterday one son & his wife sent a card to their dad. I got to deliver it & read it to him. It brought joy to me.

    Blessings 🙂

  57. Sending you a hug!

    I am a card giver and a card saver. I have a personal encouragement ministry via the giving of cards. And now that we are in this season of isolation (almost 7 weeks for me), I have been sending out even more cards. I actually just prepared a batch about 90 minutes before I discovered this email. The postal carrier has had to fill multiple stamp orders from me. 🙂 Some cards were homemade and others were purchased. I have sent out at least 50 cards during this time.