My husband has gotten the kids into collecting. My son who is 11 likes to collect everything and I do mean just about everything. When they go to sporting events, he runs around after the game and finds programs, give away items, and anything else he thinks might be collectible. My daughter who is 6 gets stuff not because she’s into collecting, but because her brother got stuff, lol. My husband has a great way for the kids to get sport team collectibles for next to nothing and free shipping, and the kids love it.
First let me explain which sports they do this for. They usually do this for baseball, football, hockey, and sometimes basketball, and sometimes minor leagues too, like the International League AAA Baseball, American Hockey League as well. The process usually doesn’t take place until about 2 months after that sports season has started, then you know team pictures are done, or preseason programs and player cards might be available.
So as an example for this past fall and winter, my son did The National Football League, and my daughter did the National Hockey League. First thing is the folding card table and chairs come out and the kids have pencils or pens in hand. Dad goes to his computer and prints out the pre-written letters that say I am a fan of the team and was wondering if you could send me some stuff. Then dad brings up a list of teams with their mailing addresses, which is usually the stadiums which is available online. Then he prints them up and cuts them out so the kids can put them on the envelopes.
The kids then put their names on the letters and team names that they are writing, put the letters into the envelopes, put the printed addresses on the envelopes, seal them up, put stamps on them and the go off to the post office. So as you can see, total cost is .44 cents for the stamps per envelope, each league is different but there are roughly 30-32 teams, so around $15.00 total cost.
Then the waiting game begins, everyday when the kids get home from school, there is a mad dash for the mailbox looking for envelopes addressed to them. Some envelopes are smaller business letter size envelopes, some are bigger white envelopes, some are big yellow envelopes and some are quite heavy too. The girl opens hers right away, the boy waits until his dad gets home from work, but feels the envelope trying to figure out what’s inside.
The kids have received some great collectibles in those envelopes from the teams. Some teams do a really nice job for the kids and some put very little effort into it. I’ve seen the envelopes opened, and seen just a letter inside thanking the kids for their support and a pocket size team schedule, or team merchandise catalog and that is it, but better than nothing for .44 cents.
Then there are the great teams, that really cater to the kids, and they get so excited, it’s like a birthday for them. I’ve seen them get, pucks, team rally towels, team pictures, player trading cards, team pencils, temporary tatoos, stickers, Game Day Programs, preseason programs, key chains, and much more that I can’t even remember right now. Sometimes when the kids get stuff and it’s multiples of the same thing, as an example my daughter got a few sheets of tatoos and her brother didn’t get a team that day, so she gave him one of the sheets. Another time her brother got a team and he got a few team pencils and he gave his sister one. It’s a great time because for a change they aren’t arguing and annoying each other.
I remember one of the kids but I can’t remember which one now got an envelope and I want to say it was from the Nashville Predators of the National Hockey League a year or two ago and it was loaded. The big envelope had a Nashville Predator hockey puck, a team rally towel, pencils, stickers, a letter and maybe a team program. It was incredible, I think that was the best batch of stuff the kids got ever. And all for the price of a stamp and their effort to finish up the letter and put it all together, I think it’s great. All the teams getting back to the kids, sparks their interest in sports and teams as well and it’s good fun.
Anyways, I just wanted to share that with you tonight, that it’s a good project for the kids, they get to sit at the table together and work on it together. They learn the process of doing their own mail, and the anticipation of getting their very own mail. I love watching them open the envelopes, I can see how happy they are that their efforts are being rewarded. I’ve always heard the term you don’t get nothing for nothing, but this is pretty darn close.