Author Topic: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column  (Read 2412 times)

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jaxsue

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Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« on: March 15, 2013, 02:07:36 PM »
I tried to find this online so I could post it, but I can't find it on Heloise's site. The scenario is this: a mom whose son just had a birthday party took a picture of her son holding a sign that said, "thank you," then printed cards with the picture. She mailed the cards - with no text - to the attendees.

I'm conflicted about this. Yes, nowadays we are happy - sometimes even a bit shocked - to receive TY notes. And, to be fair, if a person says TY in person they're good as far I'm concerned (with the exception of wedding gift - more formal rules). But let's say the birthday boy didn't open gifts at the party, so didn't have the opportunity to say TY. I have attended several kids' parties where this was the case. (This is guessing - I have no idea about the details with this LW). That detail, which is left out, would be nice.

It reminds me of the pre-written TY note we got from a neighbor who'd graduated high school. We gave him a card and cash gift. We got a form letter TY, with a few words written in blanks. It seemed....off.
If I'm too old school, I will accept that. I have loosened my definition of what is acceptable, FTR. This is not a hill-to-die-on situation. I just wondered what others thought of this.

QueenofAllThings

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2013, 02:12:35 PM »
Cute. Until you get to the no text part. I have been receiving thank you notes from my neighbor since she was three. Granted, they were initially illegible, but so what? Her mother was teaching her, and I found the scribbles and attempts at a signature charming.

The mother should have written a line or two if the child is too young to do so.

WillyNilly

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2013, 02:19:49 PM »
I agree, "cute. Until you get to the no text part."

If you are going to the trouble of printing and mailing the picture, a few seconds worth of either the parent writing "Timmy loves his new [whatever]!" or having the kid scribble or draw something is not much to ask. Without writing anything its barely a step above just buying pre-printed cards that say "thank you" and not writing anything - after all the photo is generic 9no name) so clearly its the same thing going to everyone. Whats the difference between a commercial generic card and a home made generic card? In these days of everyone having color printers and photo software at home, the answer is: nothing.

daen

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #3 on: March 15, 2013, 02:37:47 PM »
My initial thought was that the mother took pictures of Birthday Child holding the thank you sign next to the appropriate gift.
I'd be more inclined to give them a pass on that than on a semi-generic child-with-sign card - but I still think some other kind of text is necessary. A signature, a scribble by a preliterate child, a "thank you for the dump truck" - whatever is age-appropriate.

Lynn2000

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #4 on: March 15, 2013, 03:33:17 PM »
I'm so torn on TY notes sometimes. I really believe they need to be individualized. A photo of the kid with the dump truck Aunt Mary gave him on the card sent to Aunt Mary; but a photo with the Lego set Cousin Bill gave him on the card sent to Cousin Bill. That would be cute. And no one would have to write anything, if the kid was holding a sign that said "thank you." I mean, personally I would do a bit more and write the more traditional, "Aunt Mary, thank you for the dump truck..." But at least the photo shows they were actually thinking of Aunt Mary, specifically.

But to send the same photo to every person, with no additional personalization--that just rubs me the wrong way. My cousin used to do that for her child's birthday parties. The card they made on their computer had pictures from the party, but as far as I know everyone got the exact same card. They weren't photos of the child opening the gift from ME, or pictures of ME at the party. And they just printed "Thank you" inside and I think didn't even write my name on the card anywhere. So basically they printed out a bunch of identical invitations, and the only time they thought about any individual was when they addressed the envelope.

But on the other hand, by the time I finish listing my "requirements" for a TY note, I start to feel like an ungrateful whiner.  :-\
~Lynn2000

sammycat

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #5 on: March 15, 2013, 08:37:07 PM »
I'm so torn on TY notes sometimes. I really believe they need to be individualized. A photo of the kid with the dump truck Aunt Mary gave him on the card sent to Aunt Mary; but a photo with the Lego set Cousin Bill gave him on the card sent to Cousin Bill. /

I agree.

Over the years I've done a few variations on that.

1. A thank you card with a group photo of the guests (and birthday boy) on the front, with a personalised message inside with reference to the specific present from that person.
2. Photo of DS and the guest together on the front, with a personal message referencing the present inside.
3. Photo of DS and the guest together, with the present, and the personalised message inside.

A generic 'thank you' without text or personalisation almost seems ruder than not saying thank you at all.

All that said, as a guest at a birthday party, so long as there is a verbal genuine 'thank you' said at the time of the gift exchange I'm not really fussed on a written note later on.

Roe

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #6 on: March 16, 2013, 09:08:44 AM »
TBH, I don't like handwritten thank you notes. (yeah, I know...I know)  Thing is, I hate clutter and I always feel a responsibility to keep the notecard even though once I've read it, I'm done with it.

A picture, however, I would most definitely keep!  And not feel like I "had" to because I'd "want" to keep it. So for me, I wouldn't find anything rude in what the mom did.  I'd appreciate a picture and not think twice about it.

I also recognize that I'm in the minority here on eHell.  :)

jaxsue

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #7 on: March 16, 2013, 01:26:35 PM »
TBH, I don't like handwritten thank you notes. (yeah, I know...I know)  Thing is, I hate clutter and I always feel a responsibility to keep the notecard even though once I've read it, I'm done with it.

A picture, however, I would most definitely keep!  And not feel like I "had" to because I'd "want" to keep it. So for me, I wouldn't find anything rude in what the mom did.  I'd appreciate a picture and not think twice about it.

I also recognize that I'm in the minority here on eHell.  :)

Per the bolded: I understand. I used to feel guilty about throwing away TY notes. It took a lot for me to read it, think "how nice of them," then throw it away. But it's okay. It's not an heirloom (that's what I tell myself!).
I am okay if there is a verbal TY. What does bug me is what happens with a lot of my nieces/nephews. I'll send a nice gift and will hear nothing back. We're on FB together. If they'd even send a one-line TY PM on FB I'd be happy.   :o

GrammarNerd

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #8 on: March 16, 2013, 10:19:03 PM »
I think there should be some kind of customization of the thank you.  Like other PPs said, if the birthday child had the gift item in the picture, that would be a start. 

And really, in the example in the OP, what does that teach the child who received the gifts?  Too often, I see kids who are entitled to the point where they think they don't have to show any appreciation for something that they're given.  Being grateful for what you've been given is a skill or life lesson that must be learned just like other things.  So if a kid holds up a sign that says 'thank you' and gets his picture taken, is he really learning to express gratitude in any way to the giver?  Not really, IMO. 

I think if the child is old enough to have a birthday party (kid party with friends, that is), he's old enough to at least sign his name to a generic thank you.  I remember using a fill in the blanks type of TY note when my son was just learning how to write.  I wrote out what he needed to put in the blank, and he wrote it.  And even when he received a thank you like that, it was mail (he loved to get mail!) and it let him know that his friend appreciated his present. 

gramma dishes

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #9 on: March 16, 2013, 10:26:57 PM »
When my youngest was in Kindergarten we had a Polaroid camera and the child who gave her the gift sat next to her on the couch while she unwrapped it.   As she began seeing what it was I snapped off two pictures one right after the other showing my daughter, the guest and the gift.  One stayed in my daughter's memory box and the other went home with the child.  She also verbally thanked each child immediately as she unwrapped the gift. 

carol1412

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Re: Thank You Note idea for 3/15/13 Hints from Heloise Column
« Reply #10 on: March 19, 2013, 04:02:13 PM »
I've seen this done for weddings several times. The TY notes have always had a few lines handwritten, though, thanking me for coming and for whatever gift I've given. I think it's cute and I have kept them as memories of the day and the happy couple. Never seen it done as a birthday thank you. Not yet, anyway.