Teaching Our Adult Children About Gratitude

Many moms got exactly the gift they wanted on Mother’s Day last weekend: time with the kids. For empty nesters, there’s much joy when the house fills up again even for just a few hours. Many of our adult children don’t realize how much we value spending time together. The notion that time together is a perfect gift can seem strange to our millennial children. They have been branded with a reputation as the self-centered and materialistic Generation Me. Indeed …

What’s Happened to Thank-You Notes?

The holiday gifts and checks have been sent and received … or have they? When our children were growing up, we hounded them to write thank-you notes. Today, however, notes of appreciation seem to be a lost art. Millennials, in particular, seem oblivious to the rules of etiquette. USA Today dubbed them “awful millennial manners.” Considering that many digital natives see nothing wrong with breaking up via text or emailing a condolence letter, it’s not surprising that thank-you notes rank …

Thanks – For the Travel Memories

Once when I was in Switzerland, I met a local woman who went out of her way to show me around the resort town of St. Moritz. She refused payment – and even my attempt to pay for lunch. When I finally had time to pick up a gift for her, it was Sunday, and all the shops were closed. Except, of course, the touristy one. So I bought her a box of chocolates. I gave a Swiss woman a …

Siblings, Gratitude and Aging Parents

Whether you’ve had a lifelong sibling rivalry or been the best of friends, sibling relationships can be very difficult to navigate when caring for an aging parent. I am in contact with many family caregivers, and I often hear about conflict between siblings around caregiving decisions and responsibilities. Some are at such odds that they either don’t communicate or have a great deal of trouble doing so. Others say that a simple expression of appreciation would go a long way …

Holiday Tip: Think Outside the Shirt Box and Give the Gift of Service

Do you remember when you were a child and the Sears catalog would arrive right before the holidays and you, or at least I would, go through and circle everything you wanted for Christmas? It had all the presents you could want in one place. I can hear my father right now saying, “Did you leave anything for anyone else?” I would always have a split second of guilt, but it quickly passed. The holidays can be like a juggling act, …

The Gratitude Guide

You’d think that it would be easy to express gratitude — after all, giving thanks should come naturally, right? But the fact of the matter is that people can often have a hard time committing an act that requires such a revelation of true feelings. Which is why Walter Green put together a guide for gratitude, which also identifies things that prohibit us from giving thanks. His first couple of tokens of wisdom: It Doesn’t Really Matter: Most people don’t …