In line at T.J. Maxx a while back, I heard something strange. Two boys, around middle school age, were with their mom. As she finished paying for the purchases one boy said, "Thanks." The other quickly added his "thanks." I spoke up (I know you're shocked) and told the boys how impressed I was and how much it always meant to me when my kids said "thanks". I told them they were a tribute to their mom. The mom was appreciative and the boys looked embarrassed. But kudos from strangers stay with us, embarrassed or not.
My kids said "thank you" a lot. They still do. And it's still just as appreciated. One time when they were younger a friend overheard one of them thanking me at the end of a meal and she commented on it, saying her kids had never said "Thank you" to her. That got me thinking.
What I realized was that Mike always - always - tells me how much he appreciates meals. "Thanks, that was good." And so the kids thought that was what was right.
Last night at the church's Fall Festival I was in charge of the ring toss. Almost every child was prompted by parents to say "Thank You" when I handed them their toy or candy. The older ones who were by themselves were pretty good at remembering, too. But I found myself wondering if they knew to say thank you for things at home. Things like clean bathrooms, folded clothes, going to work, fixing dinner?
This morning Mike thanked me for his coffee. He said, "I'm the luckiest man to come down and have my cup of coffee sitting here waiting on me." Now how could I have a bad day after that?
Saying "Thank You" for special things is nice, but I think I like to be thanked even more for the things I've done hundreds of times.
What mundane thing needs to be appreciated in your life today?