43 answers

How to Give a Very Belated Thank You

Well I hate to say it but I totally dropped the ball with thank you notes after my baby boy's shower. He is now nearly 20 months old and I just didn't get it done. I am so much better about the thoughtful touches lately but at that time, I was working full time, and moving into a house and having a baby so waaahh, poor me right??!! Anyway, I really have no excuse, except I didn't do it. Well my mother's boss and his wife have been family friends for years. I babysat their son when he was growing up etc. For my wedding they went all out and when I was late on those thank you cards my mom's boss mentioned that his wife was surprised that she hadn't rec'd a card yet. Needless to say, I got one right out to them and got the rest sent too. So anyway they actually got me a glider rocker for my son's birth and I just cherish it. I have told my mom's boss directly how much it means to me. My sister just passed away and when I was with them talking at her funeral I again told them both that the glider is wonderful and just said that it has been a tremendous blessing. But I still feel bad!! I know the wife is very sensitive about these things. Is there anything I can do to make sure they know how thankful I truly am, or is it too late and I should just let it go? Thanks in advance for any advice!!:)

1 mom found this helpful

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Morning J.;

O.K. view point from the "Old" man!! Just send them out
now with a little p.s. at the bottom>>sorry didn't send this sooner but life has be rather hectic!!
Most will understand, those that don't can go jump in the
river!! hahahaha
B. C.

2 moms found this helpful

It is never too late for a thank you note. I have received one or two very belated thank you cards from friends and family over the years, and I must say I found it very sweet.

1 mom found this helpful

I think it is never too late. Just say that this is the first time you have had to even take a breath since the baby has been born, but that is was important to you to let them know how much it meant to you. They will be just as glad to hear now .

More Answers

As everyone has said, It is NEVER to late to say thank you.
Make it cute, make it YOU. For your mothers boss you can sand them a picture of you and the baby in the chair and let them know how much you have enjoyed the chair. You can even make it cute by telling them you thought you'd give it a test drive to let them know how well it works, hence the explanation foe the lapse of time it took to get them a thank you card. The rest I am sure will be very surprised that you remembered what they gave you. Be thoughtful and meaningful. and while your at it send every one an individual thank you for anything you can think of...they will get the hint that you really do care and you really are grateful for their thoughts and gestures of love.
P>S> sorry for your loss.
God Bless

3 moms found this helpful

Hi J.,

I think most of us have been in this situation. I think it's never to late to send thank you notes. Just say "This is VERY belated, but"....then just write what you normally would. People will appreciate it.
Also, let your husband write half of them. That's what I did. It will save you time..it's his baby, too!

Good Luck!
D.

3 moms found this helpful

new moms are overwhelmed, sleep-deprived, and there is always at least ten more things to do. also realize new moms are ususally very sensitive to what others think of them, and are hard on themselves!!!! hey, you wrote the notes, with thanks from the bottom of your heart, and that is what they are supposed to be. forgive yourself and go give that 20 month old a squeeze!

3 moms found this helpful

Its never too late. People understand when they are super late, no explination needed.. Think of a cute little saying.

For some of our thank you notes, I would take a crazy photo of "Our life at that moment" our living room in total disaster zone and plop my daughter in the photo dressed all crazy with food all over her face. I just wrote "thank you for the baby blanket" we are still trying to get used to this parenthood thing. Another time I had a photo of her trying to pet the cat while holding a fruit pop.. The cat looked horrified.. Then on the back, I said, Sorry we have been a little crazy here, we have enjoyed the cute outfit you gave us 2 years ago. Really people called and told me they loved it and did not expect a card. They understood what was going on.. Let the guilt go and just do what you can..

People that get up in a wad are not worth the effort.. I am sure you give people a break when they do not send you a thank you note.. As a matter of fact, my SIL freaked cause our daughter did not send her a thank you note last year for a graduation gift...
She and her family have NEVER sent us a thank you note. I also told SIL I was no longer responsible for chasing down an 18 year old woman about thank you notes, so I forwarded the email directly to my daughter and cc'd her aunt..

2 moms found this helpful

My condolences on the death of your sister. Now write those notes. It is very late, but you owe them the notes, and it won't ever get any earlier. People will forgive you, stop beating yourself up.

2 moms found this helpful

that is a little late, but when I am late on thank you's I do a bit more. If you have a picture of you and your son in the glider you might send it in a letter. Instead of forming it as a strict thank you, send an informative letter. Then at the end mention what a lifesaver the gift had been, since it had been the only way to calm your son down at times. Hope that helps.

2 moms found this helpful

Morning J.;

O.K. view point from the "Old" man!! Just send them out
now with a little p.s. at the bottom>>sorry didn't send this sooner but life has be rather hectic!!
Most will understand, those that don't can go jump in the
river!! hahahaha
B. C.

2 moms found this helpful

I forgot to mention that I turned the thank-you cards into "first anniversary update" cards. That took some of the sting out of the belated part. Maybe your thank-yous can be updates on what your life has been over the last two years and how you've put their gifts to use in that time.
---------------------------------------------------------
Oh, boy, I had the same problem when I got married three years ago. We got married and had the reception three months later. You generally have a year to send out thank-yous, so I was having some special cards made. Well, I became primary caregiver for a terminally ill relative and got caught up in that, and my husband tried to oversee the card project but just couldn't. (I spent some time out of state with this.) Then, we moved into a house, and.... Anyway, I was just about two years getting those things out. I included a note to all that "Due to unforeseen circumstances...", a general explanation that my life had been put on hold for a bit.

I always like to say my thanks to them directly when I first get the gifts and send my notes once I've had a chance to enjoy them, so I can tell them how I'm using them and enjoying them. This way I can send a more meaningful thank-you.

2 moms found this helpful

I would send them a thank you card with a sincere apology as well as a thank you with a gift card to one of her (their) favorite places whether it is nails, restaurant, store which will show that extra effort was put forth. I wouldn't let it go if it means that much to her. She will appreciate it.

1 mom found this helpful

Just do it! Nothing elaborate, but hand written. If you can include a picture of you and the baby in the rocker or perhaps relate the song you sing to son or story you tell him. You MUST do this ... and you will feel a lot better.

1 mom found this helpful

It is never too late to express your gratitute. If you want to send a card saying how much you appreciate their gift, that even after all this time you still think of their generosity, then do so.

1 mom found this helpful

I had the same problem with the thank you cards from my wedding. I wrote them all up....and never mailed them. I finally decided that around the time I found them in a drawer, it was ridiculous to send them. Other members of my family have mailed out thank you cards much later, and I've understood. I'm sure your friends/family will understand too; some may enough get a good laugh (possibly).
I would say, mailed them to the people that you know would be hurt if they never got one...or personally deliver them and just mention, "here's the thank you card from the shower, I'm sorry it's so late. I really did appreciate your gift."
Hopefully these days no one will be offended; some people even send email thank you cards.
Whichever, you decide, I wish you the best of luck.

1 mom found this helpful

J.,

It is never to late for a heartlfelt thank you and if it would make you feel better adn not so stressed about the situation, just sedn her a nice note and tell her what you just told us, that there was a lot going on and you did not get notes of thanks out but that you think of them daily when you use your glider and you always appreciate them doing such wonderful things for you and your family and you cherish their friendship. And tell her you know a thank you at anytime is better late than never. It will, if nothing else, clear your mind and let her know where they stand with you. Hope this helps. - Rene'e C

1 mom found this helpful

If I were you, I would send out thank you notes even though they are late. Better late than never!

1 mom found this helpful

You can take a picture of your baby on the glider and send it with a card saying something like "Baby boy is enjoying the glider too!" and just say thank you all over again for the gift they gave that just keeps on giving. Hopefully your baby boy will enjoy sitting on the glider so you can have a smiley-face picture! Cute baby picture/s will "soften" the belated thank you. Hope this helps.

1 mom found this helpful

I LOVE the picture idea! Good one, Pam! They'll love that.

T.

1 mom found this helpful

It is never too late for a thank you note. I have received one or two very belated thank you cards from friends and family over the years, and I must say I found it very sweet.

1 mom found this helpful

Many people have already said different versions of what I am going to say but wanted to write and encourage you anyway...

It sounds like a lot has happened in your life in the last 2 years and it also seems that your Mom's boss and family have been supportive of you! Send the thank you because you will forever be beating yourself up for NOT sending it.

If you plan to send ALL the thank you's write/type up a brief note of what has been happening since the baby arrived - the move, your sister dying, etc.... put in that note how frustrated you are with yourself for not writing sooner and that you hope that people know that the un-timeliness of your thanks does not diminish your gratefulness! Just a sentence would convey that message. This way, your thank you note can focus on the individual gift and thanks.

Also, several people were saying YOU OWE the woman a thank you... thank you notes are proper and a part of common courtesy but you DON'T OWE people a thank you note! When I give a gift, it is not because I am expecting a THANK YOU or return gift... it is because I honestly want to give the gift. It does help if I mailed the gift to get an acknowledgement so that I know it arrived but I have more things to do than sit around waiting on thank you cards!

Let us know how it goes!
blessings,
stacy

1 mom found this helpful

let it go you've done your thank you's just do better next time

1 mom found this helpful

What do you do????YOU WRITE THE THANK YOU NOTES!!! even if they are 20 months late. I'm sure you can come up with someting witty, such as "I had no idea how time consuming a new baby can be, I thought all they did was eat and sleep". But, whatever you do, WRITE THE NOTES. At this late date you have had time to use all of the gifts and can say how useful they were and how much use you got out of the gift and how much you appreciate it. If you have given a baby gift since then, maybe it was a duplicate and you can mention to he giver that you like yours so much that you gave someone else one just like it.

1 mom found this helpful

You just send them out. I love Laurie A.'s ideas. I would send them and not be concern how long its been. Make a phrase or comment up than write the thank you's.

1 mom found this helpful

It's never to late to show your appreciation. I suggest a gift card to their favorite restaurant.

1 mom found this helpful

Sometimes these mistakes can just drive you crazy and you really need closure. It might be nice to send a card with a picture of you and your 20 month old sitting in the rocker reading a book and mention how special the rocker is and will be a family treasure passed down through generations...thank them again for a gift that has meant so much and has been part of many special memories these 20 months. They'll be touched..I PROMISE..
Pam H

1 mom found this helpful

It's never too late to send thank you notes. Just do it! You'll feel better after you've mailed them. There's something magical and satisfying about gratitude expressed in writing. Those individuals who took the time, care, and attention to pick out a special gift for your baby; to send the gift AND/or commit to coming to your baby shower... will no longer be wondering if you received it; if he/she (the sender) was forgotten; or if you sincerely appreciated the thoughtful gift.

Also, writing thank you notes is a wonderful example to set for your own children.

So very sorry to hear about your sister.

Good luck with motherhood!

J.

1 mom found this helpful

Don't just let it go. Twenty months later it is still bugging you - so you KNOW what you should do. Sit down, write those notes. All of them. If someone spent the time buying you a present (especially an expensive one like that glider) then they deserve the time that it takes you to write a note. Doesn't have to be elaborate. Doesn't need a long explanation. Something cute and quick- "Finally getting the hang of this mommy thing, sorry I'm late but I really do love..." WHATEVER! Just do it. You will feel better knowing you have done the right thing. They will be happy to be acknowledged. A small bit of etiquette will have been retained in a world sorely lacking in the daily graces. I don't think people that get upset are not worth it-EVERYONE likes to be remembered. And teach that baby boy as soon as he can hold a crayon in his hand that he needs to send "thank yous" also. Make it second nature- all of my kids know they need to send them out after Christmas and birthdays- or risk never getting anything again! Good luck. (I think once you sit down and start writing, you will be surprised how quickly it goes and how great you feel when you are done.)

1 mom found this helpful

Better late than never. Apologize profusely, and enclose a picture of your handsome son (for the boss's mom, put in a picture of you reading your son a story on the glider). Just do it and get it over with, or it will haunt you. You may even want to send out a family newsletter with all the thank-you notes so you can really get back on track with these people.

1 mom found this helpful

I'd send a note and say, "My thanks may be belated, but your gift was truly appreciated". I'd tell how much all of us have enjoyed the gift and how it has been a special place for us to share bonding time; maybe a photo of you and the baby with a caption underneath "Reading and Rocking". People do understand that life gets in the way for all of us and they will be touched to know how much the gift has meant and that even though time has lapsed you still wanted to genuinely express your appreciation.

1 mom found this helpful

It's never too early and never never too late to let
someone know how grateful you are for a kindness.
Even now, the sooner you respond the less you'll beat
yourself up about it. When you drop that baby in the
mail box, it will lift a burden off your shoulders and
will lift your spirits as well. The wording has little
to do with it, as long as it is sincere.

1 mom found this helpful

I do understand your problem, the first thing that popped into my head was a picture of the baby sitting in the rocker, with a big thank you and maybe a lunch out. These are the things that mom's love to have. Time away, and lunch with friends and a picture as a reminder.

1 mom found this helpful

I know how you feel. I am still working on some holiday cards! It is still better to send them late than not at all.

hi J.
well, it is a little late (socially) but I would send them anyway and just say "I'm so sorry" but that your gift was so very much appreciated and has been put to extremely good use.
at least they will know you just plainforgot.
good luck and blessings

Hi J.,
If I were you I would just send like a basket filled with goodies and say thanks for the wonderful gift don't even put on there an explanation as to why it's late and they will call you up so surprised and delighted I'm sure and that's when you can explain how you've been wanting to send it since way before but just staying too busy. They will be surprised and will appreciate a late thank you..I did that once and I felt much better. Good Luck with everything!

Mia

So you are known as a procrastinator. Never let that be the reason for not displaying proper etiquette. Wriing later than not writing at all is the right thing to dol

J.

If it were me, I would leave well enough alone and not send thank you notes after this long. Hopefully in the future you will have more respect and show gratitude to those that so generously give you gifts. If I seem a little unsympathetic, please forgive me, but I have found myself on the other end of your story so often in the last few years. What on earth has happened to respect, manners and common courtesy in our society? No, I am not ancient(LOL), I am in my mid 40's and was taught that Thank You notes are sent within 7 days of receiving a gift. My husband has a cousin in their mid 20's that married a couple of years ago. As always, we gave a nice gift. We did not receive a thank you of any kind. When this same cousin recently had their first baby, my husband said that we needed to make sure and get them a baby gift. My response to him was, "guess again!" I don't know about the rest of society, but personally, I am tired of being expected to give gifts for certain occasions and the recipients do not even take the time to acknowledge it. Sorry J., I know this is not what you were probably wanting to hear, but perhaps next time you will be more respectful and thoughtful of those that are very thoughtful and generous to you. Please remember, it takes one longer to check their email than to write a note of gratitude.

Have fun with the lateness of your thank yous - give real and outrageous examples of your excuses and then just thank everyone - even send a funny photo with you under mounds of laundry or something. Everyone will appreciate your creativeness.

Simple - just write the notes! No excuses, just write the notes. Pictures would be great, but not required. One more time - JUST WRITE THE NOTES! You will feel wonderful when it is done and so will the people you send them to.

Send out the belated thank you notes. Confess to everyone how busy it was at that time and offer a thousand apologies. A cute card might include a picture of your baby boy or a mosaic of different photos of him at different ages. Never underestimate the importance of thank you notes even if they are late.

H.

I know you've told them thank you but I would go ahead and send thank you notes for your shower gifts. Even if you can just write one a day until they're all done. You might put something like "I'm sorry this note is so late." But don't feel like you have to give all the reasons why. I still wonder about wedding gifts from years ago that I never got a thank you note for. I think everyone appreciates thank you notes .... better late than never!

don't feel bad - if you do, just go ahead and mail some cards. don't worry that it's late.
For what it's worth, I know people that never send them ever. don't stress, just make some cards - homemade is always super special...if you have time, of course!

i am equaly a procrastinator. send them. next time you have an event where thank you cards are needed get the person who is in charge of hosting the event to have the guests fill out there own card with return address. this helps cut down on wrong addresses. plus its just one more step out of the chore. now its easier to write the thankyou's and tell them how much you have used the gift.

J.,

Just do it!!! It's never too late to say thank you. Just be honest - there are sites online to help you word cards so that they sound sincere.

FYI, I recently thanked a friend for something she did for me 25 years ago!! It felt awesome.

I think it is never too late. Just say that this is the first time you have had to even take a breath since the baby has been born, but that is was important to you to let them know how much it meant to you. They will be just as glad to hear now .

I would still send them. Your heart will feel better afterwards. I too am a little belated since I've had children. Just be sure to express how time disappears when you have children and your gratitude has never left your heart and you so appreciate their generousity and kindness and it will always be remembered. Deeply apologize as well for the belatedness. I think belated is better than not at all. At least, that's what I operate under.

Congrats on your family! As you can tell, you'll look up and these precious time will be gone.

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