When you’re wishing someone a happy anniversary—whether you’re giving a toast or adding a personal note to a greeting card—you want to find the perfect words to let the recipients know you share their happiness…without sounding like you’re inserting yourself into their relationship.
As a greeting card writer, I walk this line between personal and intrusive every day, and over time I’ve developed various rules of thumb to help guide me. For example: A little teasing about a happy couple’s public displays of affection? Fun. Speculating on what happens in the bedroom? Not so much.
Another rule of thumb, which I call “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” has long been a winner on anniversary cards. You, too, can use it to find your own perfect words of love.
Yesterday: I’ll never forget the time…If you attended the couple’s wedding, think of an evocative detail to include:
“I’ll never forget the smiles on your faces when you first walked down the aisle as husband and wife.”
Also, if you knew either person before the wedding day, mention what a joy it was to watch him or her fall in love.
Today: The great thing about a couple like you is…Call out the honorees’ good qualities to personalize your message while paying a compliment:
“Nobody’s surprised that you’re such a great couple. With Matt’s sense of humor and Steph’s sweet nature, your happiness is a no-brainer.”
If the marriage has had its ups and downs, don’t focus on the downside. You may get a laugh with something like this:
“Here’s to another year of Joan putting up with Kevin’s nonsense.”
But something like this will actually mean more to the couple:
“Your commitment to one another is inspiring.”
Tomorrow: If I could make one wish for you…A simple wish for continued love and joy is perfectly acceptable. But if you can show how well you know the couple in the process, you’ll make your wish more memorable.
- If the honorees love to travel, wish them many new horizons to explore.
- If they love to garden, wish them a bumper crop of good times.
- If they’re sports fans, wish them a lifetime of winning seasons.
Last, if the couple has been dealing with health, financial or other issues, be sure to make a sincere wish for bright days ahead.
Molly Wigand is a Hallmark writer who married…wait for it…a Hallmark writer. The pressure's definitely on for these two whenever a toast-worthy occasion rolls around.