Swap-bot Time: July 13, 2024 7:03 pm


Date Joined: July 22, 2013
Last Online: September 10, 2019
Birthday: December 11
Country: United States

About Me

Hi, everyone! I am looking forward to making new friends here!

I love writing/ receiving letters, and am always looking for new penpals from all over the world! I first started "letter exchange" with my cousin when I was in elementary school off and on. I got my very first "real" penpal around 1990, and never stopped penpalling since then. I always love FBs, Decos and Slams!

I love craft! I love making cards, envelopes, and design my own writing paper at times, using collage and origami. When the weather is cooler, I love doing crochet. Recently, I am getting into crochet projects using plarn (yarn made from recycled plastic bags,) such as weaving baskets. It is a lot of fun!

I just started making ATCs, and am totally addicted! Now I know why I have been holding onto all those tiny piece of paper that are so pretty!

I also make scrapbooks of the vacations I took. I tend to use various tickets, local wrapping papers, random pics from magazines and brochures, and other free/ cheap items, rather than expensive, dainty material from craft stores. So they actually are Smash Books LOL! Amazing, that it is so common/ popular enough to have a specific name!

One of my biggest passion is traveling! I love learning about cultures and languages from various parts of the world. I travel a lot for my work, and I travel some more when I have time and money. I have been to more than 20 countries so far, and over 40 states within the U.S. My ultimate goal is to visit at least 100 countries during my lifetime! I am always interested in learning about different cultures and ideas. My favorite places include (but definitely not limited to) Paris, Budapest, Tokyo, Montreal, New Orleans, and so on... I love just about every big cities in the world. I am a city girl who loves museum, concert, restaurant, bar, and shopping. I have so many places I would love to visit in the future...

I also love taking pictures. Ever since I got my iPod touch about 2 years ago, I have been taking pics of random, everyday things, as well as things that struck me as funny, cool, interesting, weird, or left any other significant impressions.

I live in Philadelphia, PA, with my husband of over ten years. We have no human children, but we have a cat. She is nine years old, a black cat with golden eyes, named Amelie.

I LOVE black cats!

Favorite Music

I listen to just about everything. Whenever I am at home, some kind of music is always playing. I never leave home without my iPod, which contains over 2000 songs!

I listen to European pops most of the time. My fav singers include Mylene Farmer, Patricia Kaas, Alla Pugachova, Laima Vaikule, Sofia Rotaru, Ojos de Brujo, Ute Lemper, Haris Alexiou, and so on.

I love jazz as well. Whenever I am in New Orleans, I end up spending a lot of time at various jazz clubs and also listening to random street musicians at various street corners. I also enjoy classical music and opera, as well as rap!

My fav local bands are Alo! Brasil and Philly Bloco, both mostly play Brazilian style music such as samba, with lots of drum. Whenever they are playing in the area, I am there!

Here are some links to my absolute favorite songs....

Огоньки (Lights) by Laima Vaikule. This is a Russian version. Latvian version is here but the video clip is a lot funnier in Russian version.

Одна калина (A Flower) by Sofia Rotaru. The clip contains great folk-style dance and fantastic costumes!

Sultanas de merkaillo by Ojos de Brujo, a Barcellona-based group that plays "Nuevo Flamenco" style music. The video clip totally appeals to my gypsy soul!

Endless Summer by Oceana. Super-fun video clip that takes you to a trip around the world. It is an official song from the UEFA Eurocup a couple of years ago.

To tango tis Nefelis by Haris Alexiou. A sweet video clip for a beautiful song.

Ohne Dich (Without You) by Rammstein. Absolutely amazing video clip, like a movie.

Sans Logique by Mylène Farmer. The video clip is a ratehr dark/ a bit goth, and it is also like a mini-movie. I also love Beyond My Control, a fantastic song. This video clip is absolutely beautiful, but not exactly G-rated. Please be warned if you are easily offended.

Favorite Books

I love reading! My recent fav writers are Lisa Gardner, John Grisham, James Patterson, Jodi Picoult, Ruth Rendell, Elizabeth Kostova, Anna Gavalda, George Orwell, Oliver Sacks, Irvin Yalom, Keigo Higashino, Miyuki Miyabe, Terry Pratchett, Charles de Lint, and so on, and am always looking for more books to read!

I don't really make distinctions between "grown-up" books vs YA books, as great stories are great stories for me, no matter what the target audience is. Some authors I love that are often classified in YA category are: Suzanne Collins, Ally Condie, Lucy Maud Montgomery, Jane Yolen, J. K. Rowling, and so on.

I am totally addicted to the books by Hugh Howey at the moment! Finished "Sand" series, which was amazing, and just finished the first one of the "Wool" series!!! And there are so many "fan" fictions that take place in the Silo Universe... I am looking forward to the many hours blissfully lost in the deep end of Dystopia LOL!

Movies/ TV

My all-time favorite movie is "Amelie". Other favs are "Black Cat, White Cat" and "Kiki's Delivery Service".

I hardly ever watch TV at home, but I usually try to check the evening news. My husband watches just about any sports, including European Football (soccer) especially British Premier League, so I sometimes join him. When I am in a foreign country, I watch just about anything! TV is like a little window to the society...

Likes/ Loves/ Favs

Fox is my most favorite animal. I collect everything that has fox on it, e.g. magazine clippings (even an ad of something that has fox designs on them,) stickers, postcards, and so on. So- any fox item is greatly appreciated!

I also love fountain pens. I guess you can say I collect them, although it is more like I just accumulate, as there is no theme or focus, other than the fact that I fell in love with them...

Here is a pic of some of my fountain pens.

Random favs

Cute, girly ones...

Red ones

Esterbrooks (vintage from 1940-60's)

I love dip pens as well! This holder is made of Mother-of-Pearl, manufactured sometime in 1890-1910's! Yes, old enough to be a piece of antique, not just vintage!

Other than that...

  • Animal: Cats (especially black cats, but cats in any other colors/ patterns are great as well) Big Cats, Red Pandas, Pandas, Wolves, Marine Mammals, Butterfly
  • Colors: Purple, Pink, Turquoise, Teal, Green, Burgundy
  • Characters: Hello Kitty, Diddl, Moomin (especially Hattifatteners), Miffy (Nijntje), Kutsushita Nyanko, Sentimental Circus, anything by Sanrio and San-X, just about everything kawaii
  • Flowers: Cherry Blossom, Lilac, Rose, Peony, Tulip, Lupine, Lavender, Azalea, Hydrangea, Cosmos
  • Theme: Matryoshka, Airplane, Aerial view, Flying, Travel, Mythological, Metaphysical
  • Motifs: Tarot, Moon, Astronomy
  • Artists: Chagall, Magritte, Tim Burton, Edward Gorey, Goya
  • ATCs! It is so cool to see different style!

Other random favs...

  • Writing Papers
  • Stationery
  • Fountain Pen/ ink
  • Washi tapes
  • Postcards
  • Stickers
  • Good luck symbols from various cultures and beliefs
  • Just about everything and anything that is cute/ kawaii!!!

I would be happy to receive anything that can be used on ATCs. Pretty pieces of paper for background or accent (even tiny, scrap bits,) charms, wood veneer, cut outs, and so on... I have been experimenting with various methods and designs, and am having soooo much fun!

I am addicted to coffee- I especially love flavored coffee, as well as New Orleans style hickory coffee. I usually drink my coffee black, but I also do enjoy cafe au lait as well, if it is exceptionally well-made. I drink a lot of coffee- easily empty out a carafe that contains 10 cups of coffee. I hardly ever drink tea.

I enjoy "adult theme" and nudity as well, although I prefer "classy sensual" or "artistic eroticism" over crude stuff. I, however, do not wish to receive condoms.

I like postcards of almost all kind. I especially like ones with gorgeous scenery, cityscape, beautiful buildings (castle, lighthouse, skyscraper, old houses, museums, and so on,) aerial pics, animal (especially fox,) airplane, flying, sky, cloud, storm, lightning, folktales, traditional folk costumes, cultural events, mythological (fairies, dragons, unicorns, and so on,) artistic (classic as well as contemporary,) interesting ad cards (especially in languages other than English,) and so on.

I prefer to receive my postcards naked unless the swap specifically instructs otherwise. It is so cool to see the traces of journey on the card. I always love beautiful stamps on them, the more the better!

I am not picky at all. I enjoy just about everything that is not on the "dislike" list below...

Dislikes/ Please Do Not Send

I don't like most insects (other than butterflies and ladybugs), realistic snakes ("cute" ones are O.K.), spiders (I am seriously phobic, even to the "cute" ones that are popular in Halloween time,) millipedes, centipedes, and just about everything else that is "creepy- crawly."

Please do not send any condoms, not even the colorful, flavored ones or "fun" patterned ones. I do not wish to receive any feminine hygiene products, underwear (edible or otherwise,) or any other items that seem "too intimate" (I cannot think of what else might be construed as such at this point, but would rather not be in for a nasty surprise... If it seems too intimate, it probably is...)

I do not wish to receive any Jehovah's Witness literature or leaflets about Bible/ Christian beliefs. I don't believe it counts as a "goodie" even when it is a sender's choice. I tend not to like items with Christian/ Bible theme in general. I believe some others would appreciate them a lot more than I do. I, however, enjoy looking at pictures of sacred buildings and symbols from various religions of the world, and learning about the rituals and belief system.

I am not into Power Puff Girls, Simpsons, Dora, X-men, and Spiderman at all.

Favorite Quotes

I collect quotes about flying/ airplanes, and here are a few of my favs.

“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return.” - Leonardo da Vinci

"Both optimists and pessimists contribute to the society. The optimist invents the aeroplane, the pessimist the parachute." - George Bernard Shaw

"After midnight the moon set and I was alone with the stars. I have often said that the lure of flying is the lure of beauty, and I need no other flight to convince me that the reason flyers fly, whether they know it or not, is the esthetic appeal of flying." - Amelia Earhart

"My soul is in the sky." - William Shakespeare

"Oh, I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,

And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunwards I’ve climbed and joined the tumbling mitts

Of sun-split clouds – and done a thousand things

You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung

High in the sunlit silence. Hovering there,

I’ve chased the shouting wind along and flung

My eager craft through footless halls of air,

Up, up the long delirious burning blue

I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace,

Where never lark, or even eagle, flew;

And, while with silent, lifting mind I’ve trod

The high untrespassed sanctity of space,

Put out my hand, and touched the face of god." - John Magee, "High Flight"

Another random fav quote:

"I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had." - Margaret Mead


I always try to aim for the heart by reading my partners' profile carefully. Please do your part as well though, i.e. fill out your profile very well. It is nothing sadder than faced with a profile that is practically empty, blindly send the item(s) that fulfill the requirement, and end up with no heart. How am I supposed to know what you love/ like/ don't like/ hate/ etc. if you don't tell me? Each person is different. I am not a mind reader. I need and appreciate all the hints/ clues/ pointers I can possibly get!

I always send out my swap items before the deadline, usually right after the partners are assigned. USPS, however, is not perfect. If anyone does not receive a swap item from me, please let me know before giving me a low rating. I will do everything in my power to make things right.

I click "Sent" once the items are out of my hands, i.e. in the mailbox or at the post office. Depending on the timing I drop the postcards/ letters in the mailbox, however, they may not get collected until the next business day. Therefore, the "sent date" may not exactly match the date when the mail gets cancelled at the post office, in case it really matters to anyone.

I always try to rate as soon as I get the item in my hands. If I forget to do so, please let me know. Here's a catch though... I travel a lot for work, which means- even when the item is arrived at my place, I may not be there. I do get random vague reports from my husband, like "You got a lot of mail today!", but- that obviously doesn't help me to rate any specific item. So I do have to ask for your patience until I get home...

Also, please make sure to put the swap title and your username, so that I will be able to actually find you!

Oh, No, You Didn't...

I have been resisting to start this category, but it seems like a good way to keep track of the flakers that crossed my way... Hopefully this list won't get any bigger.

@Ktbug77 on Christmas ATC Swap. The host of this swap has disappeared... Kindly angeled by @taeniura

@Ktbug77 on Beginners ATC #5 - Text/Page from a Book. Angeled by the awesome host, @Tiam1980

@MissAppleseed on Remembering A Loved One. This is a particularly sad one to get flaked on... Kindly angeled by @thisismeAXiD

@zbgbmom1001 on quick 5 things letter swap newbie friendly #1 swap. She is currently partially suspended.

@japoshke on Another Penpal Swap!. Kindly angeled by @thisismeAXiD

@YankeeUnicorn on "DIGITAL PHOTO SCAVENGER HUNT #2". She is fully suspended after accumulating 25 "1", amazing...

@luvtopenpal on "DIGITAL PHOTO SCAVENGER HUNT #2". Partially suspended.


@azarialee33 on "COLOR Me A Song"


I saw someone keeping track of the milestones, i.e. number of the hearts, on the profile. I thought it is a super-neat idea, and am shamelessly copying it. Sorry, I don't remember on whose profile it was that I saw... If I figure out who you are, I'd give a proper credit. Please let me know. LOL yes, I love statistics! Numbers tell so many stories to those who are willing to read them....

Received 300th Heart- Jan. 10, 2014 (Out of 357 total ratings, 84.03%)

Received 400th "Five"- Feb. 6, 2014 (338 Hearts, 84.5%)

Completed 300th Swap- Feb. 17, 2014

Received 400th Heart- March 28, 2014 (Out of 467 total ratings, 85.7%)

Received 500th "Five"- May 1, 2014 (429 Hearts, 85.8%)


sockerhamster rated for Fountain Pen Pal - Jan 2015 on Jan 27, 2015
Comment: Thanks for a great letter! :D
Comment: Thanks for all the extra items you included. I hope you had a marvelous trip to Japan!! I love getting foreign phone cards and the USA doesn't have them much anymore. Wish I could give more than one heart!! Thanks again.
Comment: You're a doll. Thank you for the lovely cards of San Fran and the holiday card... Happy Holidays to you and your family as well; good health, peace, joy, and love for 2015
Comment: I have received your beautiful envelope with the card to send on and a great map card. Wow! Thank you so much!!
Comment: thank you. it'll go out the next round
Sarah90 rated for Fountain Pen Pal - Sept 2014 on Sep 17, 2014
Comment: Thanks for the extra post card and I LOVED the envie!!
lavendarcat rated for Fountain Pen Pal - August 2014 on Sep 3, 2014
Comment: Thank you for the lovely letter. :)
Comment: Thanks for the fun historical "extra"! :)
newrule rated for 1 person from 1 Country PC Swap #19 on Aug 18, 2014
Comment: Cool card! Thanks so much.
nyanSan rated for 1 person from 1 Country PC Swap #19 on Aug 6, 2014
Comment: Thanks.
Comment: lovely stamps and postcard.. thank you very much
Comment: Thanks!
Mremptypants rated for Fountain Pen Pal - July 2014 on Jul 10, 2014
Comment: Great letter as usual. I will bee writing back soon
Comment: Love the cartoon envie! And the nice long note, the maps and texts, and the pc's--Very pleasant bit of mail!!! Thanks!
BetsyPreston rated for Fountain Pen Pal - June 2014 on Jun 24, 2014
Comment: You are lovely for sending two letters as my partner without getting a response in between. I will reply to both soon!
Response: LOL glad you got both of my letters. It was funny to get paired up with you right after I wrote to you!
Comment: Thank you for the pretty notecard and the ad card!
Response: You are welcome, glad you liked the ad card! Thank you for the nice comment and the heart!
Comment: Thank you so much for all the sweet extras---straight from my wishlist!
Response: You are welcome! Glad you liked everything! Thank you for the nice comment and the heart! (^^)
GurmCo rated for Write It Loud and Proud! - USA Only on May 23, 2014
Comment: Sorry about the late swap I've been really sick, but I did get your letter. I really enjoyed reading it and learning more about you. I was happy to see that we both like cats and kawaii stuff. I loved the hello kitty paper you wrote your letter on, even though it was pink =P. And I was so happy to get the letter set you sent me. You didn't have to do that but it was such a nice touch. And totally one of my favorite San-X characters. I also loved hearing about your traveling. It sounds like such a blast. I think it would be fun to do a private swap with you because I feel like you deserve some nice presents from me in exchange for such a nice note and extra. Thank you.
Response: No worries, thank you for the nice comment and the heart! I am so sorry to hear that you were sick, and hope you are totally recovered! I am always looking for pen pals, and like to at least introduce myself when opportunities present themselves. Sure, I would be totally up for a private swap! (^^)
shelleym rated for Fountain Pen Pal - May 2014 on May 22, 2014
Comment: FANTASTIC letter! I love the envelope you made, the pics from Japan you sent, and especially all the different pens and inks you used so I could see a sampling. Thanks! I'll be writing back soon.
Response: Thank you for the nice comment and the heart! LOL yea, I LOVE using all different colors... biggest joy of fountain pen for me! It is a lot fun to see all different ink colors others have, but it could be "dangerous" for me as I have soooo many more colors on my "Want list" than I would have had otherwise. I am generally content with samples, but still... they do add up... (^^)

Rating Overview

Overall Hearts Stars Hosted
5.0000 455 1 1
Completed Fives Threes Ones
378 529 0 0
Type 1 Type 2 Type 3 Uncategorized
8 236 134 0
View all

Currently In

  • the user is not currently in any swaps :(

Currently Hosting

  • the user is not hosting any current swaps


Loonstruck on Dec 31, 2016:

I have dropped you from the group Sealed with Love because you haven't logged on or participated in swaps since August 2015. If you decide to come back to Swap-bot and would like to rejoin our group, please let me know!

Whippet on Mar 26, 2016:

Hello Nana! Just checking in to ask how you are doing? I noticed you haven't been on swap - bot since August '2015. Best wishes to you, Kathy

MsRose on May 17, 2014:

Thank you Nana for sending Anne Maire a RAK Birthday card..Hugs Cheryl** :)

Elliepatterson on May 4, 2014:

"I'd join this swap if..." It was a hoot for sure. All I can say is, Unicorns, what unicorns, who is sending unicorns, where did they get them to send, I want a unicorn" LOL. ( Laughing out loud for sure) blessings, p.s. Welcome to SB & Hello! I hope that you will enjoy meeting and making many new friends from all around the world as I have here on SB. :-)

bungaalangalang on Apr 22, 2014:

Hi, thank you for sent me back my postcard for Adventure of Traveling PC :)

Have a nice day!

heart Ima heart

msrhetta on Apr 7, 2014:

Hi Nana,

You did not need to send me anything, I was thrilled to get your happy mail! The origami ATC's are so beautiful! You so should post your art! You did a great job., thank you SOOO much!

tonewadventures on Apr 1, 2014:

Thank you for joining Easy ATC Swap #4

Happy Swapping!

tonewadventures on Apr 1, 2014:

Thank you for joining Easy ATC Swap #3

Happy Swapping!

tonewadventures on Mar 21, 2014:

Thank you for joining Easy ATC Swap #1

Happy Swapping!

Opalsns on Mar 20, 2014:

Hi Nana, i just wanted to say thank you for my butterfly ATC. I love it. I cannot rate you because it doesn't show you as my trading partner. Not sure why. It shpws Jazzmine and Miaangel as the people sening to me..... LOLOL.... and when I checked , your were already rated by 2 people for butterfly. i love it anywayand I loved your little not about hoarding your pretty papers... LOLOL Me too!!. It flew in today and cheered me up from the 12 inches of snow we got last night, that's on top of the 20" we got last time.... I'm ready for spring and this little butterfly took me there today. Patty

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