Keeping Memories Alive #LifeIsASpecialOccasion

I’ve talked a lot recently about how meaningful it is to receive a hand-written note — especially in this digital age because it’s so quickly becoming a lost art. But not only are snail mail and personal notecards becoming a lost art, so is handwriting.

Some schools have even begun to eliminate handwriting from their curriculum, citing it as an outdated and soon-to-be-obsolete form of communication.

I find this sad in more ways than one. Let’s forget for a minute that you can’t always rely on technology and there are times when writing thoughts and lists down on paper is just more efficient, and let’s also ignore the research that suggests learning cursive is an important tool for cognitive development.

What about the MEMORIES that handwriting creates?


I have saved several cards that are special to me over the years, and I wish I’d saved more because looking back at those cards and notes dredge up memories and evoke feelings I associate with dear friends and loved ones in a way that a type-written note or email never could.

Some of my most treasured notes are from my grandparents.

When I was growing up, my Gramma would never miss an occasion to send a card. For every holiday, we could depend on finding a card in the mail with her lyrical handwriting and a flat pack of Trident chewing gum inside. Remember when Trident came in flat packs of 5 sticks? I would sometimes bite one in half to make the pack last twice as long. I always think of my Gramma when I see Trident, even though it no longer comes in packs that slip easily into an envelope.

Now that my Gramma passed away, my Grampa has taken to signing our cards. He also writes his own thank you notes. His labored scrawl is nowhere near as pretty as hers but it’s every bit as meaningful — maybe more so because I know how he struggles to pen his words. He could easily have his secretary type them up, but he writes them himself because he knows the value of a personal note. It’s ingrained in him because he was raised in a time that valued handwriting and personal correspondence.

I save almost every card I get from him now, and I wish I’d saved more from my other friends and loved ones. I keep meaning to poke through the attic and find that hatbox with the cards from my childhood.

This month again Hallmark sent me a box of cards to use for my own personal correspondence. I always love looking through the new selection they send… some sentimental, some fun, some just plain silly. Six months into this collaboration with Hallmark, I have quite a collection! I love it because now there’s no excuse not to send a card when the idea strikes. I just go to my little Hallmark stash and pick one that fits the occasion and the recipient. They do seem to have something for almost everyone.

This month my favorite was this simple card. This is just the reminder I need right now as I strive for gratefulness each day.


It actually pays to stock up and keep your own stash of Hallmark cards in the house waiting for the just right occasion because for every five Hallmark cards you buy – whether at a Hallmark Gold Crown store or the more than 40,000 grocery, drugstores and super centers where Hallmark cards are sold – Hallmark Card Rewards lets you earn gift cards, discounts, dollars off, and more from their rewards partners.

Visit Hallmark Card Rewards for more details about the program and the Hallmark Card Rewards mobile app. Thanks to Hallmark for sponsoring this post!

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11 thoughts on “Keeping Memories Alive #LifeIsASpecialOccasion

  1. I just recently made it a personal goal to be a card-sender. I was thinking about how I don’t remember to ask people about difficult situations going on in their lives when I see them and thought that if I take the time to send them a card, it would be more likely that I would have those things on my mind when I see them in person. I also agree that it’s sad that notes and cards via snail mail are getting more and more rare. Who doesn’t like getting a card in the mail? It makes you feel special and loved b/c someone took the time to send it.

    1. I’ve been trying to be better about this lately too. It takes a bit of effort, but I know how much I love getting cards and notes… I want to be one of those people spreading the love. 🙂

  2. I actually had a moment recently when I was thinking about this. I was cleaning out our guest room (aka the junk and extra stuff room) and found a bunch of old hand written letters that I had saved from some college friends. It was so cool to see them and read them and I thought, gosh, my kids aren’t going to have this! No one prints out and saves an email and even if you do, it’s just not as personal….

  3. As our oldest goes off to college this week I’m reminded of how important the notes my parents wrote me in college were to me. I can’t wait to send him old fashioned mail because he’ll love receiving them for reasons he’d never know if he wasn’t going away. Great post Jo-Lynne and love Hallmark!

    1. Oh wow, I didn’t even think about the college years – definitely a good time to utilize snail mail. I did send my son a few notes at summer camp, but I’m SURE he did not keep them. Ha!

  4. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. I have dozens of handwritten notes I’ve kept over the years and watched as my small people sat down and wrote thank you notes to everyone who had made their Summer special for them in some way…it was beautiful to see. And I’ve decided to start sending cards more frequently…. I have always LOVED getting mail and sending it – there is something intrinsically special in seeing HANDWRITING on a note in the mail – it is so rare. You know someone cared.

  5. I am coming out of a very painful time with the shingles and have had gracious friends show their love to us with dinners. I’m sure that is what has helped me so much just with the encouragement to get well (in addition to time and Rx). My hubby was MOST grateful NOT to have to make decisions! 🙂 I have made it a point to keep thank you notes in my stash although I’ve gotten out of the practice to write handwritten notes. I’ve kept up with them over the past several weeks and I am amazed the responses I’ve gotten back…they are truly grateful for getting this ‘gift’ in the mail of a note. It is a rare bird, I guess, amid what the typical mail entices one to ‘buy’ notes of appreciation truly reinforce endearment, friendship and appreciation. I recently found 40-50 year old letters from my grandfather that I delighted in reading just recently. My mother has every letter written to her, I think, and it’s fun when I go home to go through letters her parents wrote to each other before they married. You are right, these tell a part of history not only in the fashion in which people expressed themselves through time, but also allows future generations to get to know their loved ones on a different level.

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