Monday, August 18, 2008

You've Got Mail Boxes!

Today's Wonder of the World is...the Mailbox!

Why look who's grinning by that flowery box! It's second grade Sarah! The Sarah we took to campus on Friday and left with a dorm full of strangers. The Sarah who is having such fun that she hasn't called me yet, but I'm going to be grown up about it and will wait for as long as it takes.
At least until my inner nutty mommy alarm goes off. In about a week.

(By the way, thanks so much for all your nice wishes! If you haven't seen the update, scroll down to Friday's post and see her in her room and how happy she looks.
And no, you smarty pants, I promise I haven't looked at that post one hundred times since Saturday just to remind myself how happy she is.
Forty times, maybe, but not a hundred!)

Maybe if I'm lucky she'll drop me a postcard in the mailbox!

flickr photo by Siebe
I've always wanted a house with a mail drop in the front door.
I have a recurring dream in which I'm locked in my house and must survive on pancakes which Todd passes me through the mail slot. When I was a child I had the same dream, except my mother slipped me pancakes under my bedroom door.
Don't tell me what that means. I'm scared to find out.

I also like the old timey apartment mailbox doors.

I bought that one at a junk store and hung it on my laundry room wall just because it's pretty.
I used to have it by my back door, but teenagers kept trying to open it and see what was inside, and it scratched up the paint.

Before I moved to France, I didn't think much about mailboxes. I thought that all the world had mailboxes like ours. I had traveled some then, but I guess I'd never noticed that the flag on the box is an American thing. At least I think it is. Tell me, please, those of you in other places. Are there any other countries that use a flag on the mail box?

Here's our French house.

See the red arrow coming out of Ben's brain and pointing to the circle? Inside the circle is our letter box. The postman would drop off our mail in the locked box. We had a key and the postman had one too in case there was a parcel too big to fit in the slot. If I wanted to mail a letter or bill, I had to walk it to the Poste.

But I did find an American style mailbox not too far from my French house. The residents there had a daughter who lived in Texas, and they bought it on a visit and put it up as a novelty. People were puzzled by that flag. They would stop me on the street and ask me "What does it mean?" and I would get to explain.

Some Americans like to decorate their mailboxes.

Flickr photo by Digital Agent

They like to have fun with them.

Flickr photo by amusings
Sometimes the fun freaks me out.

And sometimes it's just funny.
Like when people make their cats into mailboxes.

Flickr photo by Caro H
No, that came out wrong.

I meant they make their mailboxes into cats!

Flickr photo by C a p r i c e

All this talk about American and French mailboxes made me curious.
What do mailboxes look like in other parts of the world?

Here's one in South Africa.

Flickr photo by BlackBox
I'm thinking the tube might be for the newspaper.

And here's some from China.

Flickr photo by -dan-
I think those are gorgeous against that red wall.

And here are some in Australia.

Flickr photo by Damien.C

And in Argentina.

Flickr photo by gerberbaby64
They look beautiful to me, even with the rust.

Do you know another reason I love mailboxes?
Because mailboxes sometimes bring SURPRISES!
Like the two I received last week!

One was in my email. A prize from Green Girl in Wisconsin!
It's the Arte Y Pico award!

Thanks, Green Girl! You're too kind. And you made my day!
I love her witty blog. Click on it and see for yourself.

What a week! The old fashioned mail had a surprise for me too.
On Thursday I asked Ben, "Did the mail ever come?"
He said, "Oh yeah! I almost forgot. A box came for you."
But I wasn't expecting anything.
Look what came!

I wish the picture was clearer, but I was too thrilled to take time to make it any better!
It a RAK from Paula Clare. A Random Act of Kindness! There were fun cards and the prettiest flower magnet my fridge has ever seen, and this cone of candies with a precious spooky tag!

Thank you Paula Clare! She makes incredible things. Stop by and take a look HERE.

And that's not all!
Last week I received another treasure in the mail, one that I ordered for Sarah, from my friend Teresa at Cedar Junction. (Hop on over to her shop. It's so cool!)
I bought me a Home, and look what other cool things she included!

Since you can't see the home collage very well, here's a picture from her site of a similar one. It's still for sale! Go buy it while you still can!

Isn't it perfect?
I wanted for Sarah to have a physical reminder that not only does she hold a key to my heart, but that her home is always here for her, whenever she wants.

My phone is here too. Whenever she wants to call me on it.

Have a Wonder-Full Monday, y'all!
And tell me all about your mailbox, or the weirdest one you've seen.
I love weirdo mailboxes, and have been so thirsty for one since my wacko neighborhood outlawed them.

Love, Becky


Anonymous said...

this is a neat post! I'm laughing at your "communication" to/about Sarah because I KNOW I will be doing the same thing in 10 years when my kids head off to college. SHE'S SOOOOO BLESSED to have a mom like you.

Rosemary said...

Hi Rebecca,
Sarah looks happy!!
Love the mailbox post.
I like the old timey ones too!
The weirdest one in our neighborhood is a cow mailbox.
Have a great day!

Suzie said...

I would be going nuts too. She'll call I know it. Wait didnt we give this up with dating?

vintage moon studio said...

Well I guess this is your day for surprises! Congratulations - you won the Pay it Forward gift on my blog... go see! If you will send me your addy I will most carefully wrap and send along to you (email link on my blog). Woo hoo!! Deb

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Hey Candy. You're sweet. (Which makes sense since you're Candy.) And I bet you're right about the doing the same thing in ten years. Don't blink--that time passes in a second. I used to think that was so corny to say (and maybe it is) but it's true!

Rosemary, I'd love to see a cow mailbox. We have a John Deere tractor one near Sam's school, but no cow.

Hey Suzie. I don't know why. We were crazy I guess. I'm trying to be good and wait for her call. Ben checks her status on facebook and gives me updates--a little like spying, but I'm not ashamed. So far it's all good news.

Deb! I'm so happy! That necklace is incredible and so are you! And so is my luck today! Woo hoo!

Kathryn said...

Oh that is perfect! What a great idea. And your girl seems to like it too. So sweet. :)

Paula Clare said...

Hi Becky,
I too love time I did a scrapbook challenge about my favorite place in the's my front door...because surprises in TWO forms show up there...people and mail! I just love to get mail...(really. It's ridiculous. I've all but tackled the mailman on days when I'm peering out my "peep hole" in the door and see him coming up the steps with a box for me! I know I've given the man heart failure as he stands aghast when I come bounding out the door!)

I'm so glad Sarah seems so happy...I came home from dropping off my son and immediately turned his room into a scrapbook studio...(HIS wish was that I leave it exactly as it was as a shrine and go in daily to pay homage to him.)I sobbed through the entire redesign. Email helps...and text messaging (neither of us do the phone thing very well)so it's not as dire a situation as I thought it might be...but it's still NOT THE SAME around here! I know you know the feeling!

Oh maaaaan. I'm rambling. Sorry. And on YOUR dime! Okay. That is all. Love the mailboxes. :-)

Peace in da hood,
Paula Clare

Barb said...

Hi Becky,

Sarah does look very happy and so does her roommate. They have good vibes and I just know this will be a terrific year for both of them.

When the kids were younger, my house had the mail slot in the door. It was a nightmare with my youngest. He loved putting things out of the slot.
Actually, as I look back, it was quite interesting what one would find outside the front door...

Sarah will call you soon. Hang in there!

many hugs,

May Vanderbilt said...

Wow! I love mailboxes too but they're awfully boring in the city. Just little slots in a wall.

I had almost forgotten that people have bona fide boxes with little flags because even my parents live in a condo now!

Sarah is really, really, really pretty. Are you ready for her to bring home a boyfriend at Thanksgiving :)

Susan Sandmore said...

I love it! I love mailboxes, too. Okay--mailbox story. When I was in law school, I lived in the grad student/international student dorm. One Thanksgiving I invited another grad student--a Brit--home to my mother's for the traditional turkey dinner. Mom lived in a very middle class (north Raleigh) neighborhood and my student friend went nuts for the mailboxes! He couldn't believe they were real. And why were they on posts? He just couldn't get over it. Look at them! Wow! Boxes on sticks!

The next thing that freaked him out was her broom. He only knew push brooms, not the triangle (witch-looking) ones. "Is this for decoration? Or do you really use this?" he said.

Too bad your neighborhood is against wacky mailboxes. All of ours are un-wacky and hung directly on the houses in my neighborhood. Ours is up too high and I hate having to stand on tiptoe and jam my hand down at an awkward angle. I always feel like I'm sticking my hand into some mysterious alternate dimension.

Rebecca Ramsey said...

Hey Kathryn!
Paula Clare, that's too funny about tackling the mailman. And I hear you on the room as shrine thing. I'd love to turn Sarah's room into a sewing room, but I've got two boys who've been fighting over her room since she started her senior year a year ago. We promised her we'd keep it as is at least til Christmas, and then we'll see. It's the only bedroom not on the main floor (it's over the garage) so it's hot realty property I guess.

Barb, that's funny! I never thought how a child might like to play post office with a slot like that, pushing letters out of the house!

May, don't you dare suggest such things! Ooh boy, I'm having a hard enough time with her off to college. Let's wait a while on bringing a boy home, okey doke?

Susan, that's a hilarious story. I kind of thought the same thing to look at the flickr photos of mailboxes from Australia--all cylindrical, and South Africa-all like bird houses. I wonder if the pictures really are a good representation of what they really look like.
And I so get the broom thing. When the French movers saw my broom when we moved in, I caught one of them riding it around the kitchen when he didn't know I was watching, like a witch! They'd never seen one like that. I should have put that in my book, but I forgot about it until now! Thanks for reminding me!

Rebecca Ramsey said...

PS on the broom story...that kitchen was a tiny closet, so he was twirling in circles more than "riding it around." Quite the funny image.

LarryG said...

now that was fun!
i am thinking the birdhouse looking one from South Africa is strictly "Air Mail" :)

Glad you got your girl off to school...
mine's at the bandcamp this past week and starts classes on Wed...
they do grow up too fast

Jojo said...

Becky, I missed Friday's post and I am just catching up on the reading. I feel so bad that I didn't write an encouraging note but Sarah is glowing with happiness in the photo and it is a good thing that she hasn't called. She must be loving every minute. It used to be that when we left home the mailbox was the most exciting part of our day but with email most of us have forgotten letter writing. How exciting to have gotten not one, but two packages to help take your mind of of Sarah's departure.

Thinking of you,

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

Wow--those are some really unique mailboxes. I do love the rusty antique ones best.
we have a big trout mailbox up the road from us.
Happy "post" today:)

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

We have a large stone mailbox with stone planters on each side that have little spruce trees and seasonal flowers in them. We had it built about six years ago and I made sure the box was one of those big ones that could hold lots of stuff so that the mailman didn't have to trudge up the drive. I love my mailbox!

The oddest one I've seen is one in the shape of a dolphin. A whole bit ole' dolphin. It does not reside in my neighborhood, though.

And your pretty daughter does look so happy. What an exciting time for her!!

Nilz said...

Hi! I think Australian Mailboxes do have a great geometry - looks like a tunnel! We do not see such designs here much.

Alex said...

hahaha...I love the one with the hand! Outrageous!! :)

Thank you for the birthday wish yesterday. :)

Anonymous said...

Beautiful mailboxes from around the world. Email is so common, it is always such a lovely surprise to get REAL mail!
I made mailboxes for each one of my childrens' bedroom doors. They were simple shoe boxes I decorated for their individual personalities. My nineteen year old still looks in her mailbox every day! (I peek and see her.)
All kinds of goodies go in - new mascara, a package of favorite cookies, a little note. It lets them know I am thinking about them. My sixteen year old gets her allowance there. My son would take his mailbox down when his friends came over, when he was in highschool, and he would put it back up when they left!!

dana said...

I hope you have talked to Sarah by now! Those youngins just lose track of time:-) The box with the heart on her wall is so great---I know that must make her happy! You need to go see Mamma Mia! You will love it! Take care.

Hooked on Houses said...

What a fun bunch of mailboxes! I found your blog via Nikki's this morning and have had so much fun looking around. Thanks! -Julia :-)

CC said...

I love all these mail boxes. Mine is just a box on my house. Doesn't even lock or anything. boring (and insecure!)