When was the last time someone said to you, “Drop me a line”?
When was the last time you got a simple handwritten note or letter in the mail?
Heck, in the past few years it really has become a vintage activity. Recycle, Reuse is the mantra of the days and I too find it very hard to spend money on things people will just toss out after a few days or weeks. I decided to purchase and send cards that are unique and/or frameable quill art, popular artist prints or paper pop-ups. I personally love paper art and will use left over wrapping paper and cards to make decorations or incorporate into my mixed media art. Paper chains, ornaments, bunting banners, making homemade paper all are great reusable ways to recycle.
As a practicing minimalist, I like to keep a narrow threshold of materialistic things from entering my personal space. Taking me less than 30 minutes this morning, I cleaned my home and do not regret my decision to keep things minimal after owning and caring for a 5-bedroom, home, rentals, and large yard for almost 30 years.
I enjoy the freedom it brings to my life. Technology has been a great way to keep the paper clutter to a minimal and I find myself frustrated at times when I receive unnecessary junk mail. Even more annoyed with political organizations and credit card approval mail. It makes a quick trip to the shredder, much like the spam and overly abundance of ads in my email accounts. I refuse to pay subscription fees to abolish them, since frugality is my strong suit.
It pains me, that even in a more paperless society, we still have so much waste in paper products. Have you ever watched a movie where someone comes across some old box or trunk tucked away in a dusty old attic somewhere?
The actor/actress will gingerly open the treasured box or trunk and sort through the items until they come across a letter or weathered papers. Maybe they find a bunch of letters that have been bound together with a tattered old string, much like presents for the finders to read with muse.
Were they from a lover, a friend, a spouse, a war hero, someone who has passed?
Handwritten letters and notes are a tangible extension of the writer. We try to imagine them as they sat and wrote them. Were they happy, sad, joyful or hopeful? Was their handwriting representative of textbook cursive, printed block letters or swirly and whimsical? Do the stamps on the envelopes have some cultural story of the day and times or hobby/interest of the writer?
I have letters on military stationary from my first husband which he wrote to me while in the Army. I own notes from an athletic boyfriend that are folded in tiny footballs, that he punted to me with a finger flick behind the teachers back across the classroom that landed into my lap. I have “I love you, Mom” notes and cards from my children written in preschool and school age scribbles. Jokes written in my Dad’s whimsical handwriting inside cards.
When I downsized, I had to decide what to keep and not keep. I could of easily scanned all those notes, cards and letters and kept them handy on a flash drive. However, my enduring love for nostalgia and sentimental “feels” I chose to keep a few that hold very significant meanings that would someday be treasured in their original form. “I hope”.
Today, I was cleaning and decided to sort through any unnecessary clutter. Which for some reason seems to have a way of accumulating even with practicing strict minimalism practices. I came across these beautiful note cards that were done by my 5-year old, grand-daughter.
Signed on the back by her as the Artist and her Age at the time. This was a wonderful and thoughtful fundraiser gift idea done by her play center and printed by www.kidsartworks.co.nz.
I have decided that it was time to sit down and “drop a line”. If you are fortunate enough to be on the receiving end of this particular card, maybe you will be less likely to add it to the rubbish bin and reuse or recycle it. You never know, the artist may be the next Jackson Pollack.