Tag Archives: commemorate a trip

The Best Souvenirs

Now that summer is coming to an end, and all the travel that goes along with it, I’d love to know…Did you pick up any fun souvenirs on vacations this year? 

When I was a kid, souvenirs felt like SUCH a necessity. Visiting kitschy shops at beaches, amusement parks, and roadside attractions felt like a cruel joke if I didn’t at least get to select ONE item to come home with me. The allure of some magnet with my name on it or a toy representative of the past day’s adventure too difficult to resist whining about.

Nowadays, souvenirs fall into that careful balance of knowing I don’t need any additional tchochkes cluttering my home, but also wanting to take out an insurance policy on fleeting travel memories. With that in mind, I’ve developed a few categories of purchases I employ when looking to commemorate a trip…

Little things to tuck in a memory box, like a postcard or patch, are a go-to of mine. Not a huge investment, so I feel ok that it’s only going to be admired in those days I’m feeling extra nostalgic and pull down the box to sift through my collection of random ephemera.

But I don’t mind splurging on a high-quality consumable. A bottle of wine local to the area that can be uncorked months later. A lotion with a scent to transport me back to our travels. A candle from a sweet seaside shop or a box of local chocolate from the corner store.

And speaking of chocolate, let’s go ahead and put cooking ingredients in a category all their own. Something like a beautiful bottle of local olive oil, whole bean coffee from a cafe you fell in love with, or a couple teeny tiny jars of spices that easily tuck in your backpack. I also love this as an option if you’re tasked with bringing back a goodie for a co-worker or family member. A friend of mine gifted me a little tin of paprika she bought on a trip to Hungary and I thought about her and her adventure every time I sprinkled it in a dish for months to come.

Finally, there’s what I consider the daily item. These I reserve for truly special trips. I want to be transported to those memories frequently, so something like a piece of jewelry or a scarf fits the bill. For a lower budget option, I would go for something like a coffee mug or a small print I can transport carefully home and frame. Basically an item that I can seamlessly incorporate into my daily life…not one that is emblazoned with the city or attraction I visited. Those seem like a good idea in the moment, but then get shoved to the back of a closet.

Which of these categories do you normally go for? Have your own strategy when it comes to souvenirs? Let me know in the comments below! xoxo

P.S. This would be a fun way to commemorate your trip once you’ve returned home!

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DIY: Stitch a trip.

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Recently, my brother and his girlfriend moved from Danville, KY to Savannah, GA. Lucky lil ducks, I say. I decided to do a little DIY brainstorming for ways to commemorate their big move with a crafty gift. I settled upon a project which ended up being a super easy afternoon endeavor that I’m sure anyone could replicate. Simply hand-stitch a map from point A to point B. Honestly, the toughest part about this craft was finding a suitable map. This would be a great way to remember a meaningful vacation, study-abroad trip or long distance trail hike and would look so sweet hanging amongst other frames on a mixed-media gallery wall.

What you’ll need:

– Map

– Embroidery Thread

– Embroidery Needle

– Frame

And how it all comes together:

– Find a suitable map and cut it to fit your frame. My map was torn from a book of U.S. maps that I found in a discount book bin.

– Sketch out the route and embellishments with a pencil (very lightly). I went with the route, an “X” at point A, a heart at point B and initials.

– Use your needle to poke evenly spaced holes over top of your sketch. Erase any visible pencil marks.

–  Sew through all your holes using a backstitch. (In layman’s terms–Start by threading the needle from the back of the paper through the second hole. Then insert the needle in the first hole and pull through the third. Etc. Clear as mud?)

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-Frame and admire your handi-work!

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