Snail Mail Revival

Welcome to the August 2014 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Friends

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared stories and wisdom about friends.

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“The mail! Don’t forget the mail!”

It’s a common phrase around here. Mail has become much more than bills, much more than advertisements. Mail is our connection to friends and family that live far and wide.

That’s right — we’ve got a snail mail revival going on!

Each Monday, Mail Day Monday, the littles and I pick someone to send a note to. I write a card, Jemma draws a picture or meticulously colors a coloring page and Max, well, he has quite the penchant for markers – on paper and his body :)

And then, off it goes! For 49 cents we send a smile, a hug, a prayer, across the miles.

One of my best friends lives in town, but we still send her family things on occasion. Same with our Mimi and one Aunt. We’ve even mailed Dominic postcards from our outings to his office address! Other than that, the rest of our family and friends are far away – California, Texas, Hawaii, Utah, Georgia. But, no matter where our loved ones call home it seems they all appreciate opening a surprise greeting in the mail. Am I right?

DSC_0145 DSC_0155 DSC_0157 DSC_0175Sweet words of encouragement, a quote or Bible verse, a drawing – they all say “you’re important to me” and “I’m thinking about you”. It’s something we want our family and friends to feel even though we can’t see them as often as we’d like. It’s something I want my children to see me do and learn to do themselves. Out of sight doesn’t necessarily mean out of mind. We can strengthen ties and build relationships without frequent face to face contact. It’s the little things, things like letters, that weave tiny threads into the fabric of friendship.

How do you stay in touch with far away family and friends?

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Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(This list will be updated by afternoon August 12 with all the carnival links.)

 
  • Sibling Revelry — At Natural Parents Network, Amy W. shares her joy in witnessing the growth of the friendship between her two young children.
  • Making New Mama Friends — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama muses on how she was able to connect with like-minded mamas and form deep friendships both in ‘real life’ and online. Learn how these life-long friendships, both between Jennifer and other mothers but also between Jennifer’s daughter and the other children, formed and flourished.
  • Family, Friends and Family Friends — Vidya Sury at Vidya Sury, Going A-Musing, Collecting Smiles is reflecting on family friendships, past and present.
  • Arranging friendships in a modern world — From a free-range childhood to current parenthood, how can an introvert like Lauren at Hobo Mama navigate the newly complicated scheduling of playdates and mom friends?
  • Mommy Blogs: Where Moms Make Friends — Mothers make friends with other mothers in new ways. The options from earlier decades remain, but new avenues have sprung up with mommy bloggers. Laurie Hollman, Ph.D. at Parental Intelligence shares her thoughts.
  • Friendship and Sacrifice: Guardians of the Galaxy — Shay at 4HisGlory learned that friendship lessons can be found in unlikely places, like blockbuster summer movies.
  • Friendship – Finding, Forming, Keeping, and WishingLife Breath Present‘s thoughts on finding, forming, keeping, and wishing for friendships as an introvert.
  • Consciously Creating My Community: Monthly Dinners — How have you intentionally created community? Dionna at Code Name: Mama‘s goal for the year is to cultivate community. One way she’s done that is to help organize two different monthly dinners with friends.
  • Adults need imaginary friends, too — Tat at Mum in Search shares why it’s a good idea for adults to have imaginary friends. You get to meet Tat’s friend and download a playbook to create your own.
  • Friends Near, Friends Far — Kellie at Our Mindful Life helps her kids keep in touch with friends 600 miles apart.
  • Which comes first, social skills or social life? — Jorje of Momma Jorje frets about whether her daughter can learn social skills without experience, but how to get good experience without social skills.
  • Snail Mail Revival — Skype isn’t the only way to stay in touch with long distance friends, That Mama Gretchen and her family are breaking out the envelopes and stamps these days!
  • Montessori-Inspired Friendship Activities — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares a roundup of Montessori-inspired friendship activities for home or classroom.
  • How I used the internet to make local friends — After years of striking out at the park, Crunchy Con Mom finally found some great local friends . . . online!
  • My How Friends Change — Erica at ChildOrganics knows entirely too much about how to comfort a friend after a loss.
 


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15 thoughts on “Snail Mail Revival

  1. Erica

    What a lovely idea. I really like that, I'd love to see a revival of handwritten snail mail! For me, I mostly stay in touch with family and friends that live far away via social media. Instagram and facebook mostly.

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Bossio Post author

      I'm heavy on Facebook and Instagram too – it's just so quick and easy, but I've especially fallen in love with Trader Joe's $1 cards for friends via mail. They're just so pretty and they inspire me to find beautiful quotes or Bible verses to share and send off via snail mail :)

      Reply
  2. Laura

    Love it! As you know, we are snail mail people here too… and the kiddos are starting to get into drawing something specifically for someone. A precious way to teach them to think of others!

    Reply
  3. Dionna @CodeNameMama

    We don't send mail regularly, but we do it fairly often. I know that we LOVE receiving mail, so it's fun to know that we'll be putting a smile on someone else's face with our efforts. :)We don't send mail regularly, but we do it fairly often. I know that we LOVE receiving mail, so it's fun to know that we'll be putting a smile on someone else's face with our efforts. :)

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Bossio Post author

      It's a nice way to keep the coloring pages and art work from ending up in paperwork piles too – our fridge and art display space can only hold so much so it only makes sense to share :)

      Reply
  4. Lauren @ Hobo Mama

    Mail Day Monday! What a cool idea. I usually hate getting the mail because it's all just junk — I know my kids & the distant relatives would love it if we set up some reciprocal fun arriving in mailboxes.

    Reply
  5. mommajorje

    What a cool idea! I love that you do it every week, with a set day. It helps keep it in the routine. Pretty much all of MY family is local, though my husband has relatives afar. We do have a friend that has been laid up due to medical issues and we've sent a few gifts with drawings in the mail to her – things to do to pass the time since her mom can't take her out and about so much right now. She sends us goodies and hand-me-downs back, its such a fun exchange!

    Reply
  6. Deb Chitwood

    What a great tradition, Gretchen! We did a lot of letters when my kids were little (in the 80's and 90's!). It really helped my kids learn to send thank you notes even as adults. What you're doing is wonderful in so many ways. :)

    Reply

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