One of the greatest gifts that most of us ever receive is to know that someone truly appreciated something you have done or given to them.
Growing up, my mom's grandmother always had a way of making us kids feel that whatever gift we had given her was so special. In her later years, we remembered her opening a drawer and there would be nightgowns that we had given her years earlier.
We would say, "Grandma, how come you haven't worn that?"
Her reply was, "It is just so pretty, and I like to look at it in the drawer."
Last week was the 10th birthday of one of my granddaughters. Her parents had tipped me off that she really liked to do puzzles, so I found a nice 500-piece puzzle picturing the desert southwest as a present for her birthday. She proved a true puzzle veteran as she started sorting the pieces, putting all the border pieces in one pile, and then using that pile to make a frame around what would be the completed picture.
What made the whole deal so special was she called me the next day and said, "Grandpa, I just want you to know that I loved the puzzle, and I got it finished. We have it laid out on the table, and it looks so pretty. I just want to thank you for giving it to me. I just love it!"
As a recipient of that sincere thank you, my response was, "I'm glad you like it." It could have just as easily been, "I just love it when I hear from you," knowing that she has learned the gift of appreciation and saying thanks.