A Postcard a Day

A Postcard a Day

I have a friend (who’s witty comments can even be found on this blog) who’s been a postcard aficionado ever since I’ve known her. In one of my “binder of important things” I have a postcard she sent me from Singapore complete with a Tuk Tuk illustration she drew on the back. When my life first started falling apart, my friend would send me the most perfect postcards in the mail. She had this uncanny ability to send a simple 4″x6″ piece of paper that had the right message or smile I needed at the time.

I know I’ve written in the past on here, but it took a wave of grief for me to fully realize how important snail mail can be. After Tim died, my mailbox was flooded with terrifying bills that I couldn’t pay but it was also full of cards and notes from friends. Mail makes people happy, and I wanted to send more of it.

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Armed with an Amazon gift card, I started perusing boxes of postcard sets on Amazon. As with most things Amazon related, there are tons to choose from. I picked up a few boxes, and then started collecting addresses from folks. About every other week I’ll look through my list of addresses and see if someone needs a postcard. Maybe they’ve helped me out with something, and deserve a thank you. Maybe they had a hard week, and need a smile. Or maybe they’re going through a personal struggle like one I’ve been dealing with, and a little postcard can say “Hey, I’m thinking of you” like others have for me.

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I also put a little star by every person’s name who acknowledges they received the postcard, because even if I’m trying to spread goodwill and cheer… I do like a little validation!

Aside from sending postcards to people I know, my friend turned me to a site that hosts a formalized postcard exchange – Postcrossing. The premise is pretty simple.

  • Sign up with your postal address (a lot of people use PO Boxes for this)
  • Ask to send a postcard, and the system randomly spits out an address from around the world to you
  • Write a tracking code on your postcard, and send
  • When the other person gets the postcard you sent, they enter the tracking code in the site
  • Once it’s been verified that you sent a postcard, a random one will be sent to you

Since I joined Postcrossing four months ago, I’ve sent 17 postcards and gotten 15 back. They are always a bright spot in my mailbox, and I love seeing the different images and places from around the world. I tend to get lots of pandas from China/asia, and who doesn’t love pandas?

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If you’re a fan of mail or postcards, I’d suggest Postcrossing as a pretty fun hobby. Every address is anonymously spit out, which means you can’t go to that site and say “Hey I’d like to murder Lauren – let me ask these postcard people where she lives!” Alternatively, if you want to be added to my list “people I send postcards to when I feel like it” list, you can email me your mailing address. I promise to only send postcards and no creepy stalking. 😉

13 thoughts on “A Postcard a Day

  1. Why have I never heard of this?! What a wonderful idea. I must research. Maybe we all need to do a bloggy postcard exchange!! Weeeeeeee!!!!

  2. That’s a cool idea. I love collecting postcards. I buy them everywhere I go. At my old job, my wall was covered in postcards. I don’t have a cubicle now so I can’t do that, but I have boxes of postcards at home. A few of my favorites are framed.

  3. My mom instilled in me the love of snail mail cards which I have passed on to my daughters. It is sad how most everyone has gotten out of this practice. Like you, getting something personal from a friend or family member in the mailbox puts a smile on my face. Thanks for sharing the postcard site! I love Allie’s idea of a horse bloggers postcard exchange!

  4. I love this idea, but I’m so bad about sending snail mail. SOOOO bad. I’m a terrible correspondent unless it’s electronic lol.

  5. This is awesome! I love it. I have always drawn something in all of the birthday/easter/christmas cards I have sent out to family over the years. For as long as I remember. They really really look forward to these cards and it makes me happy.

  6. What a great idea! I used to collect postcards as a kid when we went on vacation and a few years ago a friend and I started sending postcards about once a week. This exchange sounds like a great use for all my vintage Sacramento Zoo postcards!

  7. Somehow I missed this last year – and I’m so excited! I, too, adore receiving snail mail. I just signed up and I know I will have fun participating in Postcrossing, so thank you very much for the shout-out!

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