I love internet and the fact that an e-letter can reach my pal within a few seconds...but if there's one thing I regret about this era, it's that there are no old-fashioned letters any more (for me or from me) and that my stamp collection has stopped growing. The snail mail is alive all right. My mailbox has never been fuller…of junk mail. It’s only the letters that have been kicked out of the game.
But I'm still in it: forums, communities. blogging, ....and have recently managed to find a shortcut from the new era to the old, written letters - ancient times. The shortcut is called the Ravelry swaps! Not the fancy ones- naaaah, don't like those. It's not the money- it's just that those travelling boxes don’t turn me on at all. I believe a lot more spirit can fit into a small envelope. I know it can- I used to be a pen pal. :) So, if there's an envelope swap gathering old pen palling addicts like me- I'm in!
I'm currently participating in two such swaps.
The Envelope swap- an already "established" swap group, where a new swap round is organised each month and everything or anything you send should fit into a small, letter sized envelope. One swapper and one swappee... that's all. My envelope for this round is (hopefully) flying across the Ocean as we speak. It's going west. That's all I'm going to tell you for now. :)))
The second swap I'm participating in is a «new born» envelope swap called «Sending some sunshine” and it has already become so much more than just an internet group for me. It's a place where I've met more lovely people in only a month than I could have ever hoped for.
The rules are simple- the envelopes are letter sized again, only this time there’s more than one and they’re sent out every now and then during the period of 2 months. Small surprises, even just postcards, patterns, handmade gifts...rays of sunshine. One swapper and one swappee again. Only, when you meet so many lovely people in one place- before you know it, you're receiving the envelopes from people who aren't even your pals and putting additional envelopes together for some dear people yourself. My first envelope has already left The Old Continent as well. And needs to travel a long, long way to reach my pal (my lips are sealed :)) Wouldn't want to spoil the surprise, my pal still doesn't know who I am)! And as for the first surprise for me – it’s already here. :)
I only hope that these swaps will keep the Message in a bottle and crafty spirits (or “creativity among creative people” spirit as some would say) for a long time and that they wont turn into a plain chocolate bars and tea bags exchange. I’d hate to see that happen as I’m quite enjoying this game. As for my wishes- I collect stamps- I’d be happy to receive an empty envelope with a pair of nice stamps on it every now and then. ;-)
In the mean time, I’m enjoying in my first ray of sunshine! Do you know what I said I wanted- I wanted a pal from the South or from the North pole. A penguin or a Santa, if possible. And d’you know where my envelopes are coming from – from the home of Santa Claus, Finland. From a dear girl called Piia!
I’ll even let you peek into my first envelope a bit!
Just look at these stamps! A red Lilly and a picture of Finnish nature covered with snow. Like I said- I don't need more! :)))
The envelope was sealed with a bunny sticker! Ohhh....
And though I said I didn't mind receiving empty envelopes - this one was full. :))))
A package of lovely glass seed beads; an amazingly beautiful paper card with "golden" seam-like decorations, a beautiful wish printed in Finnish and my pal's note on the other side; a package of Barley seeds for this years' Easter grass; a package of her homegrown chilli-pepper seeds (I love growing those from seeds) and, finally- a Sarah Kay sticker board. How on Earth did she know I loved Sarah Kay?!?! Not many people know that (you don't just go around saying you love "childish" stickers when you're almost 30, do you?! :))) But, they're here!
It's my first ray of sunshine! From my own Santa!
You don't have your own Santa, do you?! :)))