November 11 is Veterans Day, and while every day is a good day to honor our brave veterans and give thanks to retired soldiers for their service, it’s always good to have a national holiday to inspire us to action.

So many of us here come from military families, and as the stepdaughter of a veteran myself, I know just how much a message of thanks and gratitude can mean. My own girls call their Pop-Pop every year on Veterans Day to thank him and they write him letters of gratitude, like this one my youngest wrote last year, shown below.

(You have to love that she wants to know whether he could eat candy and get cake and ice cream at the time. The burning questions of an 8-year-old!)

If you want to go beyond thanking your own family members, I’ve got a great organization that can help you with getting letters, colorful drawings, or care packages to our troops.

This post has been updated with new information for 2021

Related: 19 random acts of kindness you can have fun doing with your kids

I really like A Million Thanks, which collects and distributes letters of thanks and support, then sends them directly to our active, reserve, and veteran military.

Kids can create their own letters or artwork to send — check out this free printable thank a veteran coloring page from Crayola. (Unfortunately the one above is no longer available but the one below is great!) Then click over to the site and see where to send it off.

Free printable coloring page to thank a veteran on Veteran's Day via Crayola

Be sure to write your child’s first name on the front (no last names or address) and in no time, your child’s good wishes will be off to our deployed troops and wounded soldiers.

(Do keep in mind that Veteran’s Day is designated especially to honor our wonderful vets, though any time is a good time to write to our active troops.)

Related: 11 top-rated veterans organizations to support.
They offer everything from adaptive housing to service dogs to support exclusively for women

Just know that they’re collecting notes and drawings for the December holidays up until Dec 1. Any notes received after then will be sent out in January, so if your child wants to write a happy holiday message, be sure to get it out this month.

To me, it’s a lovely way of giving back to those who serve and protect us. And there is something so meaningful, especially in the world of digital notes, to receive a handwritten letter.

Alternately, you can deliver letters of thanks and artwork to a local veteran’s center, which you can find through the the US Department of Veteran’s Affairs.