FUN/DIY/ HOME/ Simplifying

Thank You Note Tote

Sending out thank you notes regularly=FAIL!

I know, it is not something I am proud of.  I really AM a thankful person, so I thought it was time to start showing it, and to teach my girls the importance of a thank you note…better late than never, right?

My girls actually do a great job of writing thank you notes, in fact, there is one sitting here on my computer desk as I type, that was written by my 6 year old to her Aunt Kathy.  It says…

“thank you for the Hershey’s bar
I love it.
Love you!
Love, (her name)
to. ant Kathy”

Aww!  Love the misspelled “ant.”   She wrote that without any prompting from me, which is really the case a lot of the time.  I can’t tell you how many notes my girls made that just sat here, unsent.  

I know, thank you notes diligently made by little hands but unsent=FAIL!

Obviously, the problem is me, not them.  I stopped to think about what is keeping me from sending them, and came up with  4 excuses obstacles:

1. Finding the right sized envelope
2. Stamps
3. Addresses in a handy place
4. Lack of decent mailbox (we just have a slot in our door, one that the cover has broken off of.  We used to stick our- out going mail right under the cover. Guess I  better put that on my Anti-Procrastination- Doozy- Of- A- List)

Well, I found some solutions that I think are going to work!

Solution to obstacle #1:
I went to Office Max and found some postcards for our printer.  They were blank, perforated, and came 4 to a sheet, 120 sheets!  That’s a lot of postcards!  I paid $15.00, which in my mind is not too bad considering what one pays for a “stationary set of 8 cards” now- a- days!
My thinking with the postcards-there is no need for an envelope, and my girls can get creative with what they would like the front of the postcard to say/look like.  

Solution to obstacle #2:
Buy the girls their own stamps! Doing this meant that they would need to have their own place to keep them, so I proceeded to make them a little thank you note tote!  

Solution to obstacle #3

Addresses.  Ugh.  One of these days every last address of every last person I know will be beautifully organized in my imac address book.  Until that day, when I am 80 which should be soon, because it is on the Doozy List and you are holding me accountable on tuesdays,  I decided to make the girls their own little “Addresses On A Ring.”  I wrote the addresses of people they write thank you cards to most often, (or should be writing thank you cards to, or are writing thank you cards to but their mom doesn’t send them out-FAIL), and put them on a little ring.  I like that they will hand write the addresses, because it is something every child will need to learn how to do.  I thought about making handy little address labels, which would work well for younger kids, but I decided my kids were old enough to fill the address in themselves.  

Solution(sorta) to obstacle #4
Well, because it would be up to me (or entail begging my very kind, handy dad) to get a new mailbox put on the house, I resorted to my handy dandy wooden clips that I use for everything.  I love them so much they got their very own post!  When we have outgoing mail, I will just clip it on to our open slot and hope it doesn’t rain!:)

I put this little Thank You Note Tote together while the girls were at school.  I told them about it in the car and they all 3 were pretty excited and quite impressed.  The first thing they did when we got home was write a thank you!  

There can be variations to this idea.  If you have a younger child who has a bunch of thank yous to write, you could have them draw one picture, scan it, then print it on the front of the post cards.  You could also print “Thank You” or whatever else you want to say onto the postcards, just like I added the lines and address on the back with my computer.  I kept the front of ours blank so they would have lots of space to get creative, and also because I want them to have the freedom to write any type of note, not just a Thank You note.

I didn’t add too much to the tote for them to get creative with.  We have a sticker drawer that they regularly use and will go to if they want a sticker for their card, and they can grab their Art Bags if they need anything else.

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  • Mandy
    May 4, 2010 at 1:53 pm

    great idea! Thanks for linking up on SugarBee Take-A-Look Tuesday! – Mandy,

  • Myra
    March 26, 2010 at 3:02 am

    Your header is gorgeous! Thanks for linking to Friday Fails. I’m so behind on Thank You notes, it’s ridiculous!

  • The Persimmon Perch
    March 22, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    What a great way to stay organized! Thanks for sharing with Made it Monday! Jules

  • Heather@PixieDust
    March 21, 2010 at 9:49 pm

    i love this idea! it is too cute.

  • Amy @ New Nostalgia
    March 21, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    thank you for commenting everyone! the thank you note tote is working! so happy to feel like there is a solution to something that is important to me..

  • Cheryl
    March 19, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    I love your header photo, it’s gorgeous. Great way to turn a fail around!

  • Holly T.
    March 19, 2010 at 12:38 pm

    What a great idea. Found your site on My Blessed Life and love it! Thanks for the ideas and look forward to more from your blog!

  • Page
    March 15, 2010 at 3:37 pm

    I love this idea! I am always trying to think of the best way to resolve the “thank you note procrastination.” I just found your blog through “Skip to My Lou” and love it! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  • Queen Bee
    March 15, 2010 at 3:27 pm

    This is such a cute idea – and I am in the same boat – I have TY’s that I’ve written and then they sit in the drawer. I think that I will put a similar basket together. TY again for the inspiration!

  • Kaysi
    March 15, 2010 at 2:29 pm


  • katherinemarie
    March 15, 2010 at 3:39 pm

    This is a FANTASTIC IDEA!!! I have something similar for letters… but I LOVE the idea of having one just to say THANKS!!!!

    THANK YOU for the THANK YOU IDEA!!!!!!

  • Lori
    March 12, 2010 at 3:50 pm

    We use to write thank-you notes all the time, but i really don’t know what happened… I guess life..LOL We need to start doing this again. Great idea.

    Thanks for joining Get Your Craft on Thurs. Please join me next week for another great party.


  • Veronica Lee
    March 12, 2010 at 5:44 am

    Hi! Visiting from MBC. Great blog.

  • Leigh of Bloggeritaville
    March 12, 2010 at 1:03 am

    Well done, Amy!!That is so adorable! Thanks for linking up to Thrifty Thursday and sharing this week! I hope you will come back to visit me soon. If you haven’t already, be sure to enter the giveaway.

    Have a wonderful weekend.
    Tales from Bloggeritaville

  • Kristen
    March 11, 2010 at 2:58 pm

    This is really neat! I love that you found the sheets to make your own postcards!

  • Andrea on Third Street
    March 11, 2010 at 2:46 pm

    I’m terrible at thank yous, and well, most forms of correspondence. I try very hard to send thank you e mails, but I’m not sure if this is the best etiquette.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Amy @ New Nostalgia
    March 11, 2010 at 7:16 pm

    Josh, would love to see pics.

    Sarah-I thought about index cards, but didn’t know if there was a required size for mailing?? Yes, the whole portable thing is VERY nice!

  • For the Love of Naps - Sarah
    March 11, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    Genius! I like you am TERRIBLE at the last step – sending them. My boys are too little to ‘write’ the note…but I have started saving Charley’s random drawings and school work or afternoon art projects. I just have him sign his name on them and then off they go after I write the note…works slick. But I LOVE your tote idea! I think it would motivate me! And you could carry it over to the comfy couch or to the bedside table etc. Love it!

    Oh and you can use index cards for post cards….they would even be cheaper and there are different sizes!

  • Josh H
    March 11, 2010 at 3:49 pm

    Good ideas, Amy. My mom did something similar as birthday gifts for our two oldest kids, but instead of a tote, she assembled the items in a binder.

    She ordered return address mailing labels from a checks company (dinosaurs for our son, Hello Kitty for our daughter).

    I helped her create matching stationery (just using Word) with the images from the return labels, along with some other images she found on the Internet, and had the stationery printed at Kinkos. The result was a fairly low cost (I think) solution that was also perfectly suited to each kid. They loved them.

    I can send you pictures if you’d be interested in seeing them.

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