Tag Archives: Mail

The Moment

Last week I received a package from a dear friend, Tracy, who lives in California. She was my old boss but, more importantly, a trusted and loving confidante whom I wish I connected with more often. Tracy is old-school in the sense she never texts, rarely emails, but occasionally rings while sipping wine in a vineyard she thinks we ought to visit. The moment I noticed Tracy’s easily identifiable handwriting on a brown paper package on my doorstep, I smiled really, really big.

photo 2

I had seen her writing for years on production shoot notes or editing scripts, each letter always leaning way to the left as if there was a fan on the right side of the page. This was Tracy alright. Although her writing made me miss my close friend, there was a comfort in knowing she had created this package and card only days ago, pen and paper in hand. Nothing better.

photo 1

I thought of this feeling again today when I received a correspondence in the mail. Just a few days ago I met up with a woman named Michelle, a fellow believer in the importance of handwriting . While we both took notes during our conversation I noticed her unique penmanship. All of her letters were printed lowercase yet still held a nice finesse and sophistication. When I found her letter sticking out of the junk mail one day, I knew in a second this was Michelle (I soon enjoyed a thoughtful note on lovely cotton paper, personalized with letterpress. My kind of girl!). Even after one meeting, her writing became one of the pieces of my new friend.

As we consume piles of catalogues, bills and excess paper advertisements each day, it’s a simple joy to receive anything personal in the mail these days. It’s in this moment when holding a simple, handwritten letter naturally forces me to pause, feel the life within the correspondence, and appreciate and give thanks for the effort behind the letter.

    A Trend for Life

    Handwritten étiquette and social stationery seem to be making the hot list these days. From a recent article in W Magazine which featured Sofia Coppola’s “wardrobe of stationery”…

    kic-scan_006

    …to an April article in the Fashion & Style section of the Sunday Times stating that the Thank-You Note is making a comeback, is this latest writing trend here to stay?

    06CULTURAL-master675

    Writing letters and thank-you notes has never left my universe. I feel a bit fortunate for my age. It was only toward the end of college in ’94-95 when the internet began to take form (we all felt so giddy emailing each other across the room in the computer lab at UW-Madison). I was still writing my parents from travels abroad and keeping up with college friends via long handwritten letters soon after graduation. When I could afford it, personalized stationery came back into my life later on in my 20’s (mom spoiled us with monogramed stationery as kids) and my love of paper goods continued to gain speed. Even today, the only drawer I try desperately to keep my 1-year-old daughter out of would be my stationery drawer.

    At a market last weekend, I was pleasantly surprised to see how many more young adults were purchasing Brown Ink Paper Goods. These folks also seemed the most enthused about the variety of products. It gave me hope. The Millennials might be shooting off a fancy, graphic designed picture sharing their gratitude for a memorable party, but if sources are correct, they also are following up with the thoughtful correspondence via snail mail.

      It’s Just This Heart

      Yesterday afternoon I found myself running down our snowy sidewalk in my socks. I usually prefer running shoes even in our balmy 22 degree weather but my heart made me do it. After missing our Postman’s pickup, I had no other option than to hand deliver the Valentine for my sidekick to the Postman’s mail truck.  Love is in the air and at that particular moment there was nothing more important than making sure my postcard was in the mail on that day. The Postal Service also has reason to share this emotion. The USPS has recently announced The Love Letters Project, posting stories of individuals who owe a great deal of thanks to the Postal Service for a making love connection and drawing people together. Now through February 19th you can follow these stories through audio clips shared online.

      Conversation No. 1

      My favorite is the story of Sandy and Donna, both heartfelt and thought provoking. You must listen to hear it all but here’s my favorite clip from Donna…

      “But there is this moment when you receive that (letter) and it’s stepping into a whole other world. And I think that’s just the whole thing, suddenly being able to say things and choosing words properly without intonation, without implied messages, without anything. It’s just this heart.”

      Make sure to take a listen to the other stories, all connected to letter writing through the Postal Service. But be warned, you just might be stirred to pen some sentiments of your own! Happy Valentine’s Day.

        Signed, Sealed, Delivered

        As the festive season is coming to a close, wouldn’t it be nice if your stamps and Thank You cards were all lined up and ready for writing early in the New Year? Yes? That’s what we thought too!! Kick off your enthusiasm with ordering a few of these beautiful stamps for the new year.

        The elegant 2014 Year of the Horse Forever stamp features Chinese drums and drumsticks painted red for luck, the seventh in the Celebrating Lunar New Year series.

        Nothing beats the classic Ray Charles Forever stamp, a part of the Music Icons Series. The stamp sheet was designed to appear similar to a vintage 45 rpm record sleeve, with one side filled with stamps and the other an image of a record peeking out the top of the sleeve.

        Here’s a peek of a few of my favorite stamps arriving in the coming year…

        A new postcard stamp of the graceful hummingbird will arrive early in 2014.

          The great spangled fritillary butterfly 66 cent stamp will make its way out in the New Year…

        …as is the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge Priority Mail stamp marking the bridge’s 50th birthday in 2014, a part of the USPS  Stamps Places series.

        (If you are stamp nut, look back at the 2013 Stamp Stories and vote for your favorite stamps!)

        Now all you need are some Thank You notes…

        The Capri Thank You Set on Brown Ink Paper Goods is perfect for anyone on your list.

        Although created for wedding needs, this modern and personalized Vista Thank You Card Set from Seaborn Press would be brilliant to have on hand.

        VW Bus, letterpress cards, set of 6

        Throw a little nostalgia in your note with the 60’s VW Bus card set from Pistachio Press.

        If you are looking to make Thank You cards enjoyable for the kid in your life, try out these Many Thanks stamps on Brown Ink Paper Goods, with a variety of ink pad colors to select from.

        Or pick a set of Les Animaux cards for the more mature young adult.

        Whether they actually say “Thank You” or simply display a memorable image, it’s the written word which will appeal to the receiver on a cold winter’s day!

          Time & Season

          In case life has not given you a moment to stop and shop, here are few more ideas to get you going.

          Imageho

          First, just in time for the holidays, find unique paper goods at Brown Ink Paper Goods Holiday Sale with 20% off your entire purchase through December 21st. Please use Discount Code: HOHOHO20 at check out. Guaranteed delivery by December 24th if you order by 4pm this Friday, December 20th!! We even wrap your goodies for no charge.

          Also, a few others which have caught my eye….

          Image of Snowflake Card in Gold, Single Card

          Gold Snowflake by Aileen Cheng Design could be used for brilliant New Year’s greeting card.

          Typewriter Stamp Kit

          The Typewriter Stamp Kit from terrain will make any hand-made card an original.

          Letters In The Mail is a brilliant service which mails out letters at least twice a month from well regarded authors; some typed, others handwritten. For the young adults, Letters For Kids will be written by children’s authors, many of the them including a return address to write them back. And it’s only $5 a month! This all comes to you from The Rumpus, a place where people come to be themselves through writing. These people are passionate about writing!!

          Since our family loves paper, stars and the moon, this 2014 Astrology Calendar from the Little Paper Planes online shop grabbed my attention right away.

          The Typewriter Notelets from Smythson includes a matching tissue-lined envelope – Start a tradition by exchanging written letters over the holidays with your family!

          Bergdorf Goodman is the stop for high quality items such as these personalized Leather-Bound Notebooks, a gift to hold on to for years ahead.

          Hero_marbleset-product-7

          You can find a beautiful, screenprinted by hand Marble Notes and Planner Set on Of a Kind created by Julia Kostreva which includes a notebook, planner and calendar.

          Image of Snowshoes Holiday Thank You Card

           Being a fan of Thank You Notes, who wouldn’t love to receive this Snowshow Holiday Thank You Card from Small Adventure once the snow has settled post-holiday season. Ha!

          Lastly, for you local Twin Citians, if you are out and about this week, make sure to stop into my friend’s new card and gift shop on 2515 and Nicollet Ave So…

          South Minneapolis based Joel and Lauren from Old Tom Foolery have recently opened a bricks and mortar shop, Greater Goods, to sell their personal line and other goods as well. Swing by their Grand Opening Party tomorrow, December 18th from 4-9 pm with 15% off your purchase. The store even includes a writing corner and mailbox for those eager writers. My kind of folks!

          Stamp duty: a postman braves snow in Kent, December 1962 - Not the first-class post<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />
 Lastly, don’t forget your Postal carrier this time of year. They can’t except cash, but a simple Gift Certificate will definitely put a step in their stride as they hand deliver your mail this year. And if a gift isn’t in the cards this year, a written note expressing Greetings and Thanks just might be the best gift of all.