March 14, 2013

{Hope Notes} - A guest post by Colleen Attara

Alison's Note: I hope you all love this post as much as I do.  Someday very soon I wish to meet Colleen Attara in real life.  She is an amazing example of humanity.  During my marathon fiasco, she reached out to me and made the most amazing offer (to a complete stranger).  The world needs more random acts of gifting.  I hope you will venture out and create your own "hope notes".  Enjoy...

The first time I saw a hope note, I don’t think it was meant to be one.

I was throwing a piece of gum out in an art museum, and on the very top of the trashcan was a handwritten note that had just “I love you” written twice. 

I left the gum, took that note and I have had it ever since. 

It hangs in my studio.  And I believe with all my heart it was meant for me to find.  Somebody was saying they loved me. They said it twice.

That is what hope notes are.  Little notes of love and encouragement that you send off into the world not knowing who is going to receive them, but believing with all your heart that the right person will find them.

Last month, I wrote hope notes in honor of a friend who was celebrating a birthday.

I left them on the windows of parked cars.

I put one on someone’s bicycle seat.

I hid one in a shoe for sale. This one is not really that hidden is it? 

I left one in the corner of the window of my favorite ice cream store.  I love this one because you would need to look down to see it.

That is the best part about hope notes; you must look.  You have to open your eyes to see them.  I think that is true of hope in general.  You need to look for it to find it.

A few years ago, I took my daughter and her best friend to hide hope notes. 

My notes were deep that day.

The girl’s notes were so sweet.  They wrote things like, “your hair looks great” or  “you will get that job you want”.  Their notes asked to be opened.

 We hid them in surprising places, like this parking meter.

I encourage you to go on a hope note adventure.  Or just leave a sweet note of encouragement in with the sugar packets when you go out for breakfast.

And then trust.

And believe the person who needs your sweet words the most will find them.

Ps.  Please let me know how this goes.  Drop me a little note too.

About Colleen Attara
I am an artist and a treasure hunter. I reuse materials to make joyful art.  I take my found treasures back to my studio cottage and give them a new life. When I am not designing and creating, I teach others to make altered books that heal their spirit.  I am a painter of cities and I plant colorful recycled flower gardens everywhere I go. 


  1. What a wonderful way to sprinkle goodness and love out there, falling on exactly those who are ready for it. I am pinning this with a link to you to help spread the word so more of your "hope notes" will go out into the world.

  2. Thank you! I did not start this though. This is a movement that is big....and needed. A few years ago I had a link to the start of these little notes...but the link is no longer there. A good friend of mine had told me about this. This type of action is so what I love. Simple, quick and powerful. Please let me know when you put some out in the world.......

  3. Such a lovely post Colleen. You've inspired me to write up some love notes as well. I plan to put them between the library books I'm currently reading, so hopefully they will put a smile on a stranger's face one day soon.

    You can find my post here:

    x Tania

  4. Oh, so lovely. I love this so much! I'm definitely inspired to do some of my own!!

    Tania xo

  5. Great idea! I also do pay it forward where you buy the car behind you their meal in a drive thru line and/or you tell a person you know how grateful you are for something they have inspired in you. These actions make you feel awesome!!

  6. Glad to see that there are still so many people visiting this post...even months later! Keep spreading hope. xo Alison