Friday, December 28, 2012

A Review of 'Snail Mail My Email' by Ivan Cash

"Feeling nostalgic for the almost forgotten written letter, author and former ad man Ivan Cash fell upon a simple idea: he invited anyone in the world to send him an email and he's write it out in a letter and mail it, for free.  Participants could even request a doodle or to seal it with a kiss.

What started out as a personal art project exploded into a worldwide event.  As requests poured in, Cash enlisted an international army of volunteers who helped create more than 10,000 letters sent all over the globe.

An addictive and artful window into everyday lives, Snail Mail My Email is a collection of the most memorable letters and moments from the project, and a reminder of the power of personal connection in a digital world."

If you're familiar with the Post Secret project, this is something very similar.  While Post Secret is an on-going project asking people to mail in their secrets on postcards, the Snail Mail my Email project lasted only a month and it encourages people to send out letters as opposed to emails when it comes to their special notes.  The extra incentive: email your notes and this large group of volunteers will write them down, draw some pictures, and send them all over the world, all to show how important and meaningful snail mail is.

I liked that the letters were so different from each other.  Yes, there were a lot of love letters, but some of them were pretty quirky, including what I'm sure are inside jokes between the writer and the recipient.  These inside jokes made the letters funny to read.  My favorite letter is one from a grandma to her grandchild saying, "You should write to me every once in a while, jackass."  Maybe my maturity level is on the lower end, but I just cracked up upon reading it because there was a drawing of a donkey next to it and the wording was bold.  What an interesting grandma!  I just hope that I never receive a letter from her...

This is a very quick read-- it'll take a couple hours to get through because the letters are short, but you'll stay for the pictures and the sentiments left on the paper.

I liked this book, but somehow, it was less satisfying than reading Post Secret.  Maybe it's because the letters weren't anonymous and that made them feel a little less genuine.  With no name, you can say what you please and forego your filter, to a certain degree.  A degree more than with Snail Mail My Email.

I give 'Snail Mail My Email':
Thanks for Reading!


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

19 Reasons Why It's Great to be Alive!

It's pretty great to be alive for scene like this as well...
1.  First and last days of things-- I love the anticipation beforehand and I love the sense of accomplishment or even the relief of being done afterwards!

2.  Good food on the holidays (and most other days too)

3.  The satisfaction I feel after taking care of someone or something, whether that's feeding my fish, watering my cacti, or helping a friend through a problem they're having

4.  Leisure time, when it actually comes

5.  Productivity, when it actually comes

6.  Inspiration, when it actually comes

7.  A clean room after several months of living in a pigsty filled with scattered papers and dust

8.  Old-fashioned things, whether or not they are from a time I was alive.  Most of the time, they are before my time

9.  People who appreciate books and are willing to have conversations about them with you

10.  Having people who want to be your friend and not for material reasons

11.  Living in close proximity to your friends

12.  Having periods of time when I get to read what I want and not was a professor tells me I need to read in order to receive a grade

13.  Funny Sisters that are challenging me, time and time again, to redefine my schema for Nuns

14.  Biological sisters that are there to listen, bounce ideas off of, and giggle with until our sides and cheeks hurt

15.  Other languages and the ability to acquire them

16.  Having friends in other countries.  Not just so that I can have a place to stay when I return to these places (and other selfish reasons), but so that I can be humbled by cultural differences and learn to love people who live in a different culture than my own.  Understanding is very important to me

17.  Having a place to sleep during the holidays when my dorm room is closed for the rest of December

18.  Family, no matter the moods they're in or the demeanor of them

19.  Being in higher education and not regretting my decision to enter this crazy, crazy world.  I know that by the time I graduate, I'm going to have met so many wonderful, intelligent, witty, creative, hard-working, and beautiful women and I will recognize how fortunate I am

***I meant to have this done by my 19th birthday (20 December), but that was a day busier than I care to mention, so it didn't get done.  But I thought that it was still worth posting, if only for the sake of keeping a relatively new tradition

Thanks for Reading!!


Sunday, December 16, 2012

College Adventures: Tough Decisions

Hello there!

Do you remember me?  I definitely haven't been much of a presence on this blog, but trust me, I still receive your comments and I'm still lurking in the shadows.

Life has been incredibly busy here.  I have finals on the 19th and 20th of December, I've been struggling to make my Christmas plans work (it's been complicated because of my job), and I've kind of been having a bit of a mental break-down because of all of these things happening at once.  I have called my boyfriend in tears as well as my own mother.  I almost cried in front of my boss due to frustration.  I have woken up in the middle of the night after a few hours of restless dreaming and I've just wanted to cry.

I don't think I've ever felt this way or come this close to an actual break-down.

Perhaps it's poor timing, perhaps it's a lack of communication from a variety of parties, perhaps it's my own inability to set limits for myself.

With the New Year and a new semester coming up, I think it's time to at least consider a change.  It's definitely a pre-meditated change, a week or two in the making, but I think it's a step that I must make in order to keep my sanity and do my very best in school, because school is my priority at this point in my life.

I love having a job and the place where I work is, for the most part, pretty great.  There are a few problems that I have with it, but it's very much related to being a full-time undergraduate student.  I won't go into detail about that here though.  Besides these problems, I'm having trouble balancing everything.  I have been procrastinating more than I usually do (doing things the day of as opposed to a night or two before the due-date) and because of this, I feel like I'm not doing as well of a job as I know that I am capable of doing.

These things are the most critical parts of my decision, but then I thought of this: I am also missing out on many, many experiences in college.  I have a friend that has asked me on several occasions if I would go swing dancing with her, but I've always had to say no because I work on the days this usually takes place.  I want to be able to say "Yes!!" for once.  Not only this, but I don't think I've been able to foster my friendships very well.  I have met so many wonderful people, but I haven't been able to make memories with them or get to know them better because I'm never around.

So I have to make some tough decisions.  I think that no matter what my decision ultimately is that I can make it work and it will be very beneficial to me.  I need to learn to accept that I cannot make everyone happy at the same time and I need to learn what my limits are.  I need to learn more about sacrifice and compromise.  I need to learn how to be more assertive (I've been very bad at that and that's a big reason why I've gotten myself into this predicament).

If you'd like to share, what are some difficult decisions that you've had to make?  How did you come to a conclusion for your problem?  How did you go about acting on this decision?  I could use all the help I can get...

Thank you for reading!  I will try to post more reviews soon.  After finals are over, I will have a lot more time to just sit and read.