Trying to decide who to send a postcard to?
Many people forget about postcards as an easy way to get in touch, apart from when they spot a rack of souvenir cards at tourist destination. But postcards are a great way to brighten just about anyone’s day, anytime!
They’re quick and easy to write and send—no pressure to have an “occasion” for mailing one, as many of us feel with a greeting card, and no need to have a lot to say given their limited space. Postcards can be as short as a sentence, or even a few words.
From family and friends to a small business you love to someone who changed your life, read on for ten ideas of people to send a postcard to, and find the perfect postcard for them here. There’s a very good chance you’ll make their day, and maybe even their whole week!
1. Your parents.
Few people appreciate hearing from you as much as your mom or dad do. That said, sometimes a phone call can end up lasting a lot longer than just the simple hello or quick check-in you intended it to be.
If this is keeping you from phoning up your mother at a moment’s notice, try writing a postcard instead! It’s a great way to share short updates from your life and brighten your parents’ days without having to go through all of the standard minutiae every time.
2. Your partner.
Pick out the perfect postcard, jot down a few words that let them know how much you love them, and set your surprise note beside the coffeemaker or tuck it into the corner of the mirror in the late evening or early morning for them to find when they wake up.
It’s an easy way to set an upward trajectory for their entire day, and they’ll probably still be thinking about your note, and you, by later that evening.
3. A small business you absolutely love.
Small business owners are often so busy hustling that they may hardly have time to slow down and appreciate the impact of whatever they’re building.
When you find a local establishment in your community that you really appreciate, sending them a postcard is a great way to encourage them to keep doing what they’re doing.
Whether it’s a cozy café where you love to spend your rainy afternoons, a boutique whose latest product has become one of your new favorite things, a local muralist, or the best new Ethiopian restaurant in town, find their business address online and jot a quick note—you just might find it tacked up beside their check-out counter the next time you stop in!
4. Your best friend.
One of the best things about having a best friend is the ease with which you can share whatever you’re feeling with them at any given moment—no emotion is too huge, and no thought or joke too small.
Send them a postcard just because, and tell them whatever’s on your mind! After all, that’s what best friends are for.
5. Someone you haven’t talked to in far too long.
Some people stay at the back of your mind for weeks, months, or even years, always accompanied by an intention to reach out that never seems to be realized.
Whether it’s your friend from growing up who recently moved back to town, or someone you used to spend time with regularly before life got in the way one day, drop them a line to surprise them with an invitation to dinner at your place or a concert coming up.
6. Your kids.
Write them a postcard every Monday (or for the younger ones, maybe even every day!) and drop it in their school lunchbox for a sweet midday hello from home. Whether or not they admit to loving it, they definitely will.
Or if they’re grown and away at college, send something to their campus mailbox on occasion—no matter how busy they are, it’s always great to see a handwritten note while they’re off and living on their own for long stretches at a time.
7. A person who changed the trajectory of your life.
This is especially great to do for someone who changed your life and doesn’t even know it. Perhaps it was your old next-door neighbor, who far overpaid you for weeding their backyard while you were growing up, or your third-grade teacher who instilled your love of science that turned into a career, or the cousin who gave you the best piece of life advice you ever received when you needed it most.
Track down their address (your old school can probably help, for that third-grade teacher) and keep it short and sweet. A postcard is a low-commitment way for you to share something nice without feeling like you need to write an ode to someone you might not have talked to in awhile.
8. Your representatives.
Stand out from the templated emails with an honest handwritten note in your own words letting your local representatives know what’s most important to you as their constituent.
I recently sent a note in support of the movement to protect the Mud Bay Cliffs to my mayor and city council: I chose one postcard featuring the great blue herons that call the bay home, and another with local water plants on the front. If a picture is worth a thousand words, these cards said a whole lot more than just the simple message I wrote on the back.
9. Someone you’d like to hang out with more.
Postcards are a great way to turn casual acquaintances into closer friends—more so than a text, taking the time to mail a note demonstrates that you really do enjoy spending time together and want to do so more often.
Your invitation to hang out again soon is far more likely to come to fruition if you mail it—for one thing, it’ll probably end up on their fridge where they’ll see it, and for another, writing it down (on your end) and receiving it (on theirs) helps it stick in both of your minds.
Next time Friday afternoon rolls around, chances are one of you will remember to actually reach out and make it happen!
10. Someone halfway around the world.
For those who haven’t heard of Postcrossing, it’s the popular pursuit of trading postcards with complete strangers all around the world. Simply sign up at Postcrossing.com, fill out a few details, and request an address—then a mail a postcard to that person, and wait for them to register it when it arrives.
As soon as they do, someone else in the world will receive your name as their recipient, and pretty soon you’ll have a postcard waiting in your mailbox from somewhere you may never even have heard of!
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