Mother’s Day is just around the corner. Are you ready? Too many college students these days forget to give their mother a present for Mother’s Day. In the busyness of life, it is easy, much too easy, to forget until it is “too late”. First, it never is too late. Your mother will appreciate a late present more than she would no present. Second, giving your mother a gift should be made a priority. Giving your mother a present shows her that you love and appreciate her. Often, children will send their mother flowers, a box of chocolates, or a short card. While this is better than nothing, the best present is a real, handwritten letter. A pre-written, store-bought card with your signature is simply not enough.
A true, well-crafted letter is a large endeavor. Set aside at least an hour to write your Mother’s Day letter. Fill you letter with quotes, Bible verses, personal thoughts, and childhood memories. If you feel like it is taking too long, simply remember that your mother will probably treasure this letter for the rest of her life.
Before you even start writing, brainstorm ideas of points to include. Write down specific things that you love about your mother, special memories from your childhood, things that make you think of your mother, quotes and Bible verses that remind you of your mother, and ways that your mother excelled in raising you.
Plan Your Letter
Rather than simply writing your thoughts in a random order, plan your letter logically. A letter can be written in semi-essay format. Below is an example planning outline for a mother’s day letter:
Introduction – Greetings, Introduce Topic
etc. – Continue for each paragraph
Conclusion – Recap the points covered in your paragraph, and restate your love.
Your planning outline helps you order your thoughts logically, but do not feel like you have to strictly adhere to it. It is simply a guide which you are free to modify as you write the letter. For example, you might want to write two paragraphs on one topic, or you might find that you do not have enough information for a certain paragraph. Feel free to modify the outline to fit the information that you have available.
Write the Rough Draft
On your computer, write your letter’s first draft. Instead of slowly making each individual sentence perfect as you go, concentrate on simply getting your thoughts on paper. If you have a trouble with a particular sentence leave a blank space and continue with the rest of the letter. You can come back to the difficult sections later after you have finished the rest of the letter. Your goal in this stage of letter crafting is to get your thoughts on paper.
Edit Your Letter
Now, go back to all the trouble spots on your rough draft and fix them. Use spell check to find any misspellings. Use a thesaurus to replace any vague wording. Vary your sentence patterns. For example, instead of starting all your sentences with the subject, add sentence openers such as, “When [something happened]…”, In [some location]…”, “With [some person]…”, etc. Another way to vary your sentence patterns is by using what is called a rhetoric question. For instance, “Do you remember when [something happened]?” Using these different techniques will make your letter easier to read and, therefore, more of a treasure.
Once you think that your letter is perfect, read it out-loud. It is amazing how many more mistakes can be found when a letter is read out-loud. While you are reading, check for grammar errors, incorrect words, and difficult wording. By the time you are done reading the letter out-loud it should be almost perfect.
Write the Letter
Now that your letter’s content has been written, it is time to had write the final copy that you plan to send. You might be wondering, “Why can’t I email or print the letter off my computer – isn’t it the same?”. While it is the same content, a handwritten letter shows love and care that a computer-printed letter can never replace. We all know that getting a real, paper, handwritten letter in the mail is much more exciting than receiving an email, or even a computer-printed letter. Printed letters are excellent for business communication, but handwritten letters are far superior for personal contact.
Get out a piece of card stock paper, find a black pen (or better yet, an old-fashioned fountain pen), and write your letter. Make sure to follow proper letter format, and write in cursive rather than printing. Once you are done, fold your letter, put it in an envelope, and send it via snail mail or deliver it by hand. This loving, personal letter will be treasured and kept long after the flowers would have wilted or the box of chocolates would have been eaten.
What do you think about Mother’s Day letters?