Monday, November 9, 2009

the art of gratitude

on several of my earlier posts i set a goal to send more snail mail (at least two per month) and i really get the opportunity this month to thank everyone for their awesome birthday thought and gifts. i loooove thank you notes. oddly, it was never really ingrained in me as a kid, but post college i worked for an amazing women as her personal assistant. i loved it and the best thing about the job (as strange as it seems) was that i wrote all of her thank you notes for her. the family had just moved to the town and were hosting and being hosted all the time. needless to say, she had a lot of thank you notes to send. i had to get creative with these and really explore many different ways of saying the same thing. it was fun and made me appreciate the art of a nice letter. post our july wedding, i wouldn't let my hubby touch the beautiful thank you notes we had our names printed on to use. i was the queen of gratitude and had all my notes out within the month! i just found so much joy in thanking everyone!
in this era of email and facebook and blogging, we are losing the art of a great handwritten letter! i think taking the time to write a letter and send it snail mail is so important! it brings you to a place of mindful thanksgiving.

some of my current cards/stationary in rotation:

when to send a thank you note?
  1. when you receive a gift (the obvious)
  2. when someone goes above and beyond for you
  3. if someone has you over for dinner
  4. when you stay overnight at someone's home
  5. if a person plays host and shows you around their city
  6. when someone throws a party or gathering for you
  7. anytime you think someone needs to know what a good friend they are!
my tips on writing the actual note
  • try to send it within 2 weeks of said event
  • send it snail mail (how fun is it to get something unexpected through the mail!!!)
  • use stationary (ahhhh stationary. i love it and could get lost in a paper store!!! more about that another time)
  1. express thanks for the gift or service (it's a good idea if you're thanking them for money to use another word such as "thank you for your generosity")
  2. i like then to express how, when, where i expect to use the gift or how the act of service affected my life or my favorite part of the event
  3. then - share something about your life, your day, or something you are looking forward to
  4. follow that by saying something about the past or future ("it was great seeing you" or "i look forward to seeing you soon")
  5. thank them again (in different language - get creative!) for the gift
let yourself enjoy and savor this mindful practice of thanksgiving. i know sometimes it's just another chore on the list, but it's one that can be filled with so much joy. happy writing!


  1. Hi! I just saw your post over at SITS and I just wanted to tell you that I really liked this entry. I used to send snail mail to my friends a lot but I've sorta been sidetracked lately. But because of your post, I think I just might drop off some overdue letters at the post office tommorow before work! So, thank YOU! =D

  2. Thank you notes are a lost art, as are letter in snail mail, and plain old handwriting. I applaude you for writing and sending yours out. Stopping by from SITS to say hi! ~Lanie

  3. I used to be the queen of notes. Then I had 5 sons. I still write them, but find them in my drawers 6 years later (they get them late, eventually). My daughter in law is queeen of notes now. She loves stationary. She's pulling me back in. However, I still send heartfelt, individual notes at the most important times!

    However, I hate receivingnotes that have Dear (Last name with S), and a general "gee thanks" - where's the heart in that? Or the true thanks!

  4. How funny this post has to do with Thanks?!?!

    I was just coming over to thank you for making my SIT's Day special!

    Blessings to you,

    Lana @