Each year I look forward to the slightly slower pace of the week between Christmas and New Year's. I finally get time to sit down and write thank you notes to friends and relatives for gifts received, meals shared, or cherished time as a guest in their homes over the holiday season.
I'm still a believer in the handwritten thank you note delivered via snail mail. But more often than not I feel like I'm part of a growing minority of hold-outs that still view handwritten notes as more personal than email or texting.
Maybe it's the way I was brought up or a reluctance to let go of old traditions, but I like receiving handwritten thank you notes. I appreciate the time someone spent to write me a short note, address the envelope, place a stamp on it, and drop it in the mail. There's an intimacy associated with the whole process that can't be easily replicated in email. When you get a handwritten note, you know it's meant for you and hasn't been cut and pasted, and blasted to the masses.
I think that when someone takes the time to select a gift for you, prepare a meal, or entertain you in their home, it's important to acknowledge that by putting some time and effort into how you thank them.
I have one friend who claims I'm confusing level of difficulty with level of gratitude. Her perspective is that it's better to send a timely thank you via email than a handwritten note that may sit on her desk for weeks before she gets around to buying stamps.
What's your opinion? Will technology eventually render the handwritten note a thing of the past?
Editor's Note: With 2011 just around the corner, we're going to take a short break from posting, but will be back next year. Please have a wonderful, festive, and safe New Year's celebration!