Handwritten With Love – Making Room for Sentimental

There was a time in my life where I kept each and every card, letter and note I received. Cards for birthdays, notes from classmates, letters from loved ones who lived far away. I have books and books full of cards and notes… some with a lot of meaning… some from people I barely remember. (For example – that picture of the couple above? No idea who they are!)

Some of the cards are short and sweet but as the years progressed and I got older (and could read) the messages on the card became more significant, sharing more about what was happening in our lives at that time.

Eventually, the scrapbooks of cards and letters stopped. Grown up, get rid of the clutter me took over and I became a tossing fool. “We don’t have space for sentimental!” As I was cleaning, little did I realize how much I would eventually long for those words on those little sheets of paper. The words, many written by people no longer living and whom I miss dearly, are gone. I would love to turn back time and snatch those cards and letters from the trash… not caring about the clutter but being more aware of the important space those words took up in my heart. I wish I knew how running my fingers across the raised letters could make me feel like I was sitting right next to my grandma, in her house smelling of coffee and cats and listening to her stories. Oh, how I wish I knew then what I know now.

What happened to the art of writing letters? What happened to the days of just sharing about our day… simple things like going to the grocery store to pick up nuts for bridge club? We are in such a hurry that even emails are short, to the point, and only cover the essentials. When was the last time you sat down and wrote a letter to someone you love for no reason whatsoever? I know for me, it’s been far too long.

I’m going to challenge myself to take out a pen, sit down and write a letter to someone each month. Not an email… and not even a letter with purpose. Just a “thinking of you” card to share what’s happening in our life and to let the other person know they are in our thoughts. Maybe I’ll even share things as significantly insignificant as what’s on my list for the grocery store. Because, really, sometimes the insignificant is more significant than we ever knew.

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  1. Pat Wogan says

    What a beautiful post! I have tears in my eyes reading about
    Grandma Marie’s preparations for club. I also remember Grandma Sumner’s notes included with her “widow’s mite” check to you girls when you were in college, admonishing you not to tell your Mother about the check and to spend it on something that you wanted….not something you needed. You are right, these notes are so precious. I keep the ones send to me, too. I accept your challenge to make an effort to send a hand-written note to someone once a week! Love you, Mom

  2. says

    Such a lovely post, Kristen! I used to write letters to my great grandmother. I’m not sure I still have any of hers, but she saved mine — my aunt wound up with them and read a poem I had written for her (~ age 9) at my wedding. It was so very special. Thanks for the reminder to make my kids write real letters every once in a while. :)

  3. says

    We had a whole conversation about this!!!!
    How powerful and wonderful the written word is and what treasures those cards are – the ones written by the people no longer with us.

    Oh Kristen <3 I've been challenging myself to do the same, I've been sending cards to friends and family and even people that I've lost touch with. love. love. love. <3

    • says

      Words are so very powerful… it is amazing how just seeing the handwriting of someone you love can take you back to your memories together!

  4. says

    I make it a goal to send one card each month, and not for a holiday. I have so many friends and loved ones far away, it forces me to reach out just to say I love you. I think it really means a lot to those who receive them.

  5. says

    What a great post Kristen. Steve is like that. He has a drawer full of every card me and the girls have ever given him. I don’t think he has many from growing up, but as an adult he keeps them. They’re so fun to go thru and see how the girls have changed over the years with what they write and how they write!

    I love your mom’s comment too…….but better yet, your “PS, do you know who that couple is?” HAHA!

  6. gtrexler says

    I love this post! I still have every card given to me from a very young age. The cards from those that have passed are the most precious of all. I only wish they would have written more.

  7. says

    Too true, I have also been guilty of ‘de-clutter’ mode and have thrown out all of my old cards when I was just about to get married. Reading your post just brought back so many memories of grandparents and the cards that I no longer have. But I have learned now to teach my kids not to throw these things out.

  8. Melissa says

    I miss handwriting letters. My handwriting has gotten worse, since I haven’t used it. That’s a great idea, handwriting a letter to someone each month. I’ll have to try that too!

  9. Lisa says

    Beautiful post!
    I have to admit, I’m intrigued by your Grandmother’s club — was she a HomeEc lady, too (it’s somehow related to 4H or something?)? My Gran was, and I ask not to be nosy (sorry!), but because reading that pic of her card to you made me remember how I’d help out when she hosted and it could have been her words — going to town, getting stuff in for it, etc. — that I was reading.
    Really lovely post, Kristen, even if it did about made me teary as all get out. : )

    • Yvonne Houchin says

      My mom, Kris’s Grandmother had a book club where they reviewed books every month. This was a big deal in a very small town. Invitation only, with very proper tea/coffee and always a special dessert. They would go to a different home each month all dressed up. They had officers, scrapbook and dues. My mom would worry about everything about it for months. If she was president, hostess, book reviewer, or having to do the scrapbook for the year was such a challenge. But she must of loved it because she did this up until they all couldn’t do it any more and disbanded.

  10. says

    I’ve wondered what has happened to handwritten cards as well. I have to convince my boys to write thank you notes after receiving gifts. I think I will also pick up a pen and send some thinking of you notes to some girlfriends across the country. What a nice surprise it will be in their mailbox!

  11. says

    Love this post, Kristen. Such a great idea to have saved your cards and notes in a book. I just keep mine in photo boxes on the top shelves in the bookcases. The books would be easier to go through them, though! I’ve almost tossed mine a time or two, and have a few cards that weren’t from my parents and grandparents. Those are just way too special, aren’t they?


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