extreme enveloping: woodland wrapping paper

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Hey, remember back in the days of yore when I wanted to make “creating envelopes out of unusual materials” a thing?

In November, I showed you, gleefully, the envelopes I’d crafted from a recycled roll of wallpaper, hoping to kick off a glorious new age of extensively eccentric envelope fabrication–and then I proceeded to spend the next eight months making envelopes out of nothing but magazine pages.

There’s no time like the present, though, and I’m happy to say that in my continued quest to catch up on all the pen pal letters I owe (if you’re still waiting on me, you should have yours soon!), I decided to turn my manufacturer’s eye to a new substance: wrapping paper. (Specifically, ridiculously cutesy forest creature wrapping paper probably designed for literal babies but I don’t particularly care.)

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what’s in my mailbox? go and catch a falling star

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Never has a mail haul so inspired me to quote John Donne! I know I tend to describe basically everything stamped that’s sent my way as “magical,” but these letters are enchanting in the most unique of ways. Mythical creatures of all kinds have traveled to me from Argentina, Iceland, Norway, and the U.K. over the past few weeks!

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outgoing mail: species speaking

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I’m working at catching up on my post-wisdom-teeth-drama letter backlog, I promise! The first step is creating envelopes, which is always my favorite way to occupy idle hours: especially with a fresh stack of old calendars and magazines featuring Hawai’i’s native species from my parents back home.

I don’t know what silly mood inspired me to bestow speech bubbles upon these creatures that share my island birthplace–they include two nēnē (Hawaiian geese) and a wide-eyed humpback whale–but I’m rather fond of the goofy finished product!

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what’s in my mailbox? offline is the new luxury

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Two blog posts in one week after my extended hiatus? It’s no April Fool’s joke, don’t worry! (My Polish-American heritage means my childhood springtime holiday of choice is “Dyngus Day,” anyway.)

This flow magazine postcard from my German pen pal quite aptly sums up my lifestyle lately. I’m trying to strike the balance between spending offline and continuing to pursue my digital hobbies (which includes blogging!). Thanks for your patience with me as I enjoy this luxurious existence!

Speaking of the joys of offline communication: let’s take a look at some springtime letters!

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Outgoing Mail: Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, & Thyme

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I’ve never mastered the art of sending pressed flowers or herbs through the mail – dried blossoms always seem to crumble the second I tuck them in an envelope, and as I’m not quite living my dream life of “being a child living in the country in an idealized Victorian-inspired fairy world,” I don’t own a home flower press. Yet.

If I can’t send actual blooms, though, handmade pressed flower and leaf envelopes are the next best thing! An old how-to brochure about immortalizing these ephemeral pieces of plant life has now been reincarnated into outgoing mail.

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outgoing mail: all that is gold does not glitter

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Goodbye, “Standing Stones and Sacred Places of the British Isles: 2016 Calendar” and hello, brand-new envelopes for 2017! I have to admit that I spent a good portion of last year eagerly waiting for January 1 to roll around and give me an excuse to transform these pretty pages into something worth sending.

Now that time has come. From the ashes a fire shall be woken/new mail from old paper shall spring!

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Knitting: An Accidental Whale

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It’s a new year and time for a new blogging category on Mailbox Mermaid: ocean-inspired knitting projects!

During my holiday at home, I finally picked up a pair of knitting needles for the first time since I was diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome in the fall of 2015. Although I managed to recover, thanks to occupational therapy and workplace modifications, I still shied away from returning to an activity that is basically the textbook definition of “repetitive motion.”

But then I gave it a try and made this whale!

This little guy was actually supposed to be a dolphin, according to the pattern, but I think he looks much more like a humpback. Perhaps, like my favorite cetacean documentary that involves robotic camera-creatures filming pod activity, this whale can gather intel from within the knitted dolphin community.

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