52 Weeks, 52 Letters Project Week 6/7

by Katy on February 21, 2011 · 8 comments

Photo courtesy of The Frugal Girl

I am playing catch up here for both weeks six and seven of the 52 Weeks, 52 Letters Project. I haven’t been any busier than usual, but somehow the act of sitting down and writing a letter escaped me.  Luckily, falling off the efficiency wagon didn’t mean that I should give up altogether. Inspiration came in the form of a some pretty vintage botanic print cards that I spied on the floor at my mother’s house. I horked a couple, and thus found my muse. (“Hork = Borrowing something with zero intention of ever returning it. It’s an awesome word and needs to enter everyone’s vocabulary!)

Like most projects, the hardest part was getting started. Luckily, getting started only involved addressing and stamping the envelopes, which is usually enough time for inspiration to hit. Unfortunately I was in a pretty crappy mood last night. Nothing earth shatteringly terrible, but dark nonetheless. Feeling lonely, kind of overwhelmed by life and bored. You know, life.

So instead of choosing a new person to write to, I chose my friend Jennifer, who was actually the first person to receive mail in my letter writing project. Jennifer and I go waaay back to when the two of us spent 3-1/2 months traveling through Mexico and Guatemala in 1987. Although we hardly knew each other at the start, our lifelong friendship was cemented by day two of the trip. We were that compatible. Not only are our eyes the exact same shade of blue, (which got pointed out by countless Mexican men) we turned out to be perfect traveling companions. If we ever had any friction, I have zero memory of it.

The theme of our trip became “Wherever you go, there you are.” This was helpful when it turned out there were two towns with the same name, and our bus deposited us in the middle of nowhere. However this nowhere was on the most beautiful beach known to man and did possess a single restaurant, where we ate plate after plate of prawns while sunning ourselves and waiting for the next bus.

The letter is honest and will hopefully not be too much of a downer for Jennifer to receive. I love this woman like a sister, and am saddened that her home in New Hampshire is too far away from Oregon for any casual travel. The three years she lived in Wyoming were fantastic for me, as it was only a two day drive between our homes. Our husbands like each other, and our kids are about the same age, with the older sons exactly two months apart in age. (This is huge, as pretty much all of my cohorts waited until their mid-thirties to have children, which means that none of my other friends have kids remotely the same age as mine.)

The second letter is to my half-sister Sara, who actually just lives across town. Although Sara is almost 16 years younger than I am, she and I have always had a special relationship. (Of course, having strangers always assume that I was a teen mom will kind of make a girl feel protective.) I’ve always taken my job as big sister very seriously, and made sure to be as much of a constant presence in her life as possible. From being patient when she would put her cat on the phone, to bringing her over to our house for entire weekends when my kids were babies. (She was so spacey at age 12 that I wouldn’t let her push my son in the stroller, as she had a tendency to push it into telephone poles.)

Sara and I have now entered a new phase in our relationship, as we are now both adults. Sure, I am firmly into my forties, while she races toward thirty, but it’s becoming a very satisfying sisterhood. She normally lives too far away for casual visits, but is currently spending time in Portland for unspecified period. I’m trying to not take this for granted.

So Sara, you mentioned the other day about how you never get letters. Well, you can start watching the mailbox now, because this is about the change.

Sorry if the letter is a bit of a downer.

Are you participating in the 52 Weeks, 52 Letters Project? It’s not too late to join! And if you’re a blogger, just add your blog name to widget to be counted and maybe even garner a few extra hits.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up. wear it out, make it do or do without”

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristen@TheFrugalGirl February 21, 2011 at 11:45 am

That’s funny because I was feeling blue when I wrote my letter to YOU! lol


Mary Stubblefield February 21, 2011 at 1:54 pm

I loved this idea and I too find it hard sometimes to write a letter but I am enjoying it soo much. Thank you for the idea. Last week I wrote to my husband. It was kinda cool….and he was happy and surprised when he got the mail that day.


snailmailfan February 21, 2011 at 2:26 pm

I am on week six of this project officially (actually as I am running another snail mail project I send mail everyday) but I’m quite happy to have 55 other people (and counting) trying to remember to send a letter out every week along with me!

Also, I enjoy the rest of your blog as well!



Ann February 21, 2011 at 6:10 pm

Off subject…in our family “horking” means to cough up something. Ewwww. We use “snake” for taking something…ex: “Boomer snaked Jon’s sock.”

Funny family words…LOL


Jennifer February 22, 2011 at 7:29 am

I don’t understand why you commented that both letters were downers. Why would getting a letter from an old friend or relative be a downer? I wish I got more letters!


Jude February 22, 2011 at 7:30 am

I missed a couple weeks, but posted a letter to my friend Stephanie in Chicago yesterday. Back on track, I’ll even try to make up the two letters I missed.


Mandaladreamer February 24, 2011 at 6:46 am

I agree with Ann… at our house you hear “Blackie horked up a hairball.”
I was a little disgusted with my efforts to send out mail because I’ve been hitting sendsomething.net folks and not getting much response. Then yesterday I got one I had sent out (full of lovely goodies for a mom and her 8 year old daughter) back from the PO actually cut in half with an apology note.
I have no idea why they never sent the other half of all that stuff. I stuck it in another envelope and re-sent it, crossing fingers. But I’m still sending out one or two pieces a week. I just want to be on the receiving end, too!


Katy February 24, 2011 at 11:00 am


Try sending a letter to someone you know, even if they’re in town. You might find that a satisfying endeavor.



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