This photo highlights such an innovative idea – using a loved one’s handwriting to decorate a kitchen wall. In this picture, a cherished recipe takes center stage. What do you think?

Handwriting is such a personal and intimate tether to our loved ones. Whenever I see notes written by my mother or father I feel an extra surge of connection. Here are a few additional ideas for keeping family and friends close by harnessing the power of their own words:

Engrave a piece of jewelry. Create a one-of-a-kind charm, pendant, even a pair of cufflinks. Simply take your loved one’s signature to your local jeweler and he or she will do the rest!

Frame handwriting from virtually any document (think car title or passport) and enjoy it as a piece of art. Doing so not only gives you the chance to sort through these items, it provides a terrific conversation starter whenever guests come to visit.

What does your loved one’s handwriting reveal? Handwriting expert Ruth Brayer, founder of Brayer Handwriting International, examined a letter my father wrote me decades ago. Ruth is a court-qualified handwriting expert who reviews patterns in handwriting to determine a writer’s behavioral and emotional profile. Ruth’s analysis provided numerous observations about my dad: he was “decisive,” “independent,” and had a “take charge” personality. He was “creative,” “driven,” and a “fast-thinker.” My dad was a “non-conformist,” saw the “big picture,” and had “strong emotions.” These insights filled me with joy and confirmed what I already knew about my father. For individuals who were very young when they lost a loved one, I imagine her observations could be absolutely revelatory.

Want even more ideas to keep your loved one’s memory alive? I offer 85 fun and meaningful strategies in my book, Passed and Present: Keeping Memories of Loved Ones Alive. And if you’ve developed a creative way to use your loved one’s handwriting, please let me know by emailing me at . You can also share your idea on my Facebook page. Love to hear from you!