How To Thank A Veteran Easily ANY Day of The Year {not just Veterans Day}

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Veteran’s Day is near and many people appreciate the sacrifices of our veterans  but aren’t sure how to show their appreciation. Do you see a soldier in a restaurant or airport and aren’t sure what to do?  Do you feel as if saying, “Thank you for your service” is not enough?  How do we go about blessing mature veterans?  If you’ve spent time here, you know I adore our veterans and I just might have a few ideas …..

Veterans Day

1.  Check for community programs 

The fact that you and your family took the time to show up will speak volumes to our nation’s heroes.  Pick up the phone and ask your local newspaper, Chamber, or legion. There are events going on throughout the year, not just Veterans Day.

2.  Ask about their service

I’m tearing up just thinking of all the sweet conversations that I’ve had with older gentlemen that have served our country – at the park…at Walmart… You can spot these gentlemen from a mile away with their ballcaps that display the area of their service like the photo above.  I simply thank them for their service and then mention that I just noticed their military hat.  Then I close my mouth!  It never fails, they start telling me their story and I listen.  It’s the least I can do and I love hearing it.

3.  Buy a meal 

One of the coolest things we love to do is sneak to the register to pay for a soldier’s meal when they aren’t looking.  It’s easier if it’s a place like Cracker Barrel where they haven’t paid yet.  If it’s a fast food joint, just whisper to the cashier that you’d like to pay for the soldier walking in, and then sneak up there and pay after he’s distracted with his meal.  It’s so fun to do this anonymously, but you can also just tell the cashier first and then shake the soldier’s hand as you tell him you’ve already taken care of his meal.  It’s less awkward if he knows it’s already done.

4.  Bless their family

Do you know of a family whose loved one is deployed?  Offer to cut their grass, buy groceries, babysit, etc for the parent that is often making it work on their own.  The veteran will be eternally grateful, I’m sure.

5.  Get involved

There are so many organizations that are achieving great things for our military.  Send candy, letters, support wounded warriors and more at Operation Gratitude.  Check out Buddy Check 22 to check on them.  Volunteer in many ways with the VA voluntary service:

Can’t view video? Watch What will you do?

 6.  Shine a green light

I was thrilled to see the commercial about the partnership of Walmart to Greenlight a Vet.  A cool way to let them know that we support them even when we can’t recognize them in their civilian clothes.  Shine the green light of hope.

Can’t view? Watch Greenlight a Vet

7.  Support the USO

Until our oldest joined the Army, I had no idea of all the ways that the USO blesses the families of the military.  I can tell you from experience that you can trust that money you donate is used in very effective ways.

8.  Give gift cards

One thing I used to do was keep a couple gift cards loaded with small amounts {I need to get back to this}. What a blessing it would be for a soldier to shake hands with you, only to find a gift card to Walmart or Mickey D’s in his hand, as you are walking away. 

9.  Just say thanks  

Most military people I know are humble and not seeking praise. My plan this week is to physically shake hands and thank each veteran I can in person.  I’m also going to send a social message to publically thank every person that I know is a veteran online.  Please join me in doing so and then end your message on their page by adding #thankaveteran.  My prayer is that it will be contagious and we will consume Facebook and Twitter with thankful messages to those who deserve our thanks. 

10.  Help me to spread the word

My main hope is that everyone will do something instead of just thinking about it. Share this post message to educate others with ideas and to ensure that our heroes know how thankful we are.  Below are places that wanted to bless Veterans this year.  I am thankful for each of these and will be sure to give them my business this entire year.  How about you?

Veterans Day Deals & Freebies

The deals below are to businesses that bless veterans every year on Veterans Day and beyond.  Be sure to call ahead to make sure businesses are participating in your area, and to find out what the requirements are, if any, to prove military standing. I researched and listed everything I could find – some are for more than one day.  Click on each link for details!


Do YOU have ideas to bless Veterans this year?


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7 Ways to Honor Fallen Soldiers

If you teach kids anything-teach them this


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Published on HuffPost and Okefenokee Living Magazine and other publications, Shan is a Family Travel Journalist and lover of all things ‘calm & cozy home.’

She shares travel reviews & insider secrets that Women REALLY want to know about southern family destinations and creating cozy homes they can’t wait to go home to.

Her hope is that overwhelmed women feel like family travel and cozy home gurus in their own right.

☕️ It’s THE REAL DEAL around here ☕️


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