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Monday, February 16, 2009

How You Changed My Life

Confession:  Some people have come into my life for only a moment never knowing the imprint they left behind.  I wonder if it was you and if you know how you changed my life...

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Dear Kind Gentleman;   
When spring begins to rise from winter's sleep, when there is still a chill in the air but you can feel the warmth of the sun, when the little birds begin to sing again - I think of you.  It was oh, so long ago, and on a day at exactly this time of year.  It was a fleeting moment, yet here I am these many years later still thinking of you and loving the gift you left behind.  

I was still a teenager when we met.  I was going up the steps to the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton; you, a stranger, were coming down the steps toward me.  So clear is the memory.  The day was beautiful, yet it was a sad and very difficult one.  You see, it was my first visit with Dad since learning that his illness was terminal.  Oh, the heartache I was feeling - the heaviness - the concern.  All of this necessarily hidden inside, and none of it known to you.

Extra time had been taken that day to make sure my appearance would please Dad a little more than usual.  It was also important that my behaviour reflect the lessons he had taught - very serious stuff.  I dressed, put on nylon stockings and a little pair of princess heel shoes, slipped into the pretty light blue spring coat that Dad liked so much, and off I went.  It had to be special for Dad, who was a fine gentleman himself and appreciated when took time and made an effort.

Arriving at the hospital, I started up the steps in trepidation but with my head held high.  (Dad taught me that.)  And there you were, a clergyman, coming down the steps toward me.  When we were close enough, you did what was to me the most amazing thing.  You tipped your hat to me and said a pleasant "good morning" -  you formally acknowledged my young womanhood.  From that moment on, I was no longer just a teenager - I was suddenly a young woman worthy of a gentleman's notice.  I was a woman who could handle what lay ahead and who knew how to conduct herself.  As the trepidation thinned and my spirits expanded, it seemed a good visit with Dad was guaranteed. 

Dear sweet Gentleman you never knew the power of your simple gesture that day.  In a tiny moment of chivalry and kindness you influenced my life forevermore.  You helped me face that sad, difficult day with courage and the deportment deserving of womanhood.  For all the springtimes in my life you are, and will always be, remembered with fondness. 

I honour your memory with this letter and remain

Eternally grateful,

The Letter Writer

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Bubbly Girl at the Office

Confession:  Sometimes I write letters that should never be sent - like this one to the bubbly girl at the office

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Dear Bubbly Girl at The Office:

Please, please, please stop it!  Sometimes I can't stand your sugary sweetness and today is one of those times.

It seems that every office has one of you, one of you that is happy-happy all the time.  We know it can't be true - no one is that happy every single day.  And your voice...sometimes that phoney jingly tone really gets to me.  And why do you have to talk so loud over the cubicle walls to someone who sits right next door?  Couldn't you walk around and talk in a quiet, normal voice?  Do you really talk to your family that way in that voice?  I can't imagine.  

Now, I admit to being cranky today but i'm sure that's not it.  Well, maybe a little.  Oh, all right - you are cute.  And you do brighten up the office with your cutsie outfits and your morning greetings to each and every one of us.  I suppose that's kind of nice.  True - we are all "in the know" because of your daily reports.  (I prefer not to think of it as gossip.)  Grrrr - the truth is everyone depends on you for many things.  Yes, you are kind of sweet. 

Oh, all right - I'm sorry.

The Letter Writer

Monday, February 9, 2009

Hello and Welcome!

Confession:  I think letters are very important...

Featured card created by dzdesign - lovely one-of-a-kind cards for all occasions. 

Dear Reader, 

How nice of you to drop by.  I've been sitting here alone, writing a letter (what else?).  Quite frankly, I am feeling a bit lonely today. Now you've come along and that problem is solved.

Would you like to know why I think that letters are so important? 

Well, here are the three main reasons...

Writing letters makes me feel good - it is a way to connect with people and stay connected, and it is so much more personal than sending an email.  Writing a letter, to me, is just like talking to the person I am writing to, sharing news, thoughts, or just being silly.

More importantly, writing letters makes someone else feel good.  Who doesn't love finding a real letter in their mailbox?  There is no doubt that receiving a letter is exciting - you can hardly wait to get inside and take your coat off.  Then you sit down, letter in hand, but you want to prolong the anticipation just a wee bit longer.  You look at the envelope, turning it over to see if there is anything on the back.  Then you slowly open it, unfold the letter - savouring every moment - and you read it.  Wasn't it fun, and didn't you feel that somehow the writer was sitting there with you?  

Perhaps most important of all is that we have come to know so much of the past through historical letters.  Our knowledge (the truth) of society, events and people long ago has been enriched simply because people often saved the letters they had received.  So much of recorded history has been altered to favour a particular cause or "side," and today some historians even believe that historical accounts do not need be accurate.  Personal letters inform and are honest.
Who knows?  Maybe your letters will be read 100 years from now.   (Imagine!)  Maybe your letters will inform future societies about what life was really like early in the 21st century.  Or, maybe it will give them a first-hand account of an important event.  More personally, your great-great-grandchild may read them and come to know you, and to know his/her own self a little better.  (This actually happened for me.)  Isn't that exciting to think about?

I hope you've enjoyed the visit as much as I have.   Please leave a comment and add your suggestions for future posts.  What incident, person, or situation makes you say, "I'd like to write a letter about that!"?  If you are a letter-writer, yourself, it would be great to do a blog feature of your favourite.  (Send an email to:  

The Letter Writer

P.S.  Did you know that with a microwave oven you can  bake a cake in a coffee cup?