Back to Snail Mail
Let’s talk about going back to snail mail today. I did that on Sunday night, and it is still on my mind.
You enjoy getting cards and letters and parcels in the mail, don’t you? A real treat after getting mostly ad-flyers in the mail most of the week, right?
Well, I still appreciate snail mail like cards, letters and parcels too! I’ve just been feeling guilty that over the last number of months because I have not been so faithful in replying and thanking those who made the effort to get something off to me by the mail. Yes, yes, that huge book project preempted my time in a huge way in 2017, but I had been putting that mail away in a box/bin right here where I can see it in front of the window, and it was VERY full!
For many years I’ve made it my business to take time to answer those letters and cards on Sunday night. I cringed at the prospect of answering 6 to 9 months worth of mail, but this last Sunday evening, (after a refreshing nap), I decided to tackle the project and see just how huge it was.
Some of it just needed to be filed, so those went on one pile. Some were Christmas cards and I had acknowledged most of those in the P.S. of my Christmas letter; so those could be filed too. But then there were letters in Easter and Birthday cards that I had not answered yet! Plus some that came in the Christmas cards in December, and even some letters that have arrived in January. Because I’d written the date I’d received those on the envelope, I was able to pile them up in chronological order, so I could answer the oldest ones first. Now the pile to answer didn’t look quite so horribly large.
I decided to use a trick to speed things up that I’ve used a few times before. If you ever find yourself in this position, you may want to take note here. Mind you, – it works best with a computer. If you write everything in long-hand,…it is still going to take many days and nights!
What I did was write a general letter of about a page and a half, that apologized for my tardiness in writing, and told about my Christmas mis-adventures with car battery, etc. I gave an update on my life in 2018 so far, and tried to bless them. I saved that letter on my computer as my January letter. Then I started picking up the cards and letters I was going to answer, one at a time, of course, entered the name at the top of the generic letter, and below the body I had written, I addressed the recipient personally, answering her/his questions and comments from their letter. I left space for signing it at the bottom, saved the letter with the name of the one addressed, and used the generic letter to answer the next one on my pile.
I worked like this, personalizing around the pre-written body of my personal news, to provide a personal letter to each one as I was answering. By 11 pm I had seven letters answered.
I decided that was enough for one night, so I printed them, addressed the envelopes and put on stamps and my return address stickers, and presto, they were ready to take to the mail on Monday.
This next Sunday night I will continue with this answering process, and I may even make it all the way through the pile, and be all caught up again with the snail mail I’ve received. I’ll do my best the rest of this year, 2018, of answering all incoming mail within a month.