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September 12, 2011

The Art of Saying Thank You

I grew up in the days before email and flat-rate calling. When I was a little girl, I used to write letters to my aunt and my grandmother, and they’d write letters back to me.

Even in college, after I got my first email account, I still liked writing letters…and getting them, of course.

There’s just something about a hand-written note – particularly in today’s world of constant connection – that is really special.

I don’t drop as many “hi, how’ya doin’” notes in the mail these days as I’d like, but I try really hard to at least keep up with birthday cards and thank-you notes. (If I’m being truly fair, I’d say I have an 80% accuracy over the past couple of years…not super-great…but I try…)

Since the girls started doing “artwork” on a regular basis, about a year ago, I’ve incorporated a lot of their scribbles and paint smears in my cards.

At some point in the last six or eight months, they started to understand we were making a card for Aunt GG for her birthday, or a thank-you card to send to Grandma Linda.

Still, their scribbles were very “abstract”, and I’m not sure how much of a correlation they were making between a new toy and what they were “drawing”.

As I’ve been working up my nerve to let the girls use glue, I thought of a very simple project to make thank-you notes for two books that Aunt Alison gave the girls during our Labor Day visit.

I helped the girls choose a color for the background of their cards – turquoise for the ocean, and bright green for the grass. I then cut simple shapes from construction paper and let the girls glue them to their papers (under close supervision, and with Mommy taking many deep, cleansing breaths!).

The girls definitely “got” what we were doing…they’re still talking about the cards we made. They got to slip the cards into the envelope, one applied the stamp, and one put on the return address label. And the icing on the cake? A walk to the mailbox, of course.

And one day, when the girls can actually write their own thank-you notes, maybe I’ll have more time for those “hi, how’ya doin’” notes again.


Charlene said...

I LOVE it! Those came out so stinkin' cute!!

And just remember glue washes off ;) you could try glue sticks (if you didn't already). They are much easier for little ones to control and way less messy.

Just Another Mom of Twins said...

Morning! What a great idea...the cards look AWESOME! Good for them AND good for you for teaching them this important way of saying "thank you".

I am a huge "Thank You" and "Birthday, Special Occasion" card sender. The art of letter writing may be dying around me but I also plan to teach my children the importance of this life-skill, espcially taking the time to thank someone for doing something special for them.

Have a great Monday!

Marcia (123 blog) said...

Your cards are SO CUTE!

LOVE them.

As you know, I'm about a 10 on the strict scale of saying thank-you so I won't go into that all here.

Andrea said...

I heard the other day that they are starting to slow done the teaching of cursive writing! I hope that it is just a rumor! I mean come on they still have to learn to write, right?!?!

Love the girls art projects!!

Hope your Monday has been good! :)

Barbara Manatee said...

Super cute!!

I used to be soooo good about sending cards and random "thinking of you" notes and cards...but these days I barely have time to make it to the grocery store...let alone wander Hallmark searching for the perfect card.

I love sending and getting mail. I still always want to be the one to check the mailbox when I get home. I'm so weird! ha!

Holly Ann said...

Oh, those are so cute!! As for the glue thing, I usually help my kids put all the glue dots they'll need on the paper first, then let them attach little foam or paper shapes. That makes the gluing a little less stressful. :)

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 said...

Adorable and you did so great with your deep breaths!!! I'm totally stealing this idea (if Matthew ever decides to actually pick up a crayon rather than telling me where to put each color...little dictator).

reanbean said...

What beautiful cards you all made!

Buba and Tiny just did their first solo gluing project at home this week. Tiny really, really, really wanted to us glue (inspired by a story she's loving these days) and I needed them to be busy so I could make lunch. I gave the kids some supplies, including two bottles of glue, and after a brief tutorial, walked away and just let them have at it. It was definitely messy, but they had so much fun, and the clean up wasn't too terrible. I'm sure we'll do it again in the near future. (Of course, 3.5 is a completely different ball game than 2.5. I definitely wasn't ready for solo gluing at 2.5.)