love notes :: an interview with jennifer belthoff

500lovenotes

it is a pleasure today to introduce you to the very sweet jennifer belthoff.  while she attended fall squam 2012, as did i, it was not until after squam that we connected.  instagram, email, her love notes project.  it’s amazing how technology can bring people together…i’m so happy it’s crossed my path with jennifer’s.  and with that nod to technology in place, there’s something to be said for a good, old-fashioned note in the mail.  here’s where jennifer comes in.  she’s the creator of a wonderful project, of which i’m happy to say i’ve participated in twice now and plan to do a third round {more on that soon}.  jennifer’s love notes postcard project is simple and sweet.  but i’ll let her tell you a little more about it…

what exactly is the love notes project?  how long have you been running this project?

The Love Notes Post Card Project is an opportunity to send and receive mail, real mail!  When was the last time that you went to your mailbox and were delighted by what was inside?  The Love Notes Post Card Project changes that, by matching you up with a fellow participant that you send postcards to.  Each week a writing prompt is sent out so that you do not have to face the blank page with fear.

I have been hosting this project a couple times each year since June of 2012.  It has been so wonderful to watch it unfold and see the connections that have been made through the project.

how did you conceive of the love notes post card project?

The Love Notes Post Card project came to life out of my love for writing and snail mail.  When I was a kid I had a couple pen pals that I would correspond with.  Now that technology has become so prevalent it seems that sending and receiving mail, real mail has become a lost art.

I wanted to find beauty in my mailbox next to the bills and coupons.  I wanted to see another’s handwriting and read words from their heart.  I wanted to connect people with one another.  And I wanted to make it easy, and something that anyone could do.

Sitting in bed one night I was brainstorming ideas with my love and from that night the idea emerged so organically.  I chose postcards because of their small size and less intimidating writing space.  Postcards can be found anywhere or could even be made.

do participants need to be artsy or crafty to join in the fun?  how many participants do you generally have?

The only requirements to participate in the Love Notes Post Card Project is the willingness to share some words on a postcard for a stranger.  One does not have to be artsy or crafty to join in the fun, they just have to be open to writing from the heart.  One does not even have to be a self declared “writer”.  If you can write a grocery list then you can write words on a postcard.

So far the number of participants has usually been around 100-150 people from all over the world.  To name a few, I have had people from Australia, Greece, England, Canada, Spain, the United States, and even some smaller countries that I have had to look up.

what’s your favorite part of running this project?

My favorite part about hosting this project is watching it all unfold.  I have seen friendships emerge.  Hearts open from the writing prompts.  People connect with like minded souls.  Amazing artwork created on the postcards.  It is magical, purely magical.

do you join in the fun of sending out love notes yourself?

I do join in on the fun because I LOVE it.  I pair myself up with one of the participants and am fully in the project just like everyone else.

and now, jennifer, some fun ones…

what’s your favorite time of year?

My favorite time of year is spring and summer.  I love the sunshine, warm weather, and being outside.  During that time of year you can always find me doing something outside…riding my bike, sitting on my front porch, feeding the ducks, or going for a walk.  I am a nature lover for sure.

what are some thing you do to bring yourself back to center?

Writing is my healing guide.  I find that when I am out of sorts and all over the place that sitting down with a pen and piece of paper and just letting the page hold my heart brings me back to center.  It is so healing for me to show up on the page and let go.  And I am a total lover of journals and pens and therefore prefer to write by hand.

what did you eat for breakfast?

Yogurt with granola tends to be my daily breakfast ritual :)

name a current song that’s getting a lot of play in your ears these days.

Music is one of my favorite things and I listen to all sorts of music daily so I will give you the last song I listened to:  A Million Dollars by Joel Plaskett

500mailbox

so, are you in?  i speak from experience when i tell you this is a really fun project!  it is delightful to find a bit of sweet mail tucked amidst the bills and advertisements.  the next round of love notes will run for three weeks:  june 16th – july 6th.  jennifer will pair you up with someone and send you a mailing address.  then each week, you’ll receive an email from jennifer with a prompt for that week.  you can use the prompt for your note…or write whatever is stirring your soul.

click right here for the Love Notes Post Card sign up form.  signs ups will be open until june 15th.

Image 1 ~The Love Notes Project~ 
  Hand written words of love 
  sent through the mail
 
  join us on Facebook ~ Love Notes Group
  share your photos on instagram ~ #lovenotesjb   
 

thanks for sharing your project with us, jennifer!

sending a little love your way, m

 

 

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