From One Geek to Another

15 Apr

Once upon a letter, my pen pal Kära was telling me about the International Geek Girl Pen Pals Club and the pen pal she acquired from there. She was all sorts of excited because the website took the list of Geek Loves she submitted and matched her with someone who had a similar list. Of course I was intrigued, even more so once Kära posted this blog post promoting the website even more. It was a win/win because not only did I score my pen friend some points, I had the opportunity to make another new pen friend.

Here’s the list of Geek Loves I submitted last month:

  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Blogging
  • YA Books
  • Gnomes
  • Washi Tape

On the first of April I got an email saying I’ve been paired with someone named Annie so I immediately emailed the girl telling her about my Geek Loves and asking her about hers. Here are some excerpts from the email I got back:

Re: My Geek Loves

Can I just say I love gnomes!

And washi tape!! Oh, my love of washi!

Re: Annie’s Geek Loves

-crafts!! Any type of craft and there’s a good chance I’m going to go crazy over it. I’m thinking of joining a craft of the month club where every month they send you a craft to make. I still don’t know yet but it sounds like a great idea.

-stationery (I’m obsessed…there’s no way out for me)

-books. Literally, everything and anything to do with them. In fact, my favourite past time is to loiter at the bookstore or library. I just love books so much!

Yeah, I think we’re going to get along just fine! I started a letter for her that afternoon and this stuff was ready to be sent out the very next day:

Annie told me she’d let me know when the letter got there, but unfortunately that hasn’t happened yet. Regardless, I can’t wait to hear what she thinks of my geeky self or to get to know her better. Want to geek out to? Check out the International Geek Girls Pen Pals Club.

Sincerely, Kate ~!~ 

Hail the Snail #2

14 Apr

Not long after I got the mail last Saturday, my brother-in-law texted me and Gabe telling us about his own special delivery. Meet my nephew, Christian:

More about him at a later date ;-)

More about him at a later date ;-)

Because of the little guy, I didn’t tackle much of the mail I mentioned via Hail the Snail #1 over the weekend, so when I just received postcards on Monday and Tuesday this week I actually felt relieved. I finished responding to almost everyone on Tuesday so Wednesday’s outgoing mail looked like this:

Wednesday

On Wednesday I got an adorable little stamp from my new pen friend Kari, as well as the following from Jody, an old reliable:

jody

One letter a piece on Thursday and Friday, though the same can not be said for stamps on the latter’s envelope :-P 

023

That may have been all I received this week, but responding to letters wasn’t all I’ve been up to in the hobby department!

Exhibit A

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit B

Exhibit C

Exhibit C

Whether you’re receiving one of my letters &/or creations or just seeing them here, I hope you enjoy them as much as I got a kick out of making ‘em.

Hail the Snail!
Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Post Happy Postcrossing

10 Apr

Two months ago I shared the 11 postcards I was sending out via Postcrossing and my reasons for picking each card in a post called Happy Postcrossing. I thought I’d share the messages from each of the recipients this time around since it seems they think I did a rather decent job. I know the following looks a bit jumbled, but I wanted to include each of the pictures again as a refresher, and while you could easily match each thank you with my original post from before, I included my reasonings again, too. These messages are in the order I received them and I should also warn you that I didn’t edit any of the messages I received, not that anything is too horrible.

18<~~ agagarin from Lithuania:
“Hi, very interesting postcard, thank you. have a good time too.”

Why I picked it: “So! This user asked for “nude or erotic” postcards, and though I don’t have any of that stuff laying around here, I do have this Naughty Little People set reserved for such occasions. Part of me hates to part with them, but I think this guy will appreciate this. He did say he liked electronics, too, haha.”

8onion from Germany: ~~>
“Hello Kate! Thank you very much for your lovely flowers-postcard! I really like it! I wish you all the best! Take care!”

Why I picked it: “Although this user said she’d be content seeing a view from where I live, I not only saw her say she’s interested in flowers of all kinds, but noticed her display picture is of flowers, too. I found several postcards with flowers in my stash and picked out the one I knew I’d rather get.”

19<~~ an148 from Belgium:
“Hi Kate, thanks for that card ! It’s really appealing: if I would live so close as you I would also be pleasd to take a ride (or more !!) on the river, for sure :-)”

Why I picked it: “This postcrosser was very specific but in a very reasonable way. He wanted a local view, and he said he preferred cards without any additional pictures or artwork. I decided to send him the above postcard because it’s from a city not too far from here, and there’s so much detail it doesn’t need any of the things he prefers off anyway.”

21ramsteenje from The Netherlands: ~~>
“Hi, Thank you for the beautiful card, I like all sorts of cards, my list in the profile is just to give you some ideas;-)”

Why I picked it: “I like it when people on postcrossing say, “ Send me any postcard you like, doesn’t matter what’s on it. But to make it a little bit more easier for you, here some tips…” This postcrosser said two of her favorite things were famous art and owls. I know those birds aren’t owls and I have no idea if that watercolor’s remotely famous, but I’m thinking she’ll like this postcard anyway. At least I’m hoping she does!”

12<~~ leenaj from Finland:
“Dear Kate, thank you very much for the beautiful three-in-one postcard! :) I must admit I didn’t know much about André Derain before this but now I have studied him a bit and liked his works very much. So thank you for the tip! All the best and Happy Postcrossing!”

Why I picked it: “This postcard fits a few things on this user’s wishlist. Not only is it art (by André Derain), it’s colorful and of a landscape. This postcard belonged to my late grandmother so I’m glad to have sent it along to someone who’s likely to really appreciate it.”

9dinowrath from the USA: ~~>
“Hi Kate! Thanks for the Dino card! I loooove it! I was having a pretty rough day so it was awesome to get something with dinosaurs AND where’s waldo. I hope you’re having a great Wednesday and happy almost birthday!”

Why I picked it: “Once I saw this postcrosser’s name, I thought about the Where’s Waldo card in my possession. Reading DinoWrath’s profile only made me want to give this postcard to her more because not only did she say “send me a puzzle” she just came across as being up for anything.”

13<~~ emma chen from Taiwan:
“Hello, Greetings from the Taiwan and THANK YOU so much for this wonderful card. I’m enjoying it every day on my postcard wall. I wish you all the best and happy postcrossing!”

Why I picked it: “This girl had a wishlist of 20+ things, but I barely had anything from it! I have no idea who Marie-Anne Foucar or Inge Look are so hopefully other people will be able to help her out with those. Fortunately, buried under all the artists (at least I’m assuming they’re artists) was listed “Temple, Museum, & Church” so I found a card from my Hida Takayama set, also inherited from my grandmother.”

7mostovik from Russia: ~~>
“Dear Kate!!! Many many thank for Your post card and Mackinaс Bridge! I like its!!”

Why I picked it: “This postcrosser introduced himself and then immediately started talking about how his biggest interest is bridges. I have several blank postcards with some sort of bridge on them, but because I’m a Michigainder, I thought this guy would really appreciate seeing the bridge that connects Michigan’s upper peninsula to its lower one. Plus it’s such a great picture of it.”

17<~~ ednariley from Canada:
“Hi Kate, Thank you very much for the great Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald postcard. My sister worked as a purchaser for a record company years ago and I have many albums of both of them. I like country music too as does my nephew who helps me. Luke Bryan is coming to our city May 4th. I wish you and your husband and son all the best in health and happiness!”

Why I picked it: “This postcrosser absolutely loves Elvis and I so wish I still had an Elvis postcard to send her, but she’s a music lover in general so I’m hoping she’ll still like this postcard of Nat King Cole and Ella Fitzgerald I have.”

11yanamoroz from Belarus: ~~>
“hi Kate! thank you very much for the star wars postcard i enjoy it!)”

Why I picked it: “Two things stuck out as I read this user’s profile: 1) They’re a fan of Star Wars; 2) They like things that are weird but don’t make a lot of sense. I think this postcard fits the bill here.”

The card to Prakash1959 in India was never registered, but that doesn’t surprise me considering the user’s page was completely empty apart from their address. Allow me to reiterate: “This postcrosser had nada on their profile– I don’t even know if this user is a boy or a girl. In situations like this I play it safe; I give them a postcard from Michigan, usually one I have duplicates of. Reese is actually my hometown and I think it’s hysterical that postcards for that little village exist”

The last user aside, I think I did pretty well at coming up with something that would make each person’s postcrossing experience a happy one. You know, I think I like sending postcards more than I like getting them. :-D

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Hail the Snail #1

7 Apr

I thought I’d do something a bit different for the Miscellaneous Mondays this month. For a while now I have thought about sharing the mail I have received like Hallvi’s Nest and Snailmail is Still in Fashion, so I thought I’d try it out for a bit and see how it goes over.

The past week started off with 8 postcards and some charming artwork from my pen pal Allison. Did you know you could put temporary tattoos on paper? I didn’t, but I totally intend to try it sometime soon!

My Little Ponies, FTW :-P

My Little Ponies, FTW :-P

008This postcard made me especially happy. It may just be a rose, but the postcrosser who sent it put some thought into it, as the back had the following quote written on it:

A large rose-tree stood near the entrance of the garden; the roses growing on it were white, but there three gardeners at it, busily painting them red.

This cute envelope was waiting in my mailbox for me come Wednesday:

minnie

So I sent out this one:

jody

Thursday, Friday, and Saturday were all awesome mail days. Each day included at least two letters and a package, as you can see:

Thursday's Haul

Thursday’s Haul

Friday's Haul

Friday’s Haul

Saturday's Haul

Saturday’s Haul

Kari, the sender of Friday’s package, not only sent me the stamps I requested, but a bunch of stuff for my smashbook along with a letter written on awesome black paper:

Kari

Then Sophie, my pen friend from England, surprised me with these goodies as well as a handful of postcards on Saturday:

Sophie

Yeah, I picked an awesome week to start documenting my mail, hehe. Not going to lie, getting some pictures was a bit of a challenge since I can barely wait to get inside to open my mail so I hope you all appreciate ‘em. I know I appreciate every single thing I got. <3

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

 

 

How I Met Your Father

5 Apr

Dear Logan,

By the time you’re old enough to even consider reading this, the TV show How I Met Your Mother will have gone the way of dinos and VHS tapes. Do we even watch TV anymore or do we just have these holograms programmed into our minds like in the book Feed by M.T. Anderson? (Don’t you dare ask what a book is!)

Honestly I only ever watched the first few episodes of HIMYM,  but the series ended the other night which was apparently a pretty big deal so it made me think now would be an opportune time to write about how I met your father.

7As I tell my pen pals when I talk about your dad, I first met Gabe when I was around 12-years-old thanks to youth group. The same family who was responsible for me getting (my) Snickers 16 years ago was the same family who let me tag along with them on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings to the church where I not only met your dad (and grandparents and Tio Kyle) but my friend Anna who was the maid-of-honor in our wedding.

Your dad took a liking to me right away. To be honest, I liked another boy from youth group but considering he was encouraging me to date your dad I could tell he wasn’t interested. It’s a good thing he wasn’t though, because your dad wound up being the best boyfriend I ever had. The only reason I broke up with him all those years ago was that I felt too young to be too serious. Like I said before, I was barely a teenager so whenever he gave me a rose or some other object of his affection I felt so embarrassed. I had a lot of growing up to do and in the next 10 or so years I did just that, learning from every failed relationship as well as the wonderful book He’s Just Not That Into You.

It was in 2009 when your dad came back into my life. It was right after an especially bad break up with a boy named Brett so between getting over that guy and already knowing Gabe from before, it took me a little bit to see Gabe as a potential suitor. A great friend, sure, but I didn’t know if us dating again was what I really wanted. He hung in there, though! He hung out with me at every opportunity, texted me when he couldn’t, and not only watched things like Glee with me, but took me all the way to Detroit to see The Phantom of the Opera (I bought the tickets for that Brett guy I mentioned earlier, but your dad made sure they didn’t go to waste). Just like when I was a kid, this guy made me a priority and it wasn’t until I was in Florida visiting your Uncle Doug and Uncle Erik that it dawned on me that your dad was my biggest priority, too. The whole time I was celebrating Christmas with my half brothers I wished he was there. The highlight of my trip was talking to Gabe, either by text or by phone call, about the events of each day at the end of ‘em. I might have called Gabe my boyfriend before leaving for Florida, but it was upon my return that I felt he was that and so much more.

23478_1364258707494_7995065_nIt was just a few days before my 23rd birthday when your dad proposed. I saw it coming a mile away, mainly because he was trying to gauge the type of jewelry I was into. Technically the engagement ring was my birthday present, but after a day of just lounging around, being us, he couldn’t resist giving it to me early after saying “Today has been perfect; I want every day to be like this.”

Originally we were planning to get married in August of 2011, but because of you, my dear boy, our plans changed. When we found out I was pregnant we decided to move our wedding up to July 30th, 2010 because A) I wouldn’t be showing yet, B) the two brothers from Florida were already going to be in Michigan, and C) it just seemed easiest to go through the wedding before having you than afterwards, not to mention I’d have the same last name as you once you were born.

Our wedding was great. It was a nice little event, nothing extravagant but special enough that your dad and I remember it fondly. Sure there were some hitches like Anna leaving her dress in her vehicle when she was carpooling with us and my dress not wanting to fit quite right because someone *cough* you *cough* decided my boobs weren’t quite big enough yet, but those moments just make us laugh now. Thank God. Oh, let me tell you this about your dad, one of our wedding guests was having trouble getting her van started after the reception so, after he changed out of his tux, of course, he crawled under it to get it going again. You couldn’t have picked a better father, Mr. Logan. This guy will do anything and everything he can for you.

38604_1553707363592_4632309_n

I wish I could say we all lived happily ever after, but considering you’re living this life with us I know you know that’s not true. Sure, we are happy, but there’s more to life than just feeling that one emotion. I want you to feel sad sometimes because it will make the times that you’re happy so much more meaningful. I want you to experience heartbreak because you’ll learn from it, just like both your dad and I have. Don’t get me wrong, Logan, there is nothing in this world I want more than your happiness, but sadly sometimes you’re going to get upset or irritated or just plain pissed off, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Your dad and I have seen each other through every kind of emotion there is (though thankfully some of the uglier ones don’t happen too often). I hope you see that just because we’re far from perfect, doesn’t mean I don’t think your dad’s perfect for me and vice versa. Did I make you gag yet?

You’re a very loved boy, Mr. Logan. You and your dad mean everything to me so I’m glad that I not only met him once, but that I got to meet him again.

Sincerely, Kate Love, Mom ~!~

For Some Odd Reason

31 Mar

For some odd reason two things have been popping up around the blogasphere: People either listing 21 things they irrationally love or 21 inconsequential things they hate. When I first introduced these Miscellaneous Mondays I mentioned that they’d be an opportunity for me to jump on the occasional bandwagon, so I figured I’d tackle both these lists this time around. I don’t know if it’s because I saw Animalopolis at the planetarium over the weekend or what, but I decided instead of just listing stuff I’d make up a couple poems. You’ve been warned, haha.

Things I Irrationally Love

Just 21 random things I love? How is a girl to choose?
There are so many things I adore and stuff I like to use.
Of course there’s gnomes and washi tape and my journals from Nicole.
Hearing Logan randomly say “I miss you!” is so good for my soul.
I love the Rocky Horror soundtrack and the Fifty Shades books;
I love the smell of gasoline and how my favorite mug looks.
Minions are awesome, as is my mailman rubber ducky.
When Emily sent me surprises I felt so thankful and so lucky.
There’s McDonalds’ breakfast, Howie Bread, Hot Fudge, and such.
I love how Logan says “you’re welcome” and that he says it so much.
I (kind of) want “Ye Who Wanders is Not Always Lost” as a tattoo,
And to keep watching cooking shows though cooking’s not what I do.
The Vampire Diaries and Phineas & Ferb are both an entertainment source.
Last, but not least, I love getting the mail, of course!

Inconsequential Things I Hate 

Making a list of stuff I don’t love was a harder thing to do.
Sure, I don’t like zombies or beer, and I hate black ice bunches, too.
But not too many things annoy me, or so that’s what I thought,
But once I thought a little more here was the list I got.
I hate to eat at Subway and almost every fruity dessert,
And in the winter I wish the snow would land just in the grass and dirt.
Put used paper plates in the trash, don’t use our driveway to turn around;
Squeaky carts need WD40 or else that’s the most obnoxious sound!
My post office isn’t open long and I’d prefer not to use banks at all.
My desire to go to the Gourmet Cupcake Shoppe in Bay City’s very small.
Lemon’s the only fruit candy flavor I care for and Crayola crayons are the only kind I’ll use.
Folding clothes and watching Special Agent Oso‘s my idea of abuse.
85% of Glee this season has been particularly bad,
And the thought of throwing any scrap paper away makes me sad.
I don’t like an international postcard costing as much to ship as a letter,
And if I could sleep in past the sun my mornings would be a bit better.
Buddy, the Cake Boss, saying “Mia Familia” has made me cringe,
But lucky for me none of these things have made me come unhinged.

For some odd reason I love those first 21 things, for another odd reason I don’t love the other 21, and for another odd reason the person who created these thingamabobbers loves the number 21, haha. I know the rhymes are far from perfect and the meter’s further still, but I hope the poems are something you enjoyed reading anyway.

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

150 Postcards and Counting

30 Mar

When I posted “50 Postcards and Counting” back in April of last year, I said that Postcrossing was an opportunity for me to travel the world without ever leaving my driveway. I felt the same when I posted “100 Postcards and Counting” several months later, and I still feel that way now. I absolutely love getting postcards from all over the world no matter if they’re from where someone lives, where they’ve traveled, or if they were purchased because they made the sender smile. I may love me some Alice in Wonderland cards more than anything (exhibit A and exhibit B), but I appreciate everything I’ve gotten and this blog is an exhibition of that.

Belarus

Not only did I get a postcard of an adorable little girl from the heart of Europe and one of a woman sitting on a sled, I got to see te city of Kobrin. The sender of the latter shared a favorite Alice in Wonderland quote with me: “Everything’s got a moral, if only you can find it.”

Bulgaria

I got this postcard from Bulgaria, obviously, and is it just me, or are these girls way too little to be so concerned with their weight? :-P

866ca7c9d918b98af153c51bbe6ddfe7

China

I got to see three beautiful views– one was of a back road and seemed to have a vintage vibe, and the other two showed boats and lakeside homes and/or buildings. The one taken at nighttime was especially gorgeous.

Czech Republic

I have no idea how to do all the accents, so bare with me as I tell you I received a multi-view postcard from Lamek Kromeriz. This postcrosser told me to live long and prosper, so that was pretty neat :-P

Finland

I may never get to see the Aurora Borealis in person, but at least I’ve been fortunate enough to see it via postcard(s)! I also received a cartoon featuring a kid with a messy room and on another postcard, one that featured an illustration of a bunny, I was told that the secret of happiness is the closeness of a good friend.

Germany

In addition to seeing things like a  TV tower, an oriental garden cottage, and a couple fun illustrations, I learned that Frankfurt is the 5th largest city in Germany and got to play a snowman version of Where’s Waldo.

Great Britain

Someone from GB sent me a postcard with the castles of Scotland on one side and the following quote on the other: “Happiness is not something ready made, it comes from your own actions.”

Hong Kong

This postcard got an honorable mention in my last Wonderland-friendly post, but it’s still worth sharing again as I think it’s pretty wonderful ;-)

Tungit from Hong Kong

India

Apparently they really like statues in India. One postcard I received featured a statue of Gangaikonda Cholapuram and the other showed the two sculptures that overlook the Dona Paula Bay.

Indonesia

The view from here was one of a rice field along the Ayung River.

Malaysia

I received an adorable illustration of a deer. The sender apparently really likes ‘em so I’m a bit surprised she wanted to part with the postcard. Not that I’m complaining ;-)

Netherlands

I got a variety of postcards from The Netherlands. There was an amazing shot of Harlem, samples of the Delftware tiles (made in Delft, of course), and one was an illustration of a girl and an owl that had additional illustrations added to it courtesy of the postcrosser in honor of Halloween.

Poland

There once was a poet from Poland… Yeah, the postcard I received from there was a statue of the guy– Aleksander Fredo.

Portugal

Looks like a multi-view from a cemetary. My pen pal Justine would totally approve.

Romania

Despite the postcard coming from Romania, it was actually from the Congo over 40 years ago. I wonder how much the view of the beach has changed…

Russia

The most postcards I have received out of the past 50 have come from here, not that I’m surprised. In addition to the one of Alice having a tea party, my postcards from here feature a bird’s-eye view of the Obvochy Canal Embarkment, a view of some building that looks important but I can’t decipher the name of it, a typical Russian window, the Campa Samara theater, a basket of raspberries, reindeer that were bred in Mongolia, and another one that makes me think of Alice as it’s a girl next to a jar of strawberry jam that’s bigger than her, haha.

Taiwan

I got a few postcards from here, but not nearly as many as I have to send thanks to Mother Dearest :-P The ones I got include a cartoon kitty that looks like he may be part of a cartoon on TV, a postcard from Sun & Moon Lake, an amazing view of Taipei, and even a view from Venezia.

Ukraine

One postcard I recieved from here was a landscape that was painted, another featured a bit of a winter wonderland, and then there were these cute love birds:

10156910_10201992463762338_1143190080_n

United States

This Michigan girl received postcards from the following states: Arizona (2), Illinois, Utah, and Michigan, too.

I may not send a lot of postcards via postcrossing because of how much the postage adds up, but I do still like that the site exists so I can do it at all. If you don’t participate already, you should check it out and see the variety of places you get to see from the comfort of your own home :-)

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

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