The lost art of the Thank You note is something that I've noticed for quite some time. I was raised that when someone goes out of their way for you, gives you a gift, does something special for you, that you send them a thank-you note. These used to be commonplace. Lately I've had people tell me that I don't need to send them a note every time they give my husband a holy handshake* that they know we appreciate it and that is all the thanks that they want.
It's nice to be let off the hook like that, but (and this is a big but) we need to remember that not everyone feels that way. People like to know that you appreciated their time, gift, etc.
Do you need to send a note for every little thing? No. There are times when you can express your thankfulness in person or in an email or text. Though it is good to remember to do these. If someone takes you to lunch you may want to thank them in person, and again later with a text or email. If you are inclined to send a note then that would be nice too.
If someone gives you a gift through the mail it is best to send a note of thanks for it. Or at least acknowledge that you received it. I have mailed things to people and they have never even said, "Hey, I got the package, thanks."
I've heard nothing but crickets.
Which drives me crazy and makes me not want to send things to them anymore. In fact, I haven't. I love packages, I love sending them and I love receiving them (and this is why I love online shopping so much)
All this to say, if someone does something special for you then it is kind of you to reciprocate with a few moments and write them a note. It doesn't have to be long and you don't have to fill up a notecard. Just a simple few lines about how much you appreciate their thoughtfulness.
It goes a long way. Trust me on this.
*Holy Handshake is when a parishioner gives the pastor some cash while shaking his hand.