Sometimes what a girl needs is something pretty. I like pretty stationery.
I’m not a girly girl. I don’t shop, I don’t wander “the mall,” and I’m no fashion plate. I wouldn’t know a fashion trend if it walloped me upside the head. I rarely even flip through an issue of Vogue or In Style because, when I do, all I can think of is how sad looking all those models are, how skinny, how hungry, how little fun that looks. I wonder, Where would you wear an outfit like that? This week my big purchases were a couple of travel guides, an itty-bitty book light with a flexible arm!, and my first personalized stationery in 6 six years. This is the kind of shopping I get excited about.
Ahhh, new paper still fresh in the box. I can’t wait to handwrite someone a real note. One of the things I remember most about the women in my family is their handwriting. Aunt Mary has the most beautiful, school-taught penmanship. Grandma Ann used the backs of envelopes (junk mail) to make constant notes. I remember her grocery lists: oleo, ctn cigs, 2%, sm fryer, butter rums, Tony’s can. bacon pizza, can spinach. Mom jotted down daily, summer to-do lists when she left for work at 6:30 a.m. — make beds, dishes, sweep kitch, call G’ma, turn off TV — always signing it with Love ya (never I love you), Mom. No wonder I’m a list-maker.
So back to the new stationery. Who’s going to get the first note? I hope the cards I chose are big enough, that the paper-stock is nice and smooth. I wasn’t so sure, at first, about the pink pen design, but it’s growing on me. It is. And I like seeing my name in pre-print across the top, my name, like that stanza from the the Margaret Atwood poem “Spelling”:
How do you learn to spell?
Blood, sky & the sun,
your own name first,
your first naming, your first name,
your first word.