Thank you gifts from afar
March 10, 2011 7:04 PM   Subscribe

A very nice person gave me a letter of recommendation for a fellowship, and I'd like to send her something as a sign of my gratitude. Problem is, my only contact with her is an email address. Is there something nice I can send her on the web?

She lives in LA, and I don't. I'd like to send her something in $25 range, and i don;t know if she drinks coffee or what not. Any ideas, hivemind?
posted by Sara Anne to Shopping (13 answers total)
If this person is a professor, the proper and always appreciated thank-you is a sincere personal thank you note and then following up to let her know if you got the fellowship.
posted by LobsterMitten at 7:06 PM on March 10, 2011 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: Not a professor. The letter of recommendation pertained to community involvement.
posted by Sara Anne at 7:08 PM on March 10, 2011 [1 favorite]

My first thought was a e-gift certificate for flowers or maybe a food website -- but the problem there is that she might never get around to using it, so I'm not sure.

Is there any way you could just ask her for a physical address? If you don't want to let her know you'd like to send a gift, you could just tell her you'd really like to send her a proper thank-you note but need her address. Or alternatively if you know her office address, you could send her something (such as flowers or snacks) there. Is that an option?
posted by hansbrough at 7:10 PM on March 10, 2011

You can give her an gift card then she can spend it on whatever she wants.
posted by srbrunson at 7:10 PM on March 10, 2011 [3 favorites]

My first thoughts were Amazon gift card, or gift her a groupon or something similar that's local to her area (if there's something that comes up that looks good)
posted by ghostbikes at 7:12 PM on March 10, 2011

nthing Amazon
posted by msbutah at 7:14 PM on March 10, 2011

A egift card.
posted by DrGail at 7:19 PM on March 10, 2011

How about a gift to a community organization she cares about? You could certainly find contact information for that, and do it in her name or something similar. You might even find a non-cash type of gift the organization could use.
posted by amtho at 8:44 PM on March 10, 2011

If you and/or she are a fan of, then you could give her a Kiva gift certificate. So then she'd be able to either lend money to various people indefinitely or have $25 cash (minus paypal fees) after she had lent money to someone somewhere.
posted by aniola at 9:35 PM on March 10, 2011

As a Brit, I would find it a bit awkward sending something as bald as a voucher as a thank you, although I do know that not all races are as paralysingly embarrassed of money as we are. Restaurant, theatre or book tokens would all be lovely gifts.

But it strikes me you don't have to settle for just knowing her email address. I'm sure you could find her place of work with a little bit of Googling (if you don't know it already) and send a gift there. Alternatively, you could be direct with her in an email: something along the lines of "I'm so very grateful for your kind words, would you mind giving me your address so I can send you a token of my grattitude".
posted by londonmark at 3:51 AM on March 11, 2011

I don't know the full context of your relationship, but like londonmark (except as an American), I'd feel uncomfortable receiving a gift card. I'd be most comfortable with a thank-you letter and follow up letting me know the result of the fellowship application. But if I had to receive something, something like flowers or chocolates or a book would be the best.
posted by J. Wilson at 5:57 AM on March 11, 2011

The value of a sincere, well-written thank you note cannot be overestimated.
posted by theora55 at 11:56 AM on March 11, 2011

Seconding Groupon. I refreshed Groupon at 12AM every day for a month after being given a $35 gift certificate. I finally found the perfect thing to buy, and months afterward I'm still so happy.
posted by plaintiff6r at 11:57 AM on March 11, 2011

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