While in many ways I think of myself as a gifted (or at least passably creative) writer, there are areas I still struggle to churn out something I’m comfortable associating with myself.  Sure, I agonize over employment-related correspondence, but with Mr. Apron as my proof-reader, I’m more confident.  Over the years, I’ve learned that less is more.  I’ve managed to score myself three big-girl jobs, so I must be doing something well.

In contrast to my cover letters, my thank-you notes have shown no growth or maturity since my Bat Mitzvah.  If they made fill-in-the-blank thank-yous with adult themes (no, not “adult” themes, just without the crayon scribbles and Thomas the Train), I’d use them. As it is my thank you notes still sound stilted and awkward.  This often happens because I am a crap lier.  And as gifts are usually from family members I haven’t seen in a decade, they are usually inappropriate and I have to lie. 

Here, then, is my standard thank you note format:

Dear Aunt Guzzy,

Thank you so much for remembering me on my birthday/anniversary/Hanukkah/Duwali.  I love the new fleece frog pajamas/oversize martini glasses/keychain flashlight/bucket of paper clips.  I will think of you fondly as I use them to donate to Goodwill/regift to someone else/feel guilty and keep them in my closet.  Thank you for thinking of me on my special day.

Love,

Mrs. Apron

My aunt sends me frog pajamas, alternating with alcohol accessories, every year.  She either thinks I am still 12 years old (when I was last into frogs), or a huge lush (we do not drink anything stronger than Manischewitz, twice a year).  My uncle, on the other hand, alternates between expensive, gorgeous, presents appropriate to my taste (sewing machine, printer, Birkenstocks, and a sumptuous leather coat), or hideously inappropriate, awkward, ill-fitting, clothing.  He is a hoarder and has filled up his house with Betamaxx porn tapes, clocks, National Geographics, and camera parts, so now he has taken to projectile hoarding on my mother, sister, and me.  He sends huge boxes of granny clothing from top old-lady designers, most of which ends up at Salvation Army. 

Still, thank you notes are important in my family.  Forget one, and you could be off the list, or, worse, be relegated to receiving donations in your honor to Save the Children, WWF, or United Way.

Imagine that thank you note.

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