Ever since I was a little kid, I loved writing letters and having pen pals. I would collect stationary and stickers and write/ decorate to my heart’s content. In my late teens/ early 20’s I was still writing letters although technology and emails soon took over my correspondence. Fast forward a decade or two and you’ll find me never separated from my smart phone and social media. However, every once in awhile I’ll get nostalgic and write an old fashioned note or letter to a friend. Little did I know that there is a movement to rekindle the love of letter writing! This month was the International Correspondence Writing Month (known as InCoWriMo) and participants took this pledge:
“I, [insert your name], clearly see the benefits of InCoWriMo participation, not only to me personally, but also to those who will receive my correspondence. InCoWriMo is a beneficial endeavor and worthy of my full attention. I hereby pledge to hand-write and mail/deliver one letter, card, note or postcard every day during the month of February.”
I joined the challenge and made a bullet journal page to record whom I mailed a letter. I do confess that I didn’t have time to send a letter every night but I did send note cards out every few days to make up for it. I only have a few more days left of the challenge and although I won’t be sending a letter everyday once February is over, I would like to send a letter or note once a week to keep the practice alive. And while I’d never give up texting and video chatting, there’s something to be said about the joy of old school mail and why I will continue to use snail mail as well as instant communication. With that being said, here are my 5 Favorite Things about Letter Writing.
I save my letter writing for the late evening when the kids are in bed. The house is quiet and all I can hear is the scratch of my pen against paper. There is something soothing about slowing down and thinking about my words as I write them. I’ve always been better at thinking through written word than expressing my thoughts with my mouth.
While I love to write a note to a sister or close friend, there is also something special about writing to a pen pal who loves letter writing as much as you do. When I joined one of the Bullet Journal groups on Facebook, I noticed they also had a pen pal group for bullet journal users. There were hundreds of fellow bullet journals users from all different walks of life. I happened to connect with (the only other?) Catholic mom with many kids who shared many of the same interests. It was a joy to share many of the same interests and experiences. Her friendship has already been a blessing. 🙂
It is also fun to write and share post cards with someone from another country. I am able to learn about the land and their culture and way of life. In return I have enjoyed sharing about my life here in the states. One woman I corresponded with lives close to where my father-in-law grew up in the former Yugoslavia. It makes you realize it really is a small world.
In the #RockYourHandwriting challenge, I had to write a book excerpt. I chose Capt. Wentworth’s letter to Anne from Persuasion. Swoon.
You know that feeling when you get a handwritten letter or card in the mail?? Well, I get to share that love with others. Whether I am writing a family member, an old friend, a soldier stationed overseas or a child in the hospital, there is someone who would love to receive some kind words and sisterly encouragement. (If you don’t know who to write to, there are plenty of suggestions below.)
With all of us doing so much typing and texting it is easy to forget how to write in cursive. It is also easy to forget the rules of grammar and spelling when spell check and auto correct are ready to fix our mistakes. When I write a letter I keep my phone next to me so I can quickly look up the correct spelling of a word. Writing it out on paper helps me to remember the spelling the second time around!
As for writing in cursive, I love handwriting but I do need to practice! It is also fun to experiment with trying different fonts and styles when addressing envelopes.
Want to Join Me?
Okay, so do you feel inspired to write a letter now? I added some links below that may help you get started. (Thanks to Monica for emailing me a lot of these.)
I was also thinking that although there are wonderful women in the bullet journal pen pal group I’m in, it would also be nice to connect with Catholic women who would enjoy sending snail mail to each other and praying for one another. There is something special about being able to share your faith with another person who loves it as deeply as you do. If this is something you’d be interested in, let me know and I’ll start a Facebook group where we could meet, connect and write. 🙂 (UPDATE: I started the group. Leave a comment if you want me to add you.)
Lastly, I have been doing some spring cleaning and that included paring down my huge note card collection. I would love to choose one of you to receive a RAK (“random act of kindness”) selection of note cards to inspire you to send out some snail mail love. 🙂 To enter the contest, simply leave a comment telling me you want to be entered. Next weekend I will chose one winner. Have fun and good luck!
Here are links to inspire your letter writing sensibilities. 🙂
- incowrimo.org – February
- lettermo.com – February
- writeoncampaign.com – April
- letterartscollective.wordpress.com– Monthly
- jenniferbelthoff.com/lovenotes – Quarterly
- Operation Gratitude – to soldiers
- Cardsforhospitalizedkids.com – to hospitalized kids
- moreloveletters.com – to a stranger facing a difficult situation
Oh, and one last thing, I’m linking with Ashley for this week’s Five Faves over at The Big White Farmhouse. She’s one of my favorite bloggers so hop on over and say hi! 🙂
***UPDATE: The contest is over. Congrats to the winner Nanci! 🙂 ***
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