The Map.

With the weather warm 2 weeks ago, I was able to get a couple of projects out of the way. One that I was really excited about was a Christmas present we’d bought for the boys, but hadn’t been able to finish until it was warm enough for me to use spray adhesive in the garage.

The boys have wanted a map for the wall for a long time, and I scoured the internet for what I wanted last fall and couldn’t find it. Shortly before Christmas I came up with this budget-friendly solution:

$5 folded Rand McNally US Map (I bought it at Borders)
2 pieces of white foam core from Hobby Lobby – about $8-10 total, I think.
1 can of spray adhesive ~$5 with tons left for other projects
1 box of map pins

Magically, the map and the foam core measured the same in one direction. Can you believe the luck? So all I had to do was put the two pieces of foam core right next to each other and then spray the dickens out of it with the adhesive. Then, I had to carefully line up the map with a the foam core; I HIGHLY suggest that you have a partner for this project if you do this…it would have been so much easier. Let it dry overnight, and then (poorly, if you’re me) cut along the edge to trim off the extra foam core.

We simply nailed this to the wall with white nails, and we’ve stuck map pins in to all of the places we’ve been! Matt and I are using green pins for the places we’ve been as a couple (places we’ve been individually don’t count on this map of togetherness), and any other color indicates a place we’ve been as a family. Frankly, there aren’t that many pins in the map…we are not well-traveled people, and the great thing is that it doesn’t really bother either of us. Yes, we’re excited to see more of the US with the boys over the next many years, but big travel just isn’t a huge priority for us and how we spend our money.

This summer, though, we are taking a fun trip, and our travel plans have all been set in the past couple of weeks. I’m so excited to take my boys to the mountains! We’re going to Colorado!

And, if you haven’t guessed, we’re driving there. So help me God.

15 responses to “The Map.

  1. Very cool, Nicole! I might have to do this too. Our map would have even fewer pins it though. 😦

  2. I’ve always wanted to do a map like that!

    If you guys ever have a hankering to put a pin in some Tennessee locations, you have a family bed and breakfast available in Nashville! We’re right on the way to the smokey mountains as well as the gulf coast/florida if you need a pit stop, but even a vacay to Music City itself would be fun… Sawyer would LOVE to have some extra boys around for a couple of days!!

  3. Is there a pin in Oswego? I couldn’t tell. But youve been here! :). That is cool!

  4. I don’t envy you one bit driving to Colorado! The state of Kansas could fall off a map and I wouldn’t be sad one bit.

  5. OMG–i LOVE it!!! nice job 🙂

  6. What a super-cool idea! You did a great job putting it together. I’ll have to ask the boys to show me each location when I’m there the next time!

  7. Love this!! I have a map I bought 3 years ago! I want to frame it on the wall and do the same thing! Its going to help hold me to stepping foot in each state by the time the kids graduate high school.

  8. Very cool idea! Love it! —The map looks so similar to the one in my parents basement which was Grampa Lee’s from his house. It has his flight plans marked in pencil. Us kids would always look at that map and come up with interesting places we’d like to visit someday. . .We let Tanner choose our family vacation this year since it’s his last year before graduation ( i know, don’t say it) and he chose the farthest place–Hawaii!

  9. After reading my own post, I must clarify something: The map looking similar to M & D’s–obviously all US maps will look similar! I meant that the states are individually colored like that–most I have seen are not that way. Anyway, didn’t want you all to think I’m crazy! 🙂

    • haha! I knew what you meant 🙂 And that’s why I felt like I had to look a little bit to find one like this, where the states aren’t all the same color! and hooray for you – Hawaii!!

  10. @Jill–I’ve always loved that map in K & S’s basement! And–Hawaii would be great! 🙂

  11. this is a great idea. one i will need to implement for adali soon! thanks for sharing.

  12. FUN! I actually was at friend’s house this past fall and they had a map like that too. They had it in a big frame with an engraving of their last name on it. It was such a fun idea! Your idea was much more economically friendly. Their map cost them some serious dough!!!

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