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Snail Mail ~ Cards Because I Care

August 12, 2015

Isn’t it sad our mailboxes are filled with bills and commercial these days? Remember the good old times when someone sent you a nice card or maybe even a letter? They would have picked it out especially for you and they would have sent it because they wanted to let you know they cared about you. What happened to those days? It seems like they’ve vanished completely. It’s ages ago since I have received mail I got thrilled about. Even birthday wishes are done rapidly in a free minute on the toilet browsing Facebook these days.

2015-07-30 Kaartjes Seal (2) - SignatureAnd I’m guilty as well. Occasionally I would still send a real card for someone’s birthday, but mostly I would just use the impersonal way of Facebook as well. At least my recipients got an image attached which I especially found for them on Google. Woohoo.

At the start of my Day Zero Project, I decided I wanted to go back in time a little bit and retrieve something nice from that time: sending postcards. And not the expected postcard on a Birthday or on Christmas (although those are getting rarer as well, like I said). Just a postcard because I care and because I feel this person deserves to know. Because people deserve to know they’re special to you, right? Why wait until their eulogies? So I came up with this goal:

No. 94: Send postcards to people I care about 10 times (birthdays and holidays not included). These should be at least five different people.

I actually liked this goal very much, so I started right at the beginning of my project. At the end of July, I completed this goal! These are the cards that I’ve sent:

No. 1 – My sister
(Sent on November 3, 2014)

2014-11-03 Kaart Melanie (5)

As you may remember (but probably won’t), I started my Day Zero Project on October 29, 2014. So I actually started to progress on this particular goal five days into the project! My sister was going through a very rough time and I figured I could make her feel a little bit better by sending her a card. I chose this card, because she could finally use her bike after a long period and riding her bike is something she loves. So I wanted to celebrate some positiveness in her life.

No. 2 – My sister
(Sent on November 14, 2014)

2014-11-14 Kaart Melanie (3)

As you see, the first card and this one aren’t so far apart. My sister was still going through a rough patch, so I wanted to cheer her up with not only a card, but some small gifts as well. I chose the horse card because se loves horses, a Flow Weekly because it’s a cool little weekly journal in which she could process her thoughts and some chocolate because, well… Endorfine of course!

No. 3 – My sister
(Sent on April 8, 2015)

2015-04-08 Kaart Melanie (9a)

After my very enthusiastic start I laid low for quite a while. I still wrote cards to people, but they were either for a birthday, Christmas or given in person instead of sent. This card was another horse for my sister, again to cheer her up. I cannot look at this funny card and not smile, so I hoped to share a smile with her as well.

No. 4 – My mother
(Sent on June 5, 2015)

2015-06-05 Kaart Mama (1)

In the meantime, my mother was going through some stuff of her own. I wanted to let her know that she wasn’t alone, so I sent her the cutest hug I could possibly find.

No. 5 – My boyfriend Ruud
(Sent on June 5, 2015)

2015-06-05 Kaart Ruud (2)

On the same day I also sent Ruud a card. Yes, we live together, but who says you can’t send a card to someone living in your own home? That makes it even more special, I guess. As you can see there’s a stamp on the card, so I really posted this one to surprise him with some nice mail.

Since we both worship Harry Potter I wanted to send him some owl post. Obviously I couldn’t find a real owl that would send him a card, so I settled with the closest thing I could find. Isn’t it adorable?

Oh, and did I mention envelopes should never be plain white? I mean, how boring is that? And why would you want to send a cute card in a boring envelope? So I tangled a flower on the envelope, just to make it a bit more special.

No. 6 – My friend Tulya
(Sent on June 5, 2015)

2015-06-05 Kaart Tulya (4)

This might be the most special card of all. It’s made from wood. How cool is that! It was actually a postcard, so technically I could have sent it by sticking a stamp to the back. But I was way too terrified the card might break during shipping, so I put it in an envelope for better security. This time I magically spruced it up with washi tape, one of my closest creative friends.

I sent Tulya this card because she has become a real good friend in the year I’ve known her and I wanted to let her know.

No. 7 – My friend Mathew
(Sent on June 5, 2015)

Mathew was also going through a rough time, so I wanted to let him know I’d be there for him. Do you know how hard it is to find an appropriate card for the male population of the planet? They’re all so cute and pink and girly! But orange is neutral, right? The wood one would have been super cool for men as well, but they did not have any containing an appropriate quote at the time.

2015-06-05 Kaart Mathew (1a)

No. 8 – My vets
(Sent on June 30, 2015)

2015-06-30 Kaart Dierenarts (2a)

I was doubting if I should count this card, because technically I don’t have a special bond with my vets. I mean, I never see them, unless something is wrong with one of our pets.

But I figured I do care a lot. Last year our cat was very ill. If he didn’t get surgery, he would die. However, surgery was way too expensive and it wasn’t even sure he would make it through surgery. Our vet suggested to do the surgery herself, even though this was something a specialist would do normally. But that way we would be able to pay for it and at least our little fur ball had a chance. She succeeded and therefore saved his life. Her husband, who is the second vet, did a great follow-up and he’s always so nice to us and our animals. Jimmy’s prognosis was to be able to live three months after surgery at maximum. But he is still here today. I figured they deserved a big thank you.

Unfortunately all is not well with our little Jimmy right now and there seems to be nothing we can do anymore at this point. But he has been given the chance to live a year longer than expected and for that I am eternally grateful to my vets.

No. 9 – My friend Liz
(Sent on June 30, 2015)

2015-06-30 Kaart Liz (3a)

When Ruud and I went to Texel, we needed someone to take care of our dogs. Such a person is not easy to find though, since we currently have three. But Liz offered to stay at our place during that weekend and to take care of all of our animals. And she just had a tiny little kitten herself for a few days, which she would have to miss for a few days now. And she didn’t have an easy time either. There was a thunder storm, of which Rikku is terrified. She has kept her awake half the night. I wanted to let Liz know how much I appreciated the fact she just stayed at our place and took care of our furry friends.

No. 10 – My mother
(Sent on July 30, 2015)

2015-07-30 Kaart Mama (3a)

I figured my mother could use some support again. She still had a hard time, so I wanted to let her know she was not alone and could count on me when needed.

No. 11 – My friend Maria
(Sent on July 30, 2015)

2015-07-30 Kaart Maria (1a)

Maria is one of my theater friends I got to know a year ago. Initially I just wanted to tell her I believe she’s awesome. But the day before I sent the card she came to visit me to make sushi. We opened up about our pasts and had a lot of fun and laughter in the meantime. We connected even more that day than we already had. I thought that was really special, so I wanted to let her know with this card.

No. 12 – My friend Sarah
(Sent on July 30, 2015)

2015-07-30 Kaart Sarah (2a)

Yet another theater friend I just met a year ago. She doesn’t like to get compliments very much, but I figured everyone deserves to know you think they’re awesome. I’m glad she has come into my life and these things need to be told, right?

No. 13 – My friend Scarlett
(Sent on July 30, 2015)

2015-07-30 Kaart Scarlett (1a)

Scarlett and I go way back. We’ve been friend for about eight years now. She used to live in the same city as I did, but a couple of years ago she moved away to study in another city. I really miss having her around and I wanted to let her know.

I noticed I have the tendency to find reasons to send people cards, such as supporting them in rough times or thanking them for something they did. Of course there’s no harm in that, but I figure it’s even cooler to receive a card when you least expect it. In time I became better at sending cards just because I wanted to let people know I cared for them, without any specific context. So I shared thirteen cards instead of just the first ten, since these last ones actually show that progress.

I loved doing this! In fact, I loved it so much that I am know sending letters and cards to people all over the world! I became member of a pen pal group (admin even!) and two parcel pal groups on Facebook. I have met some great new people the past few weeks. And it’s finally fun again seeing the mailman at my doorstep!

With all the technology and social media that’s available to us we tend to forget the joy of small things like a simple card to let someone know you care. We shouldn’t though. It’s such a nice way to send your love to someone else and brighten up their day. I will continue sending cards and letters to people. This goal was just a first step for me. When is the last time you sent someone a card?

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  • Reply Constructing Carrie August 12, 2015 at 4:40 pm

    Those note cards are beautiful! I love snail mail, and have wanted to get back into it. I always feel like anything I could put in a note or letter would be obsolete once the recipient got it though, thanks to social media… It really is a lost art!

    • Tanya de Kruijff
      Reply Tanya de Kruijff August 12, 2015 at 5:01 pm

      It only is if we let it. 🙂 If you’re serious about getting back into the snail mail world, I could always add you to the pen pal group on Facebook. 🙂 I can only add people who I’m befriended with on Facebook though.

  • Reply northnomads August 17, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    I love sending cards to friends and family every now and then. It is best when they don’t expect them. I think they really enjoy receiving them and they always send an email back telling me how great it was to get them in their mail among the bills and brochures!

    • Tanya de Kruijff
      Reply Tanya de Kruijff August 17, 2015 at 7:25 pm

      That’s lovely, that you do that! More people should, it is fun to get stuff in the mail other than bills!

      • Reply northnomads August 19, 2015 at 8:55 am

        It really is! Some of my friends occasionally send one back, so we might be inspiring a come-back 🙂

  • Reply Elle-K Fitness August 19, 2015 at 8:39 am

    Such a great idea, I need to send more letters and postcards too! Wonderful that you are so far through your list! Good luck for the rest!

    • Tanya de Kruijff
      Reply Tanya de Kruijff August 19, 2015 at 10:04 am

      Thank you! You definitely should, it’s addictive. I am so hooked to snail mail right now!

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