How is your International Correspondence Writing Month going? InCoWriMo is the month of February where one is supposed to write a letter a day. Halfway through the month, I am not quite there, but I’m still putting in a good effort. It has been a small but satisfying pleasure to spend some time with just my paper and pens, and a few extra supplies that I don’t always get around to using.


Just in time for International Correspondence Writing Month, are these lovely decorative lick-and-stick stamps from Portland Stamp Company. How fun! These are stamps that you can add to your actual postage to give your envelopes a bit more excitement. I’ve primarily been using them on my envelopes for InCoWriMo, but also been including them as gifts in my letters, and I might also put a few in my journal or planner, to mark a special day or event.







I’m halfway through one of the cat sheets. My strategy is to use one of these stamps on each letter that I send out, the meticulous and orderly nature of tearing off one more stamp as a reward for each letter written (for myself? For the recipient?). And then? Well, more supplies are always coming. Maybe the dog sheet.


I find so much satisfaction in using up my supplies, but then I can’t seem to help adding more to the piles, into the drawers, stacks on the desk. I mentioned the other day that it is my Sisyphean purpose in life, to accumulate more stationery in order to use it all up, and actually it is truer than I realized. The pleasure I take in the using up of, but also in the organization and sorting and strategizing of my various notebooks and bottles of ink and scraps of paper and ephemera and stickers for my journal and stationery for correspondence. What would I do with myself if I was not partially submerged in paper, and wading through it?


I am always striving towards minimalism, that unachievable quest for an empty desk, all the while the machinations of life are sabotaging me with each new shipment into the shop. Ah, but I must try each and every one of these for research and recommendations, let’s just add them to the back of the ever-growing queue. And the utter vindication I feel when I need something for some specific purpose, and I’m able to sift through and arise with exactly the right thing! There is no feeling like it in the world: a stationery shop clerk whose calling in life and the tens of thousands of hours over the last decade spent puttering around in a dusty shop has been validated by the making of a gift tag for a birthday party for an 8 year old.


But I will take it! And gladly. The motivation, the satisfaction, the delight, even with the pinge of sentimentality at using the final one, the final fill, the final sheet. Life is too short to not use what you have, while you can.


Related Posts

February 20, 2023 — Liz Chan

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.