“…your life is short and rare and amazing and miraculous, and you want to do really interesting things and make really interesting things while you’re still here.” – Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic
Whenever I travel, I carry a Ziploc bag filled with pre-addressed mailing labels and postcard stamps. I want my grandchildren to experience the thrill of excitement I felt when I received mail as a child.
I think my passion was born when in fifth grade I wrote to every capital city’s Chamber of Commerce requesting brochures on the state for a school project on the United States, back in the days long before such a request would be met with a reference to a website. I smiled and skipped back inside from the mailbox with letters most days during the project time, ready to read about the states and cut and paste information from the brochures onto the notebook paper in my presentation book. I’d enjoyed the learning, and out of it was born a love of mail that arrives in envelopes, with stamps in the upper right hand corner and my name on the front. I don’t remember every state’s bird or tree or motto, but I do remember that when I needed resources, there were places to look and people to ask. I learned something about being resourceful – about how letters requesting information glean a response.
And that is why I take every opportunity to send a quick card, whether I’m five hours from home or one hour. My grandchildren may not fully appreciate all of the cards now, but one day I hope they will look back and realize that their Nana always wanted them to see the world and to enjoy the ride!