My son's day care worker is a terrific young man who has been exceptionally kind to us. He has gone the extra mile to take very good care of my son, provides me with frequent updates, makes sure favorite toys are available, and supports our potty training efforts. I would like to do a little something for him to express our gratitude. My normal course would be to bake him some cookies or buy him lunch. In this case, I hesitate because the guy is very overweight. What do you suggest as an alternative?
First off, kudos to you for wanting to recognize another's Graciousness. You are setting a great example for your son and in a more Machiavellian vein, ensuring that the excellent care will continue.
I understand your desire to avoid food in this case--though it is not your responsibility to police this chap's caloric intake. Fortunately, there are several Gracious alternatives:
1. A pair of gloves or mittens as winter approaches
2. A few pocket sized containers of hand sanitizer--working with small children all day means lots of germs! For a guy, go with unscented or something like cucumber. Avoid florals.
3. A homemade CD--even though everyone uses Ipods these days, a CD helps build the recipient's music library, and this can be a really personal gift--make sure your son picks some of the songs and helps decorate the CD cover.
4. A gift card to a coffee shop, book shop, or Itunes.
5. A pair of novelty socks.
6. Write the gentleman a note expressing your gratitude and recognizing his efforts. Be sure to list all of the ways that he has helped your son and your family. Often, a heartfelt and sincere note can mean far more than a material item.
If you have found a facility that serves you and your child well, hold fast. The alternatives may not be great....