Having blogged for more than five years–which, face it, is like twenty-five years in internet time–often I come up with a great idea for a post and then realize that I may have written about it already. If it’s something worth repeating, I put a new twist on it and present it to you again*, sort of like re-gifting, but better. And with that…
I received a card today from a friend we haven’t seen in a while, and when I opened it I was pleasantly surprised to see that every inch of the inside was covered in handwriting. It was a note describing how much she and her family enjoyed using my book on a recent family trip to Chicago. Here’s an excerpt:
“Just wanted to tell you that we got a copy of your Chicago sightseeing book and we used some of the suggestions recently. Kevin was home on break so we spent a couple days in Chicago. We started out by going to the Holocaust Museum in Skokie and then to Poochies for lunch before heading downtown. We checked out the museum at the Federal Reserve Bank…”
It went on, saying they had a great time finding things they all enjoyed.
Besides being a fantastic plug for my book (ahem, currently on sale on Amazon!) and a great example of what I had in mind regarding how families should use the book (choosing a combination of activities in one area), this was just a really lovely gesture, and it made my afternoon to know that she took a few minutes out of her busy day to write to me.
Without a doubt, one of the things I hold most dear (besides my family) is time. Ask my friends; their heads will nearly fall off of their necks as they nod vigorously in agreement.
I’m a very scheduled person. When I plan out a day, I organize in minutes, not hours. I have been known to say things like, “I will call you back in about seven minutes.” Not five, not ten. Seven.
I don’t like wasting time, whether it’s mine or someone else’s. I run errands in the order that makes the most sense time-wise, and if I can multi-task to save time, well, that’s just the best.
When it comes to gifts, I love giving and receiving homemade things not only because of the creativity involved, but also because of the time spent out of like/love/whatever for (or from) that other person. It’s like a bonus gift.
So when someone takes a few minutes to write a heartfelt note to me, it makes my heart sing.
And then it makes me want to write a note of my own to someone else, so that’s what I did.
If you’ve got a couple of spare minutes–or better yet, if you can create a couple of spare minutes–why don’t you try it? You’re reading this on some kind of device, I bet, that you can also use to email or text someone else. You can make someone’s day in minutes. Go do that, and let me know in comments how it went.
*I have just given you the deep, dark secret of the most successful magazine writers, entertainment reporters, and reality show creators. You’re welcome.