Recently, I read about some fellow book bloggers taking up month-long (or longer) letter writing campaigns and was inspired to find my own pen pals. I didn’t need to look much further than my own family!
As a kid, I had a pen pal from another grammar school in our district and it was the highlight of the academic year. In my little-kid mind, this other school was a galaxy away (reality: 7 miles). We sent stickers, photos, and personal information. She loved animals and Michael Jackson; I had a dog and loved to roller skate to Michael Jackson music while wearing purple leg warmers.
By my teenage years, I’d graduated to finding pen pals in the back of teen magazines. I made a friend in Grand Junction, CO and we wrote back and forth for about a year before we fell out of it. The internet was looming on the horizon, and I’d soon be able to have my pick of email pen pals from the message boards on Prodigy (precursor to AOL, for you youngsters!).
After hearing about the letter campaign on Twitter, I put together two small Rubbermaid boxes filled with blank greeting cards, envelopes, blank paper, stickers, and a book of stamps. I taped a sample envelope with my name and address to the inside lid of the boxes and gave them to my cousin’s children–ages 6 and 8–when I visited them in Delaware last Friday. I explained what it meant to be pen pals and was delighted when they ran off to the dining room to write me some letters.
Yesterday, two cards found their way to my mailbox and it gave me a thrill to see my name carefully printed on the envelopes. I immediately sat down and wrote back–there’s nothing worse that a laggard for a pen pal!–and hope that we will continue to trade letters and hand-drawn pictures.
So, thanks to my blogging friends for inspiring the terrific idea to start a letter writing campaign right here in my own family! In my next letter I plan to send along some Crayola photo pages (upload photos to the website and print them as coloring pages) for fun.
Are you part of the letter writing campaign, or do you have any ‘pen pals’ of your own?