Long before social distancing, a friend who lives across the country sent me a care package that contained a book and a thoughtful note. The unexpected thoughtfulness was more touching than many gifts I had received on occasions where they were expected, like birthdays or holidays. It showed me she cared even when she wasn’t obliged to, and it made me want to do the same for other important people in my life.

When people started to self-isolate, many relationships became long-distance. Thinking of the book I received out of the blue, I sent my sisters buttery-soft pajamas to provide some comfort as they self-isolate for who knows how long. In frightening times like these, when physical togetherness isn’t an option, phone calls, video chats, and mailed mementos like cozy pajamas or handwritten notes become paramount.

Here, 17 day-brightening ideas for the special people in your life.

A Handwritten Note

A handwritten note is one of the easiest (and most impactful) ways to communicate your love and gratitude to the important people in your life.

A Weighted Blanket

In these unsettling times, a weighted blanket can help provide calm.

Yaasa the Yaasa weighted blanket

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A Workout Set

A great friend upgrades your workout gear.

Tory Sport mélange cross-back bra

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Tory Sport mélange side-pocket leggings

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Fresh Flowers

With so much time spent at home, you can actually take in the beauty of a bouquet each day.

Urban Stems The Bold Floral bouquet

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A Cozy Sweater

A cozy sweater that looks good enough for Zoom meetings makes for a thoughtful gift.

La Ligne new stripe Marin wool and cashmere sweater

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Gift Cards

Gift cards for books and groceries are always welcome.

Barnes & Noble Book Stack gift card

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A Luxe Journal

Writing can be therapeutic. Leave a heartfelt note on the first page before sending one to your friend.

Comfortable Slippers

These comfortable slippers are the ultimate indoor shoe.

Fancy Playing Cards

Take game night up a notch with a fancy set of playing cards.

L’objet two decks crocodile playing cards with box




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A Potted Plant

Bring a little of the great outdoors indoors.

The Sill Monstera deliciosa plant

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Noise-Canceling Headphones

A pair of noise-cancelling headphones will help them hone in on working from home, even with kids and loud distractions nearby.

Bose noise-canceling headphones 700

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Soft Pajamas

There’s no doubt that this set of buttery soft pajamas will get a lot of use.

A Warm Quilt

Upgrade their home decor with a warm quilt.

Matching Sweats

As we swap out rigid work clothes for more comfortable options, sending a friend a cozy sweatsuit seems like the ultimate gift.

Entireworld French terry sweatshirt

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Entireworld French terry sweatpants

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A Daily Planner

Working from home requires structure. A daily planner can help them get organized.

A Puzzle

Puzzles are a great way to keep busy and feel accomplished.

A Silk Eye Mask

Help your friends get restorative rest each night with a silk eye mask.

Brooklinen mulberry silk eye mask

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