I really am. In fact, I’m so sorry that in order to show you just how sorry I am…here’s a photo of a postcard snuggling up to a cup of cocoa:
Isn’t it cozy and adorable? Am I forgiven?
It’s kind of crazy how quickly this life thing can sweep you off your feet. When did it become December? My to do list, both of the things that must be done and the endless things I’d love to do, is so lengthy. I feel quite lucky, honestly, to have such a lengthy list — for there is so very much in this life to explore. But, the point is, I’ve been a bit overwhelmed, and thus, Lovely Handwritten Notes kind of vanished. (And, here I was trying to tell people that it was easy to keep up with your letter writing…oops…) Ultimately, I’m super sorry. I still really like all of you, and you’ve totally been on my mind during this entire absence.
I logged on to check the project’s email tonight, and there was a nice handful of messages and addresses from new followers. Each request for a letter came with its own unique little message of hope and kindness. Each one reminded me so vividly of why I started this project in the first place.
Not to mention, I’ve received some of the most beautiful, thoughtful postcards, letters, and packages from around the world. They’ve brightened my day and I can’t wait to share them with all of you. And I will. But, you might have to be a little patient with me. I can’t keep up with the daily posts and I have a lot of letters left to send…so, here’s the plan!
I hereby commit to at least one new post every other week (with the hopes of doing one every week). In addition, I plan to send out one lovely handwritten note per day to those of you who request them. Therefore, it may take a little time, but rest assured — joy and cheer shall find you in your mailbox!
All of you lovely letter-writing souls are so great. You really are. Thank you for the constant reminders of why I adore this form of communication so very much.
This is a very fantastic project! I encourage all of you to visit the website and get involved in spreading cheer. :)
It has been nice finally getting caught up on some of the lovely mail I’ve received over the past couple of months. Life gets so busy, but I think it’s always important that we make sure to schedule in the time to do the things that just make us smile. So, in between work, studying, volunteering, networking…I’m trying to get back into also just being creative, reaching out to those I love, and having a good time with this bright little life we all get the chance to live.
This letter arrived in my box back in June, and was in response to the following Question of the Week: Tell me about where you live or where you are from. How does it look, feel, smell? What are the people like? What do you love about it? Is there something you would change about it?
Wren had a wonderfully detailed response to this question. Here is what she had to say:
June 15, 2012
In response to “Tell me where you live or where you are from…”: Those are two different places; very different! I live in the deep south where I enjoy the greenery and warm weather. I am very cold-blooded and this prevents me from living where I grew up.
I was born in Connecticut, but moved to Rhode Island when I was about 2 years old. My father’s family is from Rhode Island, and have been living there since around 1780. I miss the formality of New England. I think it’s nice to get out of the jeans and t-shirt and go out in a dress or a skirt and a blouse that actually has a collar! Of course the fall foliage in New England is a highlight. My most fond memories are of my birthday (late July) when it’s a comfortable 85 degrees (at last!), having steamers and lobster seaside. The best time and place to be is at the ocean in September, just after all the “summer people” have left. How does Rhode Island smell? Salty! Like low tide! Sometimes there is too much dampness and you need to turn on the dehumidifier. In the winter, the snow will come in January and maybe leave in March. Look out the window and count the birds in the birdfeeder: cardinals, chickadees, blue jays, tufted titmouse — lots of nature in R.I. — chipmunks live in the stonewalls that the pilgrims built. Rabbits and field mice are living in the backyard. You can see foxes, woodchucks and raccoons, too.
The people are quiet and reserved and dead honest. If they don’t like you, they’ll look you in the eye and tell you so! Nobody pretends to be friendly; not even salesmen. There’s no second-guessing, and I like that!
My thoughts about my first home; thanks for the opportunity!
I think that was such a beautiful description. I could see what Wren described and feel myself there in the different seasons. Thank you so much for sharing with us where you grew up, Wren. I love how letters can make me feel like I’ve traveled the whole world!
I recently received a response to this past Question of the Week: What is something just really nice (a story, a joke, a quote, something you’d just like to say, a drawing, really, anything you can think of…) that you’d like to send my P.O. Box to bring it back into the sunshine so that I may then share all of the lovely mementos it receives from around the world on this here website so that not only I, but many more can benefit from their warmth?
This writer chose to send a story, and it was so funny and made me so happy that I found my eyes all watered up with joy on the metro ride home that day. (It actually comes from a pal of mine I miss dearly!)
I’m a sucker for sealed with a kiss.
Here’s her story:
This handwritten note is in response to your Question of the Week Aug. 9 — “What is something just really nice that you’d like to send my P.O. Box?”
Here is my story.
Once upon a hot summer night in a land called Little Five Points, two young freedom fighters marched down Moreland Avenue on a quest to blow off some steam after a long day of waging peace, fighting disease, and building hope. On their journey, they seized control of a yacht, battled a nasty case of hiccups, left numerous voicemail messages, and put a house up for sale. (One of these dainty flowers also ate her weight in breakfast foods.) To this day no one can agree on whether they fought more disease, waged more peace or built more hope, but one thing is for sure — these 2 Kirboans had a hell of a morning.
I have so much love for this lady. Thanks for the laughs down memory lane, my dear.
This project is about promoting handwritten letters (which, in turn, promotes all sorts of other goodness, like kindness, connection, and cheer). So, no matter how you choose to be involved—whether you’re responding to the questions of the week, requesting a handwritten note from me, or just sending a little “hello” yourself—you’re doing just what you need to do.
This little hello to the project came from Qatar.
Hello from afar,
Came across your blog via a retweet from another fan of letters. I’m glad you take the time to do this for folks (and keep the USPS chugging along). I travel a lot so am very happy to write a postcard though at times it’s difficult to determine who would want such an item! Whenever I visit a city I seek out a post office and request 10 stamps to make it easy on the clerk, especially if we don’t speak the same language. Acquiring these Qatari stamps the 1st time around was easy but accents were so strong I didn’t try to make conversation. The stamps were of old world cup (soccer) posters — quite bland for a foreign country stamp. Upon return to make mailings I purchased more and got these unique “creatures” of Qatar. Much better, though I need to decide who will get a postcard with a stamp of an earwig. Haha.
Take care and hope this reaches you warmly…
This was such a fun and unique note to receive. I can imagine this writer traveling the world at the same time that his or her handwritten notes also travel to and fro. It makes me happy to think about the many ways the many places of this big world are brought together.
Sometimes my favorite things to receive in the mail are quick one-liners. It can even be a postcard simply reading, “Hello! Love, Me.”
How can something so quick leave such a big smile?
Thanks, Michelle. :)
It’s not Wednesday, but I think it’s time for a new question. After all of my troubles with the post office these past couple of months, it has gotten me thinking a bit about one of the reasons I started this project — to help save the post office!
With that in mind…
What is your idea for helping save the post office? It can be silly, bizarre, serious, quantitative, qualitative, or all of the above!
Please send your lovely handwritten response to:
Lovely Handwritten Notes
P.O. Box 2674
Washington, DC 20013
United States of America
If you’re wondering what the Question of the Week is and how it works, start here.
Another question still up for grabs is:
What is something just really nice (a story, a joke, a quote, something you’d just like to say, a drawing, really, anything you can think of…) that you’d like to send my P.O. Box to bring it back into the sunshine so that I may then share all of the lovely mementos it receives from around the world on this here website so that not only I, but many more can benefit from their warmth?
I can’t wait to receive and share all of your fantastic letters! Have a fantastic weekend! :)
After a long stretch of an empty p.o. box, letters now are sweeter than ever.
Especially when life is in one of those stages where it is dancing so fast it’s hard to keep up. I’m moving this weekend, and for some reason sold my bed a week early. Sleeping on the floor leads to groggy moments come late afternoon. But then, you get a little something like this from Jerimi.
I love your goal of reviving the handwritten letter! There’s something inherently kind about a written note.
So here is a smile, sent with a stamp, just for you. :)
I smiled all the way home. Thanks for the kindness, Jerimi. It totally helped me defunkifize.
Back in April, I wrote a post about letters from my grandma. It is with sorrow that I share that she passed away last month. When I went to her home, however, I found a final letter she had written to me, but had forgotten to send. I wrote more about it, and the wonder that was my grandmother, on my other blog, Rough Outlines:
I will treasure our letters for a lifetime, and still highly encourage everyone to start a handwritten correspondence with a family member. It’s the type of thing that can leave behind some true wonder and love when it is all said and done.
So, I’m still a bit skeptical that my post office box is actually working. Theoretically, it should be, so if you send a letter just let me know so I can expect it and make sure things are functioning properly.
I’m also in the middle of a move (very excited!), so life is currently in haphazard piles and cardboard boxes of variable sizes. One of these boxes has all of your letters in it, along with my letter writing supplies (I got a little eager to move into the new place). So, I really appreciate everyone’s patience with the slowness of the project right now. In the interim, however, I’d still like to share some little tidbits of letter love. Here’s the first one.
Back in late June, I received a request for a lovely note from Sharmaine in Virginia, and her request came with a rather lovely little story. I asked her if I could share it with all of you, and she happily agreed. Here is what she wrote:
My Dearest, Lovely Handwritten Notes,Already God is ushering blessings my way because I found so many wonderful “letter writing” companions tonight as a result of a google alert I set up on Friday!I found your blog by way of 365Letters (or days of letters), along with many others. I set up the alert to do more research on letter writers, letter writing because I’m three years late on embarking upon my own project ~ 300 Letters.In 2009, my life seemed to be turning upside down because of the economy and because I was finding the courage to leave my comfort zone and follow my heart to write and do women’s ministry. Money all but dried up and it seemed for a while that my prayers for help went unanswered. I prayed for a miracle and what I found was 100 stamps! Somehow I felt that was a part of the answer to my prayer. Like you, I love to write and to write letters. (I used to send an inspirational letter to my real estate clients every month for the past 10 years).So I came upon the idea that I would write 100 letters to see if I could change my life. But along the way, I got an email asking me to send a Christmas card to Veterans in the VA Hospital. That idea mushroomed from one card, to a box of cards, to finding out how many veterans were at the VA Hospital in DC. I ended up getting 250 cards and wrote a personal message in each one of them. I used the 100 stamps for them and counted it as a good deed.However, what I received was one of those “informational emails” where the information is incorrect. I later found out that any cards sent directly to the VA Hospital would be returned. They were to have been sent to a volunteer agency for dissemination instead. All of them came back in my mailbox and I was so disheartened. I’d poured my whole heart into it, but somehow felt that the good intention would not go unrewarded.Soon after that (a couple of months later), I found yet another 100 stamps. These were stamps that were randomly stored in boxes from my real estate office that I moved home. Once again I got the idea that I would write 100 letters as an experiment to see if I could change my life. I ended up using them to send out a round of inspirational letters to my clients. So, the project never got underway.Unbelieveably, I found yet another 100 stamps and knew it was a clear sign that I should write the letters, do the experiment, and see what happens. So three years have passed and finally in 2012, I am undertaking the project called 300 letters because I found 300 stamps. I’ve written 48 letters so far. There are another 15 or so that I wrote while my life was transitioning so I’ll count them in as well. But I’m excited about “sending” my heart, my thoughts, my words, my thanks, my requests, and my questions out into the world to see what comes back.Just wanted to share that we are letter writing companions and I’m so happy that you crossed my path. Last year, a woman who makes handmade cards also crossed my path and sends me beautiful cards throughout the year. It’s love in the mailbox! I’m joining the letter writer’s alliance also. And for over a year, I’ve been sending inspirational letters to the troops in Afghanistan. It’s a way to use my words to lift, encourage, and give thanks ~ a way to put them into the world where they are needed and will be appreciated.
I don’t know about you, but reading Sharmaine’s story was a lot of fun for me. I’m always moved by the simple act of seeing someone being passionate about something. It really doesn’t matter what you are passionate about; it is just about being passionate about something. It is truly beautiful to see someone with the interest, courage, and hope that it takes to make your passions into something malleable.
Sharmaine, thank you for the reminder to persevere and to send more love out into the world. Your dreams do not go without appreciation, for they make the world a better place to be.
Sharmaine also asked me if I could share her address with all of you, as she would love to receive letters from more tender-hearted, letter-writing enthusiasts like herself. Here it is:
Sharmaine L. Hobbs (or Writing Angel)P. O. Box 4566Midlothian, VA 23112United States of America