Oh, and a lack of thank you notes bugs me too. I went to a bridal shower and wedding, both where I had to write my address on an envelope, and neither where I actually received a thank you note. It was extremely odd.
I agree. Growing up, my dad was a stickler when it came to us not only writing thank you notes but doing so in a timely manner. Also, personalize them. I've seen too many photo thank you cards with one, generic message for all.
I'm so thankful my mom was like this as well. I remember the first day off school from Christmas break we were not allowed to do anything until our thank you cards were written. My DH's family doesn't do them, however I WILL be doing them for LO. My grandma once told my dad she stopped sending money to one of my cousins because they never once sent a thank you or said thank you. It was just expected that they send the gifts and money.
I haven't been to many showers, bridal or baby, but I guess the worst was a recent baby shower that some people brought food too. I went with some co workers and many of them brought food, I felt embarrassed that I didn't bring anything (the MTB was a coworker). I don't know if they offered or were asked since it didn't say anything on the invitation, but a good example of when you don't EXPECT everyone to participate in a diaper raffle or a potluck how those that choose not to participate still feel awkward because so many other people are. Why would you want to make your guests feel uncomfortable is beyond me.