Great Lakes Aquarium


Duck Feet - Track - Day 50
_AAB0388, originally uploaded by AABIV.

If you happen to be passing through Duluth, MN and the kids are getting antsy (or your husband.) Stop at the Aquarium. We spent about 2 hours their but it could definitely be made into a 45 min stop and than on the road again, although Aidan would argue that it takes at least 4 hours to adequately explore. It is all freshwater fish, and we made it just in time for the otter feeding. Aidan also got to have a front (and only row seat) to the parrot feeding. There were ducks, turtles, and an amazing two-story lake fish tank. Believe me, its worth every cent.


Easy Enough Stenciled Cup

Stenciled Mug Side View B, originally uploaded by hannahlaura.

So lately I have been dabbling in painting dishware. Its easy enough to find at the thrift store, the whole process takes about two days and it is the perfect thing to do while little ones sleep since you don’t have to drag out a lot of supplies. I had done one cup already freehand… but had another cup laying around that I wanted to try this idea I had to get crisper lines .

Here is what you need:
A piece of dishware
Glass paint ( I used this brand )
A paint brush
Contact paper (white or clear)
Some images/sillhouttes
A printer
A scissors or X-acto Knife

What to do:

Using whatever imaging software you prefer layout out your sillhouttes/ images using the finest outline and not filled.
Cut your contact paper to 8.5X11 and put it into the printer. Print out the images onto the contact paper ( The reason for using the finest outline is that your ink will smear, since you are printing on a plastic. However I found using the thinnest outline, and being careful what your touch while you cut, ad you will get good results.)

Next , cut out all your shapes. Than the fun part, just start sticking on your shapes on to the cup in whatever design you like being careful to press down all the edges.

With the Glass paint, paint over all the shapes and area of cup that you want covered.

According to the paint I used I had to let it sit for 24 hours.

Remove all the contact paper from the cup, to reveal your design.
I than went through and cleaned up any uneven lines and smudges that might have happened. ( An X-acto knife or your fingernail work good for this!)

If you see any spots that need to be repainted do so and let dry for recommended amount of time again.

Bake according to manufacture’s instructions.

*My only regret with this project is that I layered the paint on heavy to try and hide some of the brushstrokes and I wish I would have just been more patient and tried to brush the strokes out…So beware the brushstokes and if anyone has a great idea on how to avoid them, please let me know!*

Stencil Mug Side View A

Valentines Day Present for Hubby

So here is what I came up with for the homemade present for Arty for V-day from his family. Lately he has been obsessed with finding a plant for his desk, and I thought that this would be great since it was also a little reminder what exactly he spends so many hours at the desk slaving awy for. Us, his little family that loves him more than anything.

Close up of Planter goodies

This project cost me nothing, I had the sedum already grwoing, the container was an old container we had around from when Arty tried keeping a cactus and the modeling clay was from college.  I got the idea from an Etsy store from a long time ago, it sold all these tiny houses for terrariums and I always thought it wouldn’t be to hard to duplicate.  All in all a relatively fast project with a nice outcome. The little white house  is just swoon worthy to me. Can’t you see a whole windowsill lined with these tiny houses?

Big Socks….Not Big Foot


We live in Minnesota so on Sunday mornings when the floors are cold, you are still on your first cup of coffee you grab the nearest pair of socks, for your loved one with cold feet. This pair just ended up being thigh highs on him. I didn’t have a camera handy but I had my sketchbook. He even helped with the drawing – all the atmospheric scribbles are his. Hope every one had a good weekend!