Letter writing or 'snail mail' gives me the social interaction I struggle to do in person because of my health and it enables me to keep in touch with people I know who I know but don't live nearby. Sending a letter is also so much more fun and prettier than sending a text or an email.
I love creating each letter unique and making things to put into letter like word searches, quote cards and drawings. I like making cards too. I also put in little extra like stickers, washi tape samples and. I also put in things like mini playlists and a small list of questions as a way of getting to know my pen pals better. Sometimes I put in things like tea or coffee sachets too.
It's also a really nice distraction activity.
Sometimes it's not always possible for my to handwrite letters so I type them - I'd LOVE to own a typewriter. Every birthday and Christmas it's on my list so hopefully one day I'll persuade my Dad. Or I may just go out and by one and he'll have to deal with it!
Because of my health, like the relapse I'm going through at the moment I can be slow in replying to letters, but all my pen pals are understanding that there may be delays, or all I'm able to send is a postcard.
Some of my pen pals also have health problems themselves so we have a shared understanding of this and we can talk about it, but it's not all we write aboutas there's more to us than our disabilities Instead we write about what we've been making if we both like crafts, or what we've been watching on TV or the funny things our pets have been up to.
I started up a pen pals group on Facebook for people with chronic illnesses/disabilities called 'Chronic Pen Pals'.
I'm always looking for new ideas to make my letters and envelopes more interesting, pretty and creative. Pinterest and snail mail accounts on Instagram are good places for inspiration.
In my bedroom I have a giant noticeboard (see picture below) where I put my mail up on and I have some fantastic push pins - little ducks, turtles, ladybirds, copper stars, gold roses, wooden shapes, sparkly ones, different coloured gems and Mick Mouse push pins. When we moved to this house I asked my Dad if I could get a notice board but he didn't realise how big a one I was getting so he got a bit of a surprise when he came home fro work to find it parcelled up in the hallway! But now Dad can see why I need such a big notice board.
Over the years I've been writing I've become good friends with some of my pen pals. Some of the people I write to we don't regularly exchange mail. For me I might just send a 'hello; I'm thinking of you' card in the mail to someone as I'd rather send mail than drop the person a text/online message.
As well as letter writing I also do something called PostCrossing which is where you send off a postcard to a random member and in return you get a postcard back from another random member. I love being all the different international stamps. My favourite stamps have to be the Moomin stamps and the scratch-and-sniff stamps from the USA where interesting too. It's a fun and interesting hobby, it's also expensive but I can think of worse things to spend your money on.
My local village Post Office and Postman always recognise my mail and they like being something pretty as opposed to the usual boring plain white or brown envelopes.
Letter writing is such a wonderful hobby and it's something I'd recommend to anyone. You don't need anything fancy or expensive, it more the words and the person that it's from that counts.
|My notice board filled with mail and special memories. |
Around the notice board are multicoloured fairy lights.