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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

End of the year mail haul

   Two days ago, I told you I would write and update you on my postcards. I thought about showing all of my mail but I got a ton of Christmas cards with pictures and I didn't know if my friends/family would mind me posting them. (They all are beautiful!)  I also got a great package from my friend Jenny in Germany that included a card a magnetic notepad and some DELICIOUS Advent chocolates (which I may or may not be devouring at an unhealthy rate...).
     Here are all of my cards over the past month or so. Being a musician in December has greatly interfered with me just sitting around and having time to blog.
   From Poland:  
 From the US- Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado... beautiful
 From Russia. Check out the sticker that was stuck on it. When the Postcrosser sent it to me, the sticker was not there. Anyone every see this sticker before? There's a close up under the postcard. What does it mean?

 From Germany:

China: A postcard of a stamp from 1997.
 From Germany- David took this out of my mailbox and was startled. I love it. I've developed a liking for owls.
 More owls from Plymouth, MA- less than 2 hours from me. I'd love to meet more local Postcrossers.
 Czech Republic:
 Russia: (art card. Isn't it pretty?)
 Belarus: More owls! Can you tell I updated my Postcrossing preferences?
 China- Confucius Temple.
 Finland- Moomin!!!! I also love that the proceeds from buying the card will help to build a children's hospital in Helsinki.
 Russia: This card confused me a little. I thought Konigsberg was in Germany. Apparently, after 1945 it is called Kaliningrad. It was the easternmost city in Germany until it was captured after WWII. (According to Wikipedia..lol)
 From Taiwan:
 From the US- Minnesota. I was telling the Postcrosser that I know the man who is currently renting Einstein's viola from a museum. I have heard it played. It's beautiful.
 These cards are from a Christmas card RR I did through Postcrossing. The first is from Ireland and the next 2 are from Germany, and the last is from the Netherlands.

Oh, I should also show you a gift from my Reddit Secret Santa. I sent a pashmina scarf to a Redditor in CA. I received this gift from a Reddit user in Oregon who didn't tell me their name. Thanks if you are reading this!
It is a kitten calendar, which David claimed, cookies and an art kit. I was especially excited about the art kit because I've wanted to try pastels but haven't wanted to pay for them in case I stink at it! lol

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Miss you too!

   I got a kind "PS. I miss your blog." from a friend, so here I am! I hope you had a very Merry Christmas. Mine was good. It was just the right balance between relaxation/busyness, family time/alone time (extended verses small family) and gifts/budget. My only "complaint" is that the hamster Timmy got from Santa died the next day. So, we got a new friend, Blizzard. She's a biter. I'm hoping this will stop when she gets used to us. I'll put a picture of her at the end of this post. It seems to be messing up my formatting at the moment.
    Tomorrow I will show you some cool cards and gifts I have gotten over the past month.
     I was thinking about New Years earlier and about resolutions/goals. Last year I didn't make resolutions, I chose one word to focus on for the year (rejuvenate). First of all, it feels like yesterday that I picked the word- which made me think that I really did think about it quite a bit during the year.
     What are your resolutions/goals/focus words for 2015? I'll talk about mine in a few days.  Happy New Year if I don't see you before then!

    Meet Blizzard.
Meet Blizzard. Seems well-adjusted so far.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Unwrapping the Greatest Gift

   This year for advent I wanted to make it a priority to slow down and recognize the importance of Christ in the Christmas season. I would like to decorate and o all the fun activities as well but I want to discipline myself to teach my children about the real meaning of Christmas. So, I bought Ann Voskamp's Unwrapping the Greatest Gift.  I was curious if any of the readers of my blog are also studying this book. I say down with the boys tonight to read it and they seemed to really like it. We planted our seeds, wrote our prayer list and Timmy colored the ornament for the Jesse tree. We will alternate who designs each ornament.
     What are you doing to celebrate Advent? Does your family have any Christmas traditions? Special recipes? Share your wisdom!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Incoming mail 11/12


    Finally, a great mail day. I have 2 things that are going out in the mail:
1. letter to my latest Chemo Angel
2. This card of the Rebecca Nurse Memorial, which is about 2 miles from my house. This card is headed to Australia

    When I got home from school, preparing to finish my 408 grades that were due today, I headed to my mailbox expecting a gift I had bought for one of my Chemo Buddies. Not there. (Yet- it came later today). Instead I found these 2 great cards. This one is from California:
    Then I got this one from Germany:
    Here is the best part about this card. Here is my address on the card:
Somehow this still got from Germany to me in 8 days! One of my friends at the post office once laughed at me when I mailed something to the Ukraine and it had come back in the mail to me even though there was no return address. He told me I'm the only one around here who gets "weird, exotic foreign mail" and explained that anything that fits in that category but is unexplained will most likely end up at my house. Then he added that I'm also probably on a "no fly" list somewhere because of all the weird things that  people mail to me.. lol.

     I got the package for my ChemoBuddy a little later. I got him this book, which I just read a few weeks ago. The author, Levi Stack, sent me a copy of the e-book (which may be free on Amazon right now), and then a copy of the next book in the series too. He seems like a really nice guy and I enjoyed the books. So, I figured I'd buy a copy of the 1st book and send it to my friend.
    Imagine my surprise when I walked into our hallway to see this waiting for me:
Ooh.. mysterious. Once I saw the return address I was super excited. Yes, I'm a nerd. It's from Stamps Teach. Check out their website.  (Sarah, I think this would be great for your classroom!)  I got this to use at home with my kids but I will definitely pass on the information to the teachers my kids have.  Look at all the interesting things inside!
Educational activities:

 Commemorative 1st day issues
 Magnifying sheet

 Stamp albums
 Coloring books
 More resources
 More Envelopes

 More educator's guides
 Letter, review cards, etc
 Bag of stamps with this hilarious note on it. Good to know if you're using in a classroom
 Stamps! They are so interesting. Just glancing through I saw some from: US, Canada, Chad, Trinidad and Tobago, Iraq, Uganda, Ireland, Netherlands, France, Poland, Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand, etc. There are many African countries that I have never seen stamps from. I can't wait to explore these more.