June 20, 2012

25 things you can send to your pen-pals

I've had pen-pals since I was about 10 years old; I've lost several along the way, have met a good few in person and have gained a lot ever since I moved to this country. I suck at calling or video-chatting with my friends and family in Argentina, so snail mail kind of makes it up for my suckiness in that department.

Whenever I write a letter, I try to send it along with some little goodies for my recipients. Such items are usually inexpensive and sometimes even for free. Wanna see my stash? ;)

Domestic shipping is obviously way cheaper than international shipping and lets me play more with size, shape and weight. I have to admit that the American postage system works marvelously and is very reasonable priced; that's why I don't fear when I need to send items that a bit heavy.

1. Candy. I'm kind of obsessed with conversation hearts. If I want to send sweets abroad, I choose lighter ones such as individually packed Twizzlers.
2. Erasers. I bought this 4-piece set for 99c at Walmart.
3. Hello Kitty playing cards. You can find a wide assortment of cute novelty cards at Party City.
4. Fortune cookies. You can buy them at the store, but I've used some I got when we had Chinese. They're light, but since they're fragile you can only send them in a box.
5. Scrabble tiles. I like to send names or words. I bought a complete lot for cheap on E-Bay.

6. Origami paper. I send sheets of paper or actual origami.
7. Stamps. They're really cheap on E-Bay and Yardsellr.
8. Seeds. I'm really into the idea of sending seeds! I think it's cool to grow something that came from far away :p.
9. Assorted infusions. I love tea! I like drinking and giving tea bags, hehe.

10.  Words. Yeah, you heard me. Nice phrases and good wishes :).
11. Printed material. There are so many awesome free printables out there! The one you can see here is In caffeine we trust, a board that lets you keep track of how much coffee you're consuming. Another website that offers awesome free resources is Scout Creative.
12. Mixed CDs. Of course, part of the fun consists of making the case/envelope yourself.
13. Samples. I always save the make-up and perfume samples that come in magazines. The latter I cut into squares or strips.
14. Paper clothes. I send them for my recipients to use (not wear, unfortunately, hehe) and I also make garlands or glue them to my letters. 

15. Paint chips. I particularly love the Mickey Mouse ones :p; I found them at Home Depot. They're for free and you can do a lot with them; you can use them as cards, bookmarks and create colorful shapes with the help of a craft punch (or confetti if you only have a regular punch).

16. Temporary tattoos.
17. Die cut pieces. Made with craft punches.
18. Band Aids. I like to buy limited editions when I see them.
19. Coasters. Yep, cardboard coasters from bars.
20. Instant photos. Taken with my Diana F+ Instant back.
21. Tickets and movie stubs.
22. Sticky notes. To be used as bookmarks.
23. Stationery. Because who doesn't like to get it, right? ;)
24.  Free postcards. I'm a huge fan of free postcards; I had a big lot of postcards and clothing tags in Argentina. I brought a lot, but I had to leave some at home :/.

25. Stickers. I'm currently in love with Scandinavian matchbox stickers.
Places where you can get these supplies
* Craft stores, naturally. I always go to Michaels, especially when I have discount coupons or there are special deals. Always check your branch's site for coupons before going.

* 99c stores. They have a ton of stuff you can buy!

Party City  has a great variety of candy that;s individually wrapped (which makes it more convenient to send), favors and trinkets.

* E-Bay. Try the words "Japan" or "China" and you'll find an unbelievable number of auctions starting at $0.01.

* Yardsellr. I've talked about this site before, but in case you missed it, it's a mini version of Amazon which gives you the advantage of accumulating points that can be used as money. You get such points when you log in and like people's articles. I collected so many points that I only spent $1 when I purchased washi tape, stamps, clothes and scrapbooking materials.

* Etsy. It's not as cheap as E-Bay, but there are a lot of inexpensive and neat things out there.

* Your local library. Most libraries (at least here in Southern California) have a book sale area. I happen to volunteer in this area so I get to see the most amazing bargains. We sell books as well as magazines, maps, toys, DVDs, Cds, tapes, etc. Prices range between 10c-$2.

There are so many cool things you can send!
What do you like to send or receive?

May you all have a very happy day! ;D

A little reminder: if you want to enter my Shabby Apple giveaway, you have time till June 25th!


Sian Lile said...

wow - what a stash! it must be so lovely getting packages from you!

Chrissy said...

Aw, Miki, you always have the best and sweetest ideas! So special!
Happy Wednesday, dear friend!
Hugs xxx

Mary Has Sound said...

Great post!!! You send the best goodies. :-)

Laura L. said...

This is a great post. Great, creative ideas!

As an aside, guess who has two thumbs and got an envelope of some of these wonderful goodies yesterday? THIS GIRL! :)

Andria said...

What a great post! I heard about this post from Mary, and am so glad that I visited. What a treat for your pen pals!

Andria said...

What a great post! I heard about this post from Mary, and am so glad that I visited. What a treat for your pen pals!

Katrin said...

Wow, thank you for all the inspiration, Miki! Your stuff is great!
And I look at your bottle post in my shelf every day! :)
Have a great day!

Marisa Noelle said...

You are the never-ending storybook of ideas Miki! I always come here and find something new and inspiring that I just haven't thought of before. I love this - so simple, but adorable and beyond:) Your house must be a playland of cool little nicknacks and crafty treasures. Thanks for the yardsllr tip - on to check it out! xo Marisa

Jessi said...

Awesome ideas! I found you from the Mingle With Us blog hop and I'm your newest follower!

Jess@Coxs Corner said...

What a fun post! You are so creative. I'm really glad I found your blog via the blog hop! It would be so fun to get a package like that! You've inspired me to to more when I write letters!

Kirsten said...

Whoa those paint chips!! What is it about those that's so wonderful?

Viviane Camacho said...

I love all of this. Thank you for visiting my web blog. You are very wellcome. You are from Argentina , right? I guess U still can understand spanish. If you do, you will see that spanish is very similar to portuguese. Thank you about the dress I bought in america. I dont remenber wich store but I am gona check for you.

Have a nice weekend.

Debbie No Está ® said...

Ohh que amor todo <3 ahora quiero pen pals! nunca tuve. Les mandaría postales de Gilda o diversas bizarreadas jaja.
Sigo amando tu blog, besote!

eli said...

Hola Miki!!! pasé a saludarte y contarte que hoy me dejaron el aviso para pasar por aduana a retirar tu envío. Espero poder ir mañana, pq tienen un horario bastante acotado :(
Qué buen post!
Te dejo un besote, y en cuanto lo tenga te aviso!!

KCoake said...

What cute ideas. I also looked at the post about mailing different/reused boxes. Cute ideas. It would be fun to get one of those!
I am a new follower on twitter. Found you from the blog hop.

Amy @ AGirlCalledBeloved said...

great ideas! I just sent an instant photo to someone and it was so fun!

hello bunnies said...

Great recommendations!! I enjoy sending teas in my packages and letters, but you just opened my world to a lot of new ideas!

JoAnna said...

So many awesome goodies!

I love the paint chips. I took so many of the mickey mouse and leave shaped ones once that I thought they were going to say something. Sometimes they have postcard size paint chips too.

Anne's Mail said...

Just discovered this post through Laura Ly's blog. What terrific ideas, thank you!! The paint chips idea might be my favorite :)

daisymay aka Chantele said...

Well you know I always love receiving your mail!! Yu have a great stash coming on there!

Daisy Dayz
My Hub Pages

lisa said...

These are so fun! I really need to get more creative with my mail :) Hope you had a great weekend Miki!

seelvana said...

jjaja me mataron tus sets de giladas, no veo la hora de que leguen las mías! :D

Dorothy Explor'r said...

aw, you make me want a pen pal too! :) if you're ever interested in connecting, please shoot me an email!


Katie said...

Ohhh my gosh! How did I almost miss this post?? Wow, I was just going to ask you where you got all the cute items you sent me in your letter. I loved everything! Your letter arrived yesterday and it put a big smile on my face! Thank you so much and I will be writing you back very soon. Lots of love, |<atie

Kristian said...

Ha- I love to make lists of care package ideas on my own blog, so I am super-excited to see this list on yours (along with all your other mail posts that I've been looking at). Some great ideas!

Kim said...

It has been years since I had pen pals, now I have time. Your list has been so helpful! Thanks so much!!

nés, said...

I would love so much to be your penpal

Usagi said...

Thanks for this post! You have given me even more ideas to send to my penpals!!

Anonymous said...

Wow this is a great post!
Thanks for all the ideas!

Jason Villegaz said...

Thanks for sharing this post. Snail mails have already made an important mark in long distance leisure communication long before a 1300 number and modern mobile phones are born.

Светлана Коптилова said...

Funny message, but very useful. Thank you for such a wonderful selection of goodies)))

pals24 said...

thanks for give me great information

Robin LaVonne Moore said...

I love pen paling too...been paling since I was in the 4th grade. It's really fun to see a letter in the mail box. Even though it seems like The Art of Letter Writing is a dying art... I'm doing my part and keeping it Fun ideas you shared and have used some of them to my pals... Mail tag is another fun thing to play with your pen pals.

Luisa Castillo said...

Great Ideas!!
I had not thought of that.

Nguyễn Quỳnh said...

thank you sharing!!!

Kiera Fox said...

Amazing Blog .I loved it. Thank you so much for Sharing with us. send cakes to Pakistan.

Anas Anwar said...

Thanks for sharing this amazing blog with us

send mothers day flowers japan

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Unknown said...

Thank you for sharing such great ideas!