Mark & Sue Pepe hail from Kensington, CT USA.

After finding our initial box in June 2002, we have since found letterboxes in 18 states and placed them in 13 states; 4 countries: Aruba, Bermuda, The Netherlands, Great Britain; and on a cruise ship! Thanks for stopping by our website and we appreciate your continued support.

"Have fun and just get out there & box!!!"

Email us: (Mark) or (Sue)

Monday, October 23, 2006

Computer Woes~

The pinecone computer is in a bad way.

Our email is toasted and who knows what else. We received a virus early last week and our anti-virus software caught it and segregated it. But since then, our computer is very slow and late last week we couldn't do a thing with it. That's the reason for our lack of posting.

I'm writing from work just to let you know we'll be out of commission for a while. If you sent us email of any kind last week, we think it's gone. We'll advise when we're up and running and please resend those First Finds, Mystery Day boxes, etc. Thanks.

Ain't technology great???

posted by Mark and Sue at Monday, October 23, 2006

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Mystery Box Day Page Updated

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We are just about up-to-date with those entries of Mystery Box Day boxes that were emailed to us. We have only one box to do and that one belongs to the Lazy Letterboxer. We have some images to download and place on a page and then will link those clues. In addition, we'll be updating her Couch page with some recent plantings that we've missed.

Thanks to all who sent us boxes to post and those that planted a box for this event. Hopefully, this will create a new interest in mystery boxes for some time to come.

posted by Mark and Sue at Saturday, October 14, 2006

Abraham, Martin & John

What a wonderful day it was today in central CT and I'm sure anywhere in the East! The sky was that deep blue, there was a chill in the air and the leaves (those that haven't already fallen) are very colorful.

While mowing our yard today (an activity that has spawned more than one letterboxing idea!) I remembered that song from "back in the day." The song, "Abraham, Martin and John" started playing in my head. For no apparent reason. Then - the lightening bolt struck! Last night I had just finished carving a Martin Luther King stamp . . . and we placed a box with an image of JFK called Hyannis Hero earlier this year . . . and for the Spring gathering in Glastonbury, we carved Lotsa Lincolns, which we still have yet to place permanently.

So - Abraham - Martin - and John! We are going to make a bonus stamp for anyone who gets all 3 of these boxes. Might be a little bit of a challenge since we plan to place Lotsa Lincolns on the grounds of Hildene (home to Robert Todd Lincoln - the President's son) located in Manchester, VT. Hyannis Hero (JFK) is located on the Cape. Just not sure of where we'll plant the Martin Luther King box but it will premiere on his birthday in January.

How do we get you the bonus? We'll plant the bonus box and send you the clues once you email or mail us proof of the images from all of the 3 boxes. Not a bad afternoon here in Pineconeville - a freshly mowed lawn and an idea for a new letterbox!

posted by Mark and Sue at Saturday, October 14, 2006

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A Mystery Box Planting Day Page!

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After some work, we've created a page of those entries for October 7 Mystery Planting Day. We've only included the boxes that were emailed to us by their owners. There are many more boxes planted for this day located on the LBNA and Atlas Quest. Click the detective above to see the page with the entries we've received so far. Nice to see this onslaught of mystery boxes. Many told us in their emails that they had never planted a mystery box before and found it fun. This was the main intent on bringing this to the forefront - to challenge boxers to produce some creative and different letterboxes. We think you'll get a kick out of many of these boxes!

If you would like your mystery box added to this page, be sure that the clues say the it is "part of the Mystery Box Planting Day" and email us with the name of the box and your trail name. Please allow several days for us to add your entry. We are currently up to date with the entries sent to us by 9:30pm Tuesday. Thanks!

posted by Mark and Sue at Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Our 2 New "Mystery Box Day" Contributions

Our two newest boxes, planted in conjuction with Mystery Box Planting Day on October 7 are:

Solitude - one of our best carvings ever. We're pretty critical of our abilities but it's one of which we are pretty proud. The location, as well, is a lovely spot for a picnic. Hope you enjoy this one!

Eagle's Eye View - a box featuring a hand-carved stamp from Don, of Don & Gwen, that was given to us during our Oregon trip back in June. This is a great stamp that we hope you easterners will enjoy. The location is one of our most favorite places.

At some point during the coming week, we plan to get working on a page with all of the Mystery Day boxes that were planted by other boxers. If you would like your contribution included, it must have the byline "part of the Mystery Box Planting Day" in the clues and you must send us your trail name and the boxes name. We will only include those boxes that are emailed to us giving permission to be posted on this special page.

posted by Mark and Sue at Sunday, October 08, 2006

Friday, October 06, 2006

Lend a Helping Hand!

We received several emails the past few weeks from letterboxers who feel misunderstood and outcast for various reasons. One of them really affected us and made us stop and reflect.

This boxer had a shaky start on a few of the talk lists when they authored a post that didn't sound quite kosher. In no time, this newbie was jumped on like the proverbial pigpile as more and more people heaped a bunch of ill will on this person. It didn't take long for the flame to begin. Being the optimist, this boxer attended a gathering and was shunned and left to box along. Now they do their own thing and feel left out of the community.

When this boxer emailed me, I didn't exactly remember what had happened but I distinctly remember a flame was involved! Well, this boxer told me that they are mentally challenged and those posts that sounded wrong were not meant to be that way on purpose. This boxer was a child of an abuser and didn't need a rash of hate posts that followed.

Maybe I'm being a softie or expecting too much from letterboxers but isn't it easier to treat a new person with respect and give them the benefit of the doubt before we attack them? As we have tried to point out, their posts could be colored by a past that they don't wish to share; but one that affects their daily life. Don't they have as much right to post and become active letterboxers? As a community, shouldn't we be more caring and accepting of those that really need the help and nurturing?

Let's face it - letterboxing mirrors society as a whole. We have our share of comedians, do-gooders, ambassador and even crabs and trolls. And yes, we even have some members that are mentally challenged. Is one segment of our boxing society more important than another? We think not - it's that blend of good and wackiness; the boxing ying and yang, that keeps this game ever interesting.

Maybe offering goodwill isn't what this hobby is about. But tell Dogs with Wings or Desi and Darren, who were supported by this community when hard times came their way. We should be open to emotional support as well.

Every person has a side that, once we open ourselves to accept them, becomes evident. I haven't, in our 55 years, met a person who didn't have a side of them that made them special. All I can think of is that song from long ago - "Everyone is Beautiful" and the song goes on to say "in their own way." What beauty are you missing by not opening yourselves to someone in this hobby?

By the way - do you like these photos in this article? We think they're great. And by the way - they were taken by that mentally challenged boxer we've been talking about.

Pretty cool, huh? Did we make our point?
Just get out there and show some boxing love~

posted by Mark and Sue at Friday, October 06, 2006

Don't Forget Tomorrow Is Mystery Day!

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Saturday, October 7th is International Plant A Mystery Box Day! Hope your contributions are out there already planted or just about ready. Sue & I planted one during our VT vacation several weeks ago. We'll have our clues up by Monday.

I received an email which spawned an idea. If you have planted a mystery box and have the line in your clues recognizing "Plant A Mystery Box Day," you are eligible to email your clue name and your trail name to us and we will compile a page on this blog for International Mystery Day, which will include your contribution. Don't forget the name of your box and your trail name. If you can send the link for the clue, that would be even better! Let's see how many entries we can get.

If I don't hear from you, I will not post your clue without permission. Thanks - and get out there and plant a mystery box!!!

posted by Mark and Sue at Friday, October 06, 2006

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Premiere of Another Rae Record Film!!!

Well she did it!

Rae (the devil) said she'd get that film ready of the group of us looking for her Phantom of the Boardwalk this past Saturday evening. You'll laugh; you'll cry; and you'll wonder how we ever find a letterbox!

That being said - here it is!

posted by Mark and Sue at Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Cape + Boxes + Beautiful Weather = FUN!

We left our house at about 7:30 Saturday morning with our sights set for the Cape. Those that know us realize that we're always late! And it's not me!

So - for weeks, I've been telling Sue that the Great Cape Escape gathering started at 10:00, instead of the real 11:00 hour! So, for the first time in our lives, we were at a gathering before it actually started. Felt great but Sue vowed to start checking future gathering pages to verify the real time. Guess I can't use that trick again! :-)

At 10:45, there already was a line at the signup table that was manned by the Capers - those 5 talented gals who were responsible for the gathering: Cape Cod Letterboxer, Mumma & Bunny Boy, Chunna, Archimedes Screw and Cape Cod Lightning Bug. The day could not have been any better - bright blue sky with cool temperatures - perfect letterboxing weather! Once registered, you were given a folder that contained most of the clues and a trail map. After greeting a few friends, both old and new, we headed out to find some boxes.

The Lighthouse Series, the gathering's theme, was our favorite with images of all of the main lighthouses on the Cape. They were artfully-carved with a lot of detail. We ooohed and aaahed at every box. There were other special boxes also hidden for the event, including a box by Orion called "Sailor's Valentine," which was a very creatively made and a wonderful stamp. Shades of Elsie the Cow from the Ice Scream gathering!

At some point before the event on the special Yahoo talk list created by the Capers for the event, the gauntlet was thrown down to Sue & I by Rae Record! On our last trip to the Cape, we unsuccessfully attempted, with the Lazy Letterboxer and the Letterboxing Ham, to find The Phantom of the Boardwalk by Rae. After emailing Rae and telling her about our adventures, she told us that we were probably stepping on the box when we found the geocache that was there!

So Rae decides to lure us in to finding The Phantom, and CapeCodLetterboxers asks about doing it at night, like we were supposed to last time, and before we knew it there are 12 of us heading out to meet at 6:30 for a date with Rae and her Phantom.

After fumbling around a while - it wasn't pretty - Sue finally found the box. In our defense, the geocache by the box was missing, it was dark during most of our search and the beach topography had dramatically changed since our last search. Unbeknownst to us, Brandy had found the box while the rest of us were off searching farther away and never told the group. But Sue officially found the box as well so we're somewhat vindicated! The worst thing of it all was that Rae was taping us with her camera but the battery cut out and she thought the only thing she caught was the audio - which couldn't be as damaging as the video!

But, yesterday I received an email from Rae. It seems that darned battery in that old video camera was working just fine and she has about 15 good minutes of film. D'oh!!! She asked me to send out an email to all of those in attendance to request their permission to allow her to publish the video!! Just what I need! She told me I was almost stepping on the box a number of times and has it on film to prove it! She's evil! Really!

If permission is received from all of the filmed parties, look for it here in the near future . . . . or maybe not! :-)

Hope your weekend was as wonderful as ours. Thanks to the Capers for putting together a delightful gather. Your hard work paid off - it was a huge hit. Can't wait til next year's event.

posted by Mark and Sue at Tuesday, October 03, 2006