Maybe it feels like an old fashioned tradition. Maybe you just don’t have time. After all, thank you notes are tedious, so you shove them aside, right?
Thank you notes are actually really, really important.
The main reason to send a thank you note is so that people don’t call you rude and ungrateful behind closed doors. “Margaret hasn’t had the time yet to send out thank you notes, bless her heart.” Ladies? That’s not a compliment. If all of those guests made it a priority to buy you a present and/or attend in your honor, sending them a little note of gratitude is a pretty basic common courtesy.
And getting them out in a timely manner is a big part of that.
As a general rule, two-three weeks is an appropriate turnaround time. I know that old etiquette law gave people six months to drop them in the mail, but that rule no longer applies. Our world moves too quickly – with one quick of a button a registry gift is in the mail. There have been times I’ve wondered if my gift even arrived when I didn’t receive acknowledgement of it.
There is nothing more awkward than having to send a note to a friend like:
I had such a great time at your wedding! You looked amazing. How was the honeymoon? I can’t wait to hear all about it! Let’s grab lunch soon. Also, quick question: I just wanted to make sure that you received that vase I sent you? I am worried that it got lost in the mail and I didn’t want you to think that I didn’t give you a present! Anyway, let me know!
Of course things happen, like the baby coming early or the thank you note getting lost in the mail. But to avoid any awkward conversations, just listen to me and send a thank you note early and often. And for the love of all things beautiful, please don’t send a text message or an email instead! Those forms of electronic communication should only be used for birthday gifts or a follow up from a fun dinner out. Going the extra mile and sending a note makes such a big difference. So why not?
Want to be even more of a superstar?
If someone hosts an event for you – whether it’s a baby shower or a wedding shower or even as simple as something like a tea, it is an extra special gesture to provide the host with a small gift of some sort. It doesn’t have to be anything major, but it shows your hostesses that you’re grateful for their efforts. This could be as simple as a small bouquet of flowers or a box of chocolates. Just something to think about!
And, ladies? Good luck out there.
*I would like to congratulate my friends and family for being amazing at thank you notes. I save them all. Keep sending me notes and I will keep sending you gifts.