Every week of summer, the kids write a letter. It's part of their summer homework and while they do like to do it, it's often something I hear complaints about them having to do. At the beginning of the summer, I let them write to anyone they want, so they often write to friends, Grandmas, and sometimes Dad at his work address. But at the end of summer, I make the task a bit more difficult and ask them to write to a community member, an author, or someone they do not know.
Last summer, EJ received the letter she is holding in the photo above. She had sent a letter to her favorite DJ at our favorite radio station. He does a series of interviews called Community Stories and EJ had lots of questions for him. She was so excited to get a thoughtful reply (and some goodies), but ever since, the other two kids were a little jealous...understandably so!
This summer, the other two kids had much better luck though. Olivia received an awesome card in reply to her letter to our local fire station. The firefighter who wrote her back answered all her questions and encouraged her to become a firefighter (one of her aspirations) when she grows up. Best of all (in her eyes), he included a set of Hello Kitty firefighter stickers!
Jack and I both read (and LOVED) the book, Ready Player One, this year. Jack wrote a letter to Ernest Cline and when I went to send it for him, I realized that Mr. Cline is much too high-tech to have a snail mail address. So we ended up snapping a pic of the letter and sending it electronically. Less than a week later, we were shocked to see a written response to Jack in our mailbox. We were thrilled at the thoughtful response and also loved the Back to the Future themed trading card he included.