These days, real mail is more special than ever. But a Facebook birthday wish or Twitter shout-out is so fast, most of us have stopped stamping envelopes altogether. And yet with personal mail (from the postman) nearing extinction, sending greetings that can be seen and felt really lets people know they matter to you.
Of course, it takes some extra effort, especially if you don’t regularly send personal mail. So here’s a way to ease-ify the process…
The Letter Bin
A Letter Bin is a single container that houses everything you need to write a letter and get it in the mail. When you think of someone you’d like to send a hand-written note, just pull out the container, and everything is at the ready. Easy to get started. Easy to finish. Just, easy.
How To Do It
Find a suitable container.
Unless you write a lot of letters, I suggest using a bin instead of a drawer. That way, when you’re not using it, you can more easily put it out of the way. I love clear plastic shoeboxes like this one, because they stack well and it’s easy to see what’s inside. Use whatever you find functional and lovely.
Oh – and make sure the lid closes easily. Otherwise it’ll get annoying pretty fast.
Collect your snail mail accoutrements.
I suggest including at least the following:
- Stationery (or paper and envelopes)
- Postage stamps (for all sizes of letters and postcards)
- Letter-writing pens (whatever kind you prefer)
You could also include:
- Colored pens
- Return address stamp or labels
- Supplies for decorating letters, making your envelopes, or anything else you might use to adorn your greetings
- Your letter writing script (if you have one) and scrap paper for sketching (mmm… haven’t shared with you about sketching for thank you notes yet, but will soon. Anyway, I keep those in my bin.)
If you want to include your children in the process, put paper and markers and stickers and what-have-you in there for them as well. Or help them make their own bins! If they love to receive mail, encourage them to write (or draw) and see who replies back. It’s a personal and practical way to practice writing.
Now, this final part is going to blow your mind, but stick with me.
Put all the stuff you collected into your container.
Next time you want to tell a friend you care, just grab your bin and your address book and get started. You’ll be done in a flash.
Best of all, the cleanup is stupid easy. Throw everything back in your bin and close it up. Ta-done.
Do you write as many notes as you’d like? What seems to keep you from it?