Monday, May 18, 2009

A new project! Need your help!

You know how you have ideas floating around in your head, maybe two or three things and then all of a sudden there is a connection and you just say, "Well, duh! Why didn't I think of that before?"

This is kind of like that.

But it is only half baked. I was going to wait until I was good and ready to go, but I'm guessing you all will have some ideas for me and maybe point out a few things I haven't yet thought of.

Here we go. I'll share my crazy thought process.

It kind of started with Kara's March Compassion Challenge and the idea that I carried through the last few weeks or so as I was having a hard time anticipating Gabriel's anniversary and Mother's Day. The idea that when I'm feeling bad I need to reach out and do something nice for someone else.

Then, I had thought to send Mother's Day cards out to anyone who wanted one. If you were one of the recipients you will see I'm not so much a crafty hand-makery kind of card person.

Someone was talking to me this week about a site that is kind of like netflixs but for greeting cards. You can use your computer to find what card you want, click and send it to someone in their mailbox. Snail mail, not an electronic greeting card. For as little as $25 you can get 10 cards that includes postage, so it is less expensive than buying the cards in the store. I found out you can have it send you reminders when special dates are coming up, which was the clincher for me because I am always thinking I'd like to send moms cards on their baby's anniversary dates but I am terrible about remembering them. (click here to find out more info, but I'll get back to this in a bit)

Then I signed up to be a Spirit Jumper- the button is on the side of my blog. I get addresses for people fighting cancer who need some well wishes and I can send a card or small gift. It cheers them up and feels good for me to do something for someone else.

But just a few minutes ago I had a 'zing!' kind of moment where I thought we need a list like this but for bereaved mom's missing their babies. Where we can send a card or small gift to someone who is having a hard time and let them know they are not alone in this.

What do you think? What should we call it? My first thought was 'send a smile' or 'sending smiles' or something like this but I'd like to hear your ideas.

Now, back to the 'sending a card with your email' thing. The more I look at this system the better I like it. You can upload your own photos to the front of the cards. You can use it to track and send cards easily and more inexpensively than store bought cards. And the BEST THING YET is we can make our own cards SPECIFICALLY for moms missing their babies.

Did anyone else have a hard time with the fact that I didn't really want a "Happy Mother's Day" card but not quite yet either a "Thinking of you on Mother's Day". Something kind of inbetween.

And you go to Hallmark and there are "Sympathy" cards and "Thinking of You" cards and "Sorry for your loss" cards and "Sorry for the loss of your pet" cards but NOTHING for "Sorry you are missing your sweet baby". Nothing that says "Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful child- I'm so sorry s/he is not with you".

Anyway, that is what my brain has been churning with and I'm working on putting it all together. Any comments? Suggestions? Ideas for names?

If anyone wants to try out the card sending system I can set up a gift account so you can send a few cards for free to give it a try. Just shoot me an email at OR click the link and then click on the banner that says 'send a free card' and it will walk you through it.



Ter said...

I like the idea. There are a few swaps at share and such but it can get to be a pretty long list and tons of dates, and that can become pricy for alot of people. I tried to keep up with sending gifts / cards to the people I talked to the most for their angel's special days but after a while it got to be too much, though I still try. (but admittedly, the last year or so I have not kept up with anyone's dates, so right now people are lucky to get an email from me which makes me feel like a lousy friend for not doing more)

another idea along the same lines is if you want to make it more like a swap thing, but a permanent swap. each person is set up with one, two or even 3 other swap friends, and those are the only ones they purchase for, and receive from.

Kathryn @ Expectant Hearts said...

Emily, I LOVE this idea!! The setting up a thing like the one for the cancer patients.. Here's an idea for you, what about tying it into the Aloha Remembered site in some way? Always Alohas or some such title just so there is a "connection".. I would sign up to send cards/little gifts to another bereaved mom..

Didn't check the cardgiving site yet as I should be workign...

(HOw DO you come up with these ideas? I keep searching for somethign to DO to honor Seth.. some kind of ministry like "Aloha Remembered" is .. so far, I"m not coming up with anything I think I can handle..)

Kara aka Mother Henna said...

Love love love these ideas, Em!! Don't know how helpful a model it would be, but something like they are all set up with a forum where art swaps are happening in the hundreds probably! Maybe the thousands. I don't do a lot there, but I read, lurk, and do at least two or three swaps a year. It's an interesting way to connect with other artist, making small pieces of art, easily mail-able. Just a thought...

Holly said...

That card site sounds really neat!

AnnaMarie said...

You have some great ideas Emily! I have been exchanging sympathy/support cards with several of my blogging friends for a while now and it is so helpful to receive a card in the mail. I buy cards but one very talented friend made the most beautiful cards! For me, a card in sent through the mail is much different from an e-card; I keep all of the cards on display for constant reminders that there are people who understand and care about my son.

It is hard to find appropriate cards though so being able to design your own would be useful.

I love the card you sent! It is very pretty! Thank you

corilee said...

What a great idea! It brings more awareness and sympathy.

Emily said...

Thanks, all!

Ter- you were the first person I thought of when this came to me ;0) You can be the card queen of Canada, ha!

Kathryn- I love the Always Aloha name ;0) You will find a project to honor Seth- you'll know it when you see it.

Kara- I'll check out that site! Thanks!

I had not thought to do this as a swap.. I ran a Mother's Day swap a few years ago and some people never sent their items. I want people who need a lift to get some cards without any strings attached. When they are feeling better or a little stronger they can jump in and send a card to another mom who needs some care.

Holly- thanks! ;0) I love it more the more I play around with it

AnnaMarie- I agree! I love getting cards in the real mail- it is a nice break from the bills, ha! And means a lot to know someone is thinking of me. People I don't even know in real life care about me. Crazy.

Corilee- thanks- I agree the world can use more awareness and sympathy.

Emalee said...

I like the idea!

Ivy said...

Hi Emily--I like your blog : )
keep up the good work! You left me a comment on JustJonesen regarding giving hope to people who have had miscarriages--thank you so much, that's what I wanted to do, because I didn't see many stories of success looking around and I wanted people to know that it can happen. Thank you...