Sunday, November 20, 2011

30 Days of Thankful: Day 20--Thank You Notes

Okay, so this is a good time to address thank you note etiquette or lack there of. Before I was married, I thought it was totally amazing that my sister-in-law sent Thank You notes for every gift on every occasion. I still stand in awe of the fact that she not only sends them for herself but creates and sends them for everything the nephews receive as well. Dana, of course is the most amazing influence in my life, so I took up (and dropped a few times) the habit as well.

I began my adventure in mothering by requiring Darling Daughter to write thank-yous to her friends and family before she played with or used her new found treasures. That only lasted one birthday and one Christmas before she totally refused to do it anymore. I tried buying her fancy stationary with her monogram on it. I even took a drawing she created, scanned it and created post cards one birthday; she filled them out and never gave them to their recipients, stating, "My friends think it's weird that you make me do this!" Me? Weird? That's just crazy!

What ideas do you have for Thank You notes? I have posted Ms. Post's (SHE HAS HER OWN WEB SITE...TOTALLY COOL! AND I WOULD TOTALLY DIG GETTING THE 18TH EDITION OF HER BOOK FOR CHRISTMAS!) advice below...I was surprised at how wrong I have been about this. I apologize to my mother for misguiding her about condolences, and, Sosie, you only have three months, not a year. Oops!

Etiquette According to Emily Post:
It’s never wrong to send a written thank-you, and people always appreciate getting “thanks” in writing. Why? Handwritten notes are warmer and more special than other forms of thank-yous. The rule of thumb is that you should send a written note any time you receive a gift (even a ‘thank you’ gift) and the giver wasn’t there to thank in person. But notes are not always necessary. If, for example, the gift is from a close friend or relative (and it’s not a wedding gift) you can email or call instead if you prefer. Below are some other note-writing guidelines:

Shower gifts--Even though the gift giver attended the shower in your honor and you had a chance to say thanks for her gift, you should still send a written note.

Wedding gifts--Each wedding gift should be acknowledged with a written note within three months of receipt of the gift. It’s best to write the notes as soon as possible after gifts arrive, however. Write a note even if you have thanked the giver in person.

Congratulatory gifts or cards--Anyone who sends a present, or a card with a personally written message, should receive a note in return.

Gifts received when sick--Thank-you notes should be written as soon as the patient feels well enough—or a friend or relative can write the notes. It’s okay to call close friends rather than write.

Condolence notes or gifts--Everyone who has sent a personal note, flowers or a donation should get a written thank-you. A close friend or relative can write the notes on the recipient’s behalf.

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