Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Extravagant Gifts, Simple Thanks

As I mentioned earlier, we did get our thank-you notes in the mail before Christmas vacation, nine weeks after our wedding, which is hardly a heroic feat, especially considering how urgent most thank-you notes seem. A boss I once had would get quite angry at late thank-you letters, and I remember her saying, "A same-day acknowledgment is so important and so possible!" Possible, yes - but important?

The spirit of her complaint is true: gratitude should be delivered with a sense of urgency.

We sent a little more than 50 thank-you notes. We did not send Christmas cards this year, because that would have been a ludicrous amount of correspondence all at once, and we could throw a little "Merry Christmas" into each note. It took just two weeknights to get them all written and addressed and in the mail.

Here were some things that helped:

1. Keeping it simple. We did not order custom stationery. In fact, we did not use pre-printed thank-you cards. We used these simple, recycled white note cards. The only real aesthetic call-back to our wedding was the return-address rubber stamp that was produced for our invitations. We added a little holiday cheer with this year's Nutcracker postage stamps. The result was, I think, both casual and elegant if (as one friend has said) a bit "Emily Post-ish."

2. Fool-proof writing instructions. I'm sure you've all read and internalized these tips from Leslie Harpold, which are so utterly perfect as to require neither discussion nor description. I remember finding this little article to be heart-warming when I first read it, and Harpold's passing makes it not just a resource but a treasure.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

that part about alluding to the past then present was awesome! i was reading along, all smug, noting bullet by bullet how i am the bomb when, bang, i learned something new!