Letter writing is something that has gone by the wayside. When my husband's aunt was still alive, I would write her letters. I would try to write every couple of months. She would always write me back. Getting a letter from her was the highlight of my day. I would see it in the mail and immediately smile. Letters have a way of doing that. When I was 10, our class became penpals with a class from Idaho. I remember how exciting it was to get those letters. After the class project was done, he and I remained penpals. We keep in touch to this day. That's what letters can do.
Even though I prefer paper and pencil letters, emails are another great way to keep in touch. I have a friend that I don't get to see often, and even when I do, we seem to have so much to say and such a small amount of time, so we email. It doesn't have to be long, just little stuff. These days, when we are all so busy and have very little time, it's nice to see her name in my inbox. It makes my day a little brighter, no matter what is going on.
In an emoji/gif/snapchat world, letter writing has fallen by the wayside. Studies show that technology use like this does not allow true connections to be made. It also gives a false sense of identity. That is one reason I am pushing my kids to be more diligent about writing not only thank you's, but letters in general. Some family members have already received notes from the kids. They aren't novels like I used to write to Aunt Dorothy or S, but they are a start. If you happen to get a letter from my kids, don't feel obligated to write back. If you want to, great, but it's not necessary. We're just trying to brighten your day while I teach a lost art.