One of the contest questions in last week’s “giveaway” was . . .
“When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper; put it in an envelope; put a stamp on it and mailed it?”
I must admit I asked this question with fingers crossed that many of you would say, “all the time”.
I shudder to think that email may completely replace the hand-written letter someday. The encouraging news is that the majority of people – who answered the question – do actually write letters and love receiving them in return!
Some of you communicate by snail mail quite often; others include hand-written notes in your Christmas cards; still others write letters on paper for elderly relatives who are not computer savvy, but most of you seem to agree there’s nothing like a hand-written note!
I have a cherished stack of letters and cards from family members that are no longer with us. Their notes are absolute treasures and part of their legacy. Many were written to me during special times – like when my children were born. There are also family recipes written on assorted scraps of paper or recipe cards – some have precious “hints” added in the margins! My favorites are the sweet, newsy, everyday kind of letters – they’re just brimming with tales of the past. Now and then, I come across some of them, unintentionally, and a glimpse of the handwriting brings back a wave of wonderful memories. Reading the messages is a chance to “visit” with loved ones, once again.
Some would argue that an email can be printed and kept, but it seems a poor substitute for handwriting on a pretty card, or scented stationery, or even plain old yellow lined paper!
I worry a little about today’s kids. They don’t have to spell because there’s spell check; they don’t have to multiply or divide because there are calculators; they don’t even have to “talk” because there is texting and instant messaging.
My hope is that they’ll experience written communication often enough to realize how special it is – so much more warm and fuzzy than a keyboard! Otherwise, I fear that handwritten letters may someday become as quaint as the inkwell.