I don’t know how many times I’ve said to myself, “I wish I/I ought to/I want to write more letters.” I just don’t. I email, talk on the phone, text (I have several ongoing text conversations that are priceless), use Facebook, or play Words With Friends (you’d be surprised how connected you can feel when you’re trading words with someone you don’t see very often).

I have a lot of excuses for not writing letters, none of them very good: My handwriting has gotten sloppy, I’m not comfortable holding a pen for very long, I’m busy, I don’t have anything important to say… Hogwash. I think I spend more time justifying not writing letters than it would take to actually write one.

Writing letters was always a pleasure. I used to correspond with friends and family. I love that word. Correspondence. When did I begin to neglect it? I’d like to get into the habit of writing a letter or a note, the same way I email or call or post on a wall.

So I decided to participate in the Month of Letters Challenge, which I think I read about on Facebook. It can’t be that hard, and it promises be interesting! February is the perfect month for a daily shake-up, too. It’s such a long month, even though it has fewer days. I feel like challenging myself out of the winter doldrums, and a little letter-writing might to do the trick.

I even unearthed my trusty Parker 45 “Flighter” for the occasion, figuring that I’ll be more inclined to write if I have a nice pen. It was a gift from my parents some time in the late 1960’s, and was most certainly purchased at the House Stationery Store, since both of my parents worked on Capitol Hill then. It’s a simple, inexpensive pen, but I’ve always loved it. They aren’t made any more, but I still found ink cartridges at my local office supply store. I don’t know what happened to the little converter that lets me fill it from a bottle of ink; it will appear one of these days.

After the yarn stopped flying at the end of my Family Project, I took a short knitting break. I’ve been knitting, but slowly. I always cast on a new project at the New Year, and this time it was a Ptarmigan Cowl. I had the perfect skein of cashmere for Spirit Trail, too.

I’m working on a scarf for a friend, and another Brooklyn Tweed pattern, Winnowing by Bristol Ivy. It’s going to take me a while, but every time I pick it up, I’m mesmerized by it. I’m two repeats further into it than this (not very attractive) picture:

It’s a rainy Wednesday — a good time to dash off a note, wouldn’t you say? Happy February! I’ll be posting a poem tomorrow for the annual Silent Poetry Reading, a blog tradition that I’ve participated in since 2006 (wow).  Do you have a favorite poem to share?

8 thoughts on “Corresponding

  1. Absolutely charming. The thoughts, the pen, the challenge, and of course the knitting. Also, may I add for the record that you have lovely handwriting?


  2. Writing letters is becoming a lost art, Jane. Good for you to take up the pen again! I have a dear friend in France who still writes letters and refuses to email. Her letters come on either greeting cards or postcards. Her writing starts on one page and continues (with guiding arrows) on various pages, or up and along the borders of the existing writing. It's very charming and like opening a package when I get them. P.S. I would gladly write you a letter but I don't know your actual address. 🙂


  3. Handwriting. . . schmandwriting. It's the words that count! Enjoy corresponding with that wonderful pen. (And I've got my poem ready for tomorrow.)


  4. There are plenty of places online to get purty inks and converters for your pen!Try JetPens to start, or Goulet (which has a page of very delicious color swabs).


  5. Lovely idea! I send cards in dribs and drabs. I keep thinking if I choose one day a week to correspond that might help me become a better correspondent-did I spell that right? You do have lovely handwriting or was it Rosemary that signed your Hickory socks pattern in the Knitter's Book of Socks?! KnittingKittens


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