Q: I have a question regarding ‘gift’ etiquette. My 17 year old son was recently given a car by a friend of my husband’s. This gentleman and my husband have not been friends very long, though they have known each other. How do we appreciate our thanks without insulting them? My family has never encountered anything like this before, and I don’t want to do it (accept the gift) incorrectly.
A: What a wonderful gift! Presumably, your son wrote a very sincere letter or note of thanks, and your husband let his new friend know how appreciated this gift is. You can all brainstorm on a great thank-you gift for him. This is a token of your appreciation, not a matching or in-kind gift. For example, a movie ticket gift certificate for him, his wife and son would be fun for them and help you feel as though you had expressed your appreciation. Or, if your husband knows of a particular hobby or interest he has, something fun in support of that, whether golf gloves or a specimen shrub or plant for his garden.