A Walk on the Beach

I grew up near Lake Michigan so we spent a lot of time at the beaches when we were kids. These days, I like to take advantage of any chance I can get to visit the beach. It was really foggy in the morning, so it was cool to watch the fog over the water. The water was still freezing cold, but it was so refreshing and relaxing to walk on the beach before the crowds got there for a sunny afternoon.

Bradford Beach Milwaukee

fog at Bradford Beach

waves at Bradford BeachBradford Beachfeather at Bradford Beach feather at Bradford Beach zebra mussel shells at Bradford Beach

Hope you’re out experiencing some adventures during these last days of summer!


Discovery World

We spent the afternoon of my birthday at the Discovery World museum in Milwaukee.

Discovery World Museum

We’ve never been there, so it was a fun adventure exploring all the cool exhibits. We plan to go back to check out some of the exhibits we didn’t have time for. One of the things I love about these types of museums is the exhibits are interactive, so I feel like I get more out of the experience. I also love that museums change their exhibits to keep things fresh.

in the Freshwater exhibit

They have a freshwater exhibit that shows advancements in freshwater management and a huge diorama-type layout of the Great Lakes. There area a variety of fossils, as well as live fish aquariums and other creatures to see up-close.

turtle fossil

small turtle

They have other exhibits demonstrating innovations in football gear, advancements in energy production, and a cool section full of innovations in engineering and design. Did you know Milwaukee is a well-known for engineering and design innovations? (Think Briggs & Stratton and Rockwell Automation.)

I had fun operating miniature versions of the retractable roof of the professional baseball stadium and the wings over the art museum.

Miller Park miniature

Each of these little displays had a button you could push to see the parts and components move.

invisible tailor

It was a very clever area.

sewing machine

One of my favorite exhibits was the Les Paul House of Sound. I had no idea how much he invented to improve guitars and expand the way people can play guitars, record and mix music.

Les Paul Exhibit

I think we can all learn from this little story, to never be satisfied with the way things are.

about Les Paul

We enjoyed a fabulous dinner at the County Clare Irish Pub in a bustling downtown neighborhood. We always have a good time exploring Milwaukee, a much bigger city where there’s a lot to do and see.

Milwaukee skyline

It was a good day.


A Girls’ Day Out

My mom and I had a girls’ day out earlier this week.

Our first stop was Utrecht Art Supply, a national chain full of every art supply a professional, amateur or student could ever need. I didn’t buy a lot because I’m waiting to get my supply list for the upcoming semester of design classes. But I thought this pad of disposable palette paper looked fun to try. It’s specially treated heavy paper, like really thick wax paper, you can put any media on, mix it up, water it down, and then throw away the paper, saving yourself the clean up mess.

We headed to the historic Third Ward, known as the new art and fashion district. We started with Broadway Paper, a stationery store full of greeting cards, calendars, notebooks, gift wrap, stationery, and gifts. It had everything I was hoping for, and reminded me of the Paper Source in Chicago, so I will definitely go back again. I bought this cool letter set, which included a great selection of vintage-style papers, airmail paper and envelopes, graph paper, ledger paper, and stickers. I am hoping to use these supplies in some handmade books I want to try making this year.

I also picked up this great magazine Anthology that can be hard to find in my neighborhood. It’s always full of interesting articles about creative people from all over the world, featuring home decor, travel, design, entertaining, and culture. This particular issue has an excellent article with Lotta Jansdotter!

We had lunch with my mom’s friends, which is always great fun! We ate well, had great conversation, and shared our goals for 2012. I brought my homemade caramels for a hostess gift, which were a hit.

After a little window-shopping at a couple more boutiques, we stopped by the yacht club for a cocktail. My husband and I got married there ten years ago, so it’s always fun to hang out and enjoy the atmosphere. Plus, they make the best mojitos!

I’m so happy we were able to spend another great day together, so I’m adding this to my list for 2012, to have a girls’ day out with my mom every month.