The Bright Side, established by illustrator and wordsmith Rachel Bright, has become my go to brand for cards and little gifts, for one very good reason. Their 'mantra' is on the back of each of the cards:
Think happy thoughts
Champion silver linings
Love all things (not just cute things like babies and kittens)
And when you do love - love like they do in power ballads (you know like on a cliff with wind in your hair and your eyes shut, knowing you'll never know another love like this)
Watch out for dog poo
Smile at people - even grumpy ones
Be nice (oh I already said that)
Remember that anything is possible
And whatever you do always try to look on the bright side
...and really this is why they are awesome. They say things simply, how they really are and make people smile those little smiles. To me those little smiles are better than huge laughs because that funny thing will never be funny again but that smile will come back every time you see the thing that made you smile in the first place.
In addition to cards a local store (and Campus Gifts if you're an online shopper) now sell The Bright Side Gifts. At Christmas the women closest to me all got little stocking fillers from The Bright Side. Biscuit tin for my granny, sweet tins for my mom and my aunt (all filled of course) and my sister, the not-so-little-any-more monster, got a notebook proclaiming "evil plans and stuff" on the front.
My next purchases are a wedding planner for when my friend finally starts organising her "very big huge day" and some folders for me... Some things are difficult, some take a long time, some just really need doing and if this is the case I'm sure wrapping them in The Bright Side is the best way to do it.