Swap-bot Time: December 1, 2023 3:18 pm


Date Joined: April 22, 2011
Last Online: December 1, 2023

Country: United States
Postcrossing Profile

2023: A Year of Deserts

Updated 14 November 2023

To open my washi-covered envelopes, tamp the contents to one end of the envelope and, at the other end, snip off a bit of a corner, a little triangle. Insert a letter opener or scissors into the gap; and pull across the edge of the envelope, in the same direction as the washi tape. Here's an album of my washi-covered envelopes and some I received. Scroll slowly so your computer has time to resolve the details in the photos.

In June I went to Israel for ten days, for a friend's wedding, sightseeing, and a side trip to Petra. I recommend Yad Vashem, the Holocaust center in Jerusalem, and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art. I stayed at a friend's apartment in Caesarea that's a nice walk to Roman ruins and the beach.

In April I visited a friend in Las Vegas. The weather was perfect, in the 80s. We went to Joshua Tree National Park (a UNESCO biosphere reserve) and saw the desert in bloom. Many flowers were quite tiny, from long-dormant seeds waiting for the wet winter, and there were desert dandelions, as prolific there as in our lawn.
desert dandelion

In February I went to Southern Africa and took a lot of photos — how could I not? It was one of the best trips ever. I'll clean up my photo album and post a link to it.

My kitchen is my craft room because I love cooking and baking. We are vegetarians, doing our bit for climate change. In Italy I tasted several kinds of savory flan, what I call crustless quiche. Now I have lots of new recipes to try. When I find a recipe in Italian, I open the page in Chrome for a pretty good translation. I make challah every Friday for Shabbat.


I'm swapping naked postcards on Postcrossing and blank postcards on Swap-bot. It makes it easy to organize my incoming mail. A couple of exceptions: I'll continue to participate in the series Sender's Choice -----> with a twist! hosted by @susieq11

I send the blank postcards I receive to family and friends and people on Postcrossing. Please send colorful and cheerful postcards that you'd happily send your family and friends. I appreciate quality over quantity.

No, thank you. Sorry, no hearts.
Bent corners, a sure sign the postcard has been through more than a few swaps. Postcards to color, postcards for Christian holidays and legends. Print on demand postcards like Zazzle postcards. Those cheap sepia 32-pcs Vintage Travel Sights Landscape Retro Postcards. Not childish like Distributed by Michael's Inc. designs. Please, no junk.

manders loves kawaii

Omurice is a wonderful quick dinner. I make it with Trader Joe's Japanese Fried Rice and extra frozen vegetables, thin omelettes we lay over the fried rice, and ketchup. And now it's turning up in kawaii like Ojipan and I love them all.

My favorite kawaii has a face. I love food with faces and anchovies with legs and animals in an unlikely milieu like cat servers at faux Starbucks. I enjoy most characters, especially San-X.

About Japanese kawaii brands: See Pattie's exhaustive list on the KSU group page. Counterfeit sticker flakes are turning up everywhere, from Ali Express and some sellers on Etsy. If it's a Sanrio character and doesn't have a copyright date, it's fake. If it's San-X and largish with thick lines, it's not the real thing. If the price is great, it's probably counterfeit.

No, thanks. Poo and bottoms aren't kawaii to me. 3D stickers from sheets and sticker flakes, especially PVC and puffy. Real photos made cute aren't so cute to me. Unicorns are too sweet for me.

Other Nice Things

  • Dish towels. My spouse is our dishwasher.
  • Hair sticks, fancy bobby pins, and scrunchies. I have long grey hair.
  • Hand sanitizer spray that's organic or artisanal
  • Japanese washi tape. One never has enough washi tape. (No samples please.)
  • Paper maps
  • Small kitchen gadgets, ones that you've found very useful.

Books Read and Recommended

  • Jane Austin. Emma is my favorite.
  • Gunnie Rose series by Charlaine Harris
  • Anne Hillerman's mysteries
  • Demon Copperhead and many more by Barbara Kingsolver
  • Valdemar books by Mercedes Lackey
  • Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
  • Susan Orlean, especially The Library Book
  • Murder on the Red River by Marcie Rendon
  • The Queen's Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

And many classics: Anna Karenina, The Call of the Wild, The Grapes of Wrath, Great Expectations, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Lord of the Rings, Middlemarch, Villette, Wide Sargasso Sea

No, thank you

  • Christian holidays, etc. I'm Jewish.
  • Ephemera, scrapbook paper, die cuts, and the like. I won't use them.
  • Extras. I have plenty of kawaii, stickers and washi tape. The extras I send are more of what the swap is for, e.g., an extra postcard or kawaii sticker flakes. Sometimes I write long chatty notes.
  • Food. We keep kosher and we are vegetarians. Most flavored teas aren't kosher.
  • Glitter, sequins and other tiny metallic or plastic bits
  • Pigs.
  • Planner items. My iPhone is my calendar, a holdover from my career as a software engineer.
  • Plastic, if possible. Reuse those bubble mailers!
  • Tobacco smoke residue aka thirdhand smoke. See also thirdhandsmoke.org.
  • Unicorns, except the Unicorn Tapestries dating from the late Middle Ages.


susieq11 rated for Non-Touristy Postcards #54 on Nov 30, 2023
Comment: I always know which envelope is from you - always such fun washi on it, I love it! Thank you for all the awesome postcards from your trip! I can't pick a favorite! Sounds like you had a wonderful time - a trip I could also take and love! Thank you for joining and always sending such great swaps. I am lucky to have been your partner! xoxo
Response: You're welcome! It's great to be so nicely appreciated!
Comment: Thank you for the wonderful swap. I had so much fun reading why you picked what you picked and this swap brought a smile to my face.
Response: You're welcome. Once I figured out how to keep track of everything I was less stressed and enjoyed myself 😊
Comment: No h envelopes are nicely made, and the PCs are WONDERFUL. That hedgehog one is luscious! Thank you.
Response: You're welcome! I'm so glad you like everything.
Comment: Thank you for the cute package of goodies. I didn't know you could buy plants on Etsy. Now I will be checking them out. I have about 30 African Violets on the North side of my house and they bloom like crazy.
Response: You're welcome. Our Streptocarpus, Cape Primrose aka false African violet just arrived, in perfect condition.
bluerose3 rated for CPG Nov 2023 Stocking Stuffer - US on Nov 15, 2023
Comment: Thank you. Excited to open this. Love that you used a postcard as a tag.
Response: You're welcome. I have a little stack of undersized postcards I save for swap tags. 😊
Comment: Wow, thank you so much for all of the brilliant recipes - me and my cousins are going to be very busy baking in the next few weeks! :) We recently baked 'bara brith' too which is a Welsh sweet bread with tea, mixed fruit and spices, and have also made some Welsh cakes, which could pass as a skillet 'cookie'.
Response: You're so welcome! Would you please share your recipes for Welsh cakes? I haven't made Welsh recipes - that I know of - and would love to try them.
Comment: Thanks for sending so many great cards! I always love getting ones from Yellowstone :)
Response: You're welcome! I would love to *see* Yellowstone one of these days.
sebastian122 rated for KSU: 20/20/20 on Nov 9, 2023
Comment: More Pringles!!! How happy am I?!! Thanks for sharing with me. XOXO
Response: You're welcome. Too bad Pringles aren't as good as the sticker flakes.
captkristi rated for Lots of Stamps on an Envelope #40 on Oct 14, 2023
Comment: Loving this envelope and am currently soaking off the stamps. Thanks so much! I haven't seen that Tom Sawyer stamp before! So cute.
Response: You're welcome. Please let me know how the soaking goes, taking postage stamps off washi tape.
sebastian122 rated for What's mine is yours on Oct 11, 2023
Comment: LOVED everything!! Just a wonderful swap, start to finish. (Those Pringles/HK collab will never leave the house!)
Response: I thought of you when I added them to the order. 8-D
Comment: Thank you so much for all the great postcards and the extra museum one! Love your washi decorated envelope of course!! So many fun designs! Thank you for joining my swap! : )
Response: You're welcome. I'm glad it arrived promptly - I'm heading back east next week.
Comment: I loved the cards thank you!
Response: You're welcome!
Comment: Thank you for all the memo sheets! I enjoy reading all your life updates!
Response: You're welcome. I enjoy writing notes, when I have time.
Comment: This is the most beautiful flamingo and I love these cards! Thank you so much! Happy WPD!
Response: You're so welcome! I enjoy sending those TE postcards.
Comment: LOL, I really wish SB would let hosts manually override partners so you don't get stuck sending to the same person! Thank you for a gorgeous card, a lovely note and of course, adorable kawaii!!:) Hope you are enjoying a yummy Sukkot! I like the tasty holidays the best - e.g., purim, lol!
Response: Sigh... I think any complicated algorithm like saying I'll think twice about assigning you the same partner... is too complicated. Yes, the holidays are lovely.
Comment: What a beautiful card! Happy World Postcard Day, 2023! StarMouse
Response: I'm glad you like it. It seemed perfect for you.
raniheartspaper rated for KSU: It's all... BEARS!! on Sep 29, 2023
Comment: Thank you for all the bear-themed memo sheets and sticker flakes! Love them all!
Response: You're welcome. I'm always happy to have some guidance!
jeka396 rated for Note on a Postalette 11 on Sep 26, 2023
Comment: Thanks so much for the lovely note on a Peanuts postalette with a Peanuts stamp! So well coordinated!
Response: You're welcome. Coordination by USPS. Their stationery always comes with coordinated postage stamps.
Comment: I really liked this pc! It is a fun one! Thanks for sending it! Have a great Fall!
Response: You're welcome. Fall always comes too early here in Minnesota. Lots of leaves ready to rake now.
sebastian122 rated for KSU: Meet me... at the Zoo on Sep 20, 2023
Comment: Matching the washi to the theme is just such a nice touch. Thanks for all the goodies. XOXO
Response: I rise to the challenge!

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anicka22 on Nov 8, 2023:

Mail from you is a treasure. The beautiful envie with the pretty washitape you use, the awesome postcards, the adorable stickersheet and your lovely note! Thank you for this lovely present. Thank you for this happy mail tag!!

Poohtat on Oct 21, 2023:

Thank you for the WW Sept beautiful postcard. I have missed most of the fall colors here in Maine, but luckily my husband took some photos for me. Happy swapping

kiddomerriweather on Oct 17, 2023:

Thank you for the kawaii sticker flakes and the awesome PC's you sent me for my October WW! I'm framing those PC's and hanging them up in my craft room. They are too stinkin' cute! I appreciate you thinking of me.

lovetherain on Oct 17, 2023:

Thank you for all the cute memo sheets and sticker flakes, for the CPS October wishlist! They're all so cute!

Karen07 on Oct 12, 2023:

Thank you so much for the washi covered envie! Beautiful! I really appreciate the great stuff you sent to grant my wishes!

Ikat78 on Oct 10, 2023:

Thank you for the wonderful and sparkly owl postcard! I LOVE it. 💕 I watch the Lincoln Lawyer too. I think I need to watch the newest season still. Thank you for the tv ideas! WW OCT

Highlander18 on Oct 6, 2023:

❤️❤️❤️❤️Awesome cards for October WW. I think I have to keep the amusement park card for Coney Island and maybe later give it to the friend who collects those. All super cards all favs and all new to me. Love the Abe Lincoln one! Your mail art is perfect, too! I tried my hand at it again.

OrigamiGrace on Sep 14, 2023:

Wowee!! Thank you for all the gorgeous Parisian pcs from PC tag in the pfs!! Love them! Lucky you!:) Merci beaucoup!!

Highlander18 on Sep 11, 2023:

❤️❤️❤️ Sept WW - Love all the cards you sent - so very special - the animal one is a hoot. The cards are an awesome addition to my collection. Your outside envie is outstanding. I can never get them straight. ugh!

sebastian122 on Sep 3, 2023:

Your album of washi is MAGNIFICENT! The one below mine is to die for!! Thanks for the link. I'll drool daily, I'm sure.

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