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Converted from paper version of the Broad Ripple Gazette (v13n24)
Right in my Own Backyard - Showing a Little Appreciation - by Brandt Carter
posted: Dec. 02, 2016

Right in my Own Backyard header

Showing a Little Appreciation
This is the time of year when we are frantically shopping for the perfect gift and under pressure while making a homemade present. Giving gifts has become so commercial that Christmas popped up this year in many locations before Halloween. The stores have been decked with lights and décor. The biggest surprise is that Santa had arrived at one of our largest malls the day after Halloween. Goodness gracious, I sympathize with my Facebook post when I saw "hold on Santa, let us eat our turkey first" and "Move over big boy, wait your turn!"
After attending the Broad Ripple Gazette appreciation dinner hosted by Alan Hague, his message hit home. Maybe all the gift giving is not as important as a bit of appreciation. Just taking the time to say "Thank You" or "Your work is greatly valued" is sometime better than untying the ribbon and opening the box to see what is inside.
So this year, you might give a bit of appreciation and take the time to write a note, send a card, or give just a token gift. Who do you appreciate: your family, teachers, ministers, policemen, firemen, nurses and doctors, checkout clerks? You could tell the postman, a favorite waiter/waitress, housekeeper, bus driver, hairdresser, dog groomer, coworkers, and boss that you appreciate their services, and the help you give to my everyday life is important. How about the guys that pick up your trash, your handyman, bank teller, pharmacist, and dentist? You get the picture. A little note or a card is just perfect. You can hand deliver it or send it by post. No emails at this time of year that is too impersonal!
If you want to say thanks, here's what you can do. First keep it short. Here are tips from the experts at Hallmark:
Greeting. . . Dear Bob, Dear Dr. Gray and all his office staff
Sentence 1: Express your thanks and appreciation: Thank you so much for. . . ; It made my day when I opened. . . .
Sentence 2: Give specific details. Tell the person what work, service, or act of kindness they showed you: You deliver the milk to my house weekly and my family is depends on you;
Sentence 3: Look ahead. As 2016 comes to a close, we look forward to being your customer in 2017.
Sentence 4: Restate your thanks. Close with a final thank you. Again, thank you for your generosity; Thank you, we can't wait to see you again soon!
End with your regards. "Sincerely" is a safe standby, but for closer relationships, you might choose a warmer option: With warm regards, Regards, Your friend, Your client, Your patient, Yours truly.
Put it all together in 4 sentences!

P.S. Dear Gazette Readers and Advertisers:
Many thanks for being my reader. It makes my day when someone tells me about their favorite column. I hope you continue being loyal readers in 2017. We appreciate you and all the advertisers. Again, thank you for reading the paper and especially my column Right in My Own Backyard.
Yours truly,
Brandt Carter

Brandt Carter, artist, herbalist, and naturalist, owns Backyard Birds at 2374 E. 54th Street. Visit her web site Email your bird questions to
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Brought to you by: Broad Ripple collector pins
Brought to you by: Broad Ripple collector pins