If you've recently had a baby shower, chances are you've received some very useful and heartfelt gifts from friends and loved ones. Correct etiquette suggests sending thank you notes to these individuals to show your appreciation. Etiquette also dictates the correct etiquette for addressing, wording and mailing baby shower thank you cards.
Even though you've probably thanked everyone in person and opened the gifts in front of the givers, it is still in step with etiquette to send thank you notes to the guests who bought gifts for you and/or your unborn baby. If some guests have attended the event, but did not bring gifts, thanking them verbally for coming is sufficient. It is also appropriate to send a note of thanks, as well as a small gift to the host of the baby shower, to show appreciation for the host's efforts in organizing the event and inviting guests.
What to Say
It is best to specifically talk about the gift that was received in the thank you note. Generic notes give the impression that the recipient is not generally happy with the gift. For instance, notes should say things like, "Thank you so much for the stroller. I'm sure the baby and i will enjoy taking walks with it!" or "The set of blankets you purchased for the baby are beautiful. I can't wait to rock him/her to sleep in them." The expectant mother should also include her desire to have the gift giver share in the joy that comes with a new baby, and should express her sincere appreciation for the gift giver's friendship.
Who Writes the Note
In most cases, the expectant mother, who was the guest of honor at the baby shower, should write all thank you notes. If a gift that the entire family can benefit from, such as kitchen appliances or new furniture, was given at the baby shower, the guest of honor should still write the note, but all family members who will use the gift should sign the note as well. The mother may also choose to sign her thank you notes on behalf of the baby when the gifts are exclusively for the child.
Baby shower thank you notes should be sent out as soon as possible, preferably before the birth of the baby. If the expectant mother has not sent the notes to shower guests before she delivers the child, it is acceptable to give out thank you notes up to two months after the baby is born, according to Emily Post. However, Post also suggests that this is an ideal window of time, and individual circumstances may call for thank you notes to be sent out later than two months.
It is appropriate for expectant mothers to include creative elements in their thank you notes. Photos that depict the guest of honor opening her gifts, or a picture of the baby's ultrasound can be sent along with the thank you notes to further express the joy and anticipation of the baby's arrival. If the thank you notes are sent after the child's birth, pictures of the baby using his/her gifts, for example, the baby wrapped in a blanket that was purchased by a shower guest, will make the thank you note even more sentimental.
- baby image by Dron from Fotolia.com