About Alexandra Heep

About Alexandra Heep: The internet has allowed allowed Alexandra to maintain a semblance of life when encountering an unexpected, lingering health crisis. The Internet is a lifeline which not only allows her to remain connected to friends, but also survive, via writing.While Alexandra Heep is her pen name, she does not hide behind it. Instead, she used it to brand herself on the Internet and to create opportunities.

Alexandra published her first book, a collection of her best poems, on July 11, 2012. You can buy it at Lulu.com

Support independent publishing: Buy this book on Lulu.

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Review: Christopher Arndt Postcards

I first found out about Christopher Arndt postcards from an ad on a favorite website. The ad said you could receive a free pack of Chicago-themed postcards. Now, I rarely pay attention to advertising, no matter where it’s placed. Actually, I pretty much dislike advertising altogether, especially when they promise “free stuff.”

What made this different? Well, like I said, it appeared on a favorite, trusted website, Postcrossing, and it advertised one of my favorite items: postcards. See, Postcrossing is a postcard exchange website and you wouldn’t believe how hard it is to find decent postcards.

You probably didn’t know that people still wrote those! See, that’s my point. When I first started on the site in March 2017, I combed the area for tourist postcards. I live in the Chicago suburbs, so you would think they would be easy to come by as we don’t exactly live in the boondocks. Wrong.

After trying about a dozen places or so in our area, I found some in a liquor store … for $2 a piece, plus tax. Since Cook County has the highest tax rate in the USA, it came to $2.25 a card. Since the cards had no price tag and we grabbed 10 off the rack, it was sticker shock. Yet, it would have been embarrassing to put them back, so we paid. Yikes!

What about online? Well, sure you can get some. For about $4 to $5 a piece, once you count shipping. I don’t think so! Anyway, of course I don’t click on ads, so I memorized the website (https://www.christopherarndtpostcards.com/), opened another browser window, and checked it out.

There it was, all you had to do for a free pack of postcards was to give your mailing address. No hidden costs, no shipping and handling, no gimmicks. Two days later, the envelope was already in my mail box. And … there were FIVE big cards that measured 5x8 inches each! All with different designs of Chicago landmarks and city views. I don’t think I have ever seen 5x8 cards.

So, I sent them out one by one and received excellent feedback from the recipients. Since I had such a good experience with the site, I decided to purchase some postcards. I placed my order on the site, and within half an hour I had an email stating that some of the cards I ordered could not be fulfilled right away because of an issue beyond their control. I was given several options, and I asked for substitutions.  I still received my order within 48 hours, and I received a few cards extra.

I placed another order when I used these cards up, and I had them again within 48 hours, plus a personal notification that they had been shipped about half an hour within placement of order.
In a nutshell, I like this website because of the excellent, personal customer service. 

Also, the prices per card are low (65 cents for a regularly sized card and 99 cents for a 5 x 8 card), and you don’t get hammered with shipping charges like other sites do when they offer low prices on their items. I think I paid 88 cents shipping for 5 cards. Anyway, you will see the shipping charges calculated in your shopping cart before you check out.

I also love the assortment of Chicago-themed cards. This is the only site I have found that pays homage to the Chicago-style hot dog and the deep-dish pizza. This is important because many people who collect postcards ask for cards that depict dishes/foods from the sender’s region. Collectors also often ask for trains, buildings, architecture, skylines, nighttime views, lighthouses, bridges, fountains, sports stadiums, churches/cathedrals, and Ferris wheels. All of these are represented in the inventory.

What if you don’t live in the Chicago area or don’t want Chicago-themed cards? Well, they ship anywhere in the U.S., plus the site now has a large selection of New York city and Route 66 postcards. These work well for sending outside the U.S. because everyone seems to know about NYC, and of course Route 66 is known worldwide. You can also get postcards that depict scenes from Door County (WI), Detroit, and several Illinois locales (small-town USA).

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