Tag Archives: Uni-ball Vision Exact

Day 93: Jacqueline

Today is my beautiful niece Jacqueline’s second birthday. I sat down this morning to write her a letter. I love you Jacqueline.

Day 93-3

Happy Birthday Jacqueline!

So you’re two today. You know that only happens once. Not just turning two, but doubling your age in one year – well done.

I’ve noticed two big changes in you over the past year. First, is your mobility. Man, you are fast now. And no more of this crawling stuff – you are speedster on two legs. It’s good though, that makes me keep up with you and helps keep Unca Gee (that’s what you call me) stay in good shape and keeps his tummy from getting its own zip code.

When I get you up from your nap and take you downstairs you race for the stairs traversing them like an experienced alpinist. You dash toward the kitchen and open the pantry door where you know exactly where all of your favorite treats are. “Up, up, up” you plead asking me to lift you so that you can have a better view. And then your eyes will lock in on your prey. “Baby mum-mums, baby mum-mums!” you call out. Who knew that rice cakes were so popular with your generation?

And this leads into the other area that I have noticed the most change in you – your ability to communicate. A year ago you were very limited on what and how you communicated with me, but now you are pretty talkative. And you know more colors than me (in all fairness I’m colorblind). You can identify monkeys and whales and ladybugs. You really like ladybugs! You’ve even learned a few words in Español – muy bien!

I want you to know how appreciative I am of the time you spend with me. You take excellent care of me when your mom and dad aren’t around to watch me. You take me to the park and allow me to pick you up and raise you high in the sky again and again. You’ve encouraged me to work on my reading aloud skills and have even entrusted me with the Diaper Genie (that thing is worthy of a Nobel Prize). I’ve even gotten your permission to tuck you into bed. In short, you believe in me. And I believe in you.

Today you will be showered with gifts. Hold on to the feeling you have when you see your cake and all the gifts people have brought you. I have that feeling every time we’re together. Every time you smile at me, hold my hand, shout Unca Gee, say a new word, try to walk in my shoes, wave at me from the window when I arrive, ask me to pick you up so that you can choose what color binky you want at bedtime and most of all, when you run at me full speed, arms wide open and give me one of your powerful hugs.

Jacqueline, I cannot imagine my life without you. With the exception of the rare temper tantrum or multi-directional food hurling exploits, you are so far beyond your two little years. I love how you handle yourself. Remember when we were at Gymboree and that boy pushed you out of the way so he could go first. You kept your cool and didn’t react by pushing him back. You were like, “No big deal, we’re all gonna get a chance.” It was priceless. A lot of us adults could learn something from that.

Day 93-2Anyway, Happy Birthday! Keep up the good work. Enjoy today. Smear your face in cake, hell you can throw it on the walls for all I care, because today is your day – and it’s not my house.

I love you very much / Te quiero muchisimo!
Unca Gee

Day 92: Mrs. Wunderlich

You may recall on Day 59 I sent my letter to a woman named Charlotte who was celebrating her 98th birthday. Unfortunately my letter was returned to me today with a dull yellow sticker on it stating:


That made me sad, I was very excited for Ms. Charlotte to get my letter as she was one of my favorite $10 recipients of my Year of Giving. Thankfully, I remembered that she had a sister that lived in Annapolis. After a little sleuth work I found her contact information and sat down today to write her a letter.

Day 92

You can see a glimpse of the lining I created for the envelope.


Mrs. Wunderlich, 

In August of 2010 I met you, your husband and your sister Charlotte in Annapolis – I’ve included a few photographs from that day. You may recall I was giving a stranger $10 every day for a year while I was out of work and on Day 248 I gave my $10 to Charlotte. It was a lot of fun.

charlotte todd and jewell-2

Ms. Charlotte, Mrs. Wunderlich, Mr. Wunderlich

reed charlotte and jewell-2


I’ve embarked on a new adventure this year were I write someone a handwritten letter every day for a year and I thought about Charlotte and remembered her birthday was Feb. 28th. I mailed her a card for her 98th birthday to the Metairie address where she used to live but it was returned to me – it said it was “undeliverable as addressed.” Do you have a current address for her? I hope that she is well – she was one of my favorite people I gave my $10 to. I also very much enjoyed meeting you and Mr. Wunderlich and hope that you are well. 

I look forward to hearing from you.

Reed Sandridge

Day 91: Karin

Day 91-3You really get to know someone when travel with them. When we go on vacation, we choose who are traveling companions are, but when we travel for work we often don’t have a choice. So when you travel with a work colleague who you really like, it makes the trip that much more enjoyable.

I arrived at her home in Bethesda to pick her up for our drive to Pennsylvania. After her dogs gave their approval, I made my way into the foyer. Her daughter Carolyn was by her side, her eyes heavy holding back tears. Karin had been traveling for work a lot recently and now I was making her mother miss another night at home. My heart became heavy, remembering how I felt when my dad would leave for long business trips when I was about Carolyn’s age. I’d cry while I waved goodbye to him at the airport.

I didn’t know Karin very well before this trip, but I really enjoyed spending time with her. She’s smart, interesting and very easy to talk with. I felt bad about Carolyn, but hopefully she will like this little polar bear.

Day 91-2


Vitaj doma! I hope you had a wonderful trip to Slovakia.

Day 91I wanted to thank you for taking time to travel with me to PA last week. Spending 4 hours in a car can seem like an eternity – but you made the time go by quickly and I enjoyed very much the opportunity to get to know you better. Here’s a little something for Carolyn to keep her inspired for your trip to see polar bears this fall.


P.S. And thank you for the Swiss chocolates, they were delicious!

Day 89: Rachel

Sometimes all the planets are aligned and weird things happen – like March 14th (3.14.15) of this year being “Pi Day.” Today is no exception. I should check if there is a full moon.

Day 89-2

My “homemade” embossed card.


Happy birthday Rachel!

Day 89I think that it is only appropriate that someone born in ’89 receives my 89th handwritten letter on the 89th day of 2015 and drinks 89 shots of whiskey. I’m kidding about the whiskey – stick with beer.


P.S. I just learned you’re actually the middle sister – who knew? I always thought you were the oldest.

Day 87: Patricia

Today’s letter is to my friend Patricia who bought me my favorite set of personalized stationery. It’s made by Crane & Co. – for those of you who are not paper geeks like me, Crane is a legend in the paper business. They’ve been crafting fine paper products in New England since before we won our independence from Britain -yeah, a really long time.

Day 87-3A little over four years ago Patricia gave me this wonderful box of personalized stationery. As I mention in the letter, the beauty of such a gift is that it lasts a long time and you can celebrate your friendship with the person who gave you the gift every time you sit down to compose a letter. I like that about it. Every time I write a letter on this stationery I remember her and her generous and thoughtful gift.

Day 87-2

Dear Patricia,

I’m writing you this letter from Northside Social – half expecting to see you walk in the door any minute. I’m pretty sure that you introduced me to this spot – it’s exceptional. I just had a cappuccino and the egg and sausage sandwich – delicious!

Day 87I wanted you to know that I love this stationery that you gave me. I don’t use it often – just for special occasions. Times when I want to make an uncommon impression – the last time was on Jan. 2nd when I wrote our new mayor Muriel Bowser. Giving fine stationery is a thoughtful gift – it lasts a long time and allows the recipient to reflect on their friendship every time they sit down to write something important.

Let’s get together soon – I know that your scheduled is about to become unhinged and you’ll be sucked into the vortex for the next 8 months.


P.S. Glad to hear your ‘hood is getting a coffee shop – even if it isn’t as cool as Northside Social – it’s better than nothing.