I have done a few Outgoing Mail posts in the past, sharing the special treats we were sending our kiddos for holidays and birthdays. Sometimes, it was really hard to keep up with that! I have been later than I'd like sending out boxes of gifts in the past, and having the added pressure of sharing about them here (and remembering to take photos, things like that) often slowed me down. And then I didn't share anyway! My friend Hannah had a good idea to resurrect and tweak these feature posts, to encourage letter-writing and also to help share our ideas about what to send the kids when some policy changes for what we can send are put into full effect.
So, this is the inaugural Outgoing Mail post!
This week, I wanted to send my kids a letter about spring. The first day of spring was Sunday, and it actually feels like it where I live! I'm loving the weather, even though I know it means death by allergies is on its way. I ended up finding that I didn't have quite as much to share about spring as I thought I would, but I also wanted to share an important prayer request with the kids as well. Here's the text of what I sent:
Hello! I hope that you and your family are doing well. I want you to know that my family is doing fine. This weekend marked the official change of seasons in my country- it is now springtime. The weather is so pretty! I am glad that I no longer need to wear a coat and a scarf each day. Also, many of the flowers are blooming, and the trees have blossoms as well. It is very pretty here, and we are all glad to say goodbye to winter.
I know that you enjoy seeing pictures of my family, so I am sending you two photos. They are of Brandon's aunt Anne and uncle Dennis, and their grandchildren Ivy and Margaret. I love having them as part of my family. Anne is very kind and a lot of fun to be around. You can see from the pictures that they really enjoy being grandparents! Dennis also looks so happy and healthy in this photo. It is hard to believe that just over a year ago, he was very sick and close to dying. Dennis had liver disease for a few years, and he lost a lot of weight and was very sick. He even had trouble with his mind, because his body was so ill. He was forgetful and confused much of the time. Because his liver was not working properly, his other body organs were working extra hard, and he started to have trouble with his kidneys and his heart, too! But God heard our prayers and Dennis was able to have a liver transplant surgery. It was a miracle. His recovery was hard, but he is doing so much better now. We are all thankful that God spared his life, and it is good to see him smiling and healthy again.
I would like to share a prayer request with you. My grandfather's health is starting to get bad. I have told you before that he has trouble remembering things and becomes confused, and he falls down a lot. Last week he went to the doctor and learned that he has dementia. This means that he is losing his mind- he will lose his memories and become more and more confused until he passes away. This is sad news for us to hear, because we love my grandfather (we call him Pappaw) very much. It is sad when a relative dies. I don't like to think about my Pappaw dying, but I know that when he dies, he will go to heaven and be with Jesus, and there he will be made whole again- and I will see him again someday, too! Will you please pray for my family, especially my mom? She needs to help her parents make decisions about Pappaw's healthcare and what will happen as he continues to get sicker. It is hard for her to make these decisions, and they make her very sad. Please pray for my mom to be strong, and to take comfort in God's promises.
I hope to get a letter from you soon. I am praying for you each and every day. Today I prayed for safety and security in your country. It seems that each day there is a sad story in the news, but I pray that God is keeping your family safe, and that your leaders will make wise decisions.
With love, Jessi
That letter took up almost all of the space I was allowed for the online templates, but it honestly took about three minutes to write. I had an idea in my head and ran with it. Please don't ever think that writing letters is something that is terribly time consuming or hard to keep up with- once you actually sit down at the keyboard and start typing, it really is easy. I have had a goal in 2016 to share more photos with my kids (I know that I want to see more photos of them, and they do ask for photos often!) so I have stolen several pictures from facebook. :) If we are family or close friends, chances are my kids have at least one picture of you, and I took it from facebook! Ha! When I saw aunt Anne shared these photos last week, I was so happy to see her sweet smile, and see how great Dennis looks, I knew that I wanted to snag them and share them with our far-away family!! I know that our kids who were praying for Dennis will be especially happy to see these pictures! And for our newer kids, it will be fun to see some of our extended family.
I'm not sure that I'll be sharing every letter I send (I try to write once a week) but I will be sharing a lot more of them. I hope that some people can find a bit of inspiration for their own letters from these posts. Sit down and write to your kids today!!