Sent to: Japan, Lithuania, Slovenia & U.S.A.

Two of my Postcrossing cards have reached their destinations:

The card I sent to Scotland reached its destination after traveling 6 days and 4,936 miles.

My Germany-bound card landed after 6 days and 5,709 miles

So now, I get to mail out two more cards! Going out to Tokyo, Japan & Vilnius, Lithuania:

postcard020 MORRO BAY

Let’s make that another two rounds of “The Usual!”

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In swap-bot news, the latest trade is for aerial views of a city or town.  Going out to far-away Kamnik, Slovenia & nearby Daly City, California, it’s one copy each of this card:


I love that this town has no-chain-nothin’, not even a Starbucks. I also love that modern conveniences are just a 5-minute drive away!

Received from Wakefield, England

In 1935, Associated British Cinemas (ABC) opened the Regal Cinema in Kirkgate. The Art Deco building was renamed the ABC in 1962.  In 1997, a year after a multiplex opened in town, the ABC closed.  It has remained derelict, but there have been successive proposals to redevelop or demolish it. — Wikipedia

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Received as part of a “your favorite animal” trade on swap-bot, this postcard:


English lop. The sender says these, and cats, are her favorite animals.

The sender drew me a picture of an UglyDoll, as she’d noticed I have some.


Received from: Germany, Lithuania, & U.S.A.

Three in, through both swap-bot & Postcrossing.  Clockwise from top:


From Maryland, U.S.A., comes the recipe for crab cakes.  Whatever YOUR region’s local food, I suppose you could swap it out for the crab in this recipe.

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The beautiful seascape is from along the Baltic Sea, on this card from Lithuania.

Lithuanian stamp:


Feet at the shore? Cool!

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The other card comes from Frankfurt, Germany, where my correspondent informs me it pictures a typical dish.  Apples & onions?  Well, I can say this: if you sub them out for the crab on that recipe, you got somethin’!

German stamps:


Received from: Israel & U.S.A.

Some real winners in this batch received through swap-bot trades!



Let’s start with Israel, then work our way around the U.S.  The top right card is the one that made that trip: the card loaded with pink toy awesomeness.  I actually have one of those, a King Ken, although mine is cuter–and travels. This was part of a “postcard and a quote” trade, and bore this message from the great Douglas Adams:

“He felt that his whole life was some kind of dream and he sometimes wondered whose it was and whether they were enjoying it.”

Cool stamps, too:


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Our tour around the U.S. starts at the bottom right, and the Finding Nemo card, which came to me from California.

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The beautiful lions were also sent to me from California, where the sender has recently visited the San Diego Wild Animal Park (now officially known as the San Diego Zoo Safari Park).

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WOW, look at the card on that came my way from Spokane, Washington, decorated with Arale from Doctor Slump!  I’m a big fan of this hilarious manga, which is by Akira Toriyama of Dragon Ball fame. Spokane WA #5

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Also from the state of Washington is the bird-laden top-center card.  It bears this quote by Deanne Wadsworth:

“Four things you can’t recover:
The stone after the throw,
The word after it’s said,
The occasion after it’s missed,
The time after it’s gone.”

Received from: Taiwan & U.S.A.

3 in, clockwise from top: Taiwan, New Jersey, California


Let’s start with the U.S. entries, both received through swap-bot:

The owls, which flew all the way from New Jersey, are from a “notecard postcard” trade.  The sender decorated the edges of the repurposed card with some soft, sparkly tape, and also told me she is looking forward to spring.  Me, too!

At bottom left is an image of Sedona, Arizona, sent to me by someone right here in California.  She took a trip there a few months back, and recommends it.

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And now on to Taiwan, Postcrossing, and one of my favorite postcards received to date! The top card, featuring Doraemon (Robot Cat from the Future) traveled over 9 days and 6,628 miles to get to my mailbox.

I know from reading profiles & stories on Postcrossing & swap-bot that many people would be irate at receiving  a hand-made card decorated with stickers, but more effort & consideration went into this than most cards, I think.  Look at the drawing from the opposite side:


Nice art, on both sides!  The person said she likes drawing, and I see that she seems to have looked at the handful of cards I’ve favorited on Postcrossing (yes, they contain images of Doraemon & the Buddha) & tailored something especially for me.  Made my day!


Cool stamp, too.

Received from: Australia & U.S.A.

Four pieces of mail:


From Sydney, Australia comes the postcard of Canberra (the writer visited that city recently).  She’s also visited California several times, & says she enjoys our warm weather.  I love the stamp on her card!


Isn’t it interesting how real Tasmanian Devils look absolutely nothing like Tasmanian Devil from Looney Tunes? And you should look at a photo of a Roadrunner sometime.

From the United States, all through swap-bot:

Illinois: the penguin up above is the result of a “notecard postcard” trade, in which we were to tear the front off of a notecard, and–you can guess the rest, I hope.  I’ve done a couple of these so far, as you can see if you scroll back through my posts.

North Carolina: for a “recycled postcard” swap, I received the flower vase card with a new backing.  The sender originally received it from the Netherlands through Postcrossing.

I loved that swap, the idea of taking a card I’d received, gluing on a new back, and sending it on to a different user.  Like I said starting out: I collect neither stamps nor postcards; I’m in this for the experience of snail mail itself, and making tiny connections with people from around the world. To take a card I’ve received (one of my less-favorite, of course), and get additional use out of it, & maybe even have it find a home where it is treasured, is so cool, I think!

Tennessee: no card!  Swap-bot isn’t all about postcards, though that is the part in which I am most active.  The bit of letter & bookmarks you see in the photo is from a “easy booklover’s swap,” in which we were to talk about what we were reading & also tuck in a couple of free book marks.

I especially like the bookmark my swap partner procured from a local independent bookseller in Memphis, The Booksellers at Laurelwood.  The back of the bookmark heralds the benefits of buying from independents.  They are in the same general spirit as these I am pasting from

Why shop Indie?  When you shop at an independently owned business, your entire community benefits:

The Economy

Spend $100 at a local and $68 of that stays in your community. Spend the same $100 at a national chain, and your community only sees $43.
Local businesses create higher-paying jobs for our neighbors.
More of your taxes are reinvested in your community–where they belong.
The Environment
Buying local means less packaging, less transportation, and a smaller carbon footprint.
Shopping in a local business district means less infrastructure, less maintenance, and more money to beautify your community.
The Community
Local retailers are your friends and neighbors—support them and they’ll support you.
Local businesses donate to charities at more than twice the rate of national chains.
More independents means more choice, more diversity, and a truly unique community.

Sent to: Netherlands & Scotland

A pair of Postcrossing cards going out–and that always means international!

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Mijdrecht, Netherlands: The main street is the area around the Dorpstraat, where most shops and the cityhouse are located. There is a police office, a fire department, 6 supermarkets, sport facilities, and a coffee shop. Though, there is no police or doctor in the weekends.   — Wikipedia

The Postcrossing user in Mijdrecht has a long list of likes in her profile, including children’s book illustrations & Asian themes.  This selection from my big box o’ old book cover postcards seems to fit the bill on both counts:


I looked this up, thinking it might be a folktale, but no. Miss Godden wrote a book about Japanese dolls called “Happiness and Miss Flower,” and this is a sequel to that book.

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Wick, Scotland: In 2006 the BBC reported that the Guinness Book of Records had confirmed the world’s shortest street, Ebenezer Place, measuring 2.06 meters (6.76 feet), and containing just one door, was located in Wick. It had not previously qualified for the record because it did not have a full postal address.  — Wikipedia

Sad to say, as much as I’ve expanded my supply of postcards to send, I was not able to make a match with my Scottish target’s taste (which include cacti & frogs), so I sent her my default:

2014-09-11 07.32.17c

The usual.

Sent to: Canada, England, and U.S.A.

NINE cards out in one day!  Various swap-bot trades: tourist postcard, non-touristy postcard, favorite animals, and something that starts with an F (that’s the football to the head in the top row).


Took a little day trip down the coast last week & finally picked up some decent touristy postcards.

Here’s the list of destinations for these cards:

Prince George, British Columbia, Canada

Ryton, Tyne and Wear, England

–and all in the U.S.:

Woodville, Alabama

Clovis, California

Brandon, Florida

Clermont, Florida

Fall River, Massachusetts

Round Hill, Virginia

Oshkosh, Wisconsin

Received from: Finland & Poland

Cards from both Postcrossing & swap-bot today!  Postcrossing first, with this from Poland:


Really colorful, interesting stamps on that card:


Through swap-bot–and an “up-cycled” card challenge–I received this card from Finland:


Hey–I love red pandas! Beautiful stamp art, too, and it’s really nice to see the enlargement in that sticker.

Sadly, the person who sent these didn’t bother to write anything more than the necessary distinguishing tags for swap-bot credit–a real shame–but the stamps all over the card were cool.


Received from: Canada, Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, Russia, and… Tennessee, U.S.A.!

From Canada:


For a swap-bot “art-phabet” challenge. As my correspondent tells me, J is for “Jezus.”

Interesting stamp on that one…


There must be some story…

From Berlin, Germany:


Annually in Berlin, the sender tells me, there is a food & agricultural festival–and this card was procured there.

The stamp:


From Netherlands:


The person who sent this also tucked in a photo she took:


–because I’m a toy photographer, too!

Cool stamp, too. I am assuming this is NOT Tom Brokaw:


From New Zealand:


My correspondent tells me that this postcard comes from Scotland, where she has a cousin who sends her postcard calendars every year. Cool, huh? You can see the perforation at the top, where the card has been removed from the calendar.

–and its stamp:


The stamp, though, is not Scottish. The New Zealand postal authorities would certainly have none of that.

A card from Russia:


I like water. Do you like water? I like water.

I love these stamps, probably more than any others I’ve seen during this Postcrossing/swap-bot adventure.  Of course, the fact that I favor them so much probably has to do with the fact that my memory is so horrible…


So cool. I think perhaps its the entire combination I love, more than any one specific stamp here.

And finally, Tennessee: