Few know the power of this old world treasure, the thank-you note. It costs the sender little but gives his/her host great pleasure.
We received my Great-Uncle’s Lebkuchen from Switzerland in early September but had to wait until December to see it, then until we all wrote thank-you notes to try some. It was stale but still we loved it. When I found it fresh years later in a specialty market the flavors were incredible. It wasn’t stale and I didn’t have to send a thank-you note!
But we had to write and post a thank-you note to Switzerland before we could open the treasure, and that it was, a treasure.
We recently received a very nice thank-you note from a young guest and can only guess that it was initially not of his own volition. There are certain social constraints for adults, parents and their children. The note was kind and I know he had a good, educational time with us.
My sisters and brother and I always had to write a thank-you note for everything. One time my brother was told to do so and addressed an empty envelope in protest. Unfortunately that was to our aunt, his godmother. Things haven’t been the same between them since that time.
After many years of walking with a dictionary on my head and learning what fork or spoon goes where on a table, I do appreciate my upbringing, and higher education, and that I was taught the proper way to do things.
I do believe that families should try to eat dinner together every night and talk about their days. Manners are essential to teach children how to deal with adults first as a child then as an adult. Manners must be taught with other age-appropriate childhood needs from their parents.
We always had to ask to be excused from the table so I’d ask and Dad would say “why would you want to put a monkey in the oven” and I’d say, “may I be excused” and he’d say something just as ridiculous. Then the neighborhood kids would call on him to play ball and his rule was that everyone, no matter age or gender, was included. So my sister and I got to play every game.
So, today I’m giving another thank-you to my Dad for being a stand-up guy and being sometimes too strict as we grew up. I was mitering at age seven, running a Toro riding mower at age eight. My husband thinks who knows what, except that my enchanted forest is something I want to see again.
Kids, write your thank-you notes. No-one does anymore so you’ll be special, in a good way. Your teacher, your mentor, your relatives, just say thanks for everything they do for you. Cheers, Dee