Hobby, Uncategorized

A Little Bit of Something that I Love: Postcards and Handwritten Letters

I’ve always been interested to send letters since I was a kid. The curiousity grew from seeing rubik sabahat pena (penpals) on Bobo, a kid’s magazine that my mother bought for me. But I had to wait until I was in junior high school to actually start sending letters. I don’t know about you but finding a new letter on the mailbox is like a nice little surprise for me. Nothing beats the thrill of opening the mailbox and finding a letter, written and addressed just for me. I still remember when my dad’s friend sent a postcard from LA and I was so excited to read it and removed the stamp. I used to collect it, even though I wasn’t really a philately. To me, it’s quite saddening that years after that, letters carried by conventional postal service seemed to be left behind and replaced with modern technology like e-mail. Even nowadays, the post office staffs seem to find it weird every time I want to buy a stamp for my postcard, let alone seeing a fully decorated envelope that I use to send a letter to my penpal.

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Two years ago when I was hit by depression, I stayed away from some of my friends in real life and chose to engross myself in any activity –whatever that didn’t have anything to do with talking to my friends in real life– to keep my mind off the pain. So I started writing this blog, decorating my DIY planner, and writing letters and postcards again. Writing letters was and always will be very special to me for it always evokes pleasant feelings. And receiving a letter, especially a handwritten one, never fails to make me feel special in a way that I cannot explain. There’s something so personal and thoughtful about them. I mean, writing a letter takes time and shows effort that the sender makes in order to send them. What’s not to love about that? Where are these splendid treasures in the 21st century?

To find a penpal, I usually use penpalsnow and interpals. Or sometimes I just type “penpals” on Twitter’s explore tab to find much if not some tweets about people looking for penpals. I got a new penpal from Turkey by doing that trick. And for sending postcards, I signed myself up on postcrossing. If you haven’t heard it, postcrossing is a postcard exchange project that invites everyone to send and receive postcards from random places in the world. Real postcards with stamps on it! The idea is simple: for each postcard you send, you will receive one back from a random postcrosser from somewhere in the world. If this little information already sold you, the next thing you should do is to check out their website and sign yourself up. I’ve been a proud member of that community since January 2016. And I’ve received postcards from various countries, even from faraway countries whose name I’ve never heard before.

To me, the fun part of postcrossing is we don’t know who will send a postcard to us, so again it’s like a nice little surprise every time you find out that the postcard you’re reading apparently have travelled thousand miles away before it finally arrived at your mailbox. Last Christmas I received a lovely postcard from Belarus, which is 6,097 miles away from Indonesia. I never travelled that far in my life. Actually, I never really travelled to anywhere in my life. But through these letters and postcards, I can “meet” people whom I might not have the chance to meet in real life. I can meet someone with the same interest as me. I’m so grateful for every letters and postcards that I received for it has helped me to feel happy again. It’s so uplifting to support another and getting supported in return.

All of the pictures above were taken last year. Let me know if any of you are also a fan of postcrossing and snailmail! Maybe I can send you a postcard on your birthday 😉 ❤

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106 thoughts on “A Little Bit of Something that I Love: Postcards and Handwritten Letters

  1. I think, handwriting in a letter reflect the emotion. 😂.

    Eh when I was kid, i do the same too..collecting many stamps from my dad’ office, ..I remembered how to remove the glue by soaking it in water. 😂😂.

    ..send me 😉

    Liked by 4 people

    • Yesss! Nothing captures the emotion we express in writing like a handwritten letter does. 😀
      Ahh too bad i didn’t know that trick until now, whereas it’s all over the internet. 😢
      hahaha asik sih ya ngoleksiin gituan, bahkan ampe kuliah pun semua surat dr kampus yg dikirim ke rumah teteup ku keletekin perangkonya. Kadang lgsg ku gunting seamplopnya karena susah dikelopek 😦

      Kalo mau emailin aja Mas mailing addressnya ke nadyairsalinank@gmail.com 😊

      Like

      • Ah kalau saya surat dari kampus tidak memakai perangko tapi memakai cap itu.

        Iyaa asyik banget, kan koleksi gituan adalah berburu perangko lama dan tua.

        Tapi sayangnya koleksi itu hilang ketika saya pindah rumah 😞.

        Aku juga waktu kecil di bawain Bobo

        Liked by 1 person

      • Yaaah eman-eman 😦 padahal kan ngumpulinnya lumayan perjuangan juga ya. Punyaku jg udah pada ilang sih, sebagian yg masih terselamatkan ku tempel buat ngedecorate planner.

        Kayanya itu bacaan wajib anak-anak yaa. Bahkan sampe smp pun ku masih suka dibeliin bobo. Kadang dibeliin bobo bekas yang lgsg segepok itu biar murah 😂

        Like

      • Perjuangan dan menahan malu, ketika saya kecil sering ke kantor kantor di temenin bapak hanya untuk mencari amplop yang Masih berperangko 😂,
        Namun sayang, semua perangko saya pasti ada bekas cap Dari pos

        Liked by 1 person

      • Huahahaha malah asik kan mas, ada bahan yg bs diceritain ke anak cucu besok 😂😂
        Iyaasih, kalo yang ga ada capnya kudu beli yg baru di kantor pos atau beli di kolektornya lgsg mgkn. Tp krna tujuannya cm buat koleksi kalo akusih teteu girang dapet stamp 😂

        Like

  2. Hafidh Frian says:

    I don’t have chance to do that although we live is almost same time. When I was kid, I just exchange paper with my friend’s diary. Send some words to closefriend. At the last senior high school until university, I usually send letter to my friend in jogja using postage stamp powered by Pos Indonesia. Cheap enough for university student at that time. She is UGM student. How amazing experience it was. Now, privat email is good enough to talk about condition each other with the friend. Hihihi 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lol I did that too! Tukeran bio di binder dan tukeran isi kertas binder juga. Ahhh the good ol’ days 😄
      Now it’s quite expensive to send letter, that’s why I don’t do that as often as i did before. Tapi kalau mau ngirim postcard doang cuma 4000 jg bs sampe sih klo msh seputar Jawa (atau bahkan seluruh Indo?!). Ke negara2 di Asia aja biasanya cuma ku tempel stamp 7000, ke Eropa&Africa 8000, dan ke America 9000. Lumayan menguras kantong sih especially when I was still a college student 😢
      Yes, e-mail is pretty useful and i also can’t imagine how my life would be like without it, but sometimes I crave something more, a feeling that doesn’t simply come from reading an e-mail.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. What a very interesting post! I used to send and receive handwritten letters as well; me and my circle of friends used to do it, just telling each other our thank-yous and other random stuff. But that was close to 20 years ago, and now sadly, I no longer send and receive handwritten letters. After reading your post, I’m thinking of starting the trend again… 😉
    This is the first time I’m learning of postcrossing–what a delight it must be to get to exchange with other cultures like that! I’m considering joining in too. I’ve checked out their website. Very cool. 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you! Glad to know that u found this post interesting. People nowadays choose email/chat over letters for it’s more effective and efficient. But still, nothing can beat the happiness that comes from sending & receiving a handwritten letter. If u want to experience those memories of 20 years ago it’s rlly good to try postcrossing. I hope u have a good experience with postcrossing 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi! I just found ur blog and wow, its good to find ‘what attracts me so much’ heheheh. Tp syg, skrg surat-menyurat udh jarang banget. Biarpun ada email, tp surat yg bisa kita liat fisiknya emg beda sensasinya😂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Melan! Thank you for visiting my blog. Ayoooo cobain surat2an, atau mulai dr postcards dulu deh biar mureh gituuww. Yupp, benar sekali, ada kebahgiaan tersendiri ketika baca surat dengan tulisan tangan dan ngeliatin tulisan org yg bermacam2 bentuknya ♡

      Like

  5. Something really different and interesting I came to know. Well! I couldn’t enjoy this because now we donot send letters. right? But you know once as holiday homework in seventh grade we were told to write a letter or a postcard to any of our relatives and I chose to write to my grandparents. They were merely surprised when they recieved it.
    Well! can you please tell me in which language are few of the comments there.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Ah Bobo.. I wonder what’s the magazine Like right now ^^
    I used to coLLect stamps too! Even my mother’s boss wouLd gave me aLL enveLopes that came from Europe and I wouLd cut the stamps undet his secretary’s supervision XD SadLy, Like one of the previous commentor, I Lost it when I moved house 😦
    Saya baru muLai surat-suratan 4 tahun LaLu, sama orang Jepang yang ketemu di Instagram 😅 Sayangnya dari mid-2017 dia ‘hiLang’, dan biarpun baru pernah ketemu muka sekaLi rasanya sedih banget, kaya’ bener2 kehiLangan teman 😭
    Anyway, the stickers you use are so cute! And your journaL Looks awesome 😍 is that a TraveLer’s Notebook?

    Liked by 2 people

    • I wonder abt the same thing too! I never really saw it again in penjual majalah or bookstore. Enak banget! Sounds like you used to have tons of it 😮 too bad that you lost it. Tapi seiring berjalannya wktu prioritas hidup jg berubah, dan pasti barang2 lama kadang suka jd ga kerawat dan hilang jg sih. Sad.
      Eeh tp asik itu kamu sempat ketemu sama orangnya :”) ya biarpun sedih jg kalo doi ngilang. Tp itu emg bagian sedih dr surat-menyurat sih. Surat yang tidak terbalas & org yg tb tb menghilang.
      Ahh thank you! Actually its not a sticker. I just printed and cut it by myself. I found lots of the pict on google. Yesss it’s a kind of midori style Traveler notebook. But it’s not midori and I printed my own instert & made my own leather cover. Everything is DIY.
      Looking at ur post i thought you’re not Indonesian. 😂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Ahaha dulu susah payah belajar bahasa Inggris di sekolah, sekarang harus cari outlet buat dipakai di luar kerjaan sebelum lupa semuanya ^^
        And..
        Your ‘stickers’ cuts are very neat! :O

        Liked by 1 person

  7. going through this right now, slight depression and now dealing with break up with my boyfriend. Really needed to see something like this – some sort of hope for better time and how to deal with this sad part of my life. so alone and lonely, trying not to fall apart. postcards and penpals seem like a great idea! I was going to try postcrossing a few years ago but never got round to it. The thought of opening up to a stranger via letters or postcards seens exciting but at the same time intimidating and too intimate. but knowing there is a chance to connect similar people seems appealing

    Liked by 2 people

    • i hope you’re always getting better each day. dealing with depression is already a struggle on its own, let alone going through it while in the same time also losing someone whom we thought could help us going through this hard time. i’ve been in the same situation too. the breakup sort of worsened my depression but i came to the realization that i needed to surround myself with people who constantly bring positivity into my life. and luckily i met so many nice people who can make me forget the pain, help me focus on myself, and also inspire me to spread happiness and positivity to others too.
      i actually never mentioned my depression when i sent a letter to my penpals. i usually just talk about things that we love to do, things that we wanna do, and support each other to always do things that makes us happy. ♡ however, if you feel the need to share what you’re feeling to your friends/penpals, that’s totally okay too. just do whatever it is that make you feel better.
      have a nice day! ♡

      Like

      • thanx for the reply 🙂 and all the advice you have given. hate how the depression has come back but it was mainly due to stress and worsened over time. I got mugged last summer and it really distressed me for months, worsened during the Winter and now the break up to add to that stress. Before all that I managed ro live happily and take each day as it came, live in the moment – which I had never managed to do and hadn’t had depression in a while. But due to my personality the mugging must have triggered my depression, I didn’t realise how bad it was until my bf broke up with me 😦 but it has been 2 weeks now and I am beginning to feel a bit more hopeful as I am journaling again and trying to stay positive. Reading blogs and watching YouTube has helped too

        Liked by 1 person

      • Glad to hear that you’re beginning to be more hopeful and all. Take all the time that you need ❤
        I hope you’re surrounded by people who bring positivity into ur life. Hey your bday is only two days away, isn’t it? 😉

        Like

  8. I love letters and it shows effort and thought. It’s all too easy to send an email or a text. Handwriting too …. it’s not really taught in the same way as when we were children. Hours spent perfecting letters. I think the French are even more perfectionists than us brits. Lovely post ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

  9. NJ says:

    This post reminded me of my teenage years 🙂 . I use to have few penpals at that time:) .Writing letters is always fun and reading them is much more pleasing:) .So true that there is something so special about handwritten notes and letters 🙂 I think because you can physically hold them and it makes you feel as if you are holding the real person 🙂 .

    Liked by 1 person

    • The good ol’ days :”) why did u stop writing letters? Being preoccupied by school or works?
      Yeaah, thats it. And sometimes i like to imagine how they’re writing them 😂

      Liked by 1 person

      • NJ says:

        I think when you are an engineer that too a software one you tend to fell in the vicious cycle of communicating over mails instead of handwritten notes 😀 But I do write some letters or notes for my spouse or family members or friends here and there 🙂
        I get you when you say imagining them writing it 😉 it as if you feel the emotional curve they go through while writing it.:)

        Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Juliana. I’m glad if you loved it! Some of my friends never heard of it either, since it’s not a social media that people use to communicate with one another. Postcrossing is only if not mostly used by those who are interested in writing postcards. You should totally try it some time 😀
      Thank you, your blog is adorable too. 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  10. It’s nice to find your blog. The art of letter writing has vanished with the coming of internet and email. I used to write letters and post cards too. I have difficulty with my hands lately but still manage to write thank you notes. I remember those days when I cut stamps from letters that I received but I gave them all away when we moved. I’m intrigued with postcrossing. I might try that. It will be interesting what I can get in return. Thanks for dropping at my site.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. While I’m reading this post, I remember to whom my last letter I sent. Although I forget how’s feeling back then, still I think it’s romantic. Yes, you’re right, I put my effort… even I give all I have, strength and weakness, pain and joy, white and black, both fear and fearlessness… all of them… all at once. And in the end… there’s one thing that I couldn’t do… give it by myself. Hahaha.
    I don’t remember, when the last time I sent postcards. When I we was child, my friend and I often send Idul Fitri’s Congrat card to one another.
    Nowadays, people only send a letter using post office just for applying job’s letter, I think.
    What’s that? ‘Sayak-sayak-an? Hahahahah you still collecting those relics of ancient era?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Surat buat siapa tuuuh? 😄 *kepo* hahaha
      I used to send lebaran greeting cards too, but it was years ago. Bahkan skrg ngucapin selamat lebaran via sms aja uda jarang, pasti pada via wa/line :”)
      Yup, people only send formal letters now. And some of them no longer use stamp anymore. Sejak ada post kilat :”) ga iso dikletek stampnya huhuhu
      Sayak-sayakan maksudnya apa ya mas?

      Like

      • Yaampun setelah sekian purnama berlalu baru bales komen.
        Okee okee. Sepertinya agak pribadi wkwk.
        Oalaah, engga aku udah gamainan sayak sayakan. Yg ada di foto itu cuma gambar biasa terus ku print dijadiin ala ala sticker buat ditempel di amplop surat dan travelers notebook.

        Like

      • Setelah sekan purnama, melewati purnama 12 hingga purnama 17 yang kesekian kalinya… aku tak jua berubah jadi serigala. Kemudian aku sadar aku bukan Ganteng-Ganteng Serigala 😀
        Bukan agak pribadi sih, memang pribadi. Tapi bukan itu masalahnya… masalahnya aku juga udah lupa sama wajahnya 😀
        Ya makanya aku bilang relik dari jaman kuno :v

        Like

    • OMG there must be tons of it???! I still saved some of the letters since high school but after i graduated from college my dad decided to get rid of it without my permission. But I still save the postcards though. If i were ur kids i’d be SO happy to read all those letters. 😄💌

      Liked by 1 person

  12. I used to send handwritten letters and cards to people. I have gotten away from it so much since I now primarily communicate via email, chat, and texting or blogging. It is a lost art, for sure, so that is wonderful that you are keeping it going.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Now it seems like most people don’t use it as a tool to communicate with one another anymore. They only send letters/cards on special occassion like bday/christmas.
      I didn’t send letters when i was in college because i was preoccupied with college tasks and stuff so i’m quite happy that now i have enough time & money to do it again. (well, sending letters is quite expensive especially when ur penpals live in another country).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, I am sure it is, but that is so wonderful that you are getting to know people in other countries other than your own. I am glad that I met you.

        Like

  13. I LOVE writing to people. I used to write to my grandma until many years ago. Now that she no longer is alive I miss that feeling of receiving an actual letter in the post. Thank you for your post. I will definitely be checking out postcrossing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess it’s not really famous among people who don’t consider writing postcards as a hobby. It’s so fun though, maybe you should try to check their website 😊

      Ahh yess. It’s now replaced with chat and text since it’s more effective and efficient though.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, but chat is awful thing…it’s so “draining all power out of you & gives nothing in return”-conversation 🙂 not sure tho if I could write postcards. Im bad at keeping in touch. And def u have to like it 😄

        Liked by 1 person

  14. geno42ms says:

    Nicely done. Keep it up. I have painted post-cards and sent out some of those. Lately I have not been stamping the paintings directly but sending them in a bigger envelope.

    Like

  15. Reblogged this on Happiness Between Tails by da-AL and commented:
    Guest Blog Post: “A Little Bit of Something that I Love: Postcards and Handwritten Letters,” in Nadya Irsalina’s exact words

    Getting letters and postcards in the mail is a joy! When I was a kid, I even loved getting junk mail! Years ago, a friend told me that only handwritten could suffice for thank you notes, never email. I try to follow her advice as often as I can. How about you? Do you write and/or receive handwritten mail?
    Fellow blogger Nadya Irsalina inspires me to take it to a new level…

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’m so glad I stumbled upon your blog. It’s so relatable. And I can’t believe there are others out there who are excited about postcards 😍 In a world where everything is digital we’re losing that personal touch. Having a post card or a handwritten letter for me is like having a piece of this other person, this beautiful soul, with me! Absolutely love it! Good job, keep writing Nadya. 💝😊

    Like

  17. m says:

    I love this post, I love sending and receiving snail mail, I love handwritten things. Thanks for sharing this and all of the gorgeous photos!

    Like

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