On Saturday I bought peaches at the farmers’ market. They were juicy ripe and everything fresh local peaches should be.
When I approached White Marsh Orchard‘s table, I was surprised to be greeted by name. This isn’t an unusual occurrence in my small town, but I didn’t remember the orchard owners knowing my name last summer.
Then she said, “It was so lovely to get your note,” and he chimed in, “Really thoughtful of you.”
And I suddenly remembered that last fall, when reflecting with some sadness that peaches wouldn’t be in season again for many months, I had been inspired to look up the orchard’s address so I could write and say how much I enjoyed their peaches all summer. I’d signed my name, of course, and made mention of my red market basket so they’d have a clue who I was.
They clearly figured it out.
We talked a couple minutes about our mutual appreciation of both peaches and real letters. It got me thinking (not for the first time) about making the choice to express appreciation and what a positive impact it can have. As a result, I’m challenging myself to write more notes of thanks for the little things that make life better.
What are you enjoying these days? Do you ever send unexpected thank you notes?
Posted in Postal Cheer | Tagged appreciation, connection | 10 Comments »
A few days before the new year, my grandmother made the difficult decision to go on Hospice care. As a result, January has been a time of mixed sadness and lovely moments and gratitude for family and reminiscing. I’ve been fortunate to be able to visit with my grandmother nearly every week since the end of December, but one day out of seven hasn’t felt like enough. So, I’ve been writing letters to her. Not every day, but more days than not, I’ve mailed off postcards, cards, and letters most of which have recounted memories of visiting her house over the years. She’s been enjoying receiving them, I’ve been enjoying writing them, and they’ve sparked points of connection that extend beyond the two of us. A couple weeks ago when I was visiting, a cousin of mine told me that she’d read one of my letters in which I’d described the things in our grandmother’s front hallway that I’d loved when I was growing up. She said it was like reading something she’d written, because her childhood memories of the points of interest in that hallway are very similar to mine. Upon hearing this, my grandmother beamed at us and said how nice it was for everyone to be able to share memories and get to know each other better at the same time. Isn’t that a lovely truth?
January was a beautiful month of letters for me personally.
February, as you may know, is A Month of Letters in a much larger way.
In past years, while this brainchild of Mary Robinette Kowal has inspired me to sit down to letter writing more consistently, I’ve never quite met the challenge of sending a letter each day the mail runs in February. This year, I think it’s going to happen. As well as continuing to write to my grandmother, I plan to write reminiscing letters to other people who are dear to me. And, in keeping with the rules of the challenge, I’ll catch up–and keep caught up–on my replies, too.
In preparation for A Month of Letters, I’ve spent part of this afternoon sorting out my stack of letters awaiting responses and organizing my writing supplies (they’d fallen into a rather catawampus state). I unlocked my first two achievements and I’m ready to fill the month with letters. Anyone else playing along this year?
Posted in Postal Project | Tagged connection, handwritten legacy, Month of Letters | 4 Comments »
May your day be merry and bright!
photo courtesy of bowenmurphy (and thanks to LWA for mentioning it was available)
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged creativity, LWA, personal PO | Leave a Comment »
I have a collection of things that are waiting to be glued. Not broken items waiting to be fixed, but bits and pieces waiting to be cobbled into something new. More accurately, I have several collections of such things: canceled stamps, old photos, quotations cut from magazines, pages from books that have fallen apart, scraps of colorful paper, fabric remnants, buttons.
Sometime in October, I covered the floor with several of these collections (there is, again, a sewing machine on my desk) and plunked myself down in the middle of all the possibilities with glue stick in hand. Over the course of several days, I made about two dozen cards. I used a couple to write to friends, but most I bundled into sets to be given as gifts.
This weekend I put the sewing machine to good use and made a scarf.
Between the cards and the scarf, I’ve checked off nearly everyone on my Champion of Postal Cheer project list — hooray! What’s my next project? I’m not certain. Janice MacLeod, the artist behind Paris Letters, recently wrote about her November Nurture project and it sparked a couple possibilities that I’m considering. What creative projects–letter-writing or otherwise–are you enjoying these days?
Posted in Postal Cheer, Postal Project | Tagged card, gift ideas, handmade, postal project, stamps | 10 Comments »
This is Sanzi.
I met her last month at the Chestertown Book Festival.
As you can see, she brought her own mailbox with her.
Next to the mailbox, she had a basket full of self-addressed postcards. She was inviting people to take them and write to her as part of an ongoing postal project she’s been running for the past decade. Did you notice the large and wonderfully folded creations at the front of the table in the first picture? They are collapsible books composed of series of postcards she has received. When the postcards arrive, she sorts, scans, arranges, and finally prints the compiled collections. For more information about this project, take a look at the Installations section of Sanzi’s online galleries.
Sanzi said that when she was living in England she had many more people participate in the project than she does now that she’s in the U.S. I asked if I could take a few extra postcards and give them to people who would be interested in dropping her a note (or sketch or painting or poem or piece of mail art…). I have three left and want to share! If you’re interested, leave a comment by Friday, November 1st. If more than three people are interested, I’ll toss the names into a hat. If your name is drawn, I’ll mail you one of the postcards, along with some mystery postal goodies from my own collection. You will then complete the circle by sending Sanzi’s postcard home. Deal? Excellent — let the creative collaboration begin!
Posted in Postal Project | Tagged creative collaboration, postal project, postcard | 14 Comments »