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I’ve often admired other people’s handwriting. I’ve tried to make my own legible, and some have commented that they like it. But I’ve always thought it could be better. And I envy those who are able to add flourishes and loops that make their handwriting look SO COOL. To that end I recently ordered Mott Media’s Spencerian System of Practical Penmanship from Amazon. And they arrived on Friday.

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The original edition of this system was published in 1874. In 1985 Mott Media reissued the original from their fragile state. The book is intended for children learning how to write, of course, but also for adults who want to improve their handwriting. I’m sure this is the system I learned in elementary school although I don’t think we used this book in particular.

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The original text has been unchanged except where needed (changing the spelling of hight to height) and is quite serious about posture and sitting in a desk properly, as well as using your inkstand correctly. I’m really excited to start practicing my letters.

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These 5 numbered books are the copy books, where the letters and numbers are practiced. Each book focuses on a different area: book 1 introduces the short letters, book 2 adds some of the tall letters (like t and d) and the numbers 1 to 9, book 3 completes the lower case alphabet and introduces most of the capitals, book 4 completes the capitals, and book 5 presents sentences and sayings for writing practice.

Truth be told I fell in love with the covers of these copy books. Look at that detail! Just breathtaking.

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Here’s a shot of the inside of one of the practice books.  That’s a lot of practicing. But you would be an expert by the end of the book. Can’t wait to get started!

In addition to these books I ordered a set of 8 Pilot Frixion Ball Erasable Gel Roller pens, along with a set of 3 Erasable Highlighters.

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I’m coming late to the party with these pens, as there have been a lot of reviews and talk about these pens/highlighters. They do the job as advertised and they are fun to use.

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Here are the pens, in their various colours. Very smooth, nice writers. Bright colours.

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And  here is the same writing with a few letters erased. In some instances you can still see the ghost of the letters but I think that was more a problem of me not applying the eraser long enough, rather than a failure of the ink to erase.

I really like these pens, especially for use in my planner, where space is limited and I like to be neat and tidy. My only complaint is that the eraser tip is covered by the pen cap when I post the cap, which I like to do when I write. I have to undo the posting in order to erase. A small complaint but I did find it annoying.

I also ordered three erasable highlighters, in pink, yellow and orange.

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I was less impressed with these. In the writing sample above I made the mistake of using erasable pen underneath the erasable highlighter, so everything went when I applied the eraser tip! And you can still see the ghost of the word and highlighting that was erased. In the 4th example I used one of my Slicci multipens and probably applied the highlighter too early; the words smudged. And the smudging is revealed in all its glory when the highlighter is erased. But this system is good if you are a die hard devotee of colour coding and a mistake is discovered. I wanted to try them but I doubt I will erase any highlight I apply. I suppose it is nice to have the option, again to keep things nice and tidy in my planner. I could always apply highlight to those items on my To Do List that are not yet done, and remove the highlight when they are completed.

So there you have it – my latest order from Amazon. The shipping date was originally listed as mid-March; so nice to get things early. If you have any experience with any of these items please let me know in the comments.