Do you have any old letters laying around? From grandparents, your parents, letters you wrote back and forth with a friend or other relative? Do you think of them as clutter or keepsakes?
One thing that I appreciate about letters is how they document ordinary life. Here is a letter my sister Angie found that was written by my Grandma Panther to her mother-in-law, Mrs. B.H. Panther. The postage date was April 15th 1960. It was sent from Livermore, CA to Greenacres, WA.
Dear Folks, I had a letter from Ruth - Glad to hear the operation is all over and you are getting along alright. I hope you are back on your feet real soon. All's well here- Billy walks and thinks it is lots of fun. Leaves the furniture walking but soon sits down then tries again. Kids have been out of school for a week - Spring Vacation. Les still likes to play in the orchard and rides his trike all over. I sure hate to have to live in town again. Don is thinking seriously of getting a tractor to keep the orchard plowed up. Been trying to find someone to plow up the garden and can't find anyone. Don went across the street last night to see the neighbor. He said he'd be over as soon as we moved in but he hasn't been over. Been in the hospital and they can't find out what s the matter - so he has to go back. He told Don to get Les a shovel and we'd soon get it plowed up. Got Dennis and Louise busy watering the grapes today. Takes most of the day at 10 minutes on each hill. Will have to get the roses watered today to. They are so pretty, I'd sure hate for anything to happen to them.Got new facets for the kitchen and all the holes around the pipes plugged to keep the mice out. Caught 3 one night and since he fixed the holes we haven't caught any. Hope Ruth and Wayne make it in June. Ted, the kids teacher in Ford plans on coming to Oakland when school is out and said he's look us up. My brother in San Diego is going home in July so he'll stop by. Hope mom is home to stay by then, but I doubt it. She doesn't get to go home for Easter like she'd planned and she's pretty disappointed. Better close Billy is too much of a help on my lap. (scribbles on the page)
Love, Norma, Don and Kids
I think there is something special about writing and documenting ordinary life. Don't you?
Below are some pictures of my "letter box" this box contains cards that my husband, Dave and I have given each other over the past 8.5 years. There are cards from birthdays, anniversary's, Valentines Day and as of last year Mothers Day and Fathers Day. (I also found some other random things in there too, like teeth, don't know how those ended up in there.) It is really fun to go back and read them all and to look at our card choices. And remember what stage of dating we were in when we wrote them.
There are also some cards that Dave has kept from his sisters and letters from his grandma and grandpa. I think most people are more sentimental then we like to admit. This is obvious to me as I found a card from Daves older sister Kim from his 12th birthday. It's the third picture down with the race car.
1. What is your biggest obstacle to writing a letter?
2. I want to encourage you to write to someone this week a letter that documents where you are in your life.
3.I want to know what you think, does this encourage you to write a letter?
Not sure how to get started? Click here to read an article called How (and Why) to Rediscover the Lost Art of Letter Writing.