Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Personalized Mug Just For Fidget

My sister Fidget is away at military school…by choice. Squirt told me it would be punishment for her to be there, but Fidget is loving it.

Anyway, Mom, NLB and Squirt went up for Parents’ Weekend and I wanted to send Fidget something. I’d planned on sending her a care package in the mail before now, but it just hadn’t happened yet. So I told Mom I wanted to send something when they went. I had grand plans to have Caedmon create some spectacular piece of art and then I realized that I would be the one putting forth most of the effort. And she’s probably not allowed to display works of art such as that in her room, even if it is from her eldest nephew.

But Fidget did have a few requests, one of them being some of Mom’s homemade hot chocolate mix. You don’t know what you really miss until you move away from home and don’t have things like that available. I quickly learned to keep some of that stuff around the house at all times! So Mom prepared to send her some hot chocolate mix and asked if I could come up with some “accessories” to go with it. I was glad to.

We sent marshmallows and a package of plastic spoons. She was excited to get them. Her text to me said, “I was actually in desperate need of spoons.” Who’d have thought spoons would rate so high?

89It's amazing how important the small things are...like plastic spoons

I got her an insulated mug with a lid, but I also wanted her to have something a little more special and personal. I wanted to paint a mug at one of those ceramics places, but the one I was thinking of has either moved or gone out of business. So I decided to give it a shot myself.

The paint marker I used for Caedmon’s room says it’s appropriate for writing on glass. How well it will hold up, I have no idea. But we’ll find out. Or rather, Fidget will.

91Emily w her hot chocolate mug that Caedmon and Melissa personalized for her

Here’s how I made it:

I bought this glass mug for about $3. I got it at Bed, Bath & Beyond, but I’m sure you could find them other places. That’s just where I happened to be at the time.


Not quite the perfect mug, but it’ll do.

Then, I decided what I wanted on the mug. I measured the area I wanted to use on the mug and sized the lettering appropriately and printed it. When you make your design, you’ll have to keep in mind that the bottom of the mug is smaller than the top. So the letters will start to curve upward. It becomes more pronounced the further down into the mug you go. I could’ve compensated by bending the lettering in my software, but I didn’t want to get that technical with it. Plus, I didn’t have that much to say. I also washed the mug well and let it dry completely and come back to room temperature from the hot water.

Next, I cut the lettering out and taped it to the inside of the mug. I used painter’s tape, but regular Scotch tape or masking tape would probably work just fine.


Then, I carefully traced the lettering on the outside of the mug using my paint marker. It’s really weird since the lettering is actually behind the glass, but I managed ok I think.


I let that dry well and moved the paper to the other side of the mug since I wanted to have the lettering on both sides.


Now both sides had the lettering.


I wanted Caedmon to be able to add his personal touch without messing up the words. So I taped a piece of paper over the outside of the mug, being careful not to get the tape on any of the marker. I didn’t think it would hurt it, but I didn’t want to take the risk since it hadn’t had long to dry.


Then I held the mug and let Caedmon go to town. He had a great time drawing on the mug he’d helped choose for Aunt Fidget. Here’s the finished product – I just stuck the paper down in there so you could see his “design” better.


After Fidget used it for the first time, she texted me to tell Caedmon the mug he sent was awesome. He was sleeping at the time…college kids stay up late, you know. But I made sure he knew. And the pictures made him happy (although he was wondering why she didn’t take a picture with the marshmallows). I’m glad the mug made Fidget happy, and hopefully it will be a good reminder that we love her.

It works for us…and hopefully for Fidget. For more Works for Me Wednesday, head on over to We Are THAT Family.

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  1. You are a sweet sister! Maybe you will rub off on Jill. Ha! I'm only kidding!

  2. this post made me smile so much. what a thoughtful gift and i love the pictures of your sister getting it :) those kinds of gifts are priceless. thanks for sharing the idea!

  3. Homemade Hot Chocolate Mix. One more thing to add to the Top Ten Best Barter Items in the college dorm.

  4. Curly1:27 PM

    Mom, your hot chocolate mix could easily make the Top Ten Best Barter Items of ALL TIME!

    Too bad Wal-Mart doesn't barter!