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Archive for December 3rd, 2012

100 Stamps

4:00pm is one of my favorite times of day.

Six days a week, right on schedule, I receive a visit from our mail carrier. Yes, most of the time, my mail box is filled with bills, ads or items addressed to “current resident.”

stampBut, every once in a while there’s a card in there.

And when that happens, I get so excited, I barely make it inside the house before opening it! Seriously, I’m just like the kids, except I manage to rip open the envelope without tearing apart the card.

I just love receiving cards and letters…love it! Emails, texts and instant messages are fun and definitely great ways to stay connected. However, “snail mail” is still my favorite form of correspondence. Call me old-fashioned, but getting an envelope with my name scrawled in the familiar handwriting of family and friends is so heart warming.

Have you ever had a rough day, only to have it brightened by a special note in your mailbox? Or, felt your heart skip a beat because someone was thinking about you…and took the time to tell you? All too often, it’s easy to feel like just another face in the crowd. But, when you get a card specifically meant for you…well, how can you not smile?!

There are two times a year in particular when I keep an ear out for the familiar stopping and starting of the mail truck: birthdays and Christmas. Needless to say, one of these times is now upon us. 😉

As I reflected on all this, I brainstormed about how the kids and I can give these same sentiments to other people in our life.

And so…this year I’m taking a twist on “Embracing a Spirit of Giving”!

For the past two years, we have counted down to Christmas by giving each day to a different group of people. We made hand-crafted ornaments, baked goodies, purchased items and of course, given the gift of our “time” to others.

This year though, we’re giving the gift of our words in a project I’m calling, “Embracing a Spirit of Giving 2012: 100 Stamps.”

Here’s the deal:

Every day until Christmas, the kids and I will each write a letter to someone we know. That’s 25 letters a piece, thus requiring 100 stamps.

The requirements are simple:

  1. They have to be encouraging and tell the person what they admire or respect about them.
  2. They need to tell the person why their presence is meaningful.
  3. They have to use specific examples; blanket statements or “I think you’re cool” sentences aren’t going to cut it. There has to be a “because” in there.
  4. They have to personalize and decorate the card. And yes, they get complete and total free reign with this! So if by chance you receive a card with battling Skylanders on the front, then know I said it was “okay.”

As a way to wrap-up this project, I thought it would be fun to show the kids “It’s a Wonderful Life” on Christmas Day. After writing all their letters, I think they’ll relate to the concept of how a person’s life really does matter and we should never take for granted the impact one life may have on another.

Now, one of the ideas that shaped our previous projects is giving the gift of “presence” as opposed to “presents.” So, we’ve chosen a few specific ways to honor this concept. But, more on that later…

And yes, I will have a few other “specials” to add to the project. I just wouldn’t be “Kelly” without throwing a surprise or two into the mix!

“Embracing a Spirit of Giving 2012” is officially underway!

I hope your season is blessed!

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