Congratulations Messages to Write in a Card

Updated on May 17, 2016
Blake Flannery profile image

Blake started out scribbling in cards over 30 years ago. Though his handwriting is mostly unchanged, the content has improved.

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Congratulations messages allow us to celebrate another person's accomplishment and sometimes, the bigger the accomplishment, the harder it is to write one.

A wedding, baby, engagement, retirement, new house, new job, and graduation are all important occasions that merit a thoughtful card. Luckily, below, you will find examples of all of these.

But first, here are a few general examples:

  • "You are amazing. We knew you had it in you. You were a sure thing in our book, even if your accomplishments feel like a surprise to you."
  • "Congratulations! I'm only surprised at the fact that you're still able to surprise me with your accomplishments."
  • "With so much excitement and happiness for you, congratulations!"

Quotes

Here's a list of quotes to add oomph to your card:

"I think a hero is an ordinary individual who finds strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles." –Christopher Reeves

"Congratulations. I knew the record would stand until it was broken." –Yogi Berra

"Victory is won not in miles but in inches. Win a little now, hold your ground, and later, win a little more." –Louis L'Amour

“Your journey has molded you for your greater good, and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don't think you've lost time. There is no short-cutting to life. It took each and every situation you have encountered to bring you to the now. And now is right on time.” –Asha Tyson

"The horizon leans forward, offering you space to place new steps of change." –Maya Angelou

“There is an easy way to silence your critics; just try to do what they say you can't do. If they are still not content, do more of it! Keep doing it until you become a master. Then look around, and you will see fewer critics and many compliments!” –Israelmore Ayivor

"It is often hard to distinguish between the hard knocks in life and those of opportunity." –Frederick Phillips

"Success is never final. Failure is never fatal. Courage is what counts." –Sir Winston Churchill

“Congratulations!
Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places!
You're off and away!” –Dr. Seuss

"Victory is sweetest when you've known defeat." –Malcolm S. Forbes

"Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity." –Darrel Royal

“Only those who attempt the absurd can achieve the impossible.” –Albert Einstein

"There is no one magic move or secret that creates victory, but lots of little items that when added together can make you victorious." –Bill Toomey

“Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” –Robert F. Kennedy

“To accomplish great things we must not only act, but also dream; not only plan, but also believe." –Anatole France

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Words and Phrases

Sometimes one word or short phrase is enough to say what you want to say. Here are some super short ways to congratulate someone. These work for SMS messages, social network sites, or group cards when there isn't much room to write:

  • You should be proud of yourself.
  • Hooray for you! I knew you had it in you.
  • You're a genius!
  • You've proven yourself.
  • Your talent amazes me.
  • You deserve a high five.
  • You are right on target.
  • You've come a long way.
  • You make a difference.
  • You're exceptional.
  • Awesome!
  • You are a great example.
  • Fantastic!
  • You're a trooper.
  • Superb!
  • You couldn't be any better.
  • I'm so proud and glad to know you.
  • Well done!
  • You are out of sight!

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For Graduation

When choosing a graduation card message, you may want to include a saying about the importance of education, make a joke, or just recognize the accomplishment.

Whatever you decide to do, you should make your message stand out from the others that the graduate will receive, by being personal and original. Here are some examples.

  1. All good things must come to an end, except your education which you will continue the rest of your life. Congratulations on a good start!
  2. You did it! Congratulations on your graduation. Let's celebrate.
  3. I am confident that your education will be an important key to unlocking doors to your potential. You are already a success.
  4. Congratulations on your graduation. Here's a few bucks to get you started paying back your student loans.

If you want to joke about money, it's a good idea to add a few bucks in the card for good measure. It will make your joke funnier, too.

And using these quotes–word for word or for inspiration–will add oomph to your message:

"The fireworks begin today. Each diploma is a lighted match. Each one of you is a fuse."–Edward Koch

"You are educated. Your certification is in your degree. You may think of it as the ticket to the good life. Let me ask you to think of an alternative. Think of it as your ticket to change the world." –Tom Brokaw

"There is a good reason they call these ceremonies 'commencement exercises.' Graduation is not the end; it's the beginning." –Orrin Hatch

"All real education is the architecture of the soul." –William Bennett

"Wherever you go, go with all your heart." –Confucius

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For a Wedding

Writing messages for couples getting engaged or married can be a challenge. These tend to be hopeful and future-oriented. Sometimes they are advice giving messages. Ridiculous jokes as well as inspirational Bible verses can easily fit. Here are some examples:

  • You two are choosing to do something that no one understands fully. And yet it seems so natural, especially with a couple like you two. Congratulations on your engagement/wedding.
  • Congratulations on your new titles of bride, groom, husband, and wife. We are wishing you the best in any other titles you will pick up in the future.
  • Finding someone to share your life with is an awesome thing. Congratulations to both of you.

And here are some quotes to inspire or include in your card:

"Chains do not hold a marriage together. It is threads, hundreds of tiny threads which sew people together through the years." –Simone Signoret

"Happy is the man who finds a true friend, and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife." –Franz Schubert

"The highest happiness on earth is marriage." –William Lyon Phelps

"There is nothing nobler or more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife, confounding their enemies and delighting their friends." –Homer

"A long marriage is two people trying to dance a duet and two solos at the same time." –Anne Taylor Fleming

"A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person." –Mignon McLaughlin

"My most brilliant achievement was my ability to be able to persuade my wife to marry me." –Winston Churchill

"When marrying, ask yourself this question: Do you believe that you will be able to converse well with this person into your old age? Everything else in marriage is transitory." –Friedrich Nietzsche

"The sum which two married people owe to one another defies calculation. It is an infinite debt, which can only be discharged through eternity." –Goethe

"A good husband makes a good wife." –John Florio

And a poem by Ogden Nash:

"To keep your marriage brimming

With love in the loving cup

Whenever you're wrong, admit it;

Whenever you're right, shut up."

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For a New Baby

When someone is having a baby, they are getting a gift and at the same time taking on a lot of responsibility. Expecting a baby is an exciting and scary time, so the baby card message should both encourage and congratulate the person. Here are some examples:

  1. May you be given joy with your new baby's arrival. May you also be given the patience and energy that you will need. Congratulations!
  2. Congratulations on your new one coming. We are looking forward to meeting the newest member of the family.
  3. Wishing you a healthy and happy pregnancy, delivery, and baby.
  4. Just as you are being blessed with a baby, your baby will be blessed to have you as a parent. Congratulations.

Here are some quotations to emphasize or inspire the message of your card:

  • "Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body." –Elizabeth Stone
  • "Aside from new babies, new mothers must be the most beautiful creatures on earth." –Terri Guillemets
  • “I love how babies look like old people. I saw a baby the other day that looked exactly like my grandpa, only taller.” –Jarod Kintz
  • “Calvin: Dad where do babies come from?
    Dad: Well Calvin, you simply go to Sears, buy the kit and follow the assembly instructions.
    Calvin: I came from Sears?
    Dad: No you were a blue-light special at K-Mart - almost as good and a lot cheaper!”
    Bill Watterson
  • "If your baby is beautiful and perfect, never cries or fusses, sleeps on schedule and burps on demand, an angel all the time, you’re the grandma." –Theresa Bloomingdale
  • "A baby will make love stronger, days shorter, nights longer, bank balance smaller, home happier, clothes dirty, the past forgotten, and the future worth living for." –Anonymous
  • "Loving a baby is a circular business, a kind of feedback loop. The more you give the more you get and the more you get the more you feel like giving." –Penelope Leach

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For a New House

When someone buys a house for the first time or moves into a new one, it's a good idea to get them a card congratulating them on their purchase. Congratulations can be given at an open house or mailed to the new address. Here are some examples:

  1. "I am hoping your new house transitions quickly and smoothly into your 'home sweet home."
  2. "Congratulations on your new house. We are glad to see you blessed with good things."
  3. "A new house is an exciting change. Congratulations!"

Here are some quotes to include or inspire:

"Home is where the heart is." –Pliny the Elder

"A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body." –Benjamin Franklin

"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to take you in." –Robert Frost

"It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home." –Anonymous

"He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home." –Goethe

For a New Job

Getting a new job is definitely an occasion to celebrate. Feelings of pride, excitement, uncertainty, and gratitude are common with the newly employed. Finding the right words to go along with these feelings is the key to writing your card. Here are a couple examples and link to many more:

  1. "Finally, your skills and talents have been recognized by a smart employer. We are wishing you the best as you start your new position. We will pray for you to learn everything you need to learn quickly and fully."
  2. "You are a lucky dog for getting such a great job. Congratulations, and keep up the good hard work now that you've gotten the job, and you'll be likely to keep it."

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For Retirement

Retiring is one of the major milestones of life. Although it is a time of joy, it can be as scary as graduating college was, with the proverbial "Now what?" to answer. Use the retirement card as an opportunity to congratulate the retiree and at the same time assure him or her that there is plenty of great stuff to do during retirement. Here are some examples:

  1. Congratulations on your retirement. You have earned it!
  2. You spent many years working to provide for what was most important to you: your retirement. Oops, I meant your kids.
  3. Who retires at your young age? Is that even legal? Congratulations.
  4. If you ever feel lost without having 60 hours of work to do each week, feel free to come over and help me. I have plenty you can do.

*If you want to write a congratulations card message for someone who gets a new job, then just write the opposite of a great retirement card message. Just kidding.

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