June 3, 2011

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Have you ever received a very fine gift, one that you really like and appreciate, yet aren’t quite sure what to do with it?  This describes the fancy paper the hubster bought for me some six (!) years ago.  It’s so beautiful that I felt it required a special occasion to write on it.  And I did, a time or two, but, in the back of my mind, I thought it had an even higher purpose, so it stayed in a drawer.

This makes me laugh!  You, Madame Paper, are so special that you get to stay in a dark drawer for six years.  How about them apples?  I am such a purger, if you didn’t know already.  I like to give things away.  If I’m not using it, I don’t want it in the house.  Yet some items get a pass, and then, often times, years later, are used, and quite well, I might add.  We made a stand for our second mason bee house with a metal pole that languished in the basement for who knows how long.  It’s now buzzing with life and testament that it can be okay to not let go.

Back to that fancy paper.  I have always liked telling people that I like (or love) them, their work, think they are smart, funny, have good skin, cute toes, great style, awesome glasses, whatever quality I happen to admire or appreciate.  Sometimes people seem frightened by this (wondering if I have an ulterior motive?), as the recipients are often strangers, and I’m this smiling crazy person bearing down on them at the supermarket (slightly hyperbolic), but mostly they like it, or at least smile and say, “Thank you.”

Then I heard about a man (John Kralik) who was going through a very difficult time in his life and decided to write a Thank You note to someone every day for a year to better appreciate what he had.  It changed his life in the most extraordinary way (365 Thank Yous).  Then I stumbled upon the Pema Chodron book at the library (that’s it in the photo, too) and the words, “Give away what you most want,” struck the deepest chord.

What do I want?  How about love, kindness, validation, sincere compliments, and being appreciated?  Pretty awesome, right?  Why not give it away?  So I’m starting my own Lettre Royale Campaign (after the paper).  I’ll write one letter a week until the pretty paper runs out.  There are about fifty sheets.  I’ll write to friends and strangers, near and far, and see what happens.  Besides, it will give me yet another reason to buy cool stamps.  I like those, too.