Sentimental materialism

My name is Tamsin North and I like pretty things. Pretty things and special things and lovely things. I love the little thrill of getting a package in the mail containing a lovely thing, and I love how a very special thing can continue to delight me for weeks, months and years. This makes me a bit of a materialist, doesn't it? 

A lot of my love for things stem from the sentiments I attach to them. I've hauled around the same toy dog to every place I have lived since about 1982 (with the regrettable exception of four months in the dorms when I was trying to be a grownup), I keep a small plate from my grandmother's kitchen on my nightstand and struggle to get rid of the scruffy pair of shoes I got engaged in. 

Every once in a while I'll form a sentimental attachment to a new thing, like the little stamp pictured above. We had it custom-made with our new address on it by a company called Chatty Press, and it is just the loveliest little thing. I love seeing our names together, and it just feels like a little declaration of love and fidelity to our new home. It's like saying "House, let's make this official. We love you, we're staying here and we've had a stamp made to prove it!" 

Of course the silly thing is that I can't show you the stamp itself, because one doesn't simply go about posting one's name and home address on the internet. But I'm kind of delighted with it, so I had a bit of a think, and this is what I came up with: 

If you would like me to write you an old-fashioned, in the mail letter, leave me a comment, and I will. That way you get something (hopefully!) more fun than junk mail, and I get to use my stamp. Win-win!

Naturally there are a few details to work out, like I need you to give me your address, but I promise I won't do anything more nefarious with it than writing it on an envelope. And if absolutely hoards of you (say, more than 10?) want a letter, I will probably pick out a handful of you to write to. And then there is the awkward possibility of no one wanting a letter, but I will bravely face that on my own and console myself by practice-stamping on a sheet of scrap paper.

  1. Comment if you would like a letter (but don't leave your address in the comments!)
  2. I will contact you for your address via email. 
  3. I will then write and mail you a letter. 
  4. You will receive said letter, admire return address stamp on envelope, and then (in my imagination) read the letter on the way back from the mail box. Or perhaps curl up in a favorite chair during a quiet moment to read it. There might be cocoa involved, I'm not sure how you roll in this particular instance. 
I'll write soon, penpal!

As much as I'd like to think I was that cool, this is not a sponsored post. I highly recommend Chatty Press, but they don't know that and aren't compensating me for telling you that. 

Also, please note that I made it through this entire post without a single "stamp of approval" joke. 


  1. I would love a letter. I'll send you the adress in the pm box. Love aunti Sigrid

  2. I would love a letter! I'll write one back, too.

  3. I also still have the shoes I got engaged in!! And a lock from each of my babies' first hair cuts. And a whole bunch of other sentimental things :)! I would love a letter. Then I can check out this stamp and decide if I need one before Christmas Card addressing rolls around. (So no rush, but I'll need to see that soon!) And I would prefer my letter to include one of the following:

    1. An invitation to dinner.
    2. An invitation for a play date.
    3. A list of why you love me (just me, not my cute kids)
    4. All of the above.

    That is all.


  4. Hi! I hope this isn't too strange as I am a complete stranger, but I have been reading you and Stepper for a while now- years? Oh my. Now that I think about it, how awful of me to be lurking and rarely commenting. For shame. You are the mother of two and that is a taxing job indeed! Having three myself, I am quite aware of the lack of personal time! So if you have any apprehension about mailing a lurker, or plain old don't have the time, do not worry about it.
    I do, however, have a story about address stamps. When we purchased our first house, 8 mos. after the twins were born, I was super proud of our accomplishment. That year for Christmas, my parents gave us a personalized address stamp. (I guess they are ALL personalized... oops) The only problem was, it had a slight misspelling of our address. It was insignificant enough that I was sure our (returned?) letters would reach the right place, but it was disconcerting nonetheless. I vowed to replace it with a cuter (the gift one was a generic font & not my style) stamp. We spent 4 years in that house, and never did replace the stamp! I cannot even remember what the mistype was. (I know, marvel at my amazing memory) Now that we have gone from owning to renting, I miss the stamp! The theoretical stamp I could get if we OWNED this house and didn't just rent it. But then the a/c will go out and all I have to do is call the guy and someone else takes care of it. So... pros and cons.
    This is turning out to be rather rambling. Apologies! My email is and I'll send you my address if you'd like. What a lovely idea!

  5. I think it is cute that you collect things that feel special for you :) I know I do it too.

  6. Ooh, I'd love a letter! I miss seeing your writing on a regular basis. :D


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