Missing your loved ones can sometimes be a source of a brilliant idea. My daughter's mulish stubbornness is proof of a creative and a simple DIY to revive the art of letter writing. She made me relive the good old tradition of writing a letter. It took time and effort to write letters back in our age. Unlike today where people check each other's WhatsApp status to see what's happening in the life of their friends and family.
An old soul stuck in modern times. That’s how I feel sometimes when I see the world advancing so drastically. But thank God for my marvellous kids. They sure do know how to use their grey matter in the right direction.
Long story short… My husband was travelling for work. And little baby girl started missing her dad so much that she wanted to write a letter and post it to him. But there was a small problem. Where should she post the letter? Because by the time the letter would have reached Goa where papa was staying, papa would have been back home.
We gave a little thought into the matter. And voila! Mommy outsmarted her brainy kids. I came up with the idea of making our own shiny mailbox that would be available at our disposal 24*7. Both, my son and daughter, loved the idea so much that we began gathering waste materials required to make our letterbox.
Oh! By the way, now we also have an official postman who delivers our letters. My son happily took upon the onus and does his duty of emptying the mailbox and delivering the letters efficiently every day. He has also taped a beep button on the box to press in case of an urgent/instant delivery. Kids are really sharp-witted these days!
This is a DIY I’m sure your kids will enjoy with you as much as we enjoyed together. Without further ado, I will take you through a step-by-step picture tutorial on how to make your own sheeny letterbox.
Materials Required to Make a Simple MailBox DIY:
Shoe Box, Cardboard Box or A Small Amazon Delivery Box
A Gift Wrapping Sheet or Shiny Sticker Sheet
Embellishments (we used paper hearts - valentine special)
Empty Roll of Kitchen Aluminium Foil
Gather All Your Supplies
It is always a good idea to keep everything handy that you'll need for your DIY project. Kids can't contain their excitement and it can sometimes be overwhelming working with an over enthusiastic young mind.
Covering the Cardboard Box
Once you have everything you need, start by cutting the gift wrapping sheet in the size of the cardboard box. Apply glue to the box and stick the gift wrapping sheet all around as shown in the picture above.
Covering the Empty Roll
For the stand of the letterbox, we have taken an empty roll of kitchen aluminium foil. Cover the roll with the gift wrapping paper. Leave it aside while we go back to working on the box.
Decorate the Letterbox
We used a golden wrapping sheet to cover the box as it gives a rich and classy look. Also, red seemed a bit outdated so we improvised. To decorate the box my daughter painted heart-shaped cut-outs and pasted four hearts on the box. Not only this, she assigned a heart from the box to each one of us. She gave the biggest heart to me... How flattering? I thought!
The box has flaps on the front side. It makes it easy for the kids to remove the letters from here. Tie a ribbon to keep the flaps shut at all times except for when your little one has to pick-up letters for delivery.
Next, make a slit at the top of the cardboard box to post/slide the letter in the mailbox.
You can also use glitter, stars, stickers, paints or threads to create your own embellishments. Just use your imagination and let your creative juices flow.
Assemble the Letter Box
This is the final step. Now that both our pieces are ready, all we have to do is glue the cardboard box to one end of the empty foil roll.
Your personal mail box is ready for use.
A simple DIY activity that you can make with waste materials available at home. It is neither time consuming nor exhausting. Moreover, kids will look forward to reading letters from you and other family members. They may also start getting into a habit of letter writing and/or journaling.
Writing Letters and Posting was Never So Much Fun Before
Since placing a mailbox in the house, my kids have been on a letter writing spree. Some are even as casual as:
Please let us know if we will get Tab time today? If yes, then what time?
Some letters were really heart touching where both of them have expressed their feelings on why they are angry or how much they want a certain situation to work. More importantly, they have been writing letters of appreciation to me and their dad, thanking us for the little things we do for them.
Personally, I feel it is a great way to encourage kids to share their feelings and express themselves in a positive way. Plus, it further limits the screen time as now their hands are full and writing a letter to your loved ones does take effort.
Why Should You Teach Kids to Write Letters and Make the Efforts to Revive the Art of Letter Writing?
If you were born in the eighties or before you would understand the significance of letter writing. All that the millennials have seen is an instant way of living, instant messaging, instant calls, instant plans, instant coffee, instant Maggi, and instant life. There is nothing constant except rush in today's lifestyle.
Writing is a form of expression. It keeps us grounded and helps make sense of endless thoughts that play continuously in our mind. Writing, in any form, helps to clear our thinking and improves reasoning.
Creating a simple DIY letter box at home can be useful. Listed below are certain ways that having a mail box at home can influence your kids positively:
This activity is a great way to encourage kids to express themselves.
They learn to write better sentences and make sense of their thoughts.
Their vocabulary increases.
They feel appreciated. And they learn to reciprocate with admiration for everything that you do for them.
Letter writing persuades them to dig deeper in their thoughts. This will help them clear their mind too.
They may end up journaling, that in itself is a great writing activity.
Letter writing makes them understand others feelings too. Once they know how you feel, your kids will try to respond rather than react in a given situation.
Letter writing also makes communication between parents and children, siblings easier and simple. It helps you reduce nagging and yelling. Tried and tested.
This Valentine's we, as a family, gifted each other an old tradition of letter writing with a new twist. We opened new avenues of communication at the home front and we are happy with the results.
We have now been exchanging letters for past 15 days. And I am happy to share that it has reduced my anger bouts and nag time with kids. All I have to do is write a letter to them, explain my point of view, wait for their reply and understand their perspective. It has become a fun way of teaching that we all can have different opinions but we can still live in harmony.
Have fun creating your personal little letter box and do share some fun pictures of your creativity!