It IS a Small World, After All

The kids and I have been delighted by the enthusiastic show of support for their summer US geography project and post-card solicitation. God bless social media for things such as these.

This is where we’ll share photos of postcards received, as well as a running list of states we’re still on the hunt for. Thanks again!

Thanks to Sam & Suzie Collins for sending the girls a postcard from their vacation in New Orleans, Louisianna and from their sister in Missouri! Fun fact, I sold a house for Sam & Suzie long before I was even a mama.

terrific app that’s aided in the cementing of capitols & other state-specific facts into my kids’ noggins

New Jersey was collected via my childhood (and adulthood!) bestie’s parents on their recent East-coast adventure. Thanks Cheryl & Dale!

Also pictured above are New Hampshire & Vermont, which arrived thanks to my pal Beverlee back in Oregon’s online solicitation.

Michigan postcards arrived in abundance via our online pal Nian (also adopted from China) and our Mississippi pal(see below)’s sister. We also received one from Oklahoma via a friend of our friends Nick and Kyla who lived there briefly while Nick attended law school.

Our friends from Mississippi (whom we met in China for our adoptions) sent a postcard to the girls. Impressed by their character, I shared about them here on the blog while we were still in country. Mississippi, of course, is the girls’ favorite state to spell!

Hawaii and Texas postcards arrived while we were away in Oregon. The one from Hawaii is from a friend of a friend, the one with all the wonderful sisters! The one from Texas is courtesy of the Bryant family, whom we met in our adoption travel group in China. They’ve since returned to China and adopted again, so I’m especially impressed and grateful that this busy family took the time to send us a card.

The girls’ former babysitter, Miss Wendy, sent a postcard from her home in Iowa, where she lives with her husband and new baby girl– did I mention she was also homeschooled as a girl?

Several others arrived citing our friend Kent as the catalyst– his friends and family from Iowa, California, New Mexico, and Alaska. There’s another whose origin we can’t place, the location worn off in transit. The one from California actually contained a packet of poppy seeds, which we promptly scattered in the garden with delight. Kent is the one with all the sweet sisters, the father of Husband’s good friend.

Anna & Cassie, 2/3 of my triplet cousins, both of whom were ironically my own childhood pen-pals, sent a postcard from California on their recent road-trip to the Redwoods from Oregon.

The Yellowstone one came from our recent houseguest, son of my unofficial mentor/spiritual mother, currently touring all over the Northwest by bicycle. From Oregon to Seattle, east to Glacier, south to Missoula, to rest with us en route to Jellystone and Jackson Hole before turning around and heading home. Uffda!

Iowa, Alaska, Wyoming, and California postcards each arrived courtesy of yet another thoughtful aunt of Husband’s childhood friend– theirs sure a well-travelled, generous family!

We met Joel & Donna in China, their little dude lived in the same place as Little Man before they came to us. Their happy family sent postcards from their home in Kentucky.

My friend Alison and her three homeschooled kiddos, who used to play basketball with mine, sent one from their new home in New Mexico.

Cathy, one half of the dynamic duo that is our fab next-door neighbors, sent a postcard from her home state of North Dakota while visiting family there recently.

Indiana came from adoptive-mom-friend Michelle, who lives there with her own little China man. One might recall her as the latest member of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Ergo. It just happened to show up the day that we began studies on the Hoosier state. What is a Hoosier, anyway?

Another aunt of Husband’s childhood friend, Mike, sent us postcards from Idaho, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, and Kansas, as well as more from Oregon and Washington.

must have been one heck of a road trip!

Utah and Texas both arrived courtesy of my old friend Laurie (and her five children) whom I met way back in middle-school and instantly loved because she was actually shorter than me! We were besties in high-school and beyond– she was even a bridesmaid in our wedding.

Four postcards arrived anonymously from Minnesota. Curiously, our mystery pen-pal spelled each of our names (some rather unique) correctly, which leads me to believe it was someone we know well. Hmm…

The kiddos (and I!) each received a delightfully personalized postcard from another old Bible study pal, Julie, along with her family; in Washington. Though I’ve come to expect quality prose from Julie (reigning Christmas letter champ, by a landslide), her thoughtful mention of mermaids, coffee, airplanes, marine wildlife, and birth-order was especially touching.

From my old Bible study pal, Mary, came two Illinois postcards that she picked up while on vacation with her sweet family. I loved how she reminded the girls she knew them when they were first born.

Our fun friend from California visited and shared this old Animaniacs video with us, featuring a catchy tune naming all 50 states and capitols…

Tennessee arrived from our dear, dear local(ish) friends, the Cottons, who were there recently for a family reunion and well-deserved vacation. (They also homeschool.)

From the Beatles Store in Las Vegas, Nevada, friends from our home church in Oregon, Mike & Sunny (and kids), sent a postcard while on a family vacation. Husband also worked with both Mike & Sunny in a restaurant while still in school, before any of us were married.

My cousin Crystal, her husband, Bruce, and their darling girls (mentioned below for PA, DE, NY, & NC) also sent one the same day from Bruce’s home state of South Carolina.

scored in the dollar section at target last week, a handy appendix to our studies

Colorado arrived courtesy of the aunt of Husband’s childhood friend, Mike, mentioned below.

Our former next-door neighbors (still friends), Miss Holly, Sam, & Dan, sent the kiddos cards from Dan’s home-state of Wisconsin on a recent pilgrimage back.

Old friends from our home-church, Austin, Sierra, Savanna, and mom Carol, sent us Maryland, Massachusetts, and another Connecticut and New York, plus bonus cards from D.C. and the Liberty Bell!

From my dear cousin, Crystal, and her sweet family. On a recent adventure they scooped up postcards from Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New York, as well as their home in North Carolina— which she says reminds her of Oregon. We’ve yet to visit them on the east coast, but hope to in the near future. She’s got a set of darling baby girls who tend to dress matchy-matchy and make me pine for a time-machine.

“goin’ to Carolina in my mind…”

From their homeschooling 4-H pal, Abigail, who thoughtfully sent one whilst visiting her Buckeye home-state of Ohio.

From Florida and Arizona, respectively: Kody and Kaden (and their mom, Karen), are reverse snow-birds who follow their fishing-guide father seasonally from Bozeman to the Keys. From “Uncle Spencer” in Tucson, dad to my high-school bestie and real-estate partner in crime from our past lives as a glamorous professionals. He retired to Arizona with his lovely wife about the same time my family packed up and headed to Montana.

Maine & Connecticut were both sent from Husband’s childhood friend (whose parents sent the one from Georgia), Mike, and his lovely wife with whom I happily share our once uncommon first name, Mia.

sneaky geography, under the guise of a fun activity

From Husband’s childhood friend’s wonderful parents in Georgia. Bonus points for their thoughtful mention of the native sea creatures– most notably the manatee! This one was especially timely as we discussed Georgia just this week (we are going in order of official statehood, Georgia of course being #4 in 1788.)

coordinating musical accompaniment

Virginia, as well as the nation’s capitol, from my friend’s young boys– one of whom knew Little Man long before we did. Hailing from the same birth-city in China, his Momma snapped treasured photographs of Little Man for us when she went to bring home her own son and we were still a few months away from travel. Adoptive moms know that these are friends you simply never forget.

virginia is for lovers– or awesome friends. bonus: dc!

It seems befitting that our first correspondence come from our home-state of Oregon. Specifically, from my friend Molly whom you’ll recall was the one who shared this terrific activity with me initially. Molly’s a friend from our old church, whose children are the same age as ours and whom Husband recalls from youth groups as far back as grade school. #smallworld

roseburg, oregon to be precise

Still hoping for:

Alabama,  Arkansas, Rhode Island, West Virginia


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