And again. And again. And again.
Finally it dawned on me that I was clearly out of the loop on something and decided that whether I'd look uncool or not I needed to ask what was up. So, one weekend when she was home, I took a deep breath and exposed my ignorance.
She must have remembered all the things I taught her over the years and decided fair is fair. There were no giggles or eye rolls. More of an indulgent smile as she explain this was an emoticon that represented a smiling face. There were many others too she added.
Since then I've learned most of them. And if I can't remember the appropriate one, everything from Facebook to my cellphone gives me a selection of emoticons from which to choose.
If you're a fan of clipart, there are also many wonderful 'smiley' examples on line that you can use in your messages, projects, etc., Here are just a few collections from iCLIPART.com:
Collection of Smileys