Letter writing has become a lost art of sorts. People communicate more through emails, messaging or texts rather than old fashioned pen and paper. This is fine, and definitely has its place, but receiving a handwritten letter adds a specialness not found electronically. It speaks of time spent in thought and effort. Reflections put down on paper beg a lingering over words by the recipient. Handwritten letters live on long past the writer.
So often we look outside our home for someone to write to, but I’d like to encourage you to write to your children. This can be as simple or extravagant as you’d like, and in a variety of forms. It will also look different depending on the ages of your children.
Notes & Notecards
Having notecards on hand (either handmade or store bought) makes it simple to write a quick note to your children. These are great for when they need cheering up, are feeling poorly or just because. Have a child spending the night elsewhere? Hide a note in their overnight bag. Leave random notes around the house for them to find.
Letter Journals are a wonderful way to communicate especially when they hit the teen years. Either choose a journal together or surprise your child with one. You start the journal off with a letter first. Then you pass the journal to your child. They write a letter back, and so on. My kids and I have fun hiding the journal somewhere for the other person to find. It always makes me smile when I see the journal waiting for me.
Everyone loves receiving fun mail. Write a longer letter, and mail it to your child. You can tuck something small in with the letters, too. Mailed letters are a nice tradition to continue once your child moves out on their own. Journals get a little expensive to pass back and forth through the mail, so this makes a nice alternative. Postcards are also fun to send and receive in the mail.
These letters are usually deeper and more personal. You can get a notebook for these or keep them in envelopes. You decide when you want to give these to your child. Maybe you’ve started writing them when your child was newly born. Or maybe your relationship is going through a rough patch. You’ll know when the right time is to give them these letters.
Things to Remember
~ Little kids can participate by drawing pictures to you. Keep your letters to them short and sweet.
~ Having supplies on hand makes it easier to do this. Keep supplies in a basket or drawer.
~ Schedule time to do this. Sunday afternoons are wonderful for writing letters. Early mornings or evenings may work for you. Perhaps writing during nap time. The key is to not allow much time to pass before responding.
~ You’ll find communication comes easier and is more open as you go along.
~ Letters saved from loved ones become treasures to read back through later – especially if you lose someone.
~ Letters of all sizes speak love and helps you draw closer.
~ You can share spiritual truths as well as stories from your life.
Writing notes and letters really doesn’t take a lot of time, but provides huge rewards.
Sarah from Hope in Every Season shares, “I write letters to my kids and send them in the mail. They love to get mail and it makes them feel special to be the one with a letter that day! I leave them notes on their beds now and then too, but send them in the mail more.”
How about you? Have you written notes and letters to your children? I’d love to hear about your experiences.