My two-year-old recently discovered PBS’s Caillou, and it has quickly become one of her favorite books and TV series. We can’t visit the public library without bringing home at least one of the books each week. I enjoy reading them with her because they are filled with realistic interactions between children and their families. There are moments played out on the pages between Mommy (Doris) and Daddy, for example, “Caillou laughed when Mommy scolded Daddy.” Hah! My favorite is when, at his birthday party, Caillou opens his present from Grandma and is disappointed because she got him a sweater. Is there anything more relatable than early childhood disappointment over receiving a gift of clothing?
Last week during our library time, we picked, “Caillou Sends a Letter.” The story begins with Caillou and his mother getting the mail. Mommy opens the envelopes and complains, “Bills, nothing but bills. I’d sure like to get a letter once and awhile.” Preach, Doris! The story ends with Caillou surprising his mother by sending her a letter in the mail.
Do you receive anything in your mailbox other than bills and junk mail? I know first-hand that it’s hard to find the time these days to physically write out a letter or a card to send to someone. And the convenience of communicating via text message and email makes handwriting letters even less appealing. Recently, my thank you card list was about four-months behind...oops! While tackling my thank you cards, I allow time for my daughter to write notes and draw pictures for family members. It’s a fun activity for her, and I imagine that it’s nice for the recipients to find a welcome surprise in their mailbox.
I also personally recognize the effort that senders put forth when writing me a card or note. My family recently went through an unexpected loss and a well-deserved celebration, and the outpouring of cards from family and friends for both situations was touching and encouraging. It’s comforting to be reminded that others are thinking of you in good times and bad.
Send More Mail! Write More Cards!
I’m setting a goal for myself to send more mail and write more cards to family and friends. I want to be the type of person that recognizes birthdays, anniversaries, and other milestones in the lives of those around me. I also want to support my loved ones by sending a message of care when they need a little encouragement. Amazon has amazing deals on multi-packs of blank cards for any occasion that you can stock up on to send to those you care about. I plan to set reminders in my phone’s calendar about important dates and milestones so that I don’t miss opportunities to show people that I’m thinking of them. In our fast-paced digital world, it’s nice to slow down and write a note—who wouldn’t like to get a handwritten letter once and awhile? Will you join me in the mission to brighten someone’s day?
Know What’s Coming Before It Arrives
If more of us are committed to using snail mail, it means there will be more than only bills and junk mail waiting in our mailboxes. A client of mine who travels frequently told me about the free Informed Delivery with USPS service with me, and I’m hooked. Every morning I receive an email digest from the post office with images of the exterior of the mail that’s coming to my box that day. It allows me to preview the contents and see what bills are headed my way (womp, womp, womp, womp), what checks are going to be received, and what other fun surprises are in store! It also allows me to track packages coming from USPS (UPS and FedEx have similar services for the packages they deliver). If you’re nosy like me or travel and want peace of mind in knowing the contents of your mail while you’re away, you might want to consider that service. Also, I can’t tell you how helpful the Informed Delivery service (and similar UPS and FedEx services) were when I moved. I had registered both my old address and my new one in my delivery management accounts. Once, when I was doing some rushed online shopping, I neglected to check the shipping address on the confirmation screen, and the order was set to go to my old address. With the UPS delivery management service, I received an email that allowed me (free of charge) to change the delivery address to a nearby UPS store so that I could intercept the packages before delivery to my old home.
I encourage you to check out these services to help you stay organized; they’ve been very helpful to me—and they just might help you find some extra time to catch up on your thank you card list!