Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Desire #39

Desire # 39: 
Send my thank you notes by hand

I remember when I thought it was really cool to get an email. That was before spam, email marketing and the proliferation of electronic communication in business. It was also before my emails were accessible from every mobile device known to peoplekind.

And now email is common.

And I'm not one to be common. 

Between my birthday and Christmas I noticed what a treat it was when there was actually something to open in my US Mail besides a bill or a catalog. And so the desire to go back to  writing thank you notes by hand, the way I used to in the olden days took root.

There is nothing ordinary about picking out a thank you card and taking the time to compose  a thoughtful message. It requires remembering all those things no one does anymore, like write in a handwriting that you take pains to make sure is legible and going to the post office to buy a stamp before dropping it in the mailbox.
Think about it!
How many thank you notes have you received lately that were not electronic?
When was the last time you went to the post office?
How many people even remember to say thank you?

Yes, I know it does not seem very green to many of you.  And yes, it takes longer. You can't just type a rush of words and hit send. You have to have a card. You have to think before you write because there is no spellcheck to self correct. A pen forces you to write in whole sentences the way a keyboard does not always mandate.

And then there is the subject of stamps. They cost money. This old fashioned thing is definitely pricier.

But it is so much more fun! 

I ordered a box of beautifully designed note cards from my friend Tara Dixon who has just a launched a whole line of Gratitude Designs in which 5% of all profits go to benefit The Flawless Foundation.  I wrote my first two thank you notes of the year Sunday. I sprung for stamps knowing while this might not be very green, I was contributing to my postal worker's salaries.

An example of Tara Dixon's Gratitude line.

I got to reflect back on the reason I was sending the notes in the first place before I scribbled my message because  there is no delete button on an ink pen if I made a mistake. I got to relish the gift again. I got to put attention on my friends who were ever so deserving.

There was nothing chore like about this. I was not doing something  I had to do but rather enjoying something  I wanted to do. I was practicing an art, one that seems to have gotten a bit lost in the tech maze and one I am determined to not let fade away.

Do you send thank you notes? How?
Are you surprised when you receive one, especially if it's in the mail?
How does it make you feel?


Leah Fisch said...

Love it!

I also purchased TWO boxes of Tara's gratitude cards and sent them out for the holidays feeling grateful AND like I was giving a gift to those receiving them. And you're right about cards-definitely pricier and take more effort, but there ain't nothin' like a handwritten envelope and card waiting for you in the mailbox. Thanks, Joanne, for encouraging us to do more than just press send.

Tara Dixon said...

Thank you for the shout out. I loved reading your musings on this potentially lost art. I am honored to be part of your blog. One Woman's Eye is a favorite destination where I am always simultaneously bemused and intrigued.
In gratitude-

Unknown said...

I am a huge fan... so much so that I have one of the original paintings in my bedroom and I see it every morning when I wake. I start my day mindful of my gratitude.

Thank you!

Love the cards and highly recommend the journals. such fun writing your gratitudes in a gratitude journal!
Alice 72

Suzi Banks Baum said...

Joanne! What a great post! Did you read my blog about thank you notes last week? We are thinking in the same zone! I love this! Tara's work is gorgeous and so is yours. xoxox S