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New grandchild presents from my friends

(44 Posts)
Mamo Sat 12-Oct-19 10:26:15

Just celebrating the arrival of our second grandchild, a beautiful girl. Needless to say we’re thrilled - she has a delighted big brother, whose dad is my DS. We are close to this family and I get on very well with my lovely DIL, who very much makes us part of their lives. They live about half an hour away in a very small house in an urban location which they enjoy very much. They are both very unmaterialistic and environmentally conscious, buy local, and keep possessions to a minimum, due to space restrictions as well as a fervent approach to wearing sustainably produced clothes with only a few changes each. Our DGS would wear maybe 5 outfits in turn, unlike most children these days who have wardrobes full. I find it difficult myself to stop myself buying something cute when I see it, but I respect their approach and in fairness they don’t push their views on others.

Anyway, all this for background..... my real dilemma this week is that several of my own lovely kind friends have unexpectedly given me gifts for my new DGD and I’m a bit overwhelmed as I generally wouldn’t give baby gifts to other Grans unless I knew the parents well, partly because of cost and also because it seems a bit OTT. And I’m aware there may be more on the way from one particular group. My DS and DIL will be polite but disinterested in getting what they regard as unnecessary “stuff” from people they don’t know!! And, to tell you the truth, I know and am embarrassed from previous experience that they are very slow indeed, indeed may not at all, send a thank you note, even though my DS was brought up to do so. I feel caught in the middle and am wondering would I send thank you notes to my friends myself!! Sorry for long winded post. Any thoughts?

Daisymae Sat 12-Oct-19 10:43:17

Well I think that you have to give them with the good grace that they were intended. It's up to the parents whether they send any acknowledgement.

DoraMarr Sat 12-Oct-19 10:45:33

I would send a brief thank you note myself, on the lines of “S and DIL have asked me to thank you for your gift. As you can imagine, they are quite busy with the new baby and their toddler, so I know you won’t mind if their thanks comes via me!”
We were deluged with knitted garments, often in very scratchy wool or rather lurid colours, when our children were born. We did a Polaroid photo shoot with each garment and sent them in a thank- you card to each knitter, then sent the clothes we didn’t like to the charity shop. Poor babies had to be dressed and undressed up to a dozen times, but I think we managed to avoid hurting anyone’s feelings.

Sara65 Sat 12-Oct-19 11:03:13

I very much admire your son and daughter in laws approach to life, the example they are showing their children is very commendable, but I think they should accept that the gifts are given out of kindness, and send a note, or card to say Thankyou.

It’s not really about that gift which can easily be given to a charity shop, it’s about the kind thought behind it.

Mamo Sat 12-Oct-19 11:35:37

Doramarr, I like the way you word your suggested note, that’s a good idea. Thank you

Mamo Sat 12-Oct-19 11:36:56

Sara65, I agree they should accept graciously and thank them themselves, somehow I doubt they will thoughblush

paddyann Sat 12-Oct-19 11:44:11

Where I live everyone gives presents to new babies,and I mean everyone.Our new arrival has giftes from my neighbours from friends I haven't seen in years ,from family all over the world .Thankfully most folk dont buy first size anymore so this wee girl wont need clothes for quite a long time ..or babywalkers or swings etc etc etc.Be grateful that the people you know are so thoughtful and either send the note above or if they are on FB get your DIL to put a general thank you on there for everyone .No one I know would expect individual cards now from a new mum and dad .Congratulations on the baby

Sara65 Sat 12-Oct-19 11:53:07


Well if you think that the handwritten notes aren’t going to happen, do as paddyann suggests, and put a big general Thankyou on Facebook

cornergran Sat 12-Oct-19 12:02:23

Congratulations to all. Yes, you do the thanks in whatever way works for you (we aren't Facebook users so it would be a note from us) mamo, tell the young family what you've done as you know the people and they don't. As for the items, well, they can keep any they want and give the rest to charity. Should they have any more children then forewarned and all that you could let it be know that they have said they have enough of everything already. People are kind so its good to thank them in the spirit of their gift, the eventual home for their gifts isn't your responsibility so please don't worry about it.

NotSpaghetti Sat 12-Oct-19 12:07:55

You are not alone Mamo, many of us have this problem, and some, paddyann definitely do still expect a formal thank-you. I know this because even though one of my grandchildren had been in intensive care I had one (older) friend who wondered “if she received the gift” as she “hadn’t heard from her”!

I can’t begin to tell you about the hideous clothes given to me on the birth of my babies. It was always thus!

Hellomonty Sat 12-Oct-19 12:11:35

I think what you and others are saying about the volume of gifts people receive now, from people who in previous years would never dreamed of giving something (mostly so do with the relative cheapness of things like baby clothes these days, is why thank you letter writing is dying out.

Grans now would perhaps have had to have written between 5 and maybe 20 letters if you were very lucky, but today it could be closer to 100. A task which becomes gargantuan when you are sore and tired and constantly busy with a new born and maybe older siblings.

Calendargirl Sat 12-Oct-19 12:15:05

Unlike Paddyann I don’t find people give presents to new babies like they did years ago. When I had my children, acquaintances would put a silver coin in their hands, ‘for luck’ when they first met them, that certainly doesn’t seem to happen nowadays. As for clothes and things, only close family would do that in my experience. I wouldn’t give gifts to friends grandchildren, and never expected them to give mine.

Sara65 Sat 12-Oct-19 12:44:19

My grandchildren have been given gifts by a couple of very close friends, but they have both known my children very well. Whether or not any Thankyou notes have been written, I’m afraid I can’t say!

When my third child was born, a woman who worked for us, was always giving me little things she’d bought. I always wrote a little note, thanking her, then she’d send me back a little note, thanking me for my little note.

As she managed to find a bib, or pair of socks or something most weeks, it all became quite time consuming.

Dawn22 Sat 12-Oct-19 12:56:41

Hi Mamo
Leaving your small dilemma aside l think you have an embarrassment of riches so concentrate on those lucky fall of the cards and disregard the rest.

Esther1 Sun 13-Oct-19 21:14:32

As they’re your friends I think you can take it upon yourself to take a picture of the baby with the gift and send it to the giver with a little handwritten note from yourself. Try not to turn people’s kindness into a problem during this happy time.

Nannarose Sun 13-Oct-19 21:17:02

I was in a similar position, and did as doraMarr suggests, with a picture.

NotSpaghetti Sun 13-Oct-19 22:47:35

How right you are Dawn22
We are all very lucky.

Eloethan Sun 13-Oct-19 23:58:00

I would do whart DoraMarr has suggested and thank them on your daughter's behalf.

I also think it is rather nice of people to send gifts, even when they don't know the parents personally.

Eloethan Sun 13-Oct-19 23:59:55

Sorry, I should of course have said on behalf of your son and daughter in law.

sodapop Mon 14-Oct-19 01:18:54

I agree with Eleothan the gifts were given to you to pass on to your family so it's ok for you to thank the donors.
A card would be nice as not everyone is on FB.

luluaugust Mon 14-Oct-19 09:23:08

Yes thank your friends and cross your fingers your DS & DIL will send some kind of thank you. Two friends have had granddaughters lately and I have thoroughly enjoyed buying some baby clothes. The Grans showed me pictures of the babies wearing them and eventually a short note and picture arrived, delighted. They will now have outgrown them so I hope they have gone to a charity shop.

TrendyNannie6 Mon 14-Oct-19 09:44:50

I think it’s very kind of your friends to give little gifts to the new grandchild , I also think it’s ok for you to thank these kind friends on behalf of your DS and DIL but feel it would be nicer if it was done by the parents themselves

Lilyflower Mon 14-Oct-19 09:49:04

Surely good manners trump political correctness and a thank you note should be sent?

ReadyMeals Mon 14-Oct-19 09:57:28

I say send the thank you notes yourself. The gifts were given because of your relationship with the givers, as a gesture of friendship to you. Even if the ultimate recipient was the baby.

Purpledaffodil Mon 14-Oct-19 09:58:59

Having recently had first granddaughter, I suspect it is more to do with the amount and cuteness of girl outfits available. See any baby wear shop for totally disproportionate display of girl outfits v boy outfits.
If thank you notes are a problem, why not send a Touchnote card or similar with a thank you as if from the baby? Sounds twee I know but ticks the box and you can just put your favourite baby photo on the front.