Tag Archives: contest

Pen Pal of the Month- October

10 Oct

See this girl? Not only is she October’s honoree, she was the first person to ever be featured as Pen Pal of the Month on Sincerely Kate. Here is her interview from before, and below is her interview now 😀

retiredSK: How do you feel about being Pen Pal of the Month?

Kayla: It is super awesome being pen pal of the month! With all the crap going on with our house it’s a nice change of pace!

SK: What has been your favorite thing about pen palling?

Kayla: My favorite thing about pen palling is writing to different people and actually thinking about what I’m going to say. Sometimes I think before I speak, can’t do that (easily) while writing. Well….sometimes.

SK: What, if anything, is your least favorite thing about it?

Kayla: Least favorite, is when I have written a LONG letter and my fingers/wrist starts to cramp. Makes me wish I was ambidextrous.

SK: Why do you like writing me?

Kayla: I love the fact that you and I can talk about pretty much anything and there is no judgement. There is a friendship there and has been for years 😀

SK: And what do you like about October?

Kayla: Besides it being my birth month, it starts to get chillier and the leaves start to change. I LOVE fall. it is my favorite time of year.

You know what I love about this October? That it’s the 5th anniversary of when Kayla and I started writing. She has been a very devoted pen pal to me, and I’m glad I was able to introduce her to the LEP so she could find more devoted pen pals of her own. I also love going to pumpkin patches and seeing festive movies, but this post isn’t about that so…


Sincerely, Kate ~!~

That’s the Spirit

5 Oct

Thanks to everyone who voted last time, I can tell you that Amy won my silly little mail art contest with the postcard she made from a placemat. Want to participate in the next one? Make &/or decorate a postcard or envelope with “Kid(s) in Costume” and make sure I receive it by December 25th! It doesn’t need to be Halloween-friendly since the contest extends beyond this month, though I certainly wouldn’t mind seeing trick-or-treaters anytime of the year as long as they’re in my mailbox and not at my front door 😉

Send your hoopla here:

addressAnd now that that stuff has been tended to, I can tell you what has come to both of my mailboxes over the past 10 days.

September 26th: Things were really quiet for Manolo since the 21st, so I’m happy to report I finally got a letter thanks to Jody.

September 28th: While Logan was participating in Sports Day via Spirit Week, I got exercise when I got Krista’s letter.

September 29th: I was so excited to see these letters in my regular mailbox…


… and to get all this stuff from my other one.


October 1st: Erika’s letter came, bringing my reply pile that I was knocking down back to 3.

October 2nd: Prior to seeing my mom, I received postcards from my Aunt Ruth and a letter from Ashley.

October 3rd: Much like last Saturday, my week ended with Jody’s letter, as well as one from Zoe.

The Vacation is Over

30 Sep

I knew I was forgetting to say something the other day…

I received two “Vacation” friendly things via my silly mail art contest, so I need y’all to pick your favorite 😀

Contestant #1: Nancy from New Jersey:


Contestant #2: Amy from Pennsylvania:


Ugh. WordPress is being mean to me and not letting me include a poll, so you’ll have to vote in the comments. I will announce the winner as well as the last theme of the year on the 5th! Ciao for now, Bleaders!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

A Mid-Vacation Modification

5 Jul

gooseWelcome to the second half of the year, Bleaders! This is a pretty exciting time for me for a handful of reasons. 1) I got to go to Wisconsin last weekend. 2) The boys and I celebrated the 4th of July yesterday. 3) My Christmas in July Secret Santa is happening in my group again. 4) There’s a new mail art contest theme to be announced. 5) It’s an opportune time to shake things up here.

Because this is a pen pal-friendly blog, I decided I wanted to start sharing my incoming mail, like that postcard above, more often. Because today is the 5th, you’ll find my recent haul below, and on the 15th and 25th of each month you’ll find my mail here as well. At least until 2016 rolls around, haha.

June 30th: I was able to see Pablo one last time before June was over, and it was worth the wait. There were letters from Jen E. and Laura, and postcards from three other LEP members.

July 2nd: I got a little note from Kära via Manolo, and when I saw Pablo, a letter from Whitney came too.

I’m still responding to some of the mail I mentioned above. I’d be further along if I didn’t send my pen pals postcards from my recent travels 😉 . Last weekend there was a family reunion on my dad’s side in Hayward, Wisconsin, and I joined my dad there. We drove through most of Michigan on Friday so on Saturday morning we could just focus on finding the resort. Below is a picture of the room we shared with my Aunt Ruth and Uncle Randy, and another from behind the cabin where we spent most of our time. It was a nice place to spend the weekend, and the company was even nicer yet.

THIS REMINDS ME! I need to announce a new theme should anyone want to make me any mail art via my latest contest. In honor of my travels, the new theme is Vacation! There are so many directions someone could take with a theme like Vacation. You could, for example, take the map you used to find your destination and make an envelope out of it. You could also make your own postcard from the place you visited (Note: store-bought postcards DO NOT count as mail art!).

Take the envelope or postcard you make– however you made them– and send it to me by September 25th. My address, should you need it, is.

addressI find it a bit funny that my new mail call technique looks a bit more like an “If we were having coffee post,” but now that we have our first pancake, the following posts will hopefully look a bit nicer. Thanks for hanging in there, and thanks in advance to my contest’s participants for whatever you’re about to send me.

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Rollin’ With My Gnomies

25 Jun

Sup, Bleaders? It’s time for me to share the few submissions I received via my Gnome Work mail art contest and for you to vote for your favorite! Here are the entries from the people who rolled with my gnome theme:

Contestant #1: Lisa from New Jersey


Contestant #2: Stephanie from Germany


Contestant #3: Frida from The Netherlands


I’m a bit bummed there were only 3 submissions, though at the same time it made the appearances of these guys that much more of a treat. The results from the poll will appear in my next post (June’s Mail Call), and the next theme will be announced in the post after that. Whether the theme will be something I’d love to see, or something more people will likely be willing to work with, that’s the million dollar question. Stay tuned!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Pen Pal of the Month- June

10 Jun

It was in the fall of 2013 that I first started writing Erika. It’s a bit of a random, stalkerish story. I took to a pen pal group on Facebook in search of someone new to write to and found a contender who I became FB friends with. Soon after I noticed she posted a status regarding her outgoing mail, and among the names was someone whose last name matched my maiden name with the exception of one letter. Curious, I clicked this person’s page to see she had a soft spot for Washington state– the place where I was born. I was sold at this point: I was going to write her instead, haha. A little less than two years later, it’s time for Erika to be featured as Pen Pal of the Month here!

SK: How do you feel about being Pen Pal of the Month?

(She must have missed this question, so let’s pretend she was speechless!)

SK: What has been your favorite thing about pen palling?

Erika: My favorite thing about pen palling is getting awesome mail from all over the world.

SK: What, if anything, is your least favorite thing about it?

Erika: My least favorite is when men take the friendship further then they should.

SK: Why do you like writing me?

Erika: I like writing to you because it’s like I’m writing to an old friend. We get along really well and I think if we lived closer we’d be doing all kinds of awesome stuff together.

SK: And what do you like about June?

Erika: Not a lot, but my youngest nephew’s birthday is this month.

I still have yet to make Erika her prize so I unfortunately can’t share that with you here. Instead I will share with you one of the pictures Erika took of Conner when he was visiting her recently– it’s from where she does her crafts and such 🙂


Well, I think that’s all for both me and Erika. Take care, bleaders!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~


Pen Pal of the Month- April

10 Apr

One of the first things I did when Pablo, my P.O. box, came into my life was find a handful of LEPeeps around my age around the US who wanted to help me break him in. Charmaine came into my life soon after. Though we haven’t been exchanging letters very long, she has already earned the acknowledgment here. So meet Charmaine!



SK: How do you feel about being Pen Pal of the Month?

Charmaine: It’s an honor to be chosen as pen pal of the month; thank you, Kate! I’ve never been picked for one of these things so it’s pretty cool. And you’re such an awesome pen pal so I’m more than happy to answer your questionnaire.

SK: What has been your favorite thing about pen palling?

Charmaine: My favorite thing about pen palling is personally connecting with someone who lives far away. It’s amazing how pen pals can establish friendships through written words which take time, effort, and meaning, rather than a quick text message or comment on Facebook. I also love getting to know someone else’s culture and lifestyle and exchanging little gifts (stickers, bags of tea, sticky notes), as well as picking out cute or elegant stationery to use with my friends. 

SK: What, if anything, is your least favorite thing about it?

Charmaine: One of the things I don’t like about pen palling is when I don’t really connect with a person and I don’t know how to tell that pen pal that I’d prefer not to continue writing. I am really sensitive and try to be considerate of the feelings of the other person. Thankfully I connect with the majority of my pen pals! The other thing I don’t like is when a good pen pal hasn’t written for many months (or a year) and did not tell me why. I understand that life gets busy (for me, too!), but it makes me wonder if we’re still pen pals or not. I would rather know what’s going on rather than being left in the dark.

SK: Why do you like writing me?

Charmaine: I enjoy writing to you, Kate, because you’re sincere, prompt with your letters, and you ask me questions because you genuinely seem to want to get to know me better. Some of my pen pals just talk about themselves and don’t ask any questions at all, and that makes it a little harder to respond to them. We also have some things in common, which makes it even more fun to write to you, and it’s also interesting to discover our differences that make us unique. 

SK: And what do you like about April?

Charmaine: In the month of April I love celebrating Easter, because it is a joyous celebration and a fun, relaxing day with my family, and I also enjoy celebrating my older brother’s birthday. It’s also the last month of cool weather in Southern California before the climate starts heating up sometime in May. 

Something else (I could have sworn) Charmaine told me is that I should be getting another letter from her soon, and I know many more are going to follow. I also know that this will be enclosed with my next letter as she requested a bookmark as her PPOTM prize:


Wondering how Pen Pal of the Month works? Well, to find April’s honoree I put every pen pal I heard from in March (minus Jody, Jenn, and Sarah S.) into a raffle and pulled out Charmaine’s name. Those I hear from this month will be eligible for May’s raffle. The questions, including what homemade prize the winner would like, quickly follow the drawing. Congratulations to Charmaine once again, and to everyone else, I hope April is treating you well!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Gnome Work

5 Apr

I was torn about hosting another mail art contest since I received so few entries last time, but you voted that I should do these contests quarterly like I originally intended. I decided to pick a theme that I’d love receiving so much that I wouldn’t be bothered if there were only a few entries. You get your contest, and I get gnomes! This, my friends, is my idea of a win/win scenario.

Here’s how these contests work! Now that you know the theme, you can make or decorate an envelope or postcard that reflects gnomes. You will have until June 25th to get your creation to me, and I’ll post everything I’ve received on that day so my readers can vote for their favorite. The winner will A) be announced in the blog post that follows, and B) receive a prize!

The rules are simple!

  1. Make something that can be sent in the mail (enclosing a letter or note is NOT mandatory) that fits the theme.
  2. Include your name and email somewhere on/in it so I can notify you should you win.
  3. Send it to:


imageedit_4_8937604401All are welcome to participate! Should you decide you want to participate, know that you’re more than welcome to use things like fairies and/or woodland critters on your envelope or postcard, but there needs to be a gnome on it as well for it to qualify.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask, but the important thing is to just have fun with it like I did with this ATC once upon a time. Good luck!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

P.S. I hope your Easter is a happy one 🙂

Counting Sheep

25 Mar

This time a few months ago, AKA Christmas, I got my P.O. Box, and one of the first things I did to break it in was hold a mail art contest. In honor of the Chinese New Year I thought “The Year of the Sheep” would be a fun theme, though since it was still technically The Year of the Horse, I welcomed other farm animals besides sheep/goats/rams. Long ramble short, here are the entries from the four people who weren’t sheepish about indulging me:

Contestant #1: Michael from Virginia

Contestant #2: Linda from Milano


Contestant #3: Eva from Spain

There was a spiral letter on the opposite side :-)

There was a spiral letter on the opposite side 🙂

Contestant #4: Lisa from New Jersey


Now that I’ve had the fun job of collecting these submissions and posting them for you here, it’s now your turn for a bit of fun!

And while I’m asking you things…

You’ll find the results to both of these polls in the my next post, but thanks in advance for your help! And Michael, Linda, Eva, and Lisa, thanks for humoring my request!

Sincerely, Kate ~!~

Pen Pal of the Month- March

10 Mar

In 2013 I decided to have a Pen Pal of the Month series here on Sincerely Kate, and now that several people have come and gone, I decided it was time to do it again. Those who have stuck with me deserve to be acknowledged a second time, and those I have met over the past year or so have earned some of the spotlight as well. All of the pen pals I heard from in February were put into a raffle, and I pulled out Sarah’s name.retired

Much like Jenn, last month’s Pen Pal of the Month, Sarah was one of the very first LEPeeps I started writing when I joined The League of Extraordinary Pen Pals last year. Well, sort of. Sarah writes several stories and likes the characters she created so much she likes to write letters as them. When I first started writing “her” last year, my letters actually went to a vampire named Michael (shown right). It was fun at first, but it started getting a bit too much like Twilight (something she since has been modifying), so I bowed out, offering to write her as herself instead. She was a bit resistant at first, but she accepted and it’s been smooth sailing ever since. She has definitely earned her spotlight here, so without further ado…

SK: How do you feel about being Pen Pal of the Month?

Sarah: Excited! It’s fun to be chosen!

SK: What has been your favorite thing about pen palling?

Sarah: Getting to know lots of new people, and introducing them to my characters/getting to talk to them about my stories. I love my stories so much and I love it when other people love them with me:)

SK: What, if anything, is your least favorite thing about it?

Sarah: Waiting for replies! Sometimes, with international mail, the transit times are excruciating! I want all the mail, right now! 🙂

SK: Why do you like writing me?

Sarah: You write back quickly, you ask good questions and you’re laid back.

SK: And what do you like about March?

Sarah: It finally starts warming up! Especially after this winter — we are buried in snow and coming out of weeks of ridiculously cold temperatures! Also, Dairy Queen opens for the season. Mmmm, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup Blizzard…

I wonder what Sarah will get first– one of those blizzards or this postcard I made. She selected the latter as her prize 🙂


I am really glad that Julie, the mind behind the LEP, once posted that Sarah responds to letters rather quickly, because I don’t know if Sarah and I would have started writing if she hadn’t. The past year seems to have been filled with a bit of trial and error, but I think we’re better pen friends now because of it. Looking forward to the next year’s worth of letters, and the first of her stories being published, hehe.

All the best!
Sincerely, Kate ~!~