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  • DIY Food

    How to Express Gratitude

    This year we decided to express gratitude to our parents for holiday spent together with a DIY Merci. It’s a sweet present that conveys everything we wanted to tell them: our love, gratitude and kind feelings.

    Hi! We have just returned from a two-week holiday at the seaside. The weather wasn’t always perfect, but we still managed to get some rest, owing  to our wonderful parents, who took over most of the chores. At the end of our stay we wanted to thank them in a creative way and came up with personalised Merci bars to express gratitude.

    Where did I get this idea to express gratitude?

    I was browsing the fanpage 1001giftideas when I saw this picture:

    German Merci DIY used to expresses gratitude

    It looked inexpensive, highly original and not very time-consuming, so I couldn’t wait to try it. Unfortunately the author doesn’t provide the original, German source. After some research I found out that it may originate from https://pl.pinterest.com/sveniblabla/geschenke/, but there are plenty of images on the net to inspire you if you type “Merci DIY” in Google Graphics.


    Here is how I did it:

    I started with writing down all the things that our parents helped us with. The list included: delicious meals, taking care of our daughter, so that we could go out, watching UEFA Euro 2016 together, lending us a car, and many more.

    The making of Merci DIY used to expresses gratitude: pieces of paper and a pen

    The next step was to buy Merci boxes and personalise them. You can find some tutorials on Youtube (mostly in German), but I find them rather complicated. After trying to wrap an entire bar with colour paper, I gave up and settled for sticking pieces of paper just on the top. I think the outcome is even better because 1) if there was additional layer on all sides, the bars could no longer fit in the box, and 2) the wrappings that inform about tastes are still visible from the sides and the bottom.

    The making of a Merci DIY used to expresses gratitude: paper, pen, scissors, adhesive and chocolates on a table.

    I did the first box with a double-sided adhesive tape, and the second one with a one-sided adhesive. On the first glance there is no difference, but the second option is more shiny and durable, so that’s the one that I recommend. It’s also easier to cut and paste.

    Comparison of two ways os sticking papers on chocolates

    I picked two colours of paper and changed them whenever the original wrappings changed colour. I think it worked out fine.

    Merci DIY used to expresses gratitude - my ideas on different-coloured papers

    In the very end, I cut out hearts from a colour paper, wrote “Thank you for…” and pasted it on the top of the box from the inside. The whole present took me little more than an hour.

    Hearts cut out from paper to paste on the DIY Merci

    Both sets of parents were delighted. It was a real pleasure to watch them reading. I am quite sure that I would have never been able to express gratitude so powerfully with bare words. I only hope they will get over their emotions soon enough to eat the chocolate bars before their date of expiry 😉

    Ready Merci DIY used to expresses gratitude in boxes for parents and parents-in-law

    You may also express gratitude with Merci bars on other occasions!

    Instead of a traditional food gift basket given to parents at weddings, you may give them personalized Mercis, especially if the reception is not a lavish one. Another opportunity presents itself at holidays when you rent a room, an apartment or do couchsurfing and want to express gratitude to your hosts.

    Can you think of other types of sweets that may be personalised at home to make a creative present? Share your ideas in the comments below.

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    My advice:

    • The box will be open when you present it, so make sure the recipients know why. It’s best if you open it personally in front of them. In any case, don’t put it in a gift bag and make sure the recipient opens the box right away!
    • If you want to express gratitude with chocolate bars, remember to personalise them in a cool place – otherwise they might melt in the process!
    • Write your text on the pieces of paper before you stick them on the bars – this way your writing will be neater.
    • If you quickly run out of ideas what to write, don’t give up. One of my examples was: delicious meals, but in fact I split it into: tasty breakfasts, appetizing dinners, mouthwatering suppers, gorgeous cakes and organic fruit, which covered not 1 but 5 bars! Don’t be too general. Think about small things. And if you really can’t come up with more than a few (which may be the case if you spend just a single night with a host), write one letter on each bar.
    • If your parents are on a diet or don’t like chocolate, write your words of gratitude on tea bags!


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