Guidelines


IMPORTANT! Please visit THIS page about our current status
and limited needs – before reading this page and beginning to make any cards.
READ ME FIRST

 

 

 

 

 

Operation Write Home Guidelines fit into three categories:

1. Safety  

No glitter. Really!  Glitter is a safety hazard for our heroes, so no cards with any glitter that will flake off the card are accepted. Pens that apply glitter that will NOT rub off might be acceptable, but please check your cards by rubbing it with your finger and on a sweater. If it flakes OR rubs off, it will be discarded. Small gems and brads are fine, just not the big thick ones. Before emailing with questions, please read this post to see if it’s already answered.

2. Efficiency

A2 sized cards only, and must include envelopes, tucked properly. 4.25″ x 5.5″ - half a sheet of cardstock – fit the boxes most economically. Two rows of A2 cards work best to get the most cards in each box….more for our heroes to write home on! You can even buy discounted envelopes as an OWH volunteer! Do not send handmade envelopes. Stamp the backs of your cards with our full name. We stamp the backs of cards with our organization name so families know where the card came from. We need your help stamping . . . so much that we’ll send you a stamp for free! Line cards made with dark cardstock. If a pencil won’t show up, add a liner so your cards stay out of the hospital. (Most kraft papers need a liner.) Line one side or two sides – just make sure there’s room to write. Limit multiples to five. This is a change from the past, as we are beginning to right-size OWH for the new deployment environment
Emphasize quality, not quantity. Your card may be the last piece of communication with a family – and remember that many scrapbook these letters. We want them to stand the test of time. Our heroes are worth our very best! With the new deployment environment, we need fewer cards – so pick out and send in only the best for our heroes! Watch the deadlines! Observing deadlines for holiday cards ensures we can get seasonal cards to our heroes in time to mail them back home – and with the need for many less cards in the new deployment environment, please make a small number of holiday cards, then focus more on general cards can be sent at any time of year. Include a packing slip. Please include either our packing slip, or a note with the same information. Please write the card count on the slip! Our shipper must enter your donation into our system for IRS purposes even if you don’t need an emailed receipt. Watch for your E-receipt. Your shipper will email a receipt within two weeks, as our priority is packing boxes.

3. Specific requests by heroes and their families

Use quality supplies. Computer paper or thin designer paper is not adequate for letterwriting when a hero might be using the sand as a “table” . . . so please use good, heavy cardstock for your card bases. Do not use foamies, ittybitty stickers, or gluesticks – they don’t hold up to the rigors of the battlefront. It’s perfectly fine to make fewer cards with better supplies – every card counts! (Children’s AnyHero cards are the exception; foamies are just fine for those!) Some dimension is okay – and is loved. Our heroes don’t have to pay for lettermail, but that doesn’t mean we can go wild with thick layers and embellishments. Save the big vintage buttons and deep 3D embellishments for AnyHero mail that doesn’t have to go through the postal system…we want to be sure your cards make it to their intended destination. Our heroes do comment on the tactile cards, so it’s a balance between reasonable dimension and overdoing it; please do take that into consideration. Watch this video for more information on dimension. Card themes. Remember who’s sending these cards: adults. Please do not send cards with sentiments “to” Daddy or Mommy, no “wish you were here,” or party invitations; and no explicit images or sentiments out of respect for cultures and sensitivities. Halloween cards should be cheerful ones, not scary – lest a card with a skull end up as the final communication by a fallen hero. The best cards for our heroes’ use are actually designs that can be sent at any time of year – they can customize them for any occasion by writing their note inside. NO get well, sympathy, anniversary, or other specific themes are needed, please! See a list of themes here.
Kids MUST make AnyHero cards ONLY. Most children have the “want-to” but not the “able-to” when it comes to making cards that our heroes will want to write home on. Please work with schools and scouts to create AnyHero cards in which they can write letters…our heroes love to receive those! Absolutely NO storebought cards. Neither complete cards, NOR cards repurposing parts of them. For one, our heroes come to us for handmade cards – any storebought ones get set aside, so we no longer include them and reserve our postage costs for handmade creations. Using copyrighted material also endangers our trademark, and we are not able to risk that; use all materials that are made for crafting (no napkins, ads, brochures, catalogs, magazine photos, etc.) Limit photo cards. Your photos may be beautiful, but we’re being overloaded with photo cards, which a number of our heroes have said do not get used. It’s not their photo, so they just aren’t as interested in them – they like the crafty kinds. So please limit any box to no more than 20 photo cards. NO handwritten sentiments. Some of our military wives have shared with us their instant angst when they opened a card, and the first handwriting they saw was the sentiment on the front – by another woman. *gasp* So we no longer send cards with handwritten sentiments on the outside or inside of the card, to keep even one heart from panicking. Your name on the back may be handwritten, and anything on your AnyHero cards may be handwritten.

Download a guidelines brochure

 Questions? Read through the comments below and the answers provided, your question may have been addressed there.

Looking for the shipping address? Click here!


234 Comments

  1. Melinda Samuelson

    Received the stamp I requested, thank you. I can’t wait to participate in this great program. I hope to be sending a shipment of cards soon!!!

  2. Rebecca S.

    Thank you for this information. Some of your links aren’t working.

  3. Sandra Lewis

    I have a stamp that has my name and then the copyright for Stampin’ Up!, the stamp company I use most often. Is it OK to put this on the back of the cards along with the OWH stamp?

  4. It sure is, Sandra! Thanks for asking!

  5. Virginia Luck

    My friend and I use to make blank cards and send them to Landsthul Medical Center for the wounded soldiers to send home to their families. They recently said that they have enough cards. I have been searching the web trying to find another avenue to send them to and found your website. We certainly would like to be part of sending the cards to the military.

  6. Jean Matrisciano

    I just made a bunch of cards and some aren’t A2 but when I read the new guidelines is seems to say that you want A2 only…is that right? I included envelopes with all of my cards, whatever the size.

    • A few large ones are fine – we put them on top of the other cards, and include half a dozen in a box. Focusing on A2 really helps though! Thanks for including envelopes, Jean! :)

      • How about 4-bar sized cards? [They are 3.5x5] I have a bunch that I’d love to donate, but I want to make sure the cards I send will be accepted. :)

        • Hi Kerry! In case you didn’t get your answer yet, I thought I would pop in to help you. Those 4-bar cards would be fine too. Anything up to 4.25 x 5.5 is ideal because we can fit two rows of that size (or smaller) in a flat-rate box from the post office. It’s the most efficient way to get lots of cards to our heroes! Thanks for thinking of OWH for your donations!

  7. Rowan Blalock aka Kittie (may use both interchangably

    I am new and ordered the OWH stamp set for stamping the back of my cards. Some have the OWH logo – your guidelines say no initials if I read it right? Can I use those from the set too? Also, I was going to then hand-write my first name under the logo – is that okay? Want to do this right from the very beginning. Thanks, Ro or Kittie

    • Yes, Kittie, you can sign your name or initials on the back by the OWH logo. You can even write your city and state, if you’d like! The “no handwriting” guideline refers to the front and inside of the cards that they would use to send home. Thanks for checking and thanks for stamping the backs of your cards too! :)

  8. I think the one with just “OWH” is meant to fit inside the circle that says the whole name spelled out, right?

  9. Hi, I’M excited to start making my cards, I have a grandson in the Marines so I know how much these cards mean to them. Thankyou Nancy McMenamy

  10. When you say “quality” as in cardstock what brands do you mean? Can we use card stock with the same weight as Stampin Up, American Crafts or Bazzill, but made by a different company? And what are foamies??
    Thanks:)
    Kathy

    • Hi Kathy, quality just means good heavy stock bases that don’t bend when you stand them up. Foamies are those fun foam stickers usually sold in the kid’s craft section.

  11. Hi Kathy! Yes, SU etc is good – the absolute minimum is the GP110 you can get at Walmart, but only because it’s one cardstock everyone can find.

    Foamies are those little shapes diecut from craft foam – some are adhesive-backed. Most are – yikes – neon! lol.

  12. Oh, no worries! I don’t do those nor do I like neon!! Really can’t embrace this comback at all. This is the third cycle of those colors that were called “psychedelic” in my day. LOL. Thanks for explaining, Sandy:)

  13. Hi, I teach card-making workshops to senior citizens. I’m a total craft addict. Can I make a sticky label for the back of each card with our group name and address (just in case the soldier wants to write to us)?

  14. Another questions, Sandy. I have been making cards for over 20 years. Since I’m been in Florida for 9 years, I have used good quality glue sticks (not from the dollar store) and have never, ever had a problem. Since funds are tight and I buy all the suppies we use, I really question the use of glue sticks. What glue form do you suggest and how much does it cost???? Cannot ask my seniors to buy their own supplies.

    • Madeline, gluesticks are made with a water base. When that water evaporates, the glue is no longer sticky. Even in Florida heat, you may retain more of the water because of the humidity, perhaps, but even when cards travel across the mail to our shippers, we open a box and all the card parts are falling off. So we do ask for no gluesticks, we don’t have time to reglue everything back together.

      Gluesticks, for the number of cards each one makes, are not even actually a good buy.

      Tombow tape runners are also a reasonable option – the runner itself is under $3 at this link, and the refills are only $1.75:
      http://www.discountofficeitems.com/office-supplies/general-supplies/tape-glue-adhesives/adhesive-film-dispensers/tombow-mono-permanent-adhesive-with-dispenser/p13930.html

      Invest in an ATG gun for $25 and a bunch of refills, and you’ll get way more cards out of it than the comparable expenditure in gluesticks.

      • Okay……..no glue sticks. I have a few Scotch double-sided tape dispensers that we can use. I think I read that we don’t “have” to include the envelopes, but I can’t find where I read that. Let me know.

        • Envelopes aren’t required – but it takes our shippers a lot of time to tuck thousands of cards. When it gets busy, cards with no envelopes are set aside til there is time, and that could mean the cards won’t go out til the following season (if holiday) or may wait weeks or months til we get to them.

      • Lucy Solberg

        Sandy, I was told by one of my local shops that sends cards that the best glue is Zip Dry by Becon because it holds up to the heat. Is this true and are there any other liquid glues that are good? I also am using a double sided tape from Scrapbook Adhesives called Crafty Power Tape. Can you tell me if this is good. I have looked for an ATG gun in my area and can’t find one that has double sided tape.

        Thanks,

        Also, I sent 400 cards last Monday to the Midwestern shipper and have not heard if the cards were received. How long does it take to get confirmation and the donation letter?

        Lucy Solberg

        • I generally don’t recommend any liquid adhesive for paper. It’s fine for embellishments, or a little fine detail on a diecut, but between crinkling things up and then letting go when the liquid in the adhesive dries out, it just doesn’t stick. See the comments above for answers about tape runners and ATGs.

          • Both in your reply here and in the adhesives tutorial, you talk about liquid glue crinkling paper. Zip Dry does NOT crinkle. I’ve used every adhesive out there for a church cardmaking ministry – we make hundreds every month and they are very roughly handled as people pull them out of the card sales racks and shove them back in again. We’ve actually tracked which cards use which adhesives and how well they last. Zip Dry has been our answer. We are in the dry air of Colorado and it hasn’t dried out – cards from a year ago are still adhered.

            Honestly, I am thrilled to have found you and have already ordered my stamp, envelopes and I’ve learned the tuck. I’ll be sending a box soon, but…

            1. Are you absolutely sure about Zip Dry in terms of its ability to last? (Because I guarantee that it doesn’t wrinkle paper.) I am in mourning if that is the case as I truly have come to hate tape. Tape is totally unforgiving – you can’t move something around if it’s a little crooked. But I’ll abide by your rules if you truly know that it doesn’t last.

            2. I have a few hundred cards made with Zip Dry – can I still send them?

            (A small caveat: the only paper that I have found that doesn’t do well with Zip Dry is the Stampin’ UP white and vanilla – for some reason, the glue shows through!)

            Thank you for everything you do. This is a truly amazing, well-organized and meaningful endeavor!

      • Water isn’t what makes glue sticks sticky. The chemical components of the glue is what makes it sticky.

  15. What does it mean for the cards to be tucked in the envelopes?

  16. Mary McCarthy

    Are torn pictures, photos from magazines / ads that are incorporated with quality scrap booking items ok? Sometimes just a snippet of a magazine picture conveys so much. My sister and I are artists, so we are not just cutting out ads or photos and slapping them on to card stock. We are creating meaningful vignette/collages of which a magazine photo is one part.

    • Unfortunately, no. Once we stamp Operation Write Home on it, we’re claiming rights to the art – and magazine imagery is not legally released to be used. Please stick with materials made for papercrafting. Thanks!

  17. Mary McCarthy

    Sandy-
    Thanks so much for the quick reply. One more question. what about magazine photos from old National Geographic, Sears catalogs, old textbooks? They are very retro, nostalgic. I think the soldiers would get a kick out of them. and I don’t think anyone would still be pursuing copywrites after 50 years? but whatever you say-you’re the expert.
    Do you have any advice for findng pix’s of people, houses, animals, landscapes that are ok to use? My computer is shot for printing in color, so the Internet clip art is out for me for now.
    But can you buy books of of clip art that is free to use with out copywrite concerns?

    Thanks for answering and thanks for all the massive amounts of work you do to keep OWH up and running.
    Mary

    • Please just don’t, Mary. We have no way of knowing where to draw the lines, so we’ve decided for legal purposes to say no to magazines and catalog images. Please. Some scrapbook papers have images on them, or you can look in our card gallery to see examples of cards that don’t have images on them too.

  18. Rita Gramps

    Is it okay to use wallpaper samples on the cards?

  19. Are you able to use glue dots on the cards? Or just stick to the glue tape stuff? I’m still new to card making but this is something I’m extremely interested especially since my husband is also deployed.

    • Make sure they stick well, Amy – old ones lose their stickiness. And also make sure they’re smaller than what you’re gluing; we have a lot of ribbons held on by gluedots, then the ribbon slides and the gluedot secures the card to the one next to it. :)

  20. Kandy Quesada

    I have your OWH stamp which it use but I also have a made by stamp that has my name and email address on it. Can I use that on the back of the cards?

  21. Is there somewhere I can find a file for the logo to use for printing labels on my printer or printing directly onto the cards? I would love to use your well-designed logo, but don’t want to be in violation of copyright laws if I cut and paste it from somewhere on your site.

  22. Marilyn Healey

    Hi, is it okay to stamp sentiments on the front of the cards – like happy birthday, thinking of you, etc?

  23. Verna Angerhofer

    I did not see this addressed in the comments. I was told when I first started to make cards that using Scor-tape would be acceptable and that was what I used when I was on a design team and they needed samples to display in their shows. It was a great way to hold the card projects together. I don’t have the ATG gun and would prefer to continue to use my Scor Tape or similar type tape like that which I have purchased at Sparkle N Sprinkle. Thanks so much for all the informatiion though.

    • Sure, Verna! ScorTape is awesome, I use it a lot for ribbons etc. It’s pricey compared to the other types, so I typically use ATG tape or tombow runners, but ScorTape is fine if that’s what you like. They make great products!

  24. Kathleen Mansfield

    What size or label number do you
    use with this?

  25. Jacquelyn M. Dyer

    Are staples okay to use?

  26. Janet Abreu

    Are embossing powders ok? Gotcha on the glitter but wondering about using versamark ink and embossing powder on top. Let me know. We have a card party planned in NH on Oct 6 and our goal is 500 holiday cards!! So excited! Janet

  27. i am new to OWH and am excited to send my first box of cards next week. All my cards include envelopes and are tucked. Is it ok to place tucked cards in individual clear poly envelopes? This adds to the cost but insures the cards are received undamaged.

    • Please do not include sleeves; we remove those. Our heroes sometimes need to burn or carry out their garbage from remote locations and we don’t want to add to their trash. Thanks!

  28. How can I get the stamp OWH and is there a charge for it? Is this a necessity on the back of the cards OR can I just use my personal stamp or label?

  29. jackiebaum

    I checked through all the comments and didn’t find any mention of this. I would like to know if we need to put a POSTAGE stamp on the envelopes? I doubt it, but with the “STAMP” word flowing around, I just want to make sure. As I see it, we simply do a proper ‘tuck’ in an envelope, pack ‘em up, add packing slip, and ship to shippers. Right?

    • Correct, no postage needed on individual cards; they mail letters home for free! They do have to fill out customs forms if they’re big fat cards, so that’s one reason we ask they not get too thick. But no regular postal stamps needed – the inky-stamped (or printed) Operation Write Home one goes on the back. :) Good question Jackie!

  30. For the deadlines, can we send holiday-specific cards way before the deadline (I have a great summer card idea but unfortunately, summer is now over :) )

    • We’d love your seasonal cards to start about 3-4 months before the holiday if possible so we don’t hang onto them all year. But that said, new folks often send their entire stash to us, so we end up storing anyway. Our shippers store cards in their homes, so assisting them with waiting is a big help – I have a guest bathtub that fills up with off season cards.

  31. Wow what have I been missing?!? I cannot wait to get started. You mentioned that we are to use quality supplies because computer paper or thin designer paper is not adequate. When lining a dark card are we allowed to use computer paper or thin designer paper?

  32. got my stamo and have 25 cards made and hope to have them sent in December. Thanks to all the participate in this great cause

  33. I have a supply of colored envelopes. Are colored envelopes alright to use, or do you require white only?

  34. Are we allowed to make cards using digital software like Stampin’ Up!’s My Digital Studio? It’s the same artwork and user policy as the actual stamps, but everything is created on the computer.

    • Yes, as long as they “look” handmade. Some folks want to do it all on one layer with digital embellishments, and our heroes think they’re storebought and only use the handmade. :)

  35. Well, that would totally defeat the purpose. Handmade or hybrid it is. Thanks!

  36. Can we use a glue gun on the embellishments to adhere them to the card?

    • I guess you could, but there’s plenty of less clunky adhesives that work great – glue guns would be overkill, I think…Tombow has a liquid adhesive that’s great, and the Scotch Quick Dry is great too and has a nice tiny nib.

      • I was thinking if I were to use those very tiny flowers(are those allowed:)? I would use a very small amount of hotglue on them, but don’t necessarily have to use hotglue, just used to using that sometimes on my embellishments instead of glue dots. So can I use Aleenes tacky glue to adhere those as well as other embellishments instead of the hotglue? Thanks :)

        • Yes Aleenes works fine too. Just make sure they’re pretty flat flowers; some folks send the ones that are hard, like little rocks – and those punch holes in envelopes as they go through the post office. Thanks Katie!

    • Just FYI:
      Glue from a hot glue gun remelts when it gets hot. Living in the Arizona heat (and the Middle East can be hotter), I almost never use a glue gun because of this. When that glue melts and then re-cools, it can make an awful mess.

  37. Evelyn Matthews

    I know glitter is not allowed but what about heat embossing?

    • Heat embossing is fine, Evelyn, as long as the embossing powder you choose doesn’t contain glitter.

  38. Deborah C. Adams

    I am new to this, am about to mail off my first batch of cards, hope they are acceptable. There are some with a little glitter glue (good quality, only use Stickles or Martha Stewart), did the rub off test, before packing. One question, what does “properly tucked” mean, does that mean fully in the envelope? Again, hope all of my cards are acceptable, but, if not, please let me know, I will correct for next time. Thank you for this opportunity to participated in this wonderful effort and pursue one of my passions at the same time.

  39. Judy Scritsmier

    This is fantastic. We just sent a bunch of card in the Christmas boxes but are on our way to making many more. We will follow the guidelines and my whole card making class will participate!! Fantastic!

  40. I received a message from OWH that Valentine Cards were the project at this time. Not aware that you were still accepting Christmas cards. Please advise what cards that are needed at this time.
    Thank you

  41. Diane Grooters

    My son is in Afghanistan and three of the letters he has sent home are on the beautiful cards with your stamp on the back. Thanks so much. I have made cards for over 20 years and will be sending some your way soon. I already ordered the stamp–and have learned much from reading all the correspondence on this page.
    Diane
    Orange, Texas

  42. Hi Sandy!
    I found your website through Pinterest. I’m a consultant for Close to My Heart and I’m so excited to share this project with my customers! I’m ordering the stamp and envelopes and will collect cards from my customers at regular intervals. I’m also a teacher, so I can collect AnyHero letters from them. To learn everything I could about OWH, I’m reading everything on your website! I wanted to let know about a broken link on the “Our Heroes” page. It’s the link at the very bottom of the page. Thanks so much for your dedication!
    Jacquelynn
    Centennial, CO

  43. Leah Hileman

    Hello Sandy, I just heard about this site over my winter break and I’m working on getting a group of college girls together to make cards. I’ve read that it is not ok to use magazine/catalog photos in our cards, but is it ok to use photos we have taken ourselves? I do a lot of traveling and enjoy using my own photos of landscapes as postcards and such for my friends. If it is possible for me to incorporate such photos into the cards I make I would love to. Thanks for your time!

    • As long as they’re adhered onto cardstock, layered, embellished or something. If they’re just printed on cardstock our heroes don’t recognize them as handmade. In general when using travel photos, cards would be from someone going to that location and sending a “postcard” type of card home. Our heroes won’t be sending cards from the Grand Canyon or Washington Monument, so please don’t use those types of vacation images.

  44. Dianne Baldwin

    Can you please tell me what label template size you use. When I print mine out the first few are fine but then they don’t print in the label correctly for the rest of the sheet? Thanking you in advance for your response.

  45. I’m new and so excited to participate. My question is that I have told all my students and customers to never have a naked envelope. So, are we allowed to stamp on the lower left of the envelopes?

  46. Carol Brown

    I have been given a lot of 4″ x 5 1/2″ blank cards with envelopes. Are these ok to use?

    • Cora Jean

      The cards need to fit in an A2 envelope. If your card is a little big you can always trim it a little.

  47. Trish Reddick

    My understanding is that any hero mail does not need envelopes, just placed in a ziplock bag. Is this still true. I am happy to add envelopes.

  48. Cora Jean

    Uh Oh! I don’t know if I should have posted a reply here. Sorry Sandy. I can’t see where I can delete my responses.

  49. Luanne K

    I have the DEADLINES printed out but is there any rule about how AHEAD I can send a themed card? I have some Christmas that missed the deadline…when can I send those for next Christmas?

  50. Joyce Grinnell

    I used the Sakura clear star pen. It looks like glitter but it isn’t, but it does wipe off a little. Can I send those cards or not?

    • If it comes off, no – but lots of folks put a little Glossy Accents over a flower center with whatever glitter product they use, and that seals it in just perfect. :)

  51. I, too, prefer to put my cards in sleeves, as it keeps them clean and together. A soldier I sent cards to picked out 12, one for each month he was deployed, and mentioned how nice that was. The cards can be mailed home in the sleeves as well, correct?

    • We remove all sleeves. Many of our units are remote and have to pack out or burn their trash, so we do not wish to create problems for them. It takes our shippers a lot of time to remove sleeves, so we ask you not to send cards in with them.

  52. Ok I haven’t seen this addressed yet. Besides paper crafting I also do cross-stitch and I have several patterns for cards. As long as they are A2 sized are they OK? I don’t think they’d be so bulky with the fabric than some of the other scrappy embellishments.

    • While they wouldn’t be bulky, we have had cards with fabric fall apart – fabric’s not really made to glue onto cards, and with all the handling they get, we don’t recommend it.

  53. Lisa King Boyle

    SANDY. I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO KEEP UP WITH ALL THE INFO. LISTED ABOVE BUT I AM BEDRIDDEN. WITH SEVERE MIGRAINES AND SO I CAN ONLY DO A FEW CARDS AT A TIME AND I AM ONLY ABLE TO READ A SMALL AMT. AT A TIME… I AM NOT SURE WHAT YOU MEAN BY PACKING SLIPS WITH THE CARDS. IS IT OKAY JUST TO WRITE THE NUMBER OF CARDS AND TO WHOM? I AM AS NEW MEMBER AND AM STILL WAITING FOR MY STAMP…. ALSO I THOUGHT I HEARD SOMETHING ABOUT ADDING THE MONEY FOR SOMETHING WITH TH ED CARDS…WE DON.T NEED TO SEND MONEY WITH THE CARDS DO WE? AND ONE MORE . ? FOR NOW DO YOU STILL HAVE FREE STAMPS? THANK YOU AND BLESS YOU I CAN.T WAIT TO SEND SOME…SHOOT ONE MORE.CA.N WE SEND LIKE 10 CARDS OR SO AND CAN THEY BE MAILED IN ANYTHING WE HAV F2F E AVAILABL? THANK YOU AND GOD BLESS YOU. LISA

    • You can send any quantity at any time. Funds are helpful but not required. A packing slip is needed so we can credit you with cards, but you can write the same info on a piece of paper – name, address, email, quantity of cards. If you ordered the stamp from the free tab, that’s the only free one we have available.

  54. hi there i would love to be a part of this would love one of your
    Stamps

  55. Debbie G

    I was wondering if brads from Stampin Up can be used or are they too bulky?

  56. Rosemary J

    I thought I read somewhere that I would hear when you receive my cards. I have now sent 2 packages of cards and nothing. Just hoping they got where they belonged. One was in for the Mar. 30th deadline and the next was for Apr. 30th. Just wondering.

    • Sandy

      If your email address wasn’t readable on the packing slip, that could be why – please email your shipper with the correct address and she can re-send.

  57. I was reading the guidelines regarding embellishments and was wondering about pop-dots (dimensionals) and if I could make some spinner cards (they have pop dots and a little thing that spins). Also wondering if I could make cards with action wobbles. I have made both the spinner and action wobble cards for many children, and they just love them. I have had no issues with the post office getting them to their destinations but wanted to double check with you before I make them.

    • Please be very careful with things like spinners and adding lots of dimension. We always stay shirt-button thick, not vintage-button thick. While some POs process thick mail fine, some do not – and then our hero’s card may not get to the family. That’s more important than getting lots of dimension on a card :)

  58. Along with the very-understandable need to avoid glitter – what about the new trend of sequins? I adhere with Glossy Accents – but I am still thinking it would be safer NOT to use sequins? What do you think?

  59. Debbie Fisher

    I have cards ready to send, but don’t have a stamp to stamp the back. Do I need to wait until I receive it? also I live 100 miles from KS, but I’m to send to WA since I am on the West side of the Miss. River? Just want to make sure I am doing this right. It’s been a LONG time since I’ve sent cards and the rules are a lot different, so don’t want to make more work for you all.

    • Your stamp is going to get to you pretty quick, Dixie’s good! And you can send to Kris if you need to, we’re not legalisitic about it. Flat rate goes the same price to whereever, but if it’s a smaller or larger package it would cost more for WA.

  60. Janice

    I love this idea and would like to help out, but I have a few questions. If I buy a digital scrapbooking kit, can I use that? I would print the papers and maybe some flowers or whatever the kit them is. Also, do you know if the brand Colorcopia Colored Pencils work with your baby oil technique for coloring? I have a few stamps that I would like to color and thinking of picking up some baby oil. I’m waiting for my stamp and getting very excited!

  61. Paige Hereford

    I just sent my first box of cards. I fit them into a small flat rate box, but I had to wrap tape around the box to make sure it would stay closed. (I really filled it!) As my daughter looked at it, she pointed out that I was making it hard for you to get into the box. Sorry for that in advance, Sandy! You guys are the best. I’m loving everything I’m learning on OWHtv.

  62. Chris Strong

    Can we use honeycomb paper for a pop up on the inside of a card for a hero to send back home?

  63. Kit muth

    Exactly what kind of glue is acceptable for use? Which brand works best?

  64. Verna Angerhofer

    Can we computer generate sayings if we can’t find an appropriate one for our card design?

    • You can – but it’s hard to make computer type look nice. Companies have typographers who design sayings, that’s why stamps look so nice. We get a lot of really terrible looking sentiments on otherwise nice cards.

  65. Verna Angerhofer

    Well, sorry to hear that. I thought the card looked pretty good myself, but if you don’t want a computer generated saying, it won’t really look very great with a non-related saying to the subject matter. I made a card with a little soldier from Inspired Stamps but they didn’t have a saying like I wanted. So I simply made one with a font that said “Happy Birthday Little Hero”. Do you know of a saying that might work for it then from a stamp company?

  66. Pat Eyerly

    SU Whisper WHite is not heavy enough for a card base. What is a white cardstock that is heavy enough to stand alone? We’ve been looking long and hard.

    • Kristine

      You can find 110 lb Georgia Pacific cardstock at Wal-mart. Staples and other office supply stores carry 110 lb cardstock as well. Gina K and Papertrey ink have good quality cardstock as well. Just make sure it is the heavy cardstock, not layering weight.

  67. I keep finding new links and pages to read – yes, I am new to OWH. I was so glad to find the link to the page where you can download printable logos. I have already made up my own labels page for 80 per sheet but then I accidentally printed them off in black and white. I was going to throw the entire sheet away thinking I could not use them. Now, I find that black and white are O.K. Thanks – I hate wasting ink and labels.

  68. Amelia

    What is the shipping address for Australian’s send to the USA?

    • Kristine

      Amelia, I would check with your postal service and send it to the shipper that would cost the least. Either shipper would be happy to have your cards!

    • My guess is the Washington address is closer so will likely be cheaper…

  69. Charmaine

    I have skimmed over all these questions and see a lot about adhesives. But I don’t see if I can include ribbon and/or buttons? I am currently working on generic birthday cards and was trying to make them as “safe” for our soldiers as possible. And if I am to understand correctly I am to keep units of the same kind to just 30 units of the same design of card, even if it is birthday? I would think you would need an unlimited supply of birthday cards, so I just wanted to double double check. I will order a stamp soon.
    thank you

    • Ribbon is fine – try to make it as flat as possible, sometimes the big knots in a bow can be as lumpy as a big button. And the very small shirt buttons are fine; the vintage buttons aren’t, or big sweater-sized ones. We need to keep the huge lumps out of our cards. And no we do not need an unlimited birthday card supply; we get the most of them, and could use general cards more. A person celebrates a birthday once a year, but our heroes want to write home every month or even every week – so we need that many more times the cards with love, miss you, and thinking of you sentiments.

  70. Brenda Fent

    Can we just use OWH on the back of the cards or does it have to be written out?

  71. Judy Mable

    Can I use a metallic gel pen to embellish if it doesn’t rub off?
    Second, I’d like to use pages from a scrapbooking calendar which was sold to be cropped after you tear off each date page to make cards. It was made by Accord Publishing. Is this a violation of your policies? Thank you for your efforts

    • Judy, metallic pen is ok if it stays put! :)
      As for the calendar pages, you can use them for your own cards – but depending on what the pages look like, we’ve seen a lot that end up looking like storebought cards. Our heroes love the look of handmade and don’t use ones they *think* are storebought (even when we as crafters may know there was hand-work done), so make sure they fit within that. Thanks!

  72. Not sure if I’ve just missed this or not. With any hero cards, what are the guidelines for them? Same A2 size or are different sizes ok? Do we seal the envelope? Include our name? If there’s a link that addresses this, I’d be glad to check it out. Just not sure where to go. Thanks!

  73. Carol Stalter

    Do the troops in the US get cards also or just the ones overseas? Since so many have been brought home I was wondering if the need was still as great for cards to those overseas. I just learned of this great organization a really want to participate. I’ve made cards for years and love the thought of sending them to our troops. I have a step daughter in the service and a nephew. I will request my stamp today. Thank you for all you do!

    • We only serve the deployed at this time – lots of reasons, but we have our hands full, even with some coming home. We have people all over the world all the time. Eventually if we get enough AnyHero mail we want to start serving the wounded warriors and veterans here at home with those, but that won’t happen til we have more letters than we need to send overseas.

      • Marsha F.

        I too an working towards a Masters degree in counseling and wish to work with veterans with PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injuries. It would be wonderful to be able to have Any Hero cards to give them on occasion.

  74. I left a comment on your site about two years ago thanking you for all that you did for us- we loved the cards and I sent a card to each of my three children once a week for the entire year. It is really special to go back and have a journal for the year in such a beautiful way. If ever there was a time where there was a surplus of cards, an idea is maybe to have them sent to Service members with just a little note inside that says that we appreciated and still appreciate what you do. When you are deployed, you are flooded with “thank yous”, accolades, and kind gestures (well from most), however, when you come home, the thanks and “Adda Boys” slowly diminish. Service members that joined later into the war never had a chance to feel that special sense of pride/accomplishment/service. I would be more than happy to pass out cards to units and Veterans I work with as the Suicide Prevention Program Manager. As much passion as I have for being a Soldier I have for taking care of Soldiers. I want Service members to feel that sense of importance to others that I was able at one time to feel, even if they were not “privileged” enough to get sand in their boots. I also don’t want to forget the wounded, especially if their wounds cannot be seen by the naked eye. A thank you card, with a heartfelt note may just make a dark day a little brighter. If ever I can be of help, please let me know. And again, thanks to you all for all that you do!

    • Thank you so much for your service, Kelli! My hopes are that we can grow the AnyHero program big enough that we can begin to send them to veterans and the wounded…I’ll definitely be contacting you!
      -Sandy, Exec Director

  75. Newbie to OWH and excited to participate. I have some questions. I use my cameo and my cricut a lot to make die cut embellishments as well as die cut backgrounds. Is it okay for me to use ‘lace-y’ backgrounds on my cards? Also can I use brads and eyelets?
    Thanks

    • Yes to all the above questions. And welcome to OWH. Many of the deployed are female and I’m sure they would enjoy the lacy backgrounds. And who knows, maybe some dude will enjoy sending one to his wife or girlfriend or whatever. Have fun!

      • Great. I am so glad to hear that. I just received my new Anna Griffin holiday embossing folders and I just can’t wait to put them to good use.

    • Yes, just make sure they’re well-adhered and the glue doesn’t make the front of the card sticky. We get lots that stick together through all the travel if the excess adhesive is still there. Brads and eyelets are fine – just not the uber thick brads. Just the normal small ones. Welcome!

      • Sounds good…No worry with them sticking together (i use a xyron..lol). I know exactly what u mean as it has happened to me before.

  76. judy hill

    DO WE STAMP A SENTIMENTINSIDE THE CARD- SUCH AS MERRY CHRISTMS, ETC.- OR DO WE LEAVE THE INSIDE CLEAR?? THANKS FOR THE WORK YOU DO AND LOVE MAKING THE CARDS.

  77. Just wanted to say “THANK YOU” to all the people who are making cards for our military. My son-in-law and daughter are both overseas and they send many cards home to us. I was wondering where they got the beautiful, funny cards and now I know. It means a whole lot to all of us. I get 3 or 4 cards a week and my grandkids get them every day from their parents. It means so much. THANK YOU!!!

  78. I have some wine and friendship stamps – can I use them?

    • I would recommend against it. For one, we can’t send alcohol-related cards to countries where that’s offensive. And beware of making too many friendship cards; these are mostly men sending cards, they’re typically not girlfriend-to-girlfriend types. :)

  79. Can we still send xmas cards?

  80. OK, just watched one of the recent videos and you talked about not using plastic bags or peanuts. I just mailed my Xmas cards and have always put things in bags. Sorry!! Would you recommend tissue paper for packing and cushioning the cards. Thanks.

    • I think the idea is that Sandy would rather not have any packing material as it piles up and she has to worry about disposing of it all. Fill in the extra space with cards or Any Hero mail, or use a smaller package. Hope this helps.

    • Sandy Allnock

      The less packing material the better; if you can find a right-sized box it helps so I don’t have to make trips to the dump with all the trash and recycling :)

  81. Hello one part says “GLITTER BAND” other part says Stickles and pen okay…I’m a touch confused can you help please.

    • If you read the complete sentences in the guideline, SOMETIMES stickles stays put. You have to test it out yourself. If anything comes off, you can’t send it. I don’t know why sometimes it does flake off and sometimes it doesn’t…..most of the time it does flake off. Your best bet is not to use it at all and then you don’t need to wonder.

  82. Just saw the news tonight about OWH and am considering participating in this awesome mission for our Heroes! Thank you all so much for all you are doing and the detail with which you are covering the info we need to know to contribute.

    My question is — I have some Biblical sayings rubber stamps — for example, Trust in the Lord with all thine heart. Provers 3:5. Would something like this be appropriate? Or not?

  83. Dee DiGiambattista

    I’m so excited to start making cards for this wonderful program for our soldiers. As soon as I leave this comment I will order my stamp, I’ve watched Sandy’s Copic video’s and have been a fan of her’s. I’m honored to help our troops.

  84. Deborah C. Adams

    I have several questions regarding envelopes, Please excuse if they were asked and answered above. (I scanned and did not see them addressed). 1. If the cards are the size recommended, is it OK for the envelopes to be larger for a not so tight fit?, and 2. Can the envelopes be decorated to match the card as long as there is adequate space for addressing and the envelope meets the criteria of no glitter, loose embellishments, etc.? Thank you.

  85. Marianne Hutchinson

    I love making stitched -on-paper cards and their angel policy is that you can use them as long as you put their little lable on it. are these still copyright no-no’s?

  86. Sounds like something you can use.

  87. Barbara Lindsay

    I made one card of each stencil I have and then scanned them so that I had them for future cards. Is it acceptable to send this type of card? I found your organization through one of the authors that I read and am enjoying making all the cards that I have gotten inspired by on Pinterest. Makes my husband happy since he sees all the supplies I have and am getting use out of! Anything to make the hubby happy, right? Thank you for all that you do.

  88. Leslie Zeigler

    I am really excited to do this! I support the Warfighter as my full time job and this is right up my alley! I can’t wait to get started!

  89. Welcome to the OWH family, Leslie. You will find this the most amazing bunch of people – always willing to give advice or a helping hand. Have fun!

  90. If our card bases are a light kraft, can we send matching envelopes or do they have to be white? Ready to send my western cards. I did not see the colored envelope question previously, sorry if this is redundant.

  91. I have always put a white layer (4″ x 5 1/4″) on the inside of a non-white base card, but now I’m thinking that by “liner” you mean a full-sized (4″ x 10 1/2″) layer — either glued on the full inside or folded and glued only to the bottom. Which way would be more correct? I’m getting ready to send in a box of cards and wanted to make sure I was doing it correctly.

    • I think either way is O.K. I personally use the full-sized (folded in half) to give the sender more room to write a letter, if he/she wants, rather than just a note. Hope this helps.

  92. I think either way is O.K. I personally use the full-sized (folded in half) to give the sender more room to write a letter, if he/she wants, rather than just a note. Hope this helps.

  93. Laura Weinfurtner

    Is there a group around Spokzne Wa?

  94. geraldine quesenberry

    Thank you for the opportunity to give back. I really like the idea of the I miss you cards, but I cannot find aI miss you stamp. Any ideas where I can find one.

    • Mark’s Finest Papers has a set of stamps called “I Need a Vacation.” One of the stamps on the set is “Miss You.” It’s the one I use the most for OWH cards.

    • Most of mine have come from Hobby Lobby (clearance bin), Michael’s ( $2.00 bin) or JoAnne’s. I also generate miss you sentiments on the computer. Good luck.

    • geraldine quesenberry

      thank you so much for this. i will definitely check these places out.

  95. I’m making some children’s birthday cards to go in a shipment. Do I leave the inside blank or can I stamp them? I think blank would be best so as to have more room to write on. I’m new here and any advise will be appreciated.

    • It depends on what you stamp, I would think. As long as there is plenty of room to still write inside, I think a small stamp would be O.K. But the whole purpose is to allow the sender to write a note or a letter. Hope this helps.

  96. Thank you Jill. I want to do things right. I take pride in my cards and I get alot of ideas from Pinterest. I am also involved with Stampin Up. I’m just now getting started on some cards so it will be awhile before I can send some to Operation Write Home. I did send a box some years back of some that I had come up with. I’m sure they were not quite what was required but they were good quality. I was just getting started making cards and had alot that I did not know what to do with when I found the Operation Write Home site. I also just ordered a stamp from Stampers Best and it came the other day with the free Operation Write Home stamp for the back of the card. Can I also use my Stampin Up stamp that has my name on it for the back of the card? It say Hand Stamped by Pat on it. As you can see I have alot of questions. Thanks.

    • Yes, you certainly can. The OWH stamp goes first, then any personal info you want to include. I put my name and email address on all my cards. I frequently hear from the person who sends the cards as well as the family members who receive them. Have fun!

  97. And please ask all the questions you want. These are great people involved in OWH and they are more than willing to share their tips and helpful hints. Ask away!

  98. Thanks Jill. I’m working on some cards now and I did see where stick glue is not a good choice for holding the cards together. What about double sided tape? I have played around with that and it seems to work. I also use the little glue pens that I get at Michael’s and Hobby Lobby. I also tried using my little Operation Write Home stamp this morning and it will not adhere to the clear block. I used some tacky glue that I have used in the past when removing stamps from wood blocks to make them more like a clear stamp. It has to dry for about a day before using

  99. I use Scor Tape a lot but not sure about any glue pens as I don’t think they are as stable in the different environments. And the ATC gun is great too. I have a small Scotch pink one.

    I could have added my OWH logo image to a EZ mount type of padding to make it work but instead I added my Operation Write Home stamp to a small homemade wooden block and stuck it in a special place along with some pre-stamped OWH logos ready to put on cards which were on a sticker paper similar to address labels. That way they work well on darker cards as well as light colored card stocks. Either method of adding your image will work well.

    I also heard of people just using double stick tape to hold the logo stamp on to an acrylic block. When the stickiness of the tape was not good anymore they simply removed it and replaced it to hold it on again for another stamping session.

  100. Thanks Verna. I know what you are talking about with the ATC gun, the pink one. I’ve seen it and several of the girls I work with in a scrap book club use it. The larger one is rather expensive at Michael’s and Hobby Lobby, 40.00 plus I think and I have not bought one yet. I use the little ones that you get and I am forever buying refills so I’m sure I will be getting a larger one soon. Where do you get the pre stamped OWH labels. That might be an idea. I maybe should wait til I get this ATC gun before making anymore cards. I do want them to be right and not lose any of their parts.

  101. Ditto on everything Verna said. Altho the ATG guns are expensive, with a coupon, they become much more affordable. And Lisa Oliver orders refills in bulk that she lets us in on form time to time. I waited a while before I bought my ATG gun and wish I had done so at the beginning of my OWH journey. WELL worth the investment.
    I stuck my OWH stamp onto my clear block with the Tombow tape runner and it has held for many a month now.
    I, too, made sheets of the OWH logo on return address labels and use those when I make black base cards. I just cut and pasted off the OWH web site (hope this was O.K.) Hope all this helps.

  102. I had some plain address labels and I just stamped up a whole sheet at once so they were handy for when I needed them. It was really easy with the OWH stamp. They fit right on them. And, my labels I picked up at a dollar store so they were really reasonable. But I like Jill’s idea too. In fact, I might be wrong but thought there was a sheet one could print out, but maybe that was the information sheet I was thinking of.

    • I think there is a sheet you can download, but if I remember correctly, it was for larger labels than I had on hand. I also remembered something when I was making cards just now – I stamp the OWH
      logo on the back of my black cards using a silver ink pad. Works great!

  103. I can try silver ink. I did use white ink before too. Well, if one had the right size labels then the download would work great too. I never looked it over to see what size it took, but did see it on the website.

  104. Ambil

    Hi, English is not my mother tongue language, so I just want to make sure – should I send the cards to yhe shipping address of Operation Write Home?

  105. Yes, all cards go through Sandy in WA. It sounds like you are new to OWH. Welcome to the family.

  106. I was wondering this too. I’m wondering if I could send a few sample cards to Sandi to see if they pass inspection before I make up a bunch. I’ve got to get some scor tape or one of those ATG guns. I live on Social Security and I have to watch my spending. I want my cards to be the best quality as possible.

    • Welcome, Pat, to the OWH family. As you buy supplies, remember to use coupons. Michael’s, Hobby Lobby and JoAnne’s always have 40% off coupons available. Michael’s and JoAnne’s will honor competitors coupons, altho HL will not. I buy a lot of my papers at Tuesday Morning, if you have one available. Good quality for great prices. However, they are a hit and miss type of store that do not stock craft supplies on a regular basis. But, when I find something there, it is a good deal. If you are using good adhesive (see the tutorial on the OWH guideline page) and follow all the guidelines for these cards, I am sure they are wonderful and will be more than acceptable. Glad to have you join the group!

  107. Thanks Jill for the info. I do shop a lot at Michael’s and HL, I do use the coupons. We also have a Tuesday Morning here in town. In fact it is beside the old HL building. They just built and opened a new HL, bigger and better. I’ve never been to Tuesday Morning but my soon to be daughter in law likes to go there. I will have to check it out.

  108. geraldine quesenberry

    I am definitely new to owh!! i have made cards in the past for another organization but you seem to have so many more rules. i would just package them up and send them in. i get a little confused about the different themes so i keep looking at your videos. i am slowly but surely learning. i am 72 yrs old and not as swift as i use to be. lol. it will be interesting to see what your thoughts about my cards will be. i am going to send about 15 in to get your feedback and any thoughts on what i could do better. geraldine

  109. Geraldine, I am new to OWH too. I think your idea of sending in about 15 cards to get Sandi’s input is a good idea. I may do that too. Also Jill, I have not found the video for the guidelines, can you direct me to it?

    • Sorry – it was not a video, but the guidelines listed above on this page. Sorry I confused you.

  110. geraldine quesenberry

    pat, thank you for your thoughts. i truly am enjoying making these cards. it has opened up a new creative
    venue for my cards. i am going to put them in the mail next monday after reviewing the guidelines for mailing. i am so happy to be able to give back to our american heroes.

  111. I have a question on the you tube videos. I try to watch some of them and then my sound goes off. My son says I’m doing something to make it go off and he showed me last night what to do and I did what he said and I still do not have sound. Any ideas on a fix for this. He is at work and I can’t just call him for something like this.

  112. I figured it out. But I have another question. Where do I find the newest videos? I’ve picked up on that Sandy does a every Thurs. video. I have not found that yet on you tube.

  113. Most of the videos that I have seen so far have been in 2011 and 2012. Haven’t seen any current ones.

    • Pat, so many times I go to YouTube, put OWHtv in the search box, and only get a list of old videos like you do. Try this trick – if there’s a button called “channel” under the description of the first video listed, click on that. It’ll take you to the OWHtv channel page. Click on “Subscribe” over to the right. You need a (free !) account in order to do that, I think. Then before you watch any videos, bookmark the channel page in your browser and put it on the top of your bookmark list so you don’t have to go through this each time.

      Then on the channel’s page, scroll down to see how it’s organized. You’ll see What to Watch Next, Recent Activity, You Recently Watched, Sandy’s Other Channel at the top. Then down farther the page all videos are in categories, such as Unboxing, Casual Friday, etc. It shows only four videos in each category, but note the arrow to the right to scroll through many more. This organization is really helpful! Have fun exploring!

      • Actually, there isn’t really a “channel button”; it’s the poster’s name and the number of videos they have posted. If you want to view the “helpful organization” ElsieB mentioned, the click the name of the poster (in this case, Operation Write Home). If you want to view ALL the recent videos in one place, you can click the number of videos instead (right now it says 376 videos)

  114. karenladd

    I have reams of lightweight card stock (67 lb) that by itself isn’t quite thick enough for OWH cards and I thought that I would not be able to use them except to stamp images on and mount on heavier card bases. Then I figured out a way to make good use of these lighter weights and still meet the guidelines. I take a full sheet of card stock and fold it in half. I open it up and use adhesive to adhere the two sides together. Then I score and fold in half again to make a standard A2 sized card. I now have a card base that is double the weight of the original card stock. I still don’t use anything lighter than 67 weight because that would be too flimsy…so I just use those as backgrounds that i adhere to my regular card bases.

    I’m sure that others have the lighter weight card stock that they’ve purchased over the years for scrapbook mats and card elements and now you can turn them into nice solid card bases with a little tape runner!

  115. Hey
    I was wondering if I might be able to request a stamp please . My daughter n law and I are wanting to put together some cards for our heroes too.
    Thank you

    • Here is the link to where you can order your stamp. Although it says it is free, OWH recently had to start charging a nominal fee to cover the cost. You can print an OWH label and stick that on the back of your cards or you can run the card stock through your printer and have it place the OWH logo on the backs for you while you are waiting for your stamp to arrive. Welcome to the OWH family!

      http://operationwritehome.org/free/

  116. pat, i am busy making cards for the soldiers to send home to their children. i put a flat metal charm on 2 of them that the kids can take off and wear. my husband questioned whether this would go through the mail. is this o.k.? i hope so. They are so cute and will bring a smile to their little faces. thanks. Geraldine Quesenberry

    • Geraldine, I sent you a message on Facebook which went to your “Other” folder.
      Elsie

  117. Geraldine Quesenberry

    elsie, i am sorry. but i could not find the message you sent to me on facebook. can you reply here? thank you.

    • Geraldine, it was a message completely unrelated to OWH, so email me at LC879 at yahoo dot com. Thanks.

  118. Debby Vick

    I wanted to know if Washi Tape can be used as an embellishment for the front of the cards?

    • Yes, it is. I usually wrap the ends around the back of the card to tape it down securely. But, it can be used.

  119. Juanita

    I am so excited to make cards for our troops, I have already made over ten dozen cards waiting for my stamp to arrive. I do have a few a questions though. Should I put each card with an envelope? Should I package each design together or should I seperate them into packages of one of each so that there are more packages? Most of the cards are blank inside so do they need to be individually examined?

    • This turned out to be a book…sorry about that!

      I see your comment is on the Guidelines page, so scroll up to “#2 – Efficiency” on that page to read that yes, each card needs an envelope. Here — http://operationwritehome.org/brochure-with-the-tuck-and-more/ — is a link to how to tuck each card properly into its envelope. This is called the Tuck 2.0, and since the flap is inside the card instead of hanging off behind, it keeps the flap from knocking off embellishments from the card behind it. Clever!
      Note that some early videos show another way to tuck, but the 2.0 version is now the one requested.

      The best hint I can give you about how to pack is to check out one of Sandy’s videos where she unpacks someone’s box. Then you can see how the cards are packaged. Since each package, whether it contains one card or 200, needs the same amount of paperwork on Sandy’s end (recording, sending e-mail receipts, etc.), the most efficient way is to use a medium or large flat rate priority US Post Office box. I usually send a medium, which holds 150 or more cards.

      Here’s a link to a random video, one in which you can see how there’s absolutely no packing material (paper or bubble wrap) that Sandy would have to haul to the recycling center, how there’s just one small slip of paper separating the sections of various themes, and how there are duplicates of some cards.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJxclNSC7fM&index=16&list=PL9ubSa5rsM-m7JsWVVyX_E60piGTLBsv6

      Pack cards by categories, so see http://operationwritehome.org/deadlines/ to see what they are. There’s a wealth of other information on that page as well.

      All my cards for Heroes to write home on are blank inside, giving them the maximum space to use for their message. Every card is looked at since they’re sorted individually into piles to go into boxes overseas. Any Hero cards, however, are read for suitability. If I send many cards all with the same message, I put a note with them to alert the reader so each card won’t need to be read.

      Hope this helps!
      Sandy, if this message is too long, please delete it. I got carried away!

  120. Paulette

    My Hero cards got delayed in sending and many of them mention “July 4th” celebrations. Hold on to them & wait till next year? Thanks.

    • You could add a note to the bottom of each card saying, “Oops! This was written in July but life got in the way and here I am sending it in August! But my thanks to you for your service never go out of season!” I don’t thing it would be necessary, really, because I bet our heroes would love to hear of stateside happenings no matter what the time of year, just as long as it’s normal American life they’re fighting to protect.

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