Pen to Paper

A memory flashes before me this morning as I sit down to catch up on correspondence.

My five-year-old self sitting at the kitchen table, clumsily clutching a pen over an ever-shifiting paper.

Thank you Cards. 

Dear Grandma, Thank you for the new doll. She is pretty. I love her a lot. Love, Jana 



My mother was very disciplined about having us write thank you notes to friends and family. I remember Saturday mornings sitting at the table getting this “chore” done while my friends played outside. Such drudgery at the time.

Sometime later, a note would arrive for me from my Grandmothers’ thanking me for my Thank You Notes. They would often compliment me on my beautiful handwriting or thoughtful remembrance of them. Bound together in a dusty shoe box, I now treasure their notes like they once treasured mine.

I never told my mom this {I don’t recall anyway}, but I actually learned to enjoy writing thank you notes. My quipped three sentences, quickly turned into pages of script. I sharpened my handwriting and my writing voice. I took pleasure in painting pictures on the page as I described my family’s adventures. We moved often, lived out of the country some. Penning those letters and notes connected me with them across the miles.

I am reminded of the many scenes from Jane Austin novels as the heroine sits erect at a dark-stained roll-top desk, pen in hand. With a flushed face, she writes of her adventures and mishaps. I felt like that heroine sometimes.

My son recently received a thank you note following his friend’s birthday party. He seemed surprised that other children have to write thank you notes, too. I chuckled to myself. Maybe next time he won’t moan and groan when it is his turn to write his thanks.

I also just received a hand written invitation to a lunch party. Beautiful script from a 76-year-old friend. She had sent an email to “save the date”, but still believed it necessary to send a hand written note as well. I was humbled by the tradition of that one act. My grandmothers would have approved.

I am glad to see that the art of hand written notes is not yet lost.

I have many to write today, but am looking forward once again to putting pen to paper. I hope to craft a few sentences that will capture my appreciation and admiration for these people for whom I have come to love.

Putting pen to paper one thought at a time,



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5 thoughts on “Pen to Paper

  1. Oh, I wish I was better at actually writing the notes! I always have good intentions and carry notecards around with me, but seldom actually take the time to fill them out! sometimes I’m embarrassed at how late a thank you note gets sent out… and my mother trained me better than that!! :) working on improving my note writing skills!

    • Hi Julie Anne, I am impressed that you carry notecards with you to have on hand. Great idea. You never know when a note is needed. I like blessing people unexpectedly with hand-written notes, like my kids’ teachers, or a neighbor, even my hair stylist. Seems to surprise them and to make their day. Blessings, jana

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