Post # 1
So I see lots of complaining posts about thank you cards on the bee lately, whether they took too long or weren’t personal enough or didn’t have enough written or whatever, and it is stressing me out!
I’ve posted before about how my dog totally screwed up our thank you cards (jumped on the table and knocked a glass of pop on top of my completed pile). So I started all over, and since I now have our wedding pics I’m re-doing them with cards I had made using the pictures – I’m hoping people will assume we were waiting for our pictures and that’s why the cards took a bit longer. But I’ve seen bees like freaking out when the Thank You card isn’t in their mailbox ASAP after a wedding, and we’re like 2 months after, so I’m kinda afraid everyone will hate us. I’ve debating writing in everyone’s cards that we’re sorry for the delay with an explanation, but that seems like overkill. I’m working on the new batch as fast as I can but it’s hard when we both work like 60 hours a week.
Also, it’s so freaking hard to write thank you cards! Especially with relatives I’m not very close to, I always feel like I’m being repetitive. What kind of things do you guys usually write in your cards? Obviously thanking them for coming and for the gift, but since all the gifts were money it’s hard to elaborate the way I can with a physical gift, like cooking stuff I can talk about looking forward to making dinner on, really needed those pans, whatever. But I’m seriously hitting a mental block here – so seriously, what do you ladies write in your Thank You cards?
Post # 3
Not sure this is helpful but can you write something like:
Dear Aunt Sue,
It was lovely seeing you at the wedding! I’m so glad we had a some time to visit/chat/dance together/etc. I also wanted to thank you for your very generous gift of $100. Mr. Courtney and I are planning on using it for a European tour/house down payment/to buy our flatware. We have so been looking forward to visiting Italy/owning our own home/owning new silverware and appreciate that we can now do so. Once again, thanks for being part of our special day.
Mr. Courtney and Mrs. Courtney
Maybe a little bit formal?
Post # 4
@CMSnails: It’s along what i’ve been writing, I guess I feel awkward writing about what we’re using the money for because some of our relatives would most definitely say our 50″ plasma TV with surround sound and his Gibson Les Paul are a waste of money, haha…but I suppose I can always tell those relatives about our new lamp or something, lol. The trip one is a good idea, maybe I’ll mention that we used some on our honeymoon, we went to Disney and I could go on about that forever! haha
Post # 5
CMSnails has it right. When it’s a monetary gift, it’s generally nice to tell people what you’re going to use the money for, and to think about the sort of things people would want you to spend the money on (I have family members who would love that it allowed us to do something fun on our honeymoon, but then I have family members who would be horrified if it didn’t go to something that would last forever like a down payment on a house or silver or something).
You can use this as an opportunity to show some of your personality to the relatives you barely know; take it as a challenge to introduce yourself to them in a way that makes it sound like you’re just giving them status updates. “Husband and I love making pasta on Saturday nights ever since we took a cooking class together, and your generous gift of $X was just perfect for a lovely set of pasta dishes/cookbook. We would love to serve you spaghetti bolognese in them when you come to visit us!” They may never be able to visit you, but thank-you notes are about relationships as well as gratitude, and it’s a good chance to build bridges to a closer relationship in the future.
As a side note, I ended up not being able to send out thank-you notes until after I got divorced. That was awkward. My Mother-In-Law and SIL threw them out, along with my list of who gave us what, the wedding cards, and my back-up copy of the list. I had to call my family after months of trying to find my original disconnected scribbles, but those were well-hidden. I took the blame so that it wouldn’t reflect poorly on my in-laws and new husband, and really if I’d been smart I would’ve kept track on my computer anyway. It didn’t damage any relationships, people were pretty understanding. Don’t bother writing an explanation, just let it diffuse through other people. Tell your moms, tell your friends, in the “this is frustrating but kind of funny if it happened to someone else” story-telling way. No one’s going to notice if it’s 10-12 weeks instead of 8 weeks, and in five years no one will remember how long it took for the thank-you note to get there.
Post # 6
@HappierKate: Thank you! That was really helpful and does make me feel a bit better!
Post # 7
@Wonderstruck: I defintely think your timeline is reasonable. I think within 3-6 months post wedding is fine. I’d rather get them late than not. Thats my only concern.
Post # 8
Hmmm…good point about some relatives potentially not approving of how you spend the money.
I can relate in a way when it comes to Christmas money. Sometimes I use the Christmas money I recieve as a present on other people’s birthday presents. I could never write someone a thank-you note saying, “Hey Grandma! Your money made it possible for me to buy my sister a birthday gift this year!” so I think of ways I haven’t spent my money as wisely as I could have. In the end, I usually remember something (books I bought on a whim, a nice dinner I had out) and thank her for that instead. I figure that the gift money is comingled with the rest of my money so while I techincally didn’t spend Grandma’s money on those books, it’s close enough.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that while I don’t advocate outright lying, is there a splurge that you and your husband had recently that your relatives might approve of? Something special on the honeymoon? Or something you had to bite the bullet for like roof repairs?
Post # 9
I always say, “The money will definitely be put to great use!” That way they can’t judge. I just wrote a bunch of thank-you notes for a recent shower I had and it seems very repetitive to you because you are writing that many in a row. Just remember they will only be reading one so it won’t seem repetitive to them!