A few weeks ago I was reminded of how powerful words can be. As I was walking in front of a high school, I found a letter on the ground. Handwritten. 3 pages. Front and back. My natural curiosity gave way to reading the first sentence and I was pulled into a beautifully written high school love letter. The author waxed on about love and the ocean tides, yielding a masterpiece to be shared with someone special to her.
I have been haunted by that note as I go through the business of life. It inspired me to hit the pause button and write a love note to my husband. Taped on the bathroom mirror one day he found it and hopefully felt the love that I sometimes forget to share through the dutiful tasks of everyday life.
I know this is a writing blog for children, but I must encourage you all to write, a love letter, to someone.
Now for the kids…
As they have done in the past, for the 2013 holiday season the Red Cross and Pitney Bowes are sponsoring a “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program to distribute holiday cards to service members, a program that encompasses not just troops who are recovering in military hospitals but also service members stationed throughout the U.S. and abroad, as well as veterans and their families.
Well-wishers who would like to send Christmas (and other seasonal) cards to U.S. service members should address those cards as follows:
Holiday Mail for Heroes
PO Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD
All cards must be postmarked no later than Friday, 6 December 2013 in order to ensure sufficient time for sorting and distribution before the holidays.
Before you write, please read the guidelines provided by the Red Cross for sending cards to service members:
1. Ensure that all cards are signed.
2. Use generic salutations such as “Dear Service Member.” Cards addressed to specific individuals cannot be delivered through this program.
3. Only cards are being accepted. Do not send letters.
4. Do not include email or home addresses on the cards, as the program is not meant to foster pen pal relationships.
5. Do not include inserts of any kind, including photos, as these items will be removed during the reviewing process.
6. Please refrain from choosing cards with glitter or using loose glitter as it can aggravate health issues of ill and injured warriors.
7. If you are mailing a large quantity of cards, please bundle them and place them in large mailing envelopes or flat rate postal shipping boxes. Each card does not need its own envelope, as envelopes will be removed from all cards before distribution.
8. Also please note that the “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program is for the delivery of holiday cards only. Those wishing to donate items such as phone cards or military comfort kits should go to the Help Our Troops section of the Red Cross online catalogue.
Let’s join together to put more LOVE in this world. When was the last time you wrote a love letter?