Filling Time Philatelically

Plus: A giveaway!

Things have been getting “interesting” again, alas, in the dual-degenerative disease household realm. I’ll spare you the details. I haven’t been able to be in the studio much. It’s making me grumpy, and unfinished books are still sitting… unfinished. Along with other projects I @#$% want to get to. But what can one do.

Notebooks full of postage stamps.
Notebooks full of postage stamps.

I have, however, been finding solace in, of all things, the piles of postage stamps I’ve been gathering and hoarding for years. I decided to finally sort them out so I know what I have. Sorting stamps is mindless and can be done sitting on the couch. It’s also strangely relaxing.

Stamps in slide sleeves
Stamps in slide sleeves.

I’m putting them in slide sleeves in notebooks, arranged by subject matter and, for some subjects that fill many sleeves, by color as well. That makes a lot more sense for finding stamps to use in art and craft projects than, say, sorting them strictly by country (although there are some pages of that sort too, when no other category seems to fit).

Dominic eyeing some yellow-themed postal cats.
Dominic eyeing some yellow/orange-themed postal cats.

Even my most recent plaything-sketchbook of the past few months seems to have a postal theme. Themes happen. I just follow along. (More on this latest plaything later.)

The cover of the latest plaything.
The cover of the latest plaything.

I realized recently that my 5th blogiversary came and went in March during my extended blog absence. Since time seems to pass in a blur lately anyway, what’s a measly four months? Let’s have a belated celebration!

Leave a comment, and I’ll send you a little philatelic surprise. I will also randomly draw one of you to get a somewhat bigger philatelic surprise as well (see this post for a hint). Deadline to leave a comment for the giveaway and drawing is Wednesday, July 16.

Steve is always quick to help.
Steve is always quick to help.

PS Thank you all for the outpouring of compassion after my cat Larry’s death last month. I was, and am, so touched by the heartfelt messages I’ve received, both here and privately, even from friends I’d had no idea subscribed to this blog. Thank you. It means more than you know.

26 thoughts on “Filling Time Philatelically”

  1. People with good health really do not know do they? They really do not get just how vital to their lives good health is.

    I cannot resist your giveaway! Thank you for the opportunity – assuming its open internationally?

    • Greetings Birdie– It is indeed open internationally. I’ll be emailing you later so you can remind me of your current mailing address.

      Good health… so true. There’s been a lot of nastiness in the San Francisco newspaper lately about disabled parking permits, a topic close to my heart. I wish sometimes there was a way to make those people understand even for a day… They really just have no idea how fortunate they are.

  2. I am sorry about the frustration! Sorting stamps does look therapeutic. Sometimes I have to find my accomplishments where I can get them, too :) I hope you both have some better days, soon.

    • Thanks Amy. It’s very therapeutic… although now that I’m organizing them, I find I feel more like an actual collector than someone whose intention is to use them! “What–use that on a greeting card? But then I won’t have a complete set anymore!” heh heh

  3. More medical mayhem? Unfair. So very, very unfair.
    However I am awed that Steve and Dom will allow you quiet time with small pieces of paper.
    LOVING the cover of your latest plaything. Come fly with me…

    • It’s the increasing caretaking load at the moment that’s making things especially trying… Not for the squeamish, as you know only too well.

      Steve and Dom are always quick to offer “help” when the stamps come out… (Aghh!)

      Thanks re: the plaything. :-)

  4. “Quiet time with small pieces of paper…” I wish! Only if the cats don’t want to play.
    I had a whine-y aunt who used to say she didn’t enjoy good health.Damn’ right she didn’t! She never had anything worse than a cold and died at 93, still grizzling! Hope things pick up for both of you. xx

    • Thanks Di. :-)

      One thing about the stamps is I have to keep them covered if I leave where I’m sitting, even for a short time. Steve likes to carry things away… or eat them…

  5. What an amazing collection, er, sorry, resource. Whatever you decide to do with it eventually I can understand the pleasure they can offer right now. I’ve only started collecting stamps again this past year or two, after giving up my childhood hobby. They really are little works of art, and the effort that some countries give to them is wonderful.

    Re frustration: understood. :-(

    Have you seen what Michael Nobbs says and does about working on creative projects in tiny, tiny chunks? It won’t work for everything, but I’ve found it ‘s been helpful anyway, especially to get me thinking about what might work.

    xox from me and Mia recommends soaking up some sunshine prrrrrrrrrr

    • Aren’t stamps just wonderful? I’m not even sure why I’m so addicted to them, but I truly am. History, beauty, and just plain weirdness sometimes…

      And, alas, I do understand you know the frustration only too well. (Btw, I haven’t had a chance much to answer messages… your last one gave me a lot to think about… I haven’t forgotten.)

      I looked over at the link a bit, and will look some more. Tiny chunks is, indeed, often the only way to do anything… or some things. I find, though, that for something like assembling an edition, I really do need a block of time when I feel lucid, and when I also know I won’t be summoned at any moment away from what I’m doing, while glue is everywhere… As I say, I know you know how it goes. That said, the playthings (sketchbooks) are exactly about squeezing some creative time into what feels like no time, and they are a real sanity saver for that. That and the stamps!

      Mia is a very smart gal… do give her a big kiss between the ears for me! xx

  6. Wow!!!! I am impressed with that stamp collection and the way you organized it. VERY cool. I am a mail artist and have a special fondness for stamps.have you seen the Stamp Head ATC’s many of us have been making? And I am learning book-making and working on making a punching cradle using your wonderful tutorial. So happy I found another stamp-lover, book-maker, artist. And I’d love to get a mailing from you. Send Good mail–Get Good Mail is my motto on my blog!

    • Greetings! Thanks so much! What a day-brightener to get such a nice comment. I do indeed know about the stamps heads… heh heh… I don’t make them myself, but I’ve been sharing some of my extra “heads” with my friend Connie Rose who does. It’s been a lot of fun seeing what is made with them. I’ll be sure to slip a few heads into yours… I’ll be getting in touch after next Wednesday for your mailing address.

  7. howdy there! serendipitously stumbled upon your blog thanks to dear pamela, postal doyenne, at capuccinoartjounral! what a treat!! swooning full tilt over your stamp collection! thanks for sharing.

    so sorry to hear of your dear feline friend’s passing. bless him! they so quickly become an integral part of our warp and weft. looking forward to a little mail magic from you. promise to return in kind. thanks, polly

    • Greetings Miss Polly! Thanks so much for stopping by. And thanks for your kind sympathies for Larry cat. Much appreciated.

      No obligation comes with the giveaway, but I’m always happy to receive creative offerings from like-minded souls. Kind of you to offer. :-)

      I’ll be in touch next week for postal info….

  8. Greetings from San Diego with it’s warm, muggy days. When I get home I will have to be introduced to your latest plaything. It looks just as wonderful as your others. I have my journal with me and plan to spend some time in a coffee shop drawing—after a long walk on the beach. Love you stamp collection. Wow. Happy blogiversary too—it’s always fun to see your posts while I’m traveling (or not, for that matter).

    • So lovely to hear from you, Michele. What an honor that you take time out on your travels to check in with the Chipmunk. And how wonderful that you have your journal with you and will be using it!

      It has been a very long time since I was in San Diego, but when I was, it was in the middle of the summer, and I sure do remember the muggy heat! The long walk on the beach sounds like a plan. I do hope you are having a wonderful time down there.

      Your philatelic surprise will be presented to you when we meet. :-)

  9. I’m not sure if I’m sneaking in (your time versus my time) or I’m late. No worries if I’m late I still want to say that I love your stamps and love the way you organise them and cherish them. I have just read about the loss of your beautiful companion cat – such a big hole they leave in our daily lives. Hope some days are better than others for health and creating and for celebrating the moments. Go well.

    • Greetings Fiona! So lovely to hear from you. Of course you are still in the giveaway. It’s still Wednesday here! Thanks so much for your kind comment. Indeed, some days… and moments… are better than others. But right now I’m having fun picking out things for the giveaway.

      Good wishes to you as well!

  10. Oh, man, I can’t believe I missed another (two) of your posts by two weeks. – I really need a new newfeed reader. (I used to use google reader but they discontinued it, and I have been too lazy to look into a new reader since then….)

    Anyway: Happy belated blogiversary! And I wish that things will get better at least enough for you to get some more studio time. I can imagine that this is putting on extra strain on a hard time anyway by the sound of it.
    Your collection of stamps looks amazing! Or shouldn’t I have called it “collection”? Mhm, makes me want to use postcrossing again some time…
    And the new plaything looks intruiging once again! The bright red and blue look so cheerful, and the bit of structure in the (past paper?) looks exactly right. I hope you’ll find some happy playtime with it soon! Even if it is not studio time exactly, it would be studio time light maybe ;-)

    • Hi Hilke! Sigh… yes… I too have not found a good replacement for Reader. I use Feedly, and have tried a couple of others, but it just is not the same for me. (I’ve also found that Feedly isn’t always up-to-date with its feeds, which is annoying.) I used to check Reader daily, but now I find I fall behind with my friend’s blogs a lot. I sympathize.

      Well, now I guess it won’t be a surprise, but I’d already included you in the giveaway. You’ve been so generous and kind to me, and I know you have as hard a time as I do these days keeping up with everyone! Good to know you do like stamps… :-)

      • Oh :-)! That is a nice surprise. I will look out for it in the mail.

        And I also installed a newsreader now. Apparently this was the final nudge I needed. I am trying FeedDemon for now. It looks good, and I get the feeling I could be happy with it. I hope that will make me miss less posts in the future.

        Wishing you a good (or at least better) week to come. Hopefully one with some strength and time for studio,


        • Glad to hear you found an acceptable feed reader. I checked it out, but it turns out it won’t work for a Mac user like me. Glad it will work for you, though. It seems to look a lot like Reader, from what I can tell.

          Thanks for the good wishes. And to you!

  11. …late, I’m late!…for a very important date!…but even so, I had to comment on how thrilled I am to have ‘accidentally’ perfectly landed on yr site!…stamps! silly…or serious…felines! SF!….All such good stuff….Glad to find you…and hope to discover more…in the morn.

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