August 9th.

A significant date in my life, forever, for two reasons:

- our wedding anniversary (8.9.08)
- birth of our son (8.9.12)

Obviously our sweet little boy is a total thunder stealer, and his birthday celebration now trumps our anniversary.

But, my husband and I have tried really hard (and succeeded 99.9% of the years) on celebrating our anniversary, especially by abiding by the "traditional" gift/symbol for each year. 

Here's a run down (in case you need an idea of your own, of course):

1st Anniversary: Paper
         Him: bed and breakfast reservation, printed on paper
         Me: watch (non-traditional option)

2nd: Cotton
         Him: t-shirt with artsy picture of Park Guell (Barcelona) printed on it
          Her: custom tailored dress shirt from local tailor

3rd: Leather
          Him: wallet with French Bulldog painted on from Etsy
          Her:  leather satchel

4th: Fruit/Flowers
           Him: flowers!
           Her: a newborn baby (I win)

5th: Wood
            Him: list of important dates (birthdays, anniversary, dog born, child born) written on wood
             Her: picture of us transferred on wood to hang (both Etsy gifts)

6th: Candy/Iron
            Him: two, antique cast iron kettles from awesome, local antique shop
            Her: cast iron pot filled with his favorite candy

7th: Copper
            Him:  Copper tray from awesome, local antique shop referenced above
            Her: vintage, copper fire extinguisher....from same place

8th: Bronze...........a.k.a. THIS YEAR'S ANNIVERSARY!!!!
             Him: oil rubbed bronze house numbers and bronze-coated frying pans
             Her:  the whole purpose of this blog post.......see below.

So.....Bronze? We had obviously gotten each other many "metal themed" things the past two years, so I was trying to think outside of the box for this one. 

I also have had an entire shoebox full of honeymoon mementos and maps that we used to travel (yes, I think our honeymoon predated any type of convenient GPS and certainly the iPhone) from Barcelona to Cannes with that I've been wanting to do SOMETHING visual with.  I love looking through all of the restaurant cards, tickets, etc. and have been trying to think of a fun way to display them in our home.

I've seen before (on Pinterest, obvi) where people have literally sewn their honeymoon travel onto a map.  I've done this before for a 1st birthday gift for my niece, and it took .......forever.  The thought of sewing a route from Barcelona to Cannes was very daunting to me.  What else could I use to connect the cities and make it stand out on a map????..........


I started by connecting the two maps (Spain and France, for those of you not hip to geography) with.....hot glue.  Then, I went for it and traced the road we drove from Point A to Point B to Point C.

After it dried, I went over it again.  I like how it was kind of bumpy and rugged, not perfect.
See how the red roads go to a peak over Avignon and we went straight across instead?  It was a shortcut.  And we almost got into a gigantic car accident when the car we were behind, traveling about 60 mph (whatever the hell that is in kilometers) put his complete breaks on in an attempt to get us to rear-end him.  Quick swerving in our "Mr. Bean" Mercedes/lawn mower from my new groom saved our lives.  Glad to have that short cut documented now!!!!!

Next, the bronze aspect of it.  Poking through my paint supplies, I came across this gilding paint stuff from Martha Stewart that I bought at Michael's. 
Gold is almost bronze. (insert timely Olympics joke) Unless you're Michael Phelps. 

I traced the hot glue with the gilding.....

Finished map path.....

Last, I took a trip to Michael's (twist my arm) and bought a large poster frame and a roll of cream colored craft paper to use as backing.  Brought everything home and arranged the map and mementos on the craft paper, cut to size using the poster frame insert, and, you guessed it.....hot glued it all down.  The smell of hot glue is intoxicating. 

And yes, that's 10 Euro you see in the picture.  If we ever venture to Europe again, perhaps we'll crack open the frame and gently peel the bill off of its hot glue strip.  That's like.....$17 bucks!

Here's the finished product, that I think he loved....

What do you think? Now what's 9 years.......pottery.  Hmm.....