Sometimes it's fun to do something a little different to bring out the love in your family. We suggest you try this family love notes experiment for five days, or longer if you like.

Sticky Notes

Glue a sticky note pad to a card and write on the top, "Family love notes." Put a fridge magnet on the back or tape it to the fridge. Tell your family that for the next five days anyone can take a sticky sheet and write a note to someone in the family. The note has to say something that shows love for the person it's addressed to. They stick the note back on the fridge, randomly, but not back on the note pad. If you see a child being kind to another, whisper to the child that this would be fun to write a note about to that sibling. It may take a little prodding to help the kids get started. One or both parents will likely need to set the example.

Look around and see what you can see. Catch your child doing something good and write a note complimenting him or her for it. For example: "To Johnny, I was impressed by your kindness when you helped Julie find her shoes. Way to go! Love, Mom."

Leave a note for your spouse and say something that shows you're noticing the good thing he or she did. For example: "To Dad, thanks for stopping at the store for some milk. That was thoughtful. Love you, Mom." Or, "To Mom, thanks for making my favorite meatloaf. It was yummy. Love you, Dad."

What would your teenage son think if he saw a note to him saying something like, "To Mike, I noticed how strong you're getting. Wow, those muscles are impressive. Love, Mom." How about your preteen daughter who could use a little ego boost. You could write, "To Laurie, I love your cute smile. It makes me happy. Love you, Mom."

If someone doesn't join in the writing, don't make a point of it. Make up for it by writing a few more yourself. Just have fun with the overall activity, making sure every family member gets a few notes. Just watch - the kids will be checking the fridge to see if they received a love note.

Celebrate the activity

At the end of the five days celebrate by making heart shaped cookies or have an ice cream sundae bar with some heart shaped candies to sprinkle on as a topping option. Or on a squirt of whipped cream put a cherry on and say, "Sharing love at home is the cherry on top in our home." Be a little creative and make it fun.

It's up to the parents

Creating feelings of love at home enriches family life. It takes a little effort but, like the words in this song Love at Home, it will bring its own reward.

There is beauty all around

When there's love at home;

There is joy in ev'ry sound

When there's love at home.

Peace and plenty here abide,

Smiling sweet on ev'ry side.

Time doth softly, sweetly glide

When there's love at home.

The U.S. government Child, Youth, and Family site states, "Your child wants to please you. If you praise them when they do well at something or are trying hard, it will make them want to do it again. Praising your child for being good will make them want to be good, and it will help them feel good about themselves."

Family love notes on the fridge from parents and siblings can help make this happen for all members of the family. Give it a try. It will brighten your home with a lot of smiles.

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